Alice in Zombie Land
I feel that to truly love "Resident Evil" you need to have played the game so that you can appreciate certain elements and understand certain things. But then if like me the only thing you know is that "Resident Evil" was a computer game then what we have is simply a futuristic zombie movie not that different in style to the remakes of George A. Romero's zombie movies. As such for me what "Resident Evil" ends up is a well made movie but one which still comes down to a group of people evading infection from being bitten.
When a virus is released in a top secret research facility known as "The Hive", the computer system automatically goes in to lock down preventing anyone from escaping and causing all those stuck behind the doors to become infected, zombie like creatures. A military team is sent in who also take with them Alice (Milla Jovovich - Zoolander) who is suffering from amnesia to shut down the computer as they believe it may have created the lock down of its own doing. But as they get into "The Hive" they discover the truth, the zombies and that there was someone behind the virus release.
Now in fairness I actually like the story presented in "Resident Evil" a top secret research facility called the Hive has gone into lock down and we have group of people trying to get inside, unaware that a deadly virus has been released. It sets up a variety of possibilities as we discover at the start the virus is down to a terrorist who steals a case full of the virus but also the vaccine. We also have the mystery of Alice who wakes up in a shower with memory loss and there are various others who contribute to exactly what this mystery is and whether or not the computer which controls the Hive is behind it all. And we learn bit by bit what is happening to create this solid storyline which is a nice vehicle for lots of action.
But unfortunately there comes a point in "Resident Evil" where it becomes familiar and that just happens to be the point where we discover that those who have been infected with the virus are basically zombies. It means that for all the story the movie becomes about a small group of people trying to escape with their lives, find the vaccine for those amongst them which may be infected and of course do battle with the living dead. There is no denying that all of which is worked nicely, we get reasoning to why we have zombies, we have drama as a vaccine being needed and we get plenty of kick butt action but for me it just ended up another zombie movie. And that is where I think having played the game makes "Resident Evil" a different movie because then hopefully certain things will mean more to you.
But because "Resident Evil" does end up a very visual movie about the action as zombies are battled and in turn it becomes all about Milla Jovovich as Alice. Now of course this movie does centre on Alice but it does seem that we have the case that Jovovich has been cast because she can do super sexy action chick leading to some very stunning action moments. But to me something is missing and it is the same through out because with Michelle Rodriguez it feels like they have gone for rent a tough chick. It's not so much anyone does anything wrong, in fact everyone plays their parts nicely but the actual parts seem so ordinary.
What this all boils down to is that for me "Resident Evil" ended up a good but not spectacular zombie action movie which may have been greater if I had played the game before. But what is for certain is how the movie ends does make you want to watch the next one even if you were not overly impressed.
Tags: Zombie Movies