- on Friday, 27 January 2017 07:36
- by Loron Hays
I didn’t really want to cover this release; I didn’t really want to sit through the hyper-realized gobbledygook that has plagued this series for the last three entries. Hell, it isn’t very hard to suggest that incoherence has largely dominated ALL of the film adaptations of this popular Capcom video game series. And you already know that I typically eat this shit up.
The Resident Evil movies are popcorn entertainment on ANY day, yet they continue to grind their way through cinemas without looking back. And, outside of a couple, they don’t hold up too well. You already know this, though. Well, hold onto your butts for this next confession then because it’s a doozy and, hell, it even surprised me: Resident Evil: The Final Chapter could have been much worse.
Surprisingly, director/screenwriter Paul W. S. Anderson (Event Horizon, Alien vs. Predator) has managed to bring an entry into this on-going franchise that seems, dare I suggest it, more focused and much better than anticipated. Who’d have thought it possible at this late in the game? Not this guy. I mean, he certainly didn’t have to try too hard in order to earn a dime and (probably) win the box office this weekend. But he sorta does…
…or maybe I have finally drunk the T-virus spiked Kool-Aid.
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter probably isn’t the last word in the series. Let’s get that out of the way. It’d be nice to think so, but there are ways and means that this series could continue. This release is; however, better than expected when it comes to plot and its overall pulse. While I will still submit that the film treats its characters as merely pawns and yanks them from us without even a second thought, it certainly feels like there is some attempt – even if it is just a prick – to give us something a bit more in spirit with the original film.
The new chapter is easily the best one in the film series since its debut in 2002. Other critics will laugh and point out that Anderson continues to embrace everything that has marred the sequels. That is true; this is pure brainless escapism with one beheading after another and yet somehow – in all the babble of the expected CGI carnage – Anderson reduces a lot of the superfluous noise and presents us with a streamlined look at the series and spotlights on what it does best.
In The Final Chapter, Alice must get from Washington D.C. to The Hive (the location of the first movie) in Raccoon City to save what remains of the population. Her journey takes her straight to Doctor Isaacs (Iain Glen), who has access to the only known antidote for the T-virus that has wrecked humanity. Along the way, there is a new group of zombie-kicking coeds assembled, reuniting us with the shamefully underused Claire Redfield (Ali Larter). We get origins and we get glimpses of the past, too.
It is, of course, Alice who we care the most about. Milla Jovovich’s Alice is engaged and – as far as ass-kicking goes – she still brings the boom boom boom to a room full of zombies and other drooling monsters. Jovovich’s not tired of the role and it shows. There’s still a lot going on behind those icy eyes. Neither is Anderson, who gives us a bit more of her story then previously revealed.
The events in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter are not a total redemption. They are; however, just enough to keep its fans (and probably some newbies) flipping to the next chapter.
MPAA Rating: R for sequences of violence throughout.
Runtime: 106 mins
Director: Paul W.S. Anderson
Writer: Paul W.S. Anderson
Cast: Milla Jovovich, Iain Glen, Ali Larter
Genre: Action | Adventure
Tagline: The beginning of the end.
Memorable Movie Quote: "I have no reason to believe a word you say."
Theatrical Distributor: Screen Gems
Official Site: http://www.sonypictures.com/movies/residentevilthefinalchapter/
Release Date: January 27, 2017
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date: No details available.
Synopsis: As the only survivor of what was meant to be humanity's final stand against the undead hordes, Alice must return to where the nightmare began — Raccoon City, where the Umbrella Corporation is gathering its forces for a final strike against the only remaining survivors of the apocalypse. In a race against time Alice will join forces with old friends, and an unlikely ally, in an action-packed battle with undead hordes and new mutant monsters.
No details available.