RESIDENT EVIL AFTERLIFE, 2010
In a world ravaged by a virus infection, turning its victims into the Undead, Alice (Jovovich), continues on her journey to find survivors and lead them to safety. Her deadly battle with the Umbrella Corporation reaches new heights, but Alice gets some unexpected help from an old friend. A new lead that promises a safe haven from the Undead takes them to Los Angeles, but when they arrive the city is overrun by thousands of Undead - and Alice and her comrades are about to step into a deadly trap.
Release Date: 10 September 2010
The first 20 minutes of 3D movies seem to be the 'let's spend 60% of the budget and really get into this 3D thing" time. Then for the next 80 minutes or so they spend the rest of the budget while attempting to piece a story together while almost forgetting about the 3D experience all together. It's not like they don't want to keep throwing 3D action at us. They problem is that they have run out of money.
An excellent 3D action movie will probably cost about $300 million to make and no studio, especially in these times, will ever make a movie that costs that much. Of course never say never as it's going to happen eventually, but not for the next 8-10 years. So right now they just try to give us something truly special in the beginning and for that we'll watch the rest of the movie.
I truly believe that 3D is the future of movies but not in the kiddy animation world like most of them are today. 3D is totally suitable for action films as they can take the fancy cinematography and overwhelmingly action choreography to new levels of entertainment. And I have to say that the first 20 minutes of Resident Evil Afterlife is fantastic A bit of a Matrix tribute, but they took the stylistic action montage to a whole new level. The 3D action was so terrific it was like you were in the movie yourself getting bullets shot over your head. I was blown away how cool it looked and felt. And what makes it so much better than the 2nd and 3rd Matrix films is that there is actually an emotional context.
Emotion is the key of 3D. In order for us to invest ourselves in putting on those glasses and spending the extra dollars, we need to feel something profound. A cool shot is a cool shot but if there isn't an emotional element to it, then we don't really remember them. Why is something happening? Why are the bullets flying and why are all these people dying? If there isn't a bigger picture plot and a character we admire and understand, then we don't care about the action sequence.
And Resident Evil Afterlife really succeeds in the emotional game of filmmaking. We care what's happening throughout eventhough there are moments we've seen before in other films. With exception to Jovovich's Alice character, all the other players in the film are channelling their performances from characters in other movies. The most notable is the sleezy producer character that Kim Coates plays. He's obviously doing Sean Penn doing his role in Carlito's Way. The two are so similar I'm sure even the lines of dialogue they say are the same.
But in a movie like this we don't really care. In fact, it actually helps us because we figure them out quickly and it pushes the plot faster. This is a film that's not about character development as all we're looking for is a good time. The more character development leads to some sort of overally theme that's trying to tell us something profound. All we want in Resident Evil Afterlife is a fun film. And we get that because we get to follow Alice, who is always played to perfection by Milla Jovovich. She hits all of the emotional beats needed playing the sweat, loveable girl who you don't want to mess with. She's really the John McClain of female action stars, except she likes herself a whole lot better than he ever did or will. And because she is such an interesting character, we care about what's happening throughout.
The great thing about the Resident Evil films is that all the films hold together on its own. You don't need to watch the first three films in order to watch the 4th installment. It really doesn't matter and achieving this is much easier said than done. Think about other sequels and how rare this is.
So I have to say I'm quite surprised how good this movie is. I enjoyed ever minute of it and loved the setup for the 5th Resident Evil film. I guess this is a franchise that will keep going and going as long as people keep going.
Jovovich is the key to this series and there's no other female action star in the world that can come close to comparing with her.
Funny thing about Jovovich is that she had a child and then married the director of Resident Evil Afterlife (Paul "I'm not Thomas" Anderson, who also made the 1st film). Is this what actresses need to do to get themselves an action films? Kate Beckinsale did the same thing her the director of the Underworld films. So I guess all I need to do if I want to marry a sexy actress is to direct them in an action movie. Who should I choose?