Resident Evil: Afterlife

There aren’t a lot of butt kicking heroines in cinema, however Alice from the Resident Evil franchise is one of them. Created as a fictional character, in which the first movie followed loosely the Resident Evil (or Biohazard in some regions) video game franchise about the T-virus transforming humans into the undead once bitten, Alice has been actively kicking butt and seeking revenge on the Umbrella Corporation that started the nightmare for the human race.

One happy family reunion

In the fourth instalment Alice is back in the  fight and reunited with some familiar faces that saw her through thick and thin in the previous instalments. The last movie, Resident Evil: Extinction was a disappointment for me as it [spoiler alert!] killed off one of my favourite characters in the movie franchise (although that character was quite annoying in the video games) and the tension was just not there. Also the abuse of certain characters in the video games translated into the movie didn’t really help either. So I was having quite a bit of reservation when I went into the theatre to watch Afterlife. Fortunately, Paul W S Anderson seemed to take notice of the flaws in the last movie and tried to make things right again with this one.

Alice...not from the Wonderland

The movie set in a LA that was already transformed into a zombie capital in which a small bunch of survivors tried to stay alive long enough to go to Arcadia. Originally Arcadia was thought as a save haven in Alaska but turned out to be a travelling cargo ship picking up infection free survivors. Alice (Milla Jovovich) has reunited with Claire Redfield (Ali Larter) on her search for Arcadia and together they went to LA to search for survivors where Claire was reunited with his brother Chris (Wentworth Miller). The movie then played out as a survival horror as they battled to get out of LA and board Arcadia.

Code Veronica?

As with the other instalments in the franchise, the main characters are strong headed and they were helped by a cast of disposable characters to ensure their survival. Performance wise, the three leads were up to their job and Milla as Alice has already established herself outside the video game franchise as the spokeswoman for Resident Evil on the big screen. Ali and Wenthworth as Claire and Chris Redfield actually provided a surprisingly great chemistry that really brought these two characters from the video games’ fame to real life (I didn’t like Claire in Extinction). The scene between them and Albert Wesker (Shawn Roberts) was great and it did temporarily steal the limelight from Alice (especially when they threw in lines from the original video games). For all the other characters, they served the purpose of their roles in the film and they fulfilled their duties as they should.

No time for a shower...

Resident Evil: Afterlife is based on a video game, so it is an order to have the influence of the video games to satisfy fans. This is one of the weaker aspects in Extinction but in Afterlife, that was also redeemed. The movie was littered with homages to Resident Evil 2, Resident Evil: Code Veronica, Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5. The fact that the Plagas in Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5 had taken centre stage has modernised the zombie franchise to a different level as the games are now more than just zombies. The Executioner from Resident Evil 5 was just a pleasure to watch and his fighting scene with Alice and Claire was strongly influenced by Code Veronica. The movie also has a number of jumping moments that keeps you going like the game, which is nice.

All cool man. All cool.

Resident Evil: Afterlife is not your average horror movie. It is actually not a horror movie as there is a stronger focus on the action element.  However, it is still extremely enjoyable if you are looking for an entertaining action movie with enemies running around stupidly in hordes and getting their body parts blown off by magnums and machine guns. The gore meter is not that high in Afterlife to be honest but they are more stylised, which I personally preferred. There are still scenes that didn’t really make sense but then making sense out of everything is not what the Resident Evil movie franchise is best known for. Further with all your favourites from the video game franchise (protagonists, villains and enemies alike), it should be a cool night out with friends in the cinema.

Oh and also, don’t leave the cinema immediately as soon as the credits roll. At least wait till after the cast list is finished.

About the Author

Level up freak. Level 99 is a norm not a goal. Love my JRPGs and RPGs in general. Also love my platformers and puzzle games. Was addicted to Zoo Keeper, Magnetica, Animal Crossing, Disgaea DS, Dragon Quest IX and White Knight Chronicles. Prefer to spend my time away from gaming as an actor although do have a full time job that keeps my mortgage going. But generally love anything creative. And if anyone tells you gaming is a waste of time, tell them you have great eye, hand and brain coordinations that they will never have!