Oh thank god… This shit is finally over.
Coming into this month that I dubbed something like Resident Evil Sequels Month, I was really, really, very worried about how my mental health would survive this. See, here’s the thing… The first Resident Evil is very awkwardly bad early 00s action schlock with zombies and monsters. I had major issues with that, but I could live with it just being a shitty movie. 2004’s Resident Evil: Apocalypse took that and cranked it up to about a 35 on the shitty scale. It was laughably bad. It’s bad movie night bad.
But, to my surprise things kind of went a better direction. Resident Evil: Extinction brought in a new look and feel, and I liked the post-apocalyptic landscape. Resident Evil: Afterlife brought director Paul W.S. Anderson back into the director’s chair after writing the previous two entries, but it was a bit of a step down, but at least not terrible (at least better than the first two films), and Resident Evil: Retribution was a better mix of the action schlock with sci-fi schlock and horror schlock. The last three entries at least proved the series could be somewhat entertaining.
But here we are, at the end, with Resident Evil: The Final Chapter. Why am I bemoaning the time spent and thanking magical sky man that it’s all over? These movies are all really quite tiring. I want to move beyond them so badly because I’m so worn out by the insanity that is inflicted onto my eyeballs and brain. It’s like Stockholm Syndrome at some point. Do I really like some of these movies or has my brain simply adjusted to their crap factor and I’m just letting it happen to me. It’s got me in a sleeper hold and just whispering to me, “Let it happen… Shhhh… Let it happen.”
And, frankly, if that was Milla Jovovich doing that to me, I’d be okay with all that is happening.
When you really think about this series, you realize how weird and nearly impossible it is to really, fairly and honestly call this a cohesive narrative from the first film to the sixth. At the end of the first film, you are left with Alice and the guy who ultimately mutates into Nemesis. When the sequel hits, it does a decent enough job picking up from there and finishes the Nemesis storyline while also picking up three new friends in the form of Sienna Guillory as Jill Valentine, Oded Fehr as Carlos, and Mike Epps playing L.J. They seem to be off on an adventure of their own that will have the villainous Umbrella Corporation chasing them down.
But… That’s not what happens.
There is a time jump and the world is now a desert as depicted in the third film. Alice is a loner and has some pretty nifty telekinesis powers and is basically an unstoppable weapon. Carlos and L.J. are now part of a caravan run and led by Ali Larter’s Claire Redfield. Okay, so now we have a post-apocalyptic setting for our fourth film. Got it. I’m cool. Alice is gonna go fuck up Umbrella, Carlos and L.J. have died and Claire will lead the few remaining people from her caravan to Alaska to a place called Arcadia that appears to be a refuge. Got it. Cool. I’m on board with that!
But… That’s not what happens.
No, the fourth does kind of pick things up again and we do get the return of Claire (which was different for Jill who didn’t come back in the subsequent movie from which she appeared), and there is a search for Arcadia, but the world is no longer a desolate wasteland of desert. No, it’s just a wasteland of mutants, monsters, and zombies, but the terrain has changed back to being something we’d expect to see in the second film. Arcadia is found, but it is a trap. Alice, Claire, her brother Chris Redfield, and K-Mart from Claire’s caravan defeat the primary bad guy Wesker and plan to make Arcadia what it really was supposed to be – a chance at salvation. Okay, cool, I expect that to be the next movie with Umbrella, and their brainwashed lackey Jill Valentine hunting down Alice and crew.
But… That’s not what happens.
