Wednesday, December 12

Resident Evil Extinction Review

I watched on: Netflix
The Price I paid: £0
Notes: N/A

5 years have passed since Alice escaped the Umbrella lab in Detroit at the end of Apocalypse. Since then the world has been overrun by the T-virus destroying the world as we know it. Our group of survivors from the last film have joined up with a convoy headed by Clare Redfield. This character only shares a name in common with her video game counterpart and has a very different personality. Honestly, after Apocalypse seemed afraid to move away from its source material it’s good to once again see this series doing its own thing. Alice who is aware of Umbrella tracking her has left the group and is surviving on her own. Both Alice and Clare’s convoy are sticking to small towns in the Nevada desert as the lack of a population keeps the risk of running into any undead to a minimum. The plot although never shocking is very enjoyable and introduces us to concepts that would continue in later films.

Extinction has a very different tone from both the last films but in a good way. It has its own very enjoyable Mad Max inspired identity. The action is back to it’s over the top madness losing the awful fast cut fight scenes from Apocalypse. Relying instead on claustrophobic cramped tension or well shot and dramatic stunts. This is good because it’s what the series is best at. Seeing Alice take on a hoard of zombies with nothing but two machetes is amazing. The special effects are great for the zombies and other monsters which all look fantastic. While this film is most certainly not a horror the monsters are on par with the most terrifying special effects found in the genre. A lot of this film uses make-up and other practical effects and the pay off is a film that looks and feels great.

During the previous films, it was always the cast that kept you invested and nothing has changed here. Both the returning and newly introduced cast are charismatic, instantly likeable and very often funny. I honestly care about these people and find it sad when any of them get killed off. Despite my fondness for this cast, I must say that it’s much less diverse with no people of colour making it to the end. It still has very positive representations of women with both Clare and Alice being badass action heroes with a soft side. While I certainly enjoy these two women it is a shame that we still don’t have any proper racial diversity. It would be great to have some non-white and maybe even LGBT characters in this series.

One of my biggest issues is how disconnected this film feels from the ending of Apocalypse. We get very little information on what happened in the 5 years between then and now. Jill Valentine and Angie Ashford are both missing and we never learn what happened to them. This seems strange considering how important to the last film and it’s ending they were. We are missing so much of what happened during the 5 years between films that it feels like we skipped an entry to the series. There are also minor issues with continuity from the previous films. During a fight scene, Alice kills multiple zombies by cutting their throats. In the first film, we were told that to kill a zombie you must severe the spinal chord or destroy the brain. As I said in my last review this won’t bother everyone but it does bother me and this is my review.

All in all the minor problems I have with this film do not stop it being the excessive action film that it is. I love this film, maybe not as much as the first but much more than Apocalypse. The action is once again fantastic, the cast continues to be great and the visuals are the strongest in the series so far. If you’re a fan of the last films or action films in general then this should be one you watch!

Recommendation Rating: 8 out of 10.

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