Posted by Ben at 17:34

Finally we've come to the end of the Resident Evil trilogy, and with degeneration already done we wont be doing another one until next year.

As a film to bow out on it's fitting regardless of whether you love or hate the series

It’s strange isn’t it, there’s been relatively few video game films so far, yet a surprising number of actors have made multiple game-film appearances. We’ve talked about the Uwe Boll regulars before, and there’s a few here too. Obviously there’s a few returning cast members (Alice, Carlos, and A.J), including the nefarious Dr. Isaac, who was also a nefarious bad guy in Tomb Raider. Joining him in working for Umbrella is Matthew Marsden, former star of Emmerdale and Coronation Street, who has also appeared in D.O.A. Fun facts!

As mentioned there’s a few returning characters from the second Resident Evil film, but thematically and in terms of plot, the two films have very little in common. In short Umbrella’s attempt to contain the T-Virus outbreak has failed and the world has been overrun. Alice and co are on the run, though separated, with Alice trying to evade the satellite monitoring of Umbrella. Dr. Isaac has taken Alice’s DNA, and is both trying to clone her and implant it in the undead to create a ‘cure’, of sorts.

Extinction may largely ignore the second film, but it’s more than happy to reference the first. Extinction begins with a scene for scene remake of the first film, until eventually deviating to bring in the infamous laser corridor. It leaves you confused, especially as you watch Alice die quite feebly. After that though the film goes its own bizarre route, sparing the time to nod to Day of the Dead (on at least 2 instances), Mad Max, and The Birds (oh, and steal some music from T2).

As always there’s some frankly idiotic moments in Extinction. Early on Alice, who last time out killed countless trained soldiers, took down the Nemesis, and survived a helicopter crash, gets captured by a bunch of rednecks. She could take them all out as soon as look at them, but for some reason she appears to have forgotten how, before eventually escaping using more difficult means. It’s not just Alice who’s not learnt any lessons either, A.J. goes off into the dark of a hotel, and sure enough is attacked. He’s bitten by a zombie that he surely would have seen (although the use of the mirror is a clever idea, but he still would have seen it), the bite doesn’t tear his coat or his shirt, yet gouges a chunk out of his chest. He also doesn’t tell anyone he’s been bitten, nor do they check particularly well, even though he knows exactly what danger he’s putting his companions in. You’d think someone would piece it together when he starts to turn blue.

There’s a few other trivial moments of stupidity, such as the heat map showing peoples coats and guns as being the same temperature as they are. Claire also takes charge of a helicopter at one point, despite the film never mentioning she knows the first thing about how to fly one. Without meaning to spoil things, we’re also treated to a cockney tyrant, and for some reason Wesker is both C.E.O of Umbrella and the only American that works for them.

The hardest thing about reviewing Extinction is that it is so mind-numbingly stupid that it’s hard to know what to make of it. When the zombie crows attacked I cringed in embarrassment, but when they were explained I found myself nodding as though it made perfect sense. At this point any rules and restrictions created by the series have been abandoned and flouted so much that absolutely anything can happen without it seeming out of place. Which explains why Alice can develop telekinetic powers without the filmmakers feeling they’ve gone too far. It makes you wonder what the series would have been like had the first film stayed as a horror film all the way through. Now though it’s so comic book ridiculous that it’s arguably the perfect testament to video games. It’s also why it’s enjoyable, don’t get me wrong you’ll hate yourself for it but it is entertaining.

A big part of that is the action. The gun fights aren’t really anything special, although they do allow for plenty of deaths, with the minor characters fleshed out just enough that you’re engaged in their peril. The better scenes are without doubt the ones involving Alice’s acrobatic fighting style, they’re well shot and something different from watching endless rubbery looking zombies fall backwards with their blood packs exploding all over the screen (again, they’ve been fighting the undead for years, you’d think they’d know to shoot them in the head by now).

As mentioned Extinction does touch base a couple of times, including pitching Alice against the Tyrant. I guess it was felt that Alice needed a climatic fight against a giant monster, but really it’s meaningless, and not nearly as interesting as the potential destruction of Umbrella.

For what it’s worth I enjoyed Extinction, not enough to recommend you rush out and buy it on Blue Ray, but it’s certainly better than Apocalypse, and maybe even the first film. It’s incomprehensibly idiotic at points, so much so that it begins to succeed because of that. Kill a few brain cells and you’ll enjoy it.
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