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Resident Evil: Retribution

September 17, 2012

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I remember playing Resident Evil for the first and only time on a stormy night in 2002. The experience lasted 20 stressful minutes and I turned off the television and watched Caddy Shack. Those 20 minutes had more scares, jumps and thrills than all five Resident Evil films combined. Is this a terrible thing? Nope. The series has been a brainless zombie factory of odd fun. It is impossible to critique  because they are dumb entities that have defied the odds and critics. The greatest accomplishment is making zombies, S&M axe guys and brain lizard zombies boring.  I was %100 more excited during the red band trailer of Hansel and Gretel 3D.  However, I didn’t hate the film. I walked out of the theater with a smile on my face and thoughts of funny review quotes in my head.

Totally incomprehensible with dialogue so bad it makes Resident Evil 3 seem like the Citizen Kane of skimpy clothing zombie films. The Resident Evil series has become a money-making machine of mediocrity. All five films production costs total $245 million and have pulled in $745 million worldwide not counting DVD and future grosses of Retribution. This is a billion dollar franchise that looks like it is still gaining momentum. The critics dog pile them like the zombies on top of the faceless Umbrella agent. They’ve given the films  34, 21, 22, 24 and 35 ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. The 35 is a well deserved upswing for Retribution after Milla spent 30 minutes flying around Alaska whilst talking to herself in Afterlife.

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John wrote a fantastic review and it saved me from covering all of the finer points of this film. I applaud John for finding logic among the spin kicks and machine guns. The characters in RE5 are all unnecessary and mainly an excuse to piggy back on the Fast Five idea of bringing back favorite actors and going global.

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There is a moment in this film where five men are standing in front of hundreds of zombie soldiers. The zombies are shooting thousands of bullets, dozens of rockets and billions of dirty looks. All of the bullets and rockets miss and the only death is caused by chainsaw. These men  escape by throwing a chair through a window and sauntering out. The zombies do not follow. Resident Evil: Retribution makes zero sense and doesn’t attempt to. Some might call this lazy. I think they know their audience and are not trying to make Crouching Tiger Hidden Zombie. Also, the director Paul W.S. Anderson has made some of the best/worst loud films in recent memory. Death Race almost destroyed a brilliant idea and Three Musketeers was so bad it became great badness.

This film made me want to watch other movies. It made me think about how good Perfect Getaway was and if The Fifth Element still holds up. It also has me hoping that one day Kate Beckinsale, Milla Jovovich, Noomi Rapaace, Maggie Q, Linda Hamilton, Sigourney Weaver, Paula Patton, Anna Torv and Angelina Jolie team up and make an Expendables type film. No plot just explosions and one liners. Why not? The only condition is that Len Wiseman or Paul W.S. Anderson do not direct.

Do not critique Resident Evil like other films. The CGI is good, the performances shaky and the action occasionally cool. I still don’t get who does those monsters piercings though?

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