Resident Evil: Apocalypse

02/03/2021 06:42

Film: Resident Evil: Apocalypse

Year: 2004

Director: Alexander Witt

Writer: Paul W.S. Anderson

Starring: Milla Jovovich, Sienna Guillory and Eric Mabius



This film I do have to say, I really liked when it first came out. I’m pretty sure I saw this in the theater with my family and then went again with friends. This is another one that I picked up pretty quickly after it came out on DVD and have watched it throughout the years. Again, this is another one that I hadn’t seen in some time with a critical eye so I was wondering how it would hold up. The synopsis here is Alice (Milla Jovovich) wakes up in Raccon City hospital after they’re has been overrun by zombies and must now make it out of the city before a nuclear bomb is dropped.

We start with giving us the back-story of what happened in the previous film from our main character of Alice. This includes the events involving her at the end and waking up again in the hospital where we get a cool shot paying homage to Day of the Dead with the newspaper headline.

It then shifts to Raccoon City to show us the events that will lead to what we just saw. Everyone is going about their daily lives and it feels like a normal Midwestern city. We are taken below the ground to the entrance to The Hive. Umbrella employees are opening it and are overtaken by infected. T-virus spreads out of into the city. Umbrella sends in SUVs to collect important scientists that are living there. One of them is Dr. Ashford (Jared Harris). He is concerned about his daughter and he is informed that she is being picked up as well. Her name is Angie (Sophie Vavasseur). She gets picked up, but there’s an accident leaving her stranded.

We then get to meet Jill Valentine (Sienna Guillory). She enters her home and hears over a scanner of what is happening. We get a cool introduction through a board she has detailing she’s suspended. She goes to her station and takes out the zombies that are in there. She meets with her partner and tells him to get out before it’s too late. She also frees L.J. (Mike Epps), who was in custody. Everything is breaking down around them.

Umbrella is forced to close off the city and not allow anyone to escape. Major Cain (Thomas Kretschmann) makes this decision which causes Dr. Ashford to try to find someone alive inside of the city to help get Angie out. Alice finds an Army/Navy surplus store, gets dressed and finds weapons. She encounters Jill, Sgt. Peyton Wells (Razaaq Adoti) and some other survivors. They band together and learn of their way out when Dr. Ashford calls them on a payphone. He’s able to hack into the Raccoon City mainframe to do this. They then head for the school, but encounter a much more dangerous threat. Alice isn’t the only one that Umbrella has been experimenting on.

They also encounter a group of Umbrella para-military members. They’re led by Carlos Olivera (Oded Fehr). With him are Nicholai Ginovaeff (Zack Ward) and Yuri Loginova (Stefan Hayes). They’re bitter when they’re not evacuated and are all too ready to turn their back on the company that stranded them inside the city limits.

That’s where I want to leave the recap for this movie. This is another one that now I’m a bit more critical of movies while also being fair, I wasn’t sure how this movie would hold up for me. As I started this I said I’ve seen this quite a few times and after this viewing, I still really like it. It for sure is still my favorite in the series.

This of course is taking on the games of Resident Evil 2 and 3, where the infection has gotten out and our survivors are trying to get out of town before Raccoon City is ‘contained’ and wiped out. I dig that they brought in Jill, Carlos, Dr. Ashford, Nemesis (Matthew G. Taylor) and Nicholai. There is also the unit of S.T.A.R.S. that they include here as well. They all aren’t necessarily the characters from the game, but it is at least hitting the nerd part of me there. I do have to comment, I hate that they used the outfit Jill wears in Resident Evil 3, as it is not very practical.

What I also like here is that we still get part of that contained feel that we do from the previous film, just in a bigger sandbox to play in. It is this time around I noticed we really aren’t getting a lot of the zombies. There’s some of that, it is mostly early on before we get to some of the stronger villains. This isn’t that dissimilar to the games themselves though. The main problem of the story works for me. Umbrella is constantly making bad decisions that they need to fix. They also seem to be a bit overconfident. I also like the idea that the ‘Nemesis Project’ is focusing on Alice and Nemesis. They’re too sides to the coin there where one is smaller and more agile to the bulker, stronger one. The showdown is inevitable. This does pigeon hole it into the action/horror film that it is.

Feel that next should be the acting. Jovovich is really good as our heroine here. I like that she just has this look of Alice and fits so well into the role. When I see her that is one of the things I think of first. Guillory wasn’t who I pictured at first as Jill, but I think she does a really good there. Fehr is good as Carlos. I really like Kretschmann as a villain. He is spineless, but that fits and we don’t get to see it until the end. Vavasseur is fine, Adoti, Ward and the rest of the cast are as well. I really liked seeing Harris and Epps here for completely different reasons. Taylor fits what was needed for Nemesis with the size. Also the small cameo by Iain Glen which grows into a much bigger role of Dr. Isaacs, I liked the intro to him here. Since he becomes so important to the series, I like that we get him here to start.

That will take me to the effects and cinematography. I was surprised how much better the special effects were here. The zombies all look good. The CGI for the lickers looks much better here. The action effects are fine for the most part. I actually have some issues with the cinematography for them. They decide to go with this blurry effect and some of the camera work took me out of what I was seeing. Some of the CGI there doesn’t necessarily hold for me as well.

So now with that said, this to me is one of the better video game adaptation horror movies out there. I like what they’re doing with the concept here and it is the logical next step. Resident Evil 2 is my favorite of the series so combining that with 3 works for me since they take place at the same time. Bringing characters from the game tick my nerd box, even if they’re not necessarily the same. Some of the action and effects work, there are just some slight issues there for me. The acting is fine, no one necessarily stands out as great though and the soundtrack also just fits for what was needed. Overall I’d rate this as fun movie and to me, it is an above average movie overall.


My Rating: 7.5 out of 10