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Author Topic: The Resident Evil films  (Read 117 times)

Paul

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The Resident Evil films
« on: February 11, 2019, 11:41:30 am »
After watching a play through of Resident Evil 2 remake and me having completed it 3 times now(I think it's quite good), my flatmate had the idea that we should watch all of the Resident Evil films and I thought why not. So here's my thought on them.

Resident Evil
Nothing like the story from the games and tonally way off as well, this is the only one of the films I've seen already. 14/15 year old me went to the cinema with my friend to see this as we were huge fans of the games. I remember us being disappointed the one saving grace was Mila Jovovich in various states of undress.  15+ years later and my opinion is about the same except now that I've seen naked ladies in real life there's no saving grace. It's a pretty boring film, not very much happens and having a Licker as the main bad guy seems like a budget constraint. Also the CG on it has no aged well. Nothing really makes sense and I'm seeing where 'What Script?' comes from. The AI with the English girl's voice is super lame and the movie is a weird mix of action and bad attempts at horror. The sound mix was terrible, the music was really loud sometimes drowning out dialogue and none of the music really fit the film either. Not off to a strong start.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse
This is actually an improvement! It's still not good, but it's not as bad as the first one. For a start it feels a bit more like Resident Evil, setting it in the city works better and we even introduce S.T.A.R.S and Nemesis(portrayed by someone wearing a pretty bad looking costume, it looks really out of place). Jill Valentine is some rogue bad ass cop, nothing like the character in the games but generally works OK in this. The rest of the elite S.T.A.R.S unit get killed off in about 1 minute, which makes them come off as a bit of a joke. The plot is all over the place, there's some Umbrella soldiers left for dead trying to escape along with Jill & Alice and some scientists kid and a reporter. There's also a character brought in who has apparently met with the main crew already but I don't remember that ever happening, maybe I just dozed off at some point. Anyway, the scientist is able to see everyone through camera and help them get out, then there's some show down with Umbrella people and the sequel is set up that Alice is some super G-Virus infected person with mind powers or something and they're going to take down Umbrella(who have somehow covered up nuking a city...). Can't wait to see where things go next.

Note: Apparently there's plans to reboot the film series.

Dan

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2019, 12:00:44 pm »
Quote
now that I've seen naked ladies in real life

Woah woah woah what hold up you've WHAT

Paul

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2019, 12:35:41 pm »
Well just the top half, but still it's something.

Dan

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2019, 12:36:15 pm »
Ha ha ha glol!

Ben

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2019, 07:11:07 pm »
Hey, I did this last year! Here's what I posted (on the Thumbs forum but not here, for some reason) - there are some basic set-up spoilers here, Paul, especially for 5 (Retribution); you might want to hold off reading this 'til after you've done your watch-through...

Resident Evil - cheap-feeling, ineffective movie with weak action and gore. Rips off Aliens and Cube amongst other things. The only thing worse than the stiffly-delivered perfunctory dialogue is the dirge of 90s alt metal jarringly slapped on top of it. The whole thing feels like it was written by a 14 year old and directed by someone straight out of film school.

Resident Evil Apocalypse - even worse than the first; while that film at least had a basic story this is just a series of stuff happening, but with even worse dialogue, lower levels of coverage for action scenes and cheesier monster design. Rarely rises above the level of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and often feels more like an advert for a tough-on-dirt cleaning product.

Resident Evil Extinction - wow, what a step up this film is. The real-world locations and a good director (Russell Mulcahy who also directed Highlander) are probably the key changes that make this film better in every way. Readable action scenes! Believable characters and dialogue! Cool monster design! A better-implemented, less cheesy score! It's not a classic film by any means - it's still hobbled by the franchise's episodic nature, and is now ripping off Mad Max 2 and The Birds along with the usual zombie tropes in place of Aliens and Cube (though it does it much better) - but it's a lot more enjoyable and professional, and it even retroactively fixes a few issues with Apocalypse.

Resident Evil Afterlife - okay, this time it's The Matrix being ripped off, all leather-clad, rain-drenched slo-mo, but again it's done well enough that it's enjoyable. Again, the episodic nature hurts it a little, and it's the siege tropes that get a run through this time, but the continent-spanning, genre-swapping nature means it never feels dull. Also, the (real) 3D is great - I was severely disappointed when Anderson's Musketeers 3D was so ineffective.

