Director:Paul W.S. Anderson
Cast:Milla Jovovich, Boris Kodjoe, Ali Larter, Wentworth Miller, Spencer Locke, Shawn Roberts, Kim Coates, Norman Yeung, Kasey Barnfield, Sienna Guillory
The Resident Evil movies have always been a guilty pleasure of mine, especially the first two installments. I wasn't a huge fan of the third, but it still had its moments. Now comes the fourth film, with writer Paul W.S. Anderson returning behind the camera after stepping down from the past couple sequels. I honestly wanted to like this movie, but it was just so hard to like at times, especially with all the ridiculous slow-motion, plot-holes, and cheesy action. Not to mention the lack of actual zombies!
The film boasts probably the weakest story of the four films, basically just taking place sometime after the events of the previous movie, leaving Alice and her clones to take out Umbrella's headquarters in Japan. After that business is taken care of, Alice heads to a "safe haven" from the infection in Alaska called Arcadia, where the remaining survivors from the third flick were supposedly headed.
Alice reaches Arcadia only to be greeted by several abandoned planes and zero survivors. It's not long before a mysterious figure attacks her, revealing to be Claire Redfield, whom has some sort of mind-altering device on her chest. After removing the device, Claire appears to have some short-term memory loss, making it a little difficult for Alice to get any information as to the whereabouts of all the survivors...
It has become apparent that the series is focusing less and less on the zombies and the T-Virus and more on Alice and her ridiculous powers and for the first 15-or-so minutes that's exactly what we get and then some. Around this mark Alice and her army of clones attack the Umbrella HQ in Japan and director Paul W.S. Anderson gets confused as to what franchise he's helming and gives us what appears to be the next Matrix flick! (*facepalm*)
As many are already aware, the series loosely follows certain key elements from the games and seems to randomly incorporate characters that fans are familiar with like Claire Redfield or Jill Valentine, and it's no different here. Originally Jensen Ackles was going to play Leon Kennedy, but things didn't pan out. Instead, we got a fairly pointless Chris Redfield played by the lifeless Wentworth Miller of Prison Break-fame, whose only purpose in the movie (aside from revealing where to find a cache of weapons) seemed to be fan-fare.
Briefly shown in the previous flick, Albert Wesker finally makes a more prominent appearance and is the new head baddie in this pic. I really disliked Shawn Roberts rendition of the character, as he seemed to make him out to be more of a douche and less of the badass that I remember him being in the games. For reasons unknown, the large axe-wielding Executioner from the last Resident Evil game randomly makes an appearance in the movie, barring any explanation as to who or what he is in the movie. He simply appears with his over-baring axe to cause trouble for Alice and the remaining survivors.
Along with the 3D we're slapped with an immense amount of cheesy slow-mo sequences, mostly consisting of people pointing guns and landing while striking a pose (WTF?). I have no problem with the use of slow motion to make certain scenes more dramatic, but they used it to an extent that seemed unintentionally funny. I mean seriously, how many scenes do we really need of Alice pulling out a gun?? As far as zombie action goes, forget it -- aside from brief scenes at the old prison, the foes our leads face are of the mutated variety, and even that isn't shown enough.
Despite being the weakest of the four action and script-wise, the movie still managed to entertain to an extent, whether it be the abundant of unintentionally funny slow-motion sequences or the Matrix ripoff in the beginning. Check it if you're a huge fan of the movies, but I'd advise skipping it otherwise, especially if you're looking for some zombie action.
|Posted on November 8, 2010 - 7:17pm | FrighT MasteR|