Wednesday, December 12

Resident Evil The Final Chapter Review

I watched on: Bluray - PS4
The price I paid: £0 (I got the Bluray boxset for Christmas 2017)
Notes: I want to pay my respects to both Olivia Jackson and Ricardo Cornelius. Olivia who was the stuntwoman for Milla Jovovich and lost her arm and most the movement in her spine after a motorbike stunt went wrong. Ricardo lost his life after another accident. Both of them made this film possible and deserve to be remembered as long as this series is as they both gave so much for it.

If you look at the previous 5 films leading up to this Final Chapter then you see a pattern in the plots. They all involve a group of characters having to escape some location. During the first film, the Umbrella task force and Alice must escape the Hive. Apocalypse had a group of civilians and ex-Umbrella soldiers trying to make it out of Raccoon City alive. Extinction has our heroes trapped in the desert slowly running out of fuel, food and water so they must make it to Arcadia in Alaska. Afterlife finds Alice, Clare Redfield and other survivors caged inside a maximum security prison in LA having to make it out to Umbrella's ship – the Arcadia. After this Retribution finds Alice held hostage inside a top-secret Umbrella testing facility trying to escape with the help of Ada Wong and her backup team. It seems poetic than that The Final Chapter finds Alice not trying to escape from a location but instead having to break into one. The Red Queen informs Alice that Umbrella is still active under the ruins of Raccoon City in the Hive. It’s here that they have developed an airborne anti-virus that could save what remains of the human race. Alice has 48 hours to make it into the Hive from what remains of Washington DC. I don’t want to spoil anything but the series repeated use of clones really pays off here. As a final farewell to one of the most over the top, silly and damned enjoyable plots in recent history this is amazing.

As with most of the films in this series, it’s the cast of survivors that really make this enjoyable. I think that’s why Afterlife suffered so much, it didn’t have the cast to hold it up. Here, however, we have an amazing group of characters. Thanks to the magic of cloning Dr Isaacs makes a return as does Albert Wesker and the Red Queen. Alice is joined by a group of survivors holding out in what remains of Raccoon City. These include Clare Redfield and a bunch of new faces including Ruby Rose who is always a joy to see. This film continues the cheesy but very well fitted dialogue from Retribution. While I could not say if this is a positive or a negative factor I do know I enjoy it. The cliché filled dialogue suits the ridiculous plot and action of the film. The good thing about clichés is that they are simple to understand allowing the backstory and twists to also be easy to understand. As well as these advantages this cinematic shorthand allows the action to take the centre stage as it should do. Yes, it’s corny but this entire series is corny and it’s why I love it so the dialogue doesn’t feel out of place at all.

Once again the fight scenes are edited with lots of fast cuts making it hard to see what’s happening. As I said in my review for Apocalypse this is a lazy technique to give the impression of action without actually showing any. It’s a shame because when we can see what’s happening the fights are all very good. I love the stunt work and tension in these moments. The scene with the survivors trying to hold the destroyed skyscraper from the army of undead is amazing. The special effects here are mind-blowing and really help bring this far-fetched world to life. Without this quality of effects, a lot of what this film throws at you would not be possible so it’s great to see them keeping up with the insanity. It’s over the top, unbelievable and breathtaking. I love not just this film but this series for how totally absurd it is. The action and plot of a B-movie with the budget of a summer blockbuster.

While it’s not a landmark in cinema history this film nails perfectly what it sets out to do. It’s a ludicrous end to one of cinema’s most preposterous and outlandish series and I would not have it any other way. Without a doubt, this is the best film since the first one and that makes me so happy. What a great way to end such an enjoyable series of films. I really had a good time re-watching all of these. At the end of the day, The Final Chapter is a fond farewell to this alternative look at the world of Resident Evil.

Recommendation Rating: 9 out of 10.

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