Resident Evil: Apocalypse!

Resident Evil: Apocalypse ~ 2004, Alexander Witt (written by Paul W.S. Anderson- Boo!)


What happens when you take a step down from terrible? Sometimes it seems like it would just be easier to make a good movie. Have we not yet hit rock bottom? Is it even possible to make a worse movie than we are already used to?! Today; the race to be the biggest idiot possible is a dangerous, fast paced, highly competitive arena. Trend setters in every avenue of the human experience anxiously push the limits of how stupid they can be, and no other field of human accomplishment shows as much innovation, or as much tireless zest.


In film, this competition is especially fierce. Titans of incompetence like James Nguyen, Tommy Wiseau, and Michael Bay loom formidably in the distance, unreachable points on the horizon. Yet, even now, courageous idiots dauntlessly strive to reach new levels of ineptitude. Take Alexander Witt, director of Resident Evil: Apocalypse. Just as Paul W.S. Anderson had established himself as a rampaging juggernaut of utter tripe, Witt steps up to the plate and boldly agrees to follow in Anderson’s footsteps with a sequel to Resident Evil. In so doing, he somehow manages to craft a film which is stupid in striking, unexpected new ways. Now, Witt joins with Paul W.S. Anderson and company, themselves the NASA of stupid bullshit, on a quest to dumb down the human race to the utmost of their abilities. Nobody else can suck as reliably, and with such fevered enthusiasm as these guys can. They are truly pioneers on the very boundary of what we as humans dream we can achieve.

THE PLOT~ Following the events of Resident Evil, zombies have infested Racoon City. A number of adults of bellow average intelligence fight to escape, including:

1. Alice- Milla Jovovich’s character. She’s horrible. Who cares? She ends up being a mutant.
2. Some mercenaries- Whatever.
3. A super racist portrayal of a black man – “Please, mutha fucka, my shit is custom!” (When we meet this guy he is literally handcuffed to a zombified prostitute.)
4. Another LESS cartoonish black man, so this way we can say “See, not all black people in this movie are criminals,  this black guy is a cop! This movie isn’t racist!” But it totally is still super racist.
5. Other assholes
6. A little girl with an English accent

This turkey does ONE thing right where the first movie couldn’t- we have a lot more zombies this time around. That having been said, they aren’t particularly interesting or well done, and Witt keeps filming them in a blurry, low frame rate smear, which I guess is supposed to be cool? Or scary? Really sucks. Looks cheap, it’s a terrible technique. Otherwise, the production is fine, but the acting isn’t anything to write home about. Scut Farkus is especially bad.

scut old new

Yes, you get to watch the bully from A Christmas Story die, so I guess that’s a plus.

The biggest problem here is that all of the characters are idiots. They make decisions that only a child could believe a capable adult would make. For instance:

 Quick; you’re a cop, there’s an outbreak of a deadly virus in your city, what do you do?!?

If you answered “Charge into a crowded police station and open fire on suspects in custody while numerous innocent civilians and police stand in your line of fire without any explanation, and refuse to even warn people with a “Heads up,” and then act like a total dick when they react to your behavior,” then you are a moron, and you’re probably going to get your face shot off your fucking head. That’s the bad news. The good news is, you might like Resident Evil: Apocalypse, because that’s just the sort of thing that our characters do in this movie. Jill, one of our characters, does this exact thing, in fact. When asked what the hell she is doing, she responds curtly “They’re infected.” …Okay. Well, that’s your opinion… Totally uncool for you to just shoot people like that. Also, you could have easily killed someone who WASN’T “infected.” We’re cops and you don’t get to just shoot people because you think you know what’s going on. You’re a shitty character, and you’re stupid.

That’s not the only ridiculous, imbecilic action committed by a character in this movie, pretty much anything anyone does is stupid, Alice’s antics in the church sequence jump to mind, but that’s what we get when our writer, and likely our director, aren’t very smart, and aren’t any good at what they do. Resident Evil: Apocalypse is really, really shitty.

One thing that happens in Resident Evil: Whichever one this is called which I think is especially depressing; at one point, Alice realizes she is being watched through a video surveillance camera, and she uses her crazy mental powers to actually sense the person watching her, where ever that person might be in the world, and then kill that person, Michael Ironside style. The implications here are nothing to sneeze at, either her weird, biological powers allow her to somehow “hack in” to electronic circuits and trace the outgoing signal to whichever monitor it is routed to, and then somehow read the viewer, and somehow kill that person, making her powers both biological and technological, OR she is basically a god at this point. And that’s a far cry from the bumbling, remedial Jedi you’ll see her present herself as in the next movie. The reason for this is simple; the people who make these movies are idiots. They want the end of every movie to be epic, but then they regret how little room they’ve left for themselves to grow when the next sequel begins, so they try to retcon a decent chunk of what they’ve just finished doing every time the next installment kicks off. Watch, they do this over and over.

Also, the next one is even worse.




RESIDENT EVIL – 2002, Paul W.S. Anderson


In the late 90’s, the Resident Evil video games were totally the cat’s pajamas. Critics and gamers alike couldn’t get enough of the impressive graphics, spooky atmosphere, and innovate “survival Horror” play style, and absolutely nobody ever companied about the game’s lack of Milla Jovovich doing karate. It seemed inevitable that a movie based on the series would soon enter production, and lo and behold; this prophecy was fulfilled.