In the last movie of the series, we go back to more of a feel of the FIRST movie. Almost all of the movie taking place in an underground Umbrella facility. Claire, Chris, and K-Mart are nowhere to be found. Arcadia is apparently blown up and all the people they freed from Umbrella appear to be dead. Bummer. Now, Alice is sent through simulations of outbreaks in various cities with Wesker now allying with her because she’s important to topple Umbrella, and is getting help from Wesker’s sexy Asian bodyguard, Ada Wong. Oded Fehr, Michelle Rodriguez (who had been killed in the first film and not seen since), and Colin Salmon (also killed in the first film and not seen since) have all been cloned and now leading up Jill Valentine’s super bad ass commando team to take down Alice and Ada. Alice also is reunited with former ally from the fourth film, Luther, w ho is killed, and is allied with good guy mercenary Leon Kennedy to go to Washington, D.C. where Wesker is waiting to give Alice back the powers he stole from her at the end of the fourth movie and prepare for the final battle against Umbrella’s monsters. Okay, I will assume Alice, Leon, Jill, and Becky, a cloned “daughter” for Alice in one of the simulations in the underground facility that was rescued, will band together to kick zombie asses in this final chapter of the Resident Evil Saga!
Nope. The other three people I listed with Alice are NOT in the cast for this final installment. Ay ay ay… This is getting painful. But see what I mean here? Some ideas will carry over from one movie to the next, but is usually scrapped after the opening action sequence. Some support characters will appear in one movie to the next. While there is generally an undercurrent of a specific action schlock feel to the movies, it feels like, from one movie to the next, Anderson just decides to zig and zag around other ideas and concepts. It is exhausting.
Now, if I’m being as kind as I can, and as fair as possible, I could say that it really doesn’t matter. You have two primary forces that need to be present – Alice with her abilities fighting for good and Umbrella and their hordes of monsters doing nefarious capitalism. That’s it. Those are the two things that you need for any one of these movies. With that, then you could potentially say that the Resident Evil series is told in more of a legend sort of style – like the Mad Max movies. Or, maybe much more appropriately, the Friday the 13th movies. If we were to look at the Friday the 13th series, then we can very easily say that, while much more cohesive of a general genre feel that persists through the 12 films in the series, we only need two things – a group of people to kill and Jason Voorhees (or a killer if we represent the first and fifth films more accurately).
But you see… One movie ends, and the next movie picks up to complete the previous movie’s cliffhanger. So… It can’t be a legend type of situation because Mad Max don’t do that shit. Friday the 13th only barely does that, but I will still say that the Jason Voorhees thing is really more of a campfire tale as seen in the second movie. Of course, both of those series don’t have recurring characters (yes, yes, Tommy Jarvis) quite the same way that Resident Evil does, but I still almost have to think about this series similarly to those two because of how wildly something shifts away from the previous entry’s premise and themes.
Here’s the deal. This movie got delayed a couple times. Originally, the plan was to immediately go to town on the sixth installment after Retribution proved to be a box office hit. Sony was ready. Anderson was on board. Jovovich, as the primary face of the entire thing, was definitely a go. Anderson did a movie called Pompeii which delayed the writing and production. Production got pushed to 2015 which meant the movie wouldn’t see a release at least until 2016. Even then, the movie didn’t hit its usual release timing of late in a year and was held off from seeing release until January of 2017.
If you know anything about movies, you know that January is a very bad time to have your movie release. It usually indicates lack of support or concern over quality from the higher ups. January and sometimes (at least in the past) February are considered dumping grounds. Granted, September used to be a shitty time for movies to be released too, but I would say that this series had a niche when the four previous films were all released after the bum rush of the summer blockbuster season while getting a head start on spooky Halloween times. This movie had a slashed budget too. The previous films in the series were all major hits at the box office with budgets appropriately growing alongside each release. This film cost only as much as the first film did 15 years previously. Adjusted for inflation, this movie would be the cheapest produced film.
All of these things are bad signs for a series. The triple threat of delay-release schedule-slashed budget is a hard thing to overcome. This movie would go on to make a huge amount of money, but it does kind of feel like the franchise was slowly deflating at the finish line. Plus, Sony Pictures, the distribution partner for the series, was not in great shape during this era. It’s also possible that budget was reallocated after delays to help in post or pre-production costs for the 2016 Ghostbusters movie or the 2017 Spider-Man: Homecoming picture.
