This is the fourth installment in the Resident Evil franchise. I thought that the first film was just okay. The second film was the first one I really liked. The third one was even better and easily the best of the three. So with that kind of trajectory, I figured the fourth one should be even better. Is it? Read my review to find out.
In Resident Evil : Afterlife Milla Jovovich reprises her role as Alice. The main challenge for her and the few other humans that are still alive is simply survival in a world becoming increasingly overrun by zombies. You don’t really need to have seen the other movies to see this one, even though there are a couple other characters in it from the last film. The story stands on its own and doesn’t require any knowledge of previous films.
The first thing I noticed is that the cinematography and set design is beautiful from beginning to end. It is an amazing looking film. On top of that, this movie should absolutely be seen in IMAX 3D as it uses the 3D so skillfully. Watching Piranha 3D, 90 percent of the time, I totally forgot that it was even in 3D. It just seemed like a waste. But this film makes every scene jump off the screen much the way Avatar did. Of course none of that matters if the story and characters fall flat.
I am very happy to say that my hopes of this being even better than the 3rd film were confirmed. The actors flesh out the characters quickly and get you invested in their situation. That is a good thing because most of this movie has relentless pacing and some of the best action sequences I have ever seen. And when it does slow down, there is a well done atmosphere of the creepiness and dread of an apocalyptic world with hordes of zombies right on your doorstep, trying to push their way in. The movie even has time to have mysterious characters whose motives are revealed as well as a special villain that has a great menacing presence and impact despite only being on screen a short time. And as with the last film in the series, the soundtrack is amazing, totally matching the tone of the film
I was not bored for a minute. This is a seriously well made movie of it’s type. In a lot of ways, the last Resident Evil movie was a virtual remake of George Romero’s Day of the Dead. This film has echos of that film as well as Land of the Dead. These films strike a nice balance. They have the undertones of Romero type pressure and dread, while at the same time strike their own identity with Matrix inspired action scenes. A very enjoyable movie.
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