Articles tagged with cgi

Posted by Ben at 06:01

With the release of Resident Evil Damnation we can now confirm that thereís 2 Resident Evil film franchises on the go; the live action Milla Jovovich ones, and these CG efforts. While the live action films often get criticised for not staying true to the source, Resident Evil Degeneration, and this new film Damnation, do a much better job of capturing the feel of the games.

Thatís not to say they nail it, granted Iím not the worlds foremost knowledge of Resident Evil, but I was under the impression that once someone turned in to a zombie, or a Las Plagas zombie, that was kind of it, Damnation shows that they can be back and chatting away a minute later. Iím not even sure if one of the key plot points is possible in the Resident Evil fiction, controlling Lickers by injecting yourself with the Plagas parasite.

To the plot then, a former Soviet country is suffering a power struggle, with a former military leader claiming power and exerting influence on other political leaders. The people fight back, with rebel factions and government forces becoming embroiled in a civil war, and itís not long until BOWs start being used. Which is why Leon is called in, although thanks to the political sensitivity of the region heís on his own, with neither the U.S. nor Russia wanting to get involved.

To be honest most of that you can just forget, all you need to know is that the rebels are fighting the government and thereís zombies. Leon makes a friend, which gives him a reason to care about whatís going on, but really thereís no reason for him to help the rebels, especially as all the evidence suggests that theyíre the only ones using BOWs (although that does change).

It took me a while to place what Resident Evil Damnation reminded me of, itís very Japanese in its structure. It focuses on relationships, quickly formed, but strong enough that it gives the hero a motivation for the back half of the film. Damnation is every Dragon Ball Z, Naruto, and Pokemon spin-off film you will ever see. One thing it also shares with Pokemon (Pokemon Black I think it is) is the moral ambiguity of the factions, itís commendable that the rebels arenít wholly good, in fact whatever their motivations their actions are indefensible.

Beyond that though itís hard to praise the plot too much, it doesnít feel particularly important, possibly because the main character isnít really a part of it. Even the characters feel incidental, you donít care when people die, you arenít really routing for anyone other than Leon and you know heís going to be fine. The script is particularly clunky, probably due to a too literal translation from Japanese (anyone whoís watched a significant amount of anime will know what I mean).

If Damnation is going to be worth a watch then it has to come from what youíre seeing, and the film certainly looks great. Itís not jaw-dropping or anything, but in comparison to Degeneration itís a huge improvement, and the characters are well animated. Where itís let down though is that the action isnít really showy enough. It starts well, the underground car-park scene is relatively tense and adds some mystery, but itís not until Leon is sprinting down an opulent hall in the back half of the film that I can offer that praise again. Iím not entirely sure what the problem is other than to say that thereís a lack of punch and peril.

Iím not sure where Iíd place Damnation amongst the gaming films Iíve reviewed, itís certainly not a bad film but at no point does it really do anything of note. When the biggest crime a film commits is cringe-worthy puns and shoehorned characters you canít really damn it too harshly. And with that being said Iíd recommend Resident Evil Damnation to RE fans, itís less annoying than the first animated film, and closer to the games than any of the live action films, but itís not something you need to rush to watch.
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Posted by Ben at 18:29
This I remember us posting about. Ubisoft are to release a short Assassin's Creed movie to coincide with the release of Assassin's Creed Revelations.

It will of course be CGI to fit with today's theme, and is called Assassin's Creed Embers.

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Posted by Ben at 18:13
I can't remember if we posted about this or not, it seems familiar but I don't remember ever seeing it on the site.

Regardless, there's a CGI Tekken movie called Tekken Blood Vengeance on the way to the PS3 later this year. Prior to that though Namco Bandai will be offering 1 night only cinema screenings, in 3D no less.

It's being reported as America only, and tomorrow, which is no use to anyone, particularly me and my notebook full of game movie criticism. However I'm hearing talk of there being a London showing, not that that's much use either, but if you are in London then have a look around your local cinemas on the 27th

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Posted by Ben at 17:14
Might be time for another spurt of Loading Screen reviews soon.