As for the lack of returning cast members for the roles of Ada, Chris, Leon, K-Mart, Becky, evil Michelle Rodriguez, and Jill were all originally, in some way, rumored originally to be part of the final film, but when the chips were down, none of them were invited back for this last hurrah. Again, I have to assume that was a budget based decision. It’s unfortunate too because this 15 year, six film franchise was fairly groundbreaking for video game movies. It proved some could actually be huge box office hits with pretty good returns for one film to the next. These types of franchises thrive on the camaraderie of the characters and the people playing those characters. When they have to be often swapped out or completely dumped, it feels weird even introducing them. Like Wentworth Miller as Chris Redfield. He was an interesting character that ultimately played a huge part in Afterlife, but he’s been dumped. Nothing more to that story despite him being a pretty big character in the video game series. You introduced him for basically no reason.
But enough about this. I’m looking forward to seeing how things come to a close and how much more excitement I can glean from Gun Mommy Alice and Caravan Mommy Ali Larter – both of whom have an invitation to step on me whenever they want.
As is customary in these movies, we get a preamble. In this final installment, we learn the true history and origin of Umbrella Corporation and their T-virus. It’s kind of like a “Secret Origins” edition of a DC Comic series. You see, there was a man named Dr. James Marcus who had a little girl named Alicia. Alicia was dying of progeria. That’s a disease that inflicts rapid aging on the victim. Dr. (Not Carol) Marcus discovers the T-virus which, in theory and by design, is supposed to seek out bad tissue and cells and repair it. Oh, also Alicia was recorded a bunch too. Her speech patterns, her stories, or whatever. She basically was going to become the Red Queen. The T-virus worked. At first. When others were treated with the same injection Alicia was, they died and turned into zombies. Dr. (Not David) Marcus pleaded with his business partner Dr. Isaacs (from Resident Evil: Apocalypse and Extinction) to shut the whole thing down, but Isaacs is having none of it. Isaacs has Marcus killed. Alicia became the ward of Isaacs.
Isaacs created the Red Queen out of Alicia’s likeness. From there, the whole series happened. We learn that the whole everything happened before, but I’m guessing there’s some serious Crisis on Infinite Earths/Zero Hour/Infinite Crisis shit to explain that third one and how the whole place isn’t the barren wasteland we were told it was but then was immediately shown it is not the case in the next movie. Pulling a classic Resident Evil move, Alice tells us that Washington, D.C. was supposed to be the start of salvation, but it was a trap. End of prologue. It’s movie time.
The movie begins in earnest with Alice emerging from an underground bunker or something. The place is utterly devastated. I do like the return of the color palette from the one entry in the series I do legitimately like – so I guess we’re back to the apocalyptic feel. Ay ay ay. I need a nap. Anyway, Washington is just fucked. There are smoldering buildings. There are fat ass bloated monsters in the National Mall, it’s a mess! At least there won’t be another insufferable Washington Football Team season that starts of full of hope only to end with a kick in the nuts.
At the end of the last movie, we saw some big ass dragon like monsters that are flying around. Now, we get to see them in action as one chases after Alice in a Jeep. I mean that Alice is in the Jeep. Not… Not the dragon monster. Why would he be in a Jeep? He can fly. Anyway, Alice blows up the dragon, and her sweet ride, but as she lays on the ground to regather her senses, she sees a glimmering sparkle in the sky as something flies overhead. I don’t know if it is the satellite that we’ve seen in previous entries or if it is a spy plane or what, but that’s quickly set aside as Alice continues walking through the city.
Alice finds her way into a building that might be a prison or a command center or something. Anyway, the Red Queen communicates with Alice first by way of an old printer saying hello to her. Then, she appears on a bunch of TVs and tells her that she needs to go to Raccoon City. There, she’ll find the antivirus that Umbrella has developed that can be put into the atmosphere and wipe out the T-virus. However, Umbrella is simply waiting for the remaining 4,000+ unaffected humans to be killed off so the Umbrella people can have the planet for themselves.
What a prize that would be.
Okay, so the Red Queen can’t blow up Umbrella because of her programming. Alice doesn’t have that limitation on her. So, she has 48 hours to get over 400 miles to Raccoon City, blow up the Hive (which was the facility in the first movie), and she can get her revenge and save the world. Okay, cool.
