Resident Evil: Apocalypse is the sequel to the surprisingly well-received movie version of the video game. What it lacks in the enclosed-spaces thrills of the first, it makes up for in bullet-spraying action, although there are several times when it just doesn’t make sense.
You’d think they’d hire someone to read over their script and find any holes in plot or logic, wouldn’t you? It’s not so hard. So why, if the the virus just escaped and started mutating the citizens of Raccoon City, are there undead bodies buried in a cemetery, just waiting for our stars to arrive? What, they were buried in the last 8 hours?
Aside from the multiple failings in plot, the above example only one of them, this film is fun and exciting. Maybe it’s what I needed that day, but for whatever reason, I actually quite enjoyed this. Sure it’s overblown, illogical, clichéd… but what Hollywood science fiction surprises these days?
Guillory is great as Jill Valentine, Jovovich passable as Alice, and Fehr does a reasonable job as Olivera. The other cast are pretty much irrelevant in the onslaught of monsters, zombies and gun-toting army guys. The shots and editing are great, only rarely slipping into jump-cut and whip-pan errors. The CGI isn’t awful.
I guess it may help to have grown up playing games like this, as you’d be more willing to accept the obvious – Gee, I wonder when we’ll see Matt again? As it was, I enjoyed this for all its flaws. Go in with a light-hearted attitude and have fun.
Review by Mark Lavercombe, 1st January 1970
Sigh. I can’t imagine this film being any worse. Five minutes in and I was fully prepared to leave.
The first Resident Evil was entertaining, if not entirely challenging. It moved at a quick pace, had Milla Jovovich and a score by Marilyn Manson going for it.
This sequel is just plain terrible. Jovovich is just about the only person that survives this film unscathed. She is great as the action hero and looks cool when kicking arse. Unfortunately everything else sucks.
The supporting cast are no good, and it was only after Mark pointed it out that I realised that Oded Fehr was even in this film. More’s the pity… he was one of the best characters in The Mummy films, yet here was simply annoying. I disagree with Mark… I think Sienna Guillory was just as terrible as everyone else.
Of course to be fair, the actors didn’t have a good script to work with. ‘We’re expendable… and we’ve just been expended’. Yep, that’s about as good as it gets, people.
The special effects are so-so. The prosthetic effects are terrible. I’ve seen monsters in ‘Buffy’ that looked better than Nemesis. There are two action sequences of worth, and neither of them make any sense.
Let’s face it. Zombies are boring. Or at least, they are right now. After Resident Evil, Dawn Of The Dead, Dead Creatures, Undead, House of the Dead and Shaun Of The Dead, I think audiences want something different. The director of Dawn Of The Dead (remake) made a good point when he said that the more you show zombies the more they look like a bunch of extras (NOT a direct quote). Thus in his film we only saw the monsters briefly. In RE: Apocalypse however, a hand held, kind of blurred strobe effect is used, and it just makes then look even sillier.
Mark commented to me the other day the difficulty in rating Hollywood films. He suggested that even if a film is absolute shite, chances are it’s well shot, well edited, and has nice special effects. This is definitely NOT the case with RE: Apocalypse! The editing is jarring, and the shots haphazardly framed. There is nothing quality about this film… a first year film student could do better.
Boring, predictable, stupid.
Review by Stuart Wilson, 1st January 1970Hoopla Factor: