Friday, March 8, 2013

Lollest Common Denominator v2: RESIDENT EVIL – APOCALYPSE

Perhaps I wasn’t entirely clear in my post on the first movie, but I’m not really invested in the RESIDENT EVIL series emotionally. I remember exactly two instances of where I played the games in my entire life; Once at my cousin’s playing the original on PS, then nearly a decade later playing RE4 for a few hours on the Wii. I had fun both times, but I didn’t run out to buy any of them. ALAS this is the Age of the Internet and everything has a fanbase, to the point where movie execs feel justified rebooting a franchise not half a decade old because the hero now has slightly fewer powers and his girlfriend is called Gwen instead of Mary Jane. SO YEAH
RESIDENT EVIL: APOCALYPSE has as misleading a title as the first movie, where precious little runtime was spent in the titular residence! This time, the APOCALYPSE is pretty confined to the destruction of Raccoon City, The Town That Was Named By Japanese Game Developers. We join up with Milla (or as her character is apparently named, Alice, since no one bothered to name her in the first) again as she wanders the streets of an empty Raccoon City. She picks up some appropriately skimpy attire at a surplus shop, before meeting up with a couple of survivors who bring her up to speed with what happened since she woke up.
In a hilarious display of classic UMBRELLA RETARDATION, they re-open the Hive as promised at the end of the first movie and send a bunch of scientist in decontamination suits in. One of the scientists looks at his little geiger counter that indicates T-Virus Levels which goes to OH SHIT RED about five seconds after they set foot in the place. He looks up as if to say, “Uh… guys…?” and then they all just get swamped by zombies. SO THAT’S WHAT THIS FUCKING T VIRUS DOES AAAAARGGHHHH
Then we are introduced to various body parts of a sexy high-heeled femme fatale as she does things around her apartment. The things she does are all located near newspaper clippings about the rise and fall of a young cop named Jill Valentine who was DUPED and FRAMED for… something? and thrown out of the Raccoon City elite S.T.A.R.S. (Special Tactics And Japanese Acronyms) team. But these new troubles have spurred Jill into action, and she’s about to tell her dumbass superiors what’s really going on! Sienna Guillory struts into the police station dressed almost exactly like her video game counterpart:
All the other cops are in uniform or suit and tie, and she just cosplays the shit out of it. But the crescendo of lulz does not stop! Those stupid donut munchin’ ex-partners of hers are trying to subdue a bunch of zombies. Jill doesn’t have time for that and just blasts a bunch of ‘em in the head, after which she confronts the Stupid Chief with a good “Don’t you see what’s going on here???”. I think is probably my favorite scene of the entire movie. It just completely plays like a Funny Or Die skit. Not only is Jill decked out like a cosplayer in a seemingly “normal” movie police station, the RCPD is also somehow trying to process obviously cannibalistic monster men. LJ, the movie’s comedy pimp, is cuffed to a chair fighting off two zombie hoes trying to get at him. If this is how authorities work in the Raccoon government, I am not entirely sure anymore that APOCALYPSE is an undeserved subtitle here. These people would probably show the Ring tape as a pre-movie cartoon at the local Raccooniplex.
Jill Valentine was one of the two playable characters in the first game, and her appearance in this movie dressed exactly like the game seems like Anderson placating fans. He adds another game character, namely Carlos Oliveira, played by this guy:
as the leader of an Umbrella special ops team out to do SOMETHING. He is introduced as he jumps out of a helicopter and dual-wields Glocks in free-fall, blasting at zombies chasing a lady on a rooftop. Also on Carlos’ team is NIKOLAI, played by:
So if you wanna see Scut Farkus doing a Russian accent and shoot the shit out of some zombies (and zombie dogs because obvs) this is the movie for you.
The city is quarantined by Umbrella because 9 out of 10 households have Umbrella products in them, as the first movie told me, so I’m pretty sure that gives them the right to quarantine an American city (precedent set by Naberrie vs. Trade Federation, 1999).
Alice’s band meets up with Carlos’ team and are contacted by a guy on the outside. This is the Professor whose little girl failed to get evacuated because zombie drivers are simply a menace. The Professor is
a clever guy cuz he hid the T-virus and its antidote in the girl’s lunchbox or something, so it’s a win win if Alice’s people go to the school and find lil’ Angie. They do, action scenes happen, blah deeh bla, but let’s talk about NEMESIS the most retarded looking movie monster of the last decade!
He is the infected UglyBettyGuy from the first movie turned into a big ole Frankenstein monster and UNLEASHED within quarantined Raccoon City to test his capabilities. Umbrella, always makin rotten lemons into necrolemonade! Now basically he just looks like a big ole rotted bodybuilder with an apron and platform shoes.
And all the people he kills, he kills with a minigun and a rocket launcher, so I’m not really sure why you have to go and mutate regular people if you can just put armor on their chests and rocket launchers in their hands and get kinda the same results. I mean yeah okay, this guy has a DIRECT LINK with Umbrella Douchebag and his Computer Lady but you might as well give regular guys a headset too!
The big, weird thing that the movie doesn’t get is the zombie presence. Director Alexander Witt (don’t worry though, Anderson still wrote and produced this one) decides that every time a zombie horde attacks, the camera shutter speed should get turned the fuck uppppp so the zombies are all herky jerky at all times. I have no idea what he was trying to achieve. Maybe (probably) the zombie make-up just wasn’t up to par and if everything was blurry and jerky it wouldn’t register as much.
In YET ANOTHER DARK REVELATION, the Umbrella Douche (he is named Major Tom Cain but I don’t remember that being dropped anywhere so UD it is) tells Milla she performed ADMIRABLY! And now to test her strength against Nemesis! Well okay, I guess they were doing something with her when they stuck all them tubes in there. She couldn’t jump like an X-MEN extra in the first movie! Milla is actually quite fun in this one. She jokes and laughs and punches and shoots. There’s one scene where the scope of a sniper trying to shoot lil’ Angie is blocked suddenly and it’s Milla just holding her hand in front of it like peekaboo. Then she laughs and punches him off the roof. A marked improvement in FUN as opposed to cowering wh-what is happening in this HIVEEEE Milla from the first movie. Another fun detail, when Alice and Nemesis have their showdown, they both put their dukes up like they were debating who the damn pater familias is.
It ends with yet another cliffhanger, as Raccoon City is nuked by Umbrella and the explosion is covered up by a “nuclear meltdown” at the Raccoon power plant. Ella suggested this was definitely in the pre-social media age, since if a local paper actually has the headline THE DEAD WALK, no way was #raccooncity not a trending topic in, what, three hours?The blast has Alice and her band’s helicopter crash in the woods, where she is picked up by (who else) Umbrella scientists who tinker with her some more. One of those guys is:
which is p. cool cuz I like that guy! It seems like he’s the villain for 3, so it’s got that in its favor already! Milla escapes, STARES a security guard to death (???) and is picked up by her fellow survivors with fake Umbrella IDs and black jumpsuits. I was disappointed to see that lil’ Angie was hidden in the car, cuz I was hoping the movie would be retarded enough to have a little girl with a fake Umbrella ID walk into a high security facilty and just walk out with a towel wearing Milla.
Although I wouldn’t actually RECOMMEND this movie to anyone outright, I didn’t find it the abject failure the first one was. The horror aspect is still pretty dire (as evidenced by the shutter speed fast walkin’ dead), but it’s SO downplayed that it just feels like a DTV action movie where some of the bad guys just happen to be monsters. And as a DTV that accidentally got into theaters, it’s not bad. I know, I know, low bar, but I’m not a book learnin Umbrella doctor or anything.
brb gonna check basement for zombies

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