She wastes 12 hours because she is barely outside Washington when she has a blow out and is nearly captured by Umbrella goons in riot gear. I said she wasted 12 hours, but I don’t know. I imagine it’s pretty hard to get help at the rental car place when there are only 4000 people left on the planet. Anyway, the Umbrella goons had a motorcycle. She tries to get on it and take off, but it shocks her because she is not an authorized user.
She wakes up and now only has like 20 hours left. She’s blown over a full day of her 2 day lead time to get to Raccoon City. She comes face to face with Isaacs. He’s roaming the country in armored tank like vehicles. Inside, he’s captured others, but there’s a weird religious iconography around Isaacs. Apparently, she figures out that she killed a clone of his, or this version of him is a clone. I don’t know, and, if I’m being frank, I don’t know if I care. He leads the other prisoners in a chant to have Alice cast out. She’s forced outside and is made to remain tied to the armored vehicle and run behind it as it barely stays ahead of a whole bunch of zombies. Isaacs calls Wesker and tells him that he’s pretty sure Alice knows about the antivirus.
Alice outsmarts the dumb Umbrella (dumbrella?) guys and starts kicking and karate chopping Isaacs and the various other goons. Now, what I find funny is that 1) there’s another armored vehicle running along with the one that Alice and Isaacs are fighting on top of. It waits until waaaaay too long before it starts shooting over at them to get her and 2) this movie is over 25 minutes old and I’m not sure I understand what’s going on.
I mean, okay, she’s gotta go release the antivirus. Cool. She’s got 48 hours to give this a game feel. Okay. Makes sense. She lost 12 hours finding a car. She loses another 16 hours from being shocked unconscious by the motorcycle. Now, I’m guessing they want this to be a thing where she hits the right button just before the time runs out and all that. I’m fine with that, but they gave her way too much time before that. When you lose 28 hours due to twiddling your thumbs or getting knocked out, it doesn’t give me much confidence in you.
I do like that she ends up stealing an Umbrella motorcycle and when Isaacs reminds her that she can’t use the bike, she cuts off his hand to give her something that can be used to use the bike. Kudos to her on that move.
She arrives at the hole in the ground that used to be known as Raccoon City. She gets knocked out AGAIN and grabbed by a group of marauders who live in the city. They were going to wake her because they say something big is coming. However, she wakes up on her own and starts attacking people. It should not be a surprise to anyone that the cleanest, most well put together person in the whole camp of these survivors is none other than Claire Redfield. It’s good to see Ali Larter again. After all, Claire might be my favorite character in these movies by virtue of actually being a character.
What’s weird about this movie is that it is simultaneously super slow AND super fast. We’re over 30 minutes into the movie and Alice is already at Raccoon City after spending most of her 48 hours asleep. However, her traveling from Washington to Raccoon City is cut incredibly frantically. I’m starting to get whiplash from all these edits. Think about all she’s done since the movie began. She’s been roaming around Washington. She gets attacked by a flying monster. She talks to the Red Queen who tells her about the antivirus. She gets into a car accident and tries to take the Umbrella cycle, but gets shocked. She wakes up and needs to figure a way out of being tied up behind the armored vehicle. She then has to fight and defeat Isaacs. She then gets to Raccoon City. She gets nabbed by Claire’s gang.
That’s a lot of shit that’s gone on, but none of the scenes are much to write home about except for the fight sequences. It’s edited more like a cheap knockoff movie than the final act of a massive six-film franchise. It smacks of this movie having gone through some major overhauls by way of low test screening scores or studio notes. This is the longest movie of the series at over 105 minutes. That’s five or six minutes longer than the first. Yet, that first movie is so much better edited. I have to wonder, all things considered, with the way the movie industry was by 2016, if this first part was originally twice as long. Think about it, this movie could have easily been around the 135 minute length. That would put it among the franchise tentpoles of the time too. The way it is edited and how fast we shift from location to action set piece to location to action set piece it would make sense that this has a bunch of stuff cut out of it. This is by far the hardest movie in the series to settle into.
