HOLLYWOOD—Of this series' five installments, I had only seen the first chapter. I am aware of the games, but mostly I went in to see "Resident Evil: Retribution" for a night out—not as a fan. As a moviegoer, I was testing to see if this chapter could stand alone.
To me, it did not. The movie did try to tie in the previous chapters through narration and key scenes. According to my brother (who is a fan of the games), the movie managed to include characters, locations, and details from the game. However, even he did not seem too pleased walking out of the theater either.
My idea of a great movie is one where the director directs emotion and plays with it. You get involved into the characters and feel their risks at stake. Whether it’s a character running for her life or a high school student just making it through the day, you as the audience should be emotionally attached to the point where you relate as if you were in the movie yourself: that’s true movie magic. That’s the experience I would imagine most audiences go to the movies to seek. You would think Alice, played by Milla Jovovich, shooting her way through zombies while trying to survive is an emotional experience, but I could care less.
There wasn’t substance to the movie, just violence and action. The cast’s performance couldn’t save the movie because they were given cheesy lines to work with. Michelle Rodriguez returns in interesting ways. She has accomplished contrasting roles. Unfortunately, her main role was her type-casted action-woman. Everything was sequential. Was the mentality when structuring the movie, “This is going to happen, can you survive? Okay, how about this? Still going? Let me throw this at you”? It may be structured so to be similar to the game in a sense to finish a level before you may proceed to the next. However, even simply watching someone play the game is more exciting because the gamer is the one making the decisions and facing the consequences. The decisions Alice makes tries to arise emotion, but it’s so forced and objective, any subjective thought or backstory is laughable.
If you’re ready to see a minimal team outnumbered by zombies fill your action junkie eyes with action and gore, this is the movie to see this weekend. It’s not a movie I’ll be adding to my collection, though.
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