Lena and I watched Resident Evil: Extinction last night. (I know, I’m behind the curve. But that’s why I won’t have to feel guilty about the spoilers!) I remembered that I enjoyed these movies, but it had been long enough since I’d been to the theatre that I’d forgotten exactly why.
300 may have a slight edge for sheer, over-the-top badassery, but only just. RE3, like it’s predecessors, is all about stompin’ some undead baddies with loads of extreme prejudice. It also carries this weird sci-fi vibe throughout that really only manages to increase the creep factor. I think because the T-virus is kinda unpredictable in it’s effects you’re never really sure what’s going to be around the next corner, so you end up being more or less scared of everything.
(It occurs to me I should throw a heads up out there. I am a huge zombie flick fan. I love me some dead guys walkin’ around lookin’ for brain pie. I think it’s because shooting zombies (or chopping zombies if you’re not interested in the hassle of counting your bullets) is a guilt free way to burn off a serious amount of pent up aggression… but I may be reading too much into it. Who really cares anyway? Zombies are cool!)
The only thing I didn’t care for about the movie was this strange filter they kept putting over Milla Jovovitch’s face. It made her look like she was made of plastic. (If it was supposed to be too subtle for me to notice, you guys blew it.) Even worse, it wasn’t in every shot. If she was over a certain distance from the camera, or if the lighting was too dark or bright, or if she was looking from behind something else, they didn’t bother with it. So you ended up playing the game of trying to watch to see when she was human, and when she was a plastic doll. I thought briefly that maybe they were trying to keep her from aging, but that didn’t make any sense. Time is passing in the world of RE3, and they’ve been hard years on Alice. (Jovovitch) Also, she’s a super-model for cryin’ out loud. She’s beautiful sweaty, sandy, bloody, or any other way you put her on-screen. Finally I decided that maybe she was evolving into a higher life form, maybe one made of vinyl, and that was the physical manifestation. I just wish it had been more consistent.
So now I get to talk about the evil Umbrella Corporation, the creator of the T-virus and the responsible party for the coming extinction of the Earth. Now these guys apparently just can’t help being evil, they’re villains, and they take their roles seriously. In fact, they’re so evil, you end up feeling a little sorry for them. I mean, if these guys were gonna wake up in the morning and go get the newspaper off the front lawn, they’d find an evil way to do it. There would be casualties.
Two examples: One, when trying to find a way to end the zombie menace, the evil Dr. Isaacs instead decides to give the zombies more speed and aggression, as well as increased brain-power to hunt down their human prey. To be fair he was actually trying to create a docile workforce in the employ of Umbrella, but when that didn’t pan out he thought that making them deadlier was okay too. To reiterate — in order to stop the zombies from killing people, he made them better killers. See? That’s evil!
Two, Umbrella needs a sample of Alice’s blood to end the T-virus plague forever. Just a sample. A little bit. Like, one syringe full. Do they ask? Do they text her and say, hey, can we send a guy over and get this sample so we can bring the Earth back to life? Oh no. Because that’s not evil. See, Alice wants to cure the world of the T-virus, she just doesn’t know how. Umbrella knows, so they are hunting Alice down to try and KILL HER in order to get a blood sample. (And apparently they really like killing her. They’ve cloned and killed her at least 86 times in fun, rather horrible ways by the time the movie opens for no reason anyone really goes into. I guess it’s just evil.)
They are the ultimate cartoon villains, and in this movie, it really works. Every member of Umbrella hates every other member and is constantly plotting against them. Now I know why they always have board meetings via hologram, it’d be too dangerous to meet with other VPs face-to-face. But because of this you are cheering the zombies, heroes, and other Umbrella office workers when they kill off their corporate cronies. Yay!
Oded Fehr (as Carlos Olivera) has one of the greatest death scenes ever in a movie, proving once and for all that smoking actually is cool. Ali Larter is hot and commanding as desert-soldier Claire Redfield, and Mike Epps (playing L.J.) proves once again that those last few hours of pain and fear are way more important that the lives of those you know and love. (Note: when someone who has been fighting hand-to-hand with zombies starts to exhibit outward signs of becoming a zombie himself, do not put him in the car with all the kids, even if one of them is named K-Mart.)
Anyway, if you like zombies, cool chicks with guns and knives, and loads of cartoon violence, this is the film for you. If not, I liked the new Halloween too.
Oh wait a minute…
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Pre-orders are officially done, so all books are now being ordered directly from Lulu Press. (Huge thanks to all of you who ordered! You burned up my sketchbook something crazy!) Just to let you know, if you should feel so inclined Lulu has included a spot for people who order to review the book online and let other know of its awesomeness or lack thereof. (But we’re hoping for awesomeness!)
Thanks again, see you next week!
P.S. A new surprise in on the way for the second week in November. Stay tuned!