As the next few minutes have passed, I really am now starting to believe this movie did have much, much more to show in these early scenes than what we got. The reason is how much more settled this movie got all of a sudden. Claire and Alice get ready for the incoming hordes of zombies following the armored vehicles led by Isaacs. They immediately take out one of the vehicles. But this actually feels like a complete sequence. I understand fully what is happening. Alice knows Isaacs is coming here. She knows he’s leading tens of thousands of zombies. She knows Claire has people who can help defend their camp. After they get rid of this threat, Alice can then get into the Hive and wipe out the rest of Umbrella and release the antivirus which, by the way, will also kill her, but she’s willing to go that far.
Between the hordes of zombies, the missiles and heavy artillery machine guns on the armored vehicles, and Alice’s general presence in town, Claire’s gang’s hideout is totally fucked. Like, seriously, whenever Alice goes anywhere, if you are a survivor, you are gonna be homeless, dead, or dead and homeless. Considering their base is totally smashed to shit, Claire’s gang, joined by the now free prisoner’s from Isaacs’ armored vehicle, decide they need to get into the hive and finish all this. Well, it’s part that they have zero shelter whatsoever and part that there are two more big ol’ groups of zombie hordes coming. I guess if you combined their home smashed to fuck and those hordes… I guess dying with your boots on would be better than waiting to be overrun.
On the way to the entrance to the Hive that was exposed by the nuclear blast at the end of the second movie, they are chased and attacked and stalked by a bunch of monster dogs. There were some other traps and such that they have to get through and that only leaves about half the original team that decided to go to the Hive with Alice. When they finally get inside the Hive, the Red Queen explains why she has turned against Umbrella. She plays a video that was recorded about 17 months before the viral outbreak of the T-virus. In it, Isaacs explains that the virus has an apocalyptic purpose. He explains that people are bringing the world to its knees. The plan is to release the T-virus, cleanse the Earth, but keep the resources intact. He says this has been done before as he taps a bible that he apparently carries around with him.
Say… Was Isaacs a religious nut in the previous movies he was in? I mean, no, right? Like he was a bad guy. He was a scientist who got a little too over the top with his ideas and what he was sciencing. Sure. A religious nut? Not that I know of. See what I mean about these movies always changing course mid-stream? Also, what resources are you hoping to have remaining? Zombies? Are zombies your new fossil fuels for this new world? I have so many questions…
Anyway, so Umbrella released the T-virus on purpose. It was there to wipe the place the clean and they would emerge from underground to a world they could shape as they wish. That brings up the next round of questions in this whole “we’ll have all these resources for us to use!” nonsense. Call me nutty, but the buildings are fucked. There are dead people all over the place. The roads no longer exist. The cars are probably pretty messed up. How are these corporate douchebags going to live on this world without us middle class chumps making the world work with buildings and airplanes and cars and stuff? How are they going to live in a society without the lower class wage slaves making their Big Macs for them? Just sayin’. Sometimes you can do the Karl Stromberg/Hugo Drax thing. But you don’t really want to leave the world as messy as a zombie apocalypse would.
Okay, Red Queen sends Alice into the Hive and tells her that she can only help her so far. She cannot harm an employee of Umbrella herself or have her actions lead to the death of an employee. She also tells Alice there was an informant among Claire’s gang. It’s possible that informant is with them inside the Hive, so… You know, watch yo back?
Lots of traps and are laid out for Alice and friends as they enter the Hive. It’s all fairly standard game type stuff that make for some fun tense scenes. For example, there is a turbine in the facility that Wesker turns on to try to chop up people, then “reverses the polarity” (Jon Pertwee is smiling down upon you dumb zombie monster movie) to suck people into it. That’s how Ruby Rose dies in this movie. Oh yeah, Ruby Rose was in this movie. This was just before she hit it big (somehow). She’s playing… Well, she’s playing Ruby Rose. She’s a tomboy with short hair who knows how to do things with mechanical shit. At least she did before she flew into those blades and became a greasy spot on the floor of the Hive service tunnels. I shouldn’t be a jerk, but I’ve only seen Ruby Rose in, like, three things and in each thing she was playing basically the same thing – disaffected lady with an attitude and sometimes might be Batwoman.
