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Resident Evil

Movie Review by Keith Kelly

“Resident Evil: Afterlife” is the 4th film in a series based on a video game. I’m a firm believer in “one movie based on a video game is more than plenty”-but Hollywood never seems to listen to me.

I’ve never seen Resident Evils 1, 2 or 3, but I had to bite the bullet and watch the latest installment since I was assigned to review it for the Naperville Sun. I did, however, go with an open mind-as all good critics should for any movie.

As you might expect, the action is pretty decent with lots of flips, chops, slashing and bullet dodging. The sets and landscapes are expansive and impressive-but I always wonder why the architects in these kinds of films design so much wasted space in their ginormous buildings. But Resident Evil: Afterlife really falls apart in the script department. The plot and character development is almost non-existent. It’s just “escape from the zombies” and “get even with the bad guys”. Our main hero Alice, played stoically by Milla Jovovich, and the other players have as much depth as, well, video game action heroes-go figure. The main villain is just a bad impersonation of Agent Smith from “The Matrix. No shades of grey for this guy-he just exists to be evil.

Chapter 4 brings nothing fresh to the genre, other than a couple of cool new zombie designs-which include a giant bad-ass zombie, and some kind of gnarly mouth creature that pops out of some of the upgraded zombies. They’re never explained, but I guess they’re part of the ongoing genetic meddling that the Umbrella Corporation is undertaking.

There were plenty of opportunities to uniquely utilize some “in your face” action in this 3D film, but they mostly went wasted. Unless you’re a die-hard Resident Evil fan-and their must be a bunch of you since the film opened at #1, I say stay home and play the video game instead.

I give “Resident Evil: Afterlife”, directed by Paul W.S. Anderson, a grade of “C”.

Keith Kelly TV

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