Resident Evil Retribution - what starts off as a promisingly inventive set-up - clones, mind-control and simulated environments allowing for versions of various characters from previous films to show up with different loyalties or peronalities in a variety of settings - is mostly wasted in this blur of dreary CGI and imploding lore (How is Wesker alive? How did Valentine get turned and where has she been? Why is the Red Queen suddenly in charge of Umbrella and wanting to wipe out humanity? Why does Wesker need Alice if he's the better version of her? How did Luther West end up working for Wesker's group of mercenaries? Perhaps these are getting left for the next film but that's pretty unsatisfying in the meantime). Michelle Rodriguez is the only returning actor who gets anything interesting to do, and there is a less welcome return of the creaking dialogue and paper-thin characterisation from the first two films.

Resident Evil Final Chapter - goes back on everything set up at the end of the previous movie, entirely stops making sense and is at this point extremely repetitive. Unsatisfying.

Paul

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2019, 10:00:01 am »
Just read the first two, in my original description of the second film I had a line "Some stuff happens" because that is basically the plot, there's no real reason for anything and they just go places and do things until the film is eventually over. I didn't even begin to pick apart the terrible logic of it because that would require talking about every scene. One favourite was how Alice escapes out of the hospital or whatever at the end and somehow her buddies arrive at the exact right time she's being brought away after being caught to rescue her, because somehow they knew this would all happen?

Watching the 3rd film this evening.

Ben

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2019, 08:56:18 pm »
I've spoilered them up individually to make it a bit easier for you to read them as you go.

Paul

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2019, 10:38:05 am »
Resident Evil Extinction
Another improvement but still pretty bad at times. I think a big problem these films have is there's a lot of stuff happening that doesn't matter. At the start of this Alice gets lured into a trap and captured but within a few minutes she has killed everyone and we're reminded she's a bad ass(that somehow got captured in the first place), but we know this already. There's also the problem that it takes about 40 minutes for some sort of plot or goal to be established in this films, this time once it does it gets going quite well. Nothing makes much sense still, but the CG holds up really well and there's some pretty nice gory zombie shots and the final mutant monster guy looks excellent and is like a proper Resident Evil monster which has been sorely lacking in the past 2 films. He fits the bill well too as scientist who took his own medicine to survive and ended up like this. They also seem to have swapped out Jill with Claire and it makes very little differene. I could do without the mind power stuff though, it feels a bit out of place for the series and the logic of it is just not there. Honestly, the main problem with this film is the script, otherwise it's fairly competent. Once again it ends by setting up the next film.

Ben

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2019, 08:29:55 pm »
Seems like we pretty much agree on that one too, then!

Paul

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Re: The Resident Evil films
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2019, 12:53:14 pm »
Resident Evil Afterlife
For me this is by far the worst of the films so far. I didn't watch it in 3D though and I think that really takes from it in a number of ways. It still has all the expected problems of no story, nothing making sense etc. which I'm used to now, they also hit the reset switch to some extent and take away all of Alice's powers at the start, which helps a little. She's apparently flying a plane around endlessly looking for survivors(don't even start to wonder how she has fuel for this or how long she spends in the air) and eventually comes across some people in LA trying to get to a ship. It's all the cliche people thrown together to survive characters, they eventually get to the ship and it was Umbrella all along to gather people to do research on. The population of the whole World has been wiped out but somehow Umbrella are still operating, again none of this makes any sense so just ignore all that. Wesker is the big bad guy and they have someone new to play him, he's fine but I don't know what his motivation is and he's seemingly invincible surviving a lot of absurd situations because he's infected and has it under control or something. So this rant on how nothing makes sense comes from there being no 3D to distract me, I can see the stuff that was meant for 3D because it's usually a slow motion scene which in itself gets tedious when in 2D because it's a rather bland looking shot. So yes, the one I had the most trouble making it to the end of so far, I think the next few go all in on the 3D so I don't have high hopes now. Not that I really did at the start of this anyway.