More traps go off and it kills one guy by dropping him over a rocky abyss and another separates Alice from the rest of the quickly dwindling group of survivors. Another survivor, Razor, drops into the same room Alice is in and they get attacked by a sinewy monster that kills Razor. Eventually, Doc, one of the leaders of Claire’s gang, shows up too. Neither Doc nor Alice know what has happened to Claire.
Alice has 24 minutes before it’s too late to save the world. The movie has 35 minutes to save my night by ending. Nice little symmetry there. Inside the Hive, Doc and Alice make their way to the same control room that once ran the laser grid room and Claire is trapped in a glass cage. Wesker wants “him” to be awoken even though the Red Queen says that should only be used in the greatest of emergencies. I’m guessing that’s some sort of super monster. Outside, Isaacs is surrounded by zombies in his armored car he’s commandeered from other Umbrella goons.
However! The person Wesker wants awoken to take over the whole operation is the REAL Isaacs. The guy in the previous movies and the guy outside are clones! Real Isaacs is pretty good at figuring out they’ve been betrayed. Claire breaks out of the class cage she’s in, but is soon followed by Wesker. Alice and Doc cross a bridge over a moat to find the main office where Isaacs is waiting for her. He tells Alice to drop her weapons or he’ll smash the antivirus which will lead to everything being for naught. Turns out that while she disarms herself Doc is not dropping his gun. He was the informant for Umbrella.
We get treated to some fun little action scenes as Alice looks at a table with potential weapons for her to grab and, with each one, we see how she plans to use each one. However, Isaacs is already one step ahead of her. He’s got some “enhancements” of his own. So we see what he’ll do if she goes for a weapon. It’s nice to actually see Alice sorting out a plan instead of showing up and getting people killed.
What’s more, Isaacs drops a truth bomb onto Alice – she is NOT the original either. She, too, is a clone. She was a clone of Alicia Marcus. Apparently the T-virus didn’t quite work out or she’s got that aging problem again.
Okay, so everything has come to a head here. Isaacs is giddily looking forward to the day Alicia dies so he assumes full control of Umbrella. However, with 50% of the company under her control still, Alicia decides to get smart. Now, here’s the thing. Why do you think that the remaining power brokers who could afford to be frozen by Umbrella, which includes the corporate board, would follow Isaacs or Alicia or Alicia AND Isaacs just because they own stock in the Umbrella Corporation? It’s the question I asked previously in one of the other Resident Evil articles. I really do believe that when all these people wake up, they will honestly believe their old way of life in capitalism will still be the way of life. Forget about there being no capital, no workers, no structure. They will think who ever has the best portfolio will be king (or queen). It’s hilariously evil and sadly predictive of what to expect when we kill this planet in the next few years.
So yeah, it’s good thing that at least the Red Queen follows the rule of capitalism because when Alicia fires Wesker, she can then be allowed to harm him. She slams a door down onto his foot, severing it. We also see that Alice already knew Doc was the traitor so she gave him an unloaded gun. Alice lets him live only as long as it takes for Claire to come over and shoot him in the head. While Wesker dies slowly, Alicia watches some home movies of her life that was once happy. Alice and Claire track down Isaacs so they can kill him and get the antivirus from him. He beats on them pretty good, but then he puts Alice in the laser room and tries to kill her that way, but she is able to avoid the lasers.
When the system charges back up with more lasers, he uses them to cut Alice’s fingers off. She slipped a grenade in his pocket and it blows his sides up but good. Now, just before all this, the Red Queen said she only had like 4 or 5 minutes left, but that took about 8. I’m guessing she failed?
Nah, just kidding, she has literal seconds left before Umbrella blows up all the remaining people. She drops the vial, but real Isaacs and clone Isaacs show up to stop Alice. Real Isaacs tells clone Isaacs what’s up, and clone Isaacs stabs the fuck out of his real self. In the compound, Wesker dies, and drops the grenade Alice put in his hand. He blows up. Alicia blows up. The whole place blows up.
