Underworld: Rise of the Lycans was released in theatres on 1/23/09 and on DVD and Blu-ray on 5/12/09.
I have to say, if they had started off the franchise with this movie instead of adding it as a prequel, I may have been more interested in the sequels. I hated the original and the sequel was even worse. This prequel actually could have been good if they had given it a chance, but the filmmakers really had no faith in it at all... and it shows.
It's really just another Romeo and Juliet story except Romeo is a werewolf and Juliet is a vampire. The performances were fine and the dialogue was as expected. Where the movie was severely lacking, was in the special effects and make-up... or lack there of. The special effects were TERRIBLE and instead of using fake blood the used CG blood, almost every time. Part of the problem with making such a dark movie, I would think, would be the fact that it's difficult to see blood in such a dark environment. But they wanted it to be bloody. So they animated it. It looked like a cartoon.
If you liked the first two Underworld movies, then you might like this one. I really didn't think it was as bad as the first two... but it wasn't good.