Initially, the studio went after beloved horror director and zombie O.G. George Romero to direct an adaptation, which, at the time, seemed like a slam dunk, but after a long courtship, these negotiations fizzled out, leaving producers to apparently just throw up their arms in frustration and ask, “What about that smarmy ballsack who directed Mortal Kombat?” And that, boys and girls, is how Paul W.S. Anderson, who is to film franchises what Jack the Ripper is to 19th Century British Prostitutes, destroyed any possibility of there ever being a good Resident Evil movie, ever.

Here’s the thing, it should not be hard to make a good Resident Evil movie, you guys. For reals, this one should have been in the bag. The problem is, though, that Resident Evil was a game about surviving, not fighting. Paul W.S. Anderson doesn’t care about that. That’s boring, in Paul’s book, he really only makes one type of movie; it’s gotta be an action film, it has to be really, really stupid, and if at all possible, his girlfriend Milla Jovovich has to be in it, so she can pretend to be a bad ass. Though this is an unconfirmed suspicion, most experts agree that the only way Anderson can retain that Leeloo Dallas Multipass to her downstairs Ukrainian bang-situation is by constantly crafting full length motion pictures wherein Jovovich get’s to pretend to be a bad ass and beat people up. Do the math, she’s a model and he’s a squirmy little turd. I’ve seen guys do more elaborate things to seal the deal, but seriously, bro, this is extreme. Just find somebody who likes you for you.

THE PLOT~ Deep underground in a genetic research facility, there is an outbreak of a deadly, biologically engineered virus which turns people into zombies. Immediately, the job is put to Milla Jovovich to be a bad ass and do karate.

Resident Evil is glorified Sci Fi channel tripe, it’s a cheesy, predictable action film full of stupid characters doing stupid things, start to finish. There actually are a few decent scenes here and there, shockingly enough, but the story is boring, and the zombies are seriously downplayed. We do have some zombie dogs that turn up, which are briefly almost neat, but Jovovich just karate kicks them to death in a sequence totally and utterly divorced from the spirit of the source material, so that scene and everything in it is therefore reduced to suckary of the lowest order.

As mentioned before, Zombies do not factor into this “zombie movie” nearly enough. Our most memorable sequence in the whole film involves someone being killed not by the undead, but instead, by….. an elevator. Alright…. It’s a good scene, but I kinda wonder why you’re not doing any zombie stuff in your zombie movie, Paul… Moving right along… The second most memorable sequence in the film… also, zero zombies. Instead, we have a bunch of people who get laser beamed to death in some kind of futuristic, laser-hallway. Again, kinda neat, but one would think that, when sitting down to write and direct a zombie movie, zombies would be something you would want to make sure got in there somewhere. I feel like that would be the very first item on the checklist, so it seems really weird how minimal they are in the grand scheme of this movie. I mean, if any of you out there really have a thing for laser-death, please, step up, this movie has a scene that you should totally see, but given that this was supposed to be a zombie film, it for sure comes across as being far too light in the zombie department.

And that’s not the only thing this movie skimps on, either. It really feels like there must have been a conscious effort to avoid including anything that made the games effective, and the only qualities that made the jump from the game to the film are the qualities that don’t really matter. The crumbling atmosphere, the claustrophobic, tension laden camera angles,  the emphasis on survival over Matrix style karate shootouts like we ended up with, all of that is either minimized or just flat out missing altogether, and replaced with bland cinematography, slick action sequences, and childish, two dimensional characters who nobody ever asked for. This movie sucks, and it could have been really great.

Resident Evil is a massive failure in every way except for commercially, because when Paul W.S. Anderson is on board, you are guaranteed a fate worse than death. Not only do his movies totally suck, but they also make money, thereby guaranteeing a long, miserable line of sequels, each even suckier than the last. If you had any connection to the source material at all, your life just took a virtual belly flop into Hell’s lake of fire.

So, Devil’s advocate time: From a very zen, calm state of mind, one can look at Resident Evil and say, “okay… It’s not that terrible. It’s not the kind of movie we should have received, but as a cheesy, paper-thin sci-fi action flick, this certainly isn’t the worst movie out there.”

That’s true… but is that enough? I’m pretty tired of constantly trying to lessen the sting of how shitty everything is by telling myself that other things are even shittier. That’s a poor excuse, and if we keep on justifying things in this fashion, nothing is ever going to get better. We need to rethink that train of thought right here and right now, if you get stung by hornets, don’t just say “Hey, at least my entire family wasn’t murdered before my very eyes, because that would be worse than being stung by hornets.” That makes no sense, dude. I mean, I agree, the murder of your immediate family would be worse, but you’re allowed to be upset about getting stung by hornets. Too many people aren’t, though, and sadly, by this point we’ve tolerated and even rewarded shitty media for such a long time that now there’s almost nothing decent out there. Now we have people so desperate to actually enjoy something that they’re willing to convince themselves that being stung by hornets is just terrific. Its not!!! Hornet stings are freaking terrible!!! And so is this damn movie! Stop paying for hornet stings!!!

Followed by a spree of horrible sequels. In fact, there are now like, six of these things. Or maybe I’m dead and this is Hell, both seem probable.