The live action Tekken movie wasn't as bad as I was expecting, but I suspect a CGI movie will have it beat.

It's called Tekken Blood Vengeance and features mechs, pandas, giant hands... it's Tekken. It's due this summer (in Japan) and is written by Dai Sato (Cowboy Bebop), with Digital Frontier (Resident Evil Degeneration) doing the art.

Check out the impressive looking trailer below

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Posted by Ben at 16:08
Seems like the far off future doesn't it 2012. But then so did 2010 two years ago and now look at us, surrounded by hoverboards and that virtual sex from Demolition Man.

Come 2012 we'll probably be living in some steam punk dystopia, but we will have another Resident Evil CGI film to watch, this time called Resident Evil Damnation

Resident Evil: Damnation will star Leon S. Kennedy, and will be in 3D. Hopefully it looks, is acted, and just is better than the last one (Resident Evil Degeneration)
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Posted by Ben at 13:42

Strange to think, but for many this is the most anticipated game movie of this year and next year. Not Max Payne with its A-list star, or Street Fighter with its game sequel jumping bandwagon, but a CGI straight to DVD release

The best way to watch Degeneration is to pretend the live action Resident Evil films donít exist. For some of you this will take no prodding, personally though I have a bit of a soft spot for them. Actually thatís exaggerating things, theyíre passable in a rubbish kind of a way, with Milla Jovovich being the main reason to watch.

Degeneration takes things a completely different route, feeling more like the plot to a Resident Evil game Capcom never got around to making. Familiar faces Claire Redfield and Leon Kennedy (in full on hero mode) are the main focus, splitting the narrative not unlike in Resident Evil 2. The films CGI bares more than a passing resemblance to that of the games, a higher standard for sure, but itís not quite the high-end animation many were expecting.

Character movement is at points noticeably stilted, as though rather than watching something drawn you are watching something built. While it should never be enough to ruin your enjoyment of the film, it is disappointing. The clunky animations carry over into the facial features too, characters are never convincing and often incredibly clichťd and childlike during conversations.

Itís not just the animations that let the characters down, the plot and scripting could have done with a lot more work. Characters are wafer thin, take the politician for example, heís so evil his shifty eyes canít stay still for more than half a second. Heís arrogant and ungrateful to the point that he snaps and snides at the very people fighting to save his life. He also shoves a little girl over into the path of some marauding zombies, whilst abandoning his own people to fight for their lives while he escapes to safety.

The films over arching plot is quite a decent one, the motivations for it all are a bit muddy, never quite seeming enough to justify the amount of death and destruction caused. There are plot holes all over the place, mostly minor but thereís one or two key ones I wont spoil here. A couple of the more trivial ones include how a zombie manages to walk through the terminal building, surrounded by people, yet only attacks its intended target. Another is the massive coincidence of a plane crashing into the terminal and the onboard zombies managing to open the heavy side door.

While you can probably enjoy the film if youíre a series virgin, thereís no doubting that it makes some references that will go over your head. Even with a solid knowledge of Umbrella youíll occasionally feel lost, not making connections until after the characters have spelt things out to you. For a series veteran though this is likely the film you were craving, building on past relationships and tying up some loose ends before setting the series up for a new story arc.

None of these issues will really ruin your enjoyment of Degeneration, if anything they help it capture the spirit of the series, certainly the pre-Resident Evil 4 entries at any rate. Itís good to see some of the familiar faces make a comeback, yet enough restraint not to throw them all in, and itís almost worth recommending the film just to witness how ridiculously bad-ass Leon is. His action scenes should really come with QTE commands.

It probably goes without saying that Degeneration is better than all 3 of the live actions films, capturing the feel of the games perfectly, yet thanks to its CGI format it can really pile on the action. Sure itís dumb, yes youíll spot the bad guy within 10 minutes, and no itís not exactly a classic, but it is fun and thatís all you can ask for. Definitely worth a watch
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