Clone Isaacs got bitten by a zombie so Alice was able to release the antivirus. The zombies drop dead. Alice drops, but doesn’t die. The Red Queen said she knew all along that only the T-virus would be the only thing destroyed within her. The healthy cells will remain, thus Alice lives. Alice is pissed about this, but the Red Queen says that they had to know she would make the ultimate sacrifice for others. Sure. Whatever.
Anyway, so Alicia downloaded all her memories to give to Alice so she could be a more complete person and not just a 10 year old clone with no life before that. Alice rides on saying that the T-virus could spread with the world’s population’s regular movements. Airplanes and jets and cars and trains and boats could spread the virus all over the world. The antivirus is being blown by the wind so it may take a while. Until then, she still has work to do. She sees some of those flying monsters chasing her on her bike as she rides toward Washington, D.C.
And a series comes to an end…
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is a mildly satisfying conclusion to the series. There’s no hackneyed conclusion that makes you laugh. The movie ends with you knowing that Alice will still carry on until she can finish, but generally speaking, you are given hope for the first time in the entire 15 year history of the franchise. Every chance at a good ending was kicked in the nuts previously. But here, you know the good guys won and Umbrella is truly gone. That’s a good way to finish your movie. Alice can still be a bad ass while the hopeful, pleasant end knowing that the world will get another chance because the T-virus will eventually be a thing of the past.
If there’s anything I can say negatively about this movie is that it does feel overly scant in the overall production value department. You can really feel that there was supposed to be more here. That first 30-40 minutes is hacked to shit and feels like a lot of stuff was removed to help us ease into the change of location, etc. By the time we get into the Hive, the whole movie takes on a different feel and tone that is more like the other sequels, but I can’t help but to wonder if there was something that might have hit differently or more emotionally that was left out due to pace editing or lack of funds.
That’s the other thing. This movie cost about the same as the original. It looks pretty good (at least on par with the other films in the franchise), but, again, $40 million in 2002 is a lot more than $40 million in 2017. There were some issues behind the scenes with two terrible accidents that involved stunt crew that might have been able to be avoided, but it left one stuntwoman permanently disfigured and a stuntman dead. It just feels like there’s an air of misery that surrounds this from being delayed to being slashed in budget to being delayed again to having accidents to ultimately bringing a series with a lot of fans to a close. I dunno… You can just kind of feel that woven into the finished product.
But fear not! Chris and Claire Redfield, Jill Valentine, Leon S. Kennedy, Albert Wesker, and Ada Wong are all on the way back. This November, Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City will be released from Sony Pictures, Screen Gems, and Constantin Film – three of the major players in charge of the original series. This film is set to be set in 1998 and be based on the first two Resident Evil games. I do not believe it will actually be connected at all to the Paul W.S. Anderson franchise. I don’t know if there will be a subsequent series to roll from that or if it will just be a one off movie or what. Either way, it’s time for a fresh start and see if it can recapture some of that video game magic without having to lean on a decade and a half of movies that are very hit and miss.
I dunno about you, but I’ll check ‘er out.
So let’s bring this theme of Resident Evil Sequel Month to bed. But… It’s October. And, in just two days, we have Halloween. Around here, we always have a Halloween article. So, guess what? 2021 is no exception! As a palette cleanser for all these damn Resident Evil movies, I’m gonna watch a classic from the 80s – Night of the Creeps! I promise you I will probably type “Thrill me” several times and half of the time, it will probably give you the creeps. So… Look forward to that!
To catch when that releases, follow the blog through WordPress here, or follow B-Movie Enema on Facebook and/or Twitter! You also know you can subscribe to the B-Movie Enema YouTube channel as well because tomorrow, October 30, 2021, the Halloween episode of B-Movie Enema: The Series drops as Nurse Disembaudee and I get dressed up and watch Hollow Gate with some surprise guests! Be sure to check that out both here at the website, OtherWorlds TV, AND on YouTube!
So, until then, this is Geoff signing out from the Hive where a creepy little red girl keeps telling me I’m going to die down here.