Resident Evil (2002) – Paul W.S. Anderson

 

The Sci-Fi Chronicles now plunges me into the most successful video game/film adaptation to date, based on Capcom’s Resident Evil series, the film brings the survival horror nature of the addictive and occasionally terrifying video games to the theatrical world.

This entire series has been a guilty pleasure for me, and I was happy to dig into it again. Written and directed by Paul W.S. Anderson, the film has a mish mash of a cast, some are quite good in their roles, like the lead, Milla Jovovich, (and who doesn’t love her outfit and boots in this film?), Michelle Rodriguez, and Colin Salmon, while some of the other actors, are a little too cardboard-like.

Alice (Jovovich), awakes with no memory of who she is, or where she is, when an armed team arrives in her home, and escorts her to an underground facility beneath her house. It seems, she is part of the security of this facility, run by the Umbrella Corporation, who are working within, what is known as, The Hive, to engineer bio-weapons, and it seems now, one of them, the T-Virus, has gotten loose.

The T-Virus kills, and then re-animates, so this is a bit of a zombie movie, though they aren’t the lumbering type, these are fast, and because Umbrella is all about genetic manipulation as well, there are variations, mutations, and dangers of all sorts deep within The Hive.

The team’s mission, led by One (Salmon), is to ascertain what happened, stop the spread of the infection, and survive…

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They are thwarted, of course, by the rapid spread of the virus, one bite and you’re done, the masses of undead already seething through the complex, and all of it overseen by a potentially homicidal computer known as The Red Queen.

As her team begins to dwindle, under the seemingly unstoppable onslaught of undead and security precautions of The Hive, Alice learns what is really going on, and how the T-Virus actually got loose.

The film itself is little more than B-movie fare, but looks slick, has a sense of fun, is bloody, violent, and features an ass-kicking female lead, all good things in my book, and perhaps that is part of the appeal of these films for me.

I also like that it also ends not necessarily on a cliffhanger, but sets up things for the next inevitable film, something each film does at its conclusion. It’s fun to see the way a character(s) survive, and how everything seems just about fine before a bigger reveal that this is only one obstacle…

The film doesn’t pretend to be anything it isn’t, it has no aspirations on social commentary, it’s not going to change the world, it’s there to entertain, pure and simple, and for me, it does that job. These are just fun, no-brainer films, and consequently, I am looking forward to making way through the series.

And who doesn’t like seeing Milla kick ass?

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