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Okay I am talking about the RESIDENT EVIL movies now, but wait-don’t disappear. I have just watched a trailer for, yes, another sequel from the infamous PAUL WS ANDERSON for RESIDENT EVIL:RETRIBUTION, due out later 2012. Did you think there could be another after the last one? Well, financially the last one, RESIDENT EVIL:AFTERLIFE (in 3D!) seemed to do very well. It’s amazing what a gimmick will do for a franchise dying on it’s knees.

I know how critically derided and mauled this film series has been ever since the first one appeared based on the already very successful cult videogame franchise. Again, like most movies based on games, fans hoped for so much, only to be largely let down a very big way. That was to be expected really. After the horrors of the STREET FIGHTER and SUPER MARIO BROS. movies, audiences were not every expecting much for game adaptations.

I did personally quite enjoy the first film, even while I could see the negative aspects to it. The budget was big enough, MILLA JOVOVICH is always entertaining, and some of it worked very well.

Then a sequel-RES EVIL:APOCALYPSE in 2004. It again, in ways was better, trying to emulate the second, possibly best game. But then some terrible scripting, and horrendous effects and acting. It generally got worse for RES EVIL:EXTINCTION (2007) and RES EVIL:AFTERLIFE(2010).

The annoying part is that while most of these sequels are trashy, and lame, they do have often very great starting points, set ups and endings. The last couple also have almost really caught some very relevant interesting parallels with the dangers and fears of modern international mega corporations, governments, genetic engineering and chemical and biological terror. They could be so much more powerful and terrifying or at least more successful on a basic entertaining level.

The director and producers seem caught with a platform for conveying some very relevant issues, and earning absolute fortunes if they just let MILLA kick zombie butt, and stick some regular gimmick spin on top of it. The many fans of the original games-from Playstation through to XBox-did want bucket loads of non-stop blood and gore or at least more darker, complicated thiller elements which I think almost came through in the first movie.

Well, later this year we will see the next, latest sequel and see how brave or safe they are this time with the series which could be a much more powerful, shocking and brave zombie gore survival flick.



Author of science fiction novels Orbital Kin and Minerva Century-also horror, literary fiction, many short stories and screenplays. Always reading, writing, watching films, playing guitar/bass, and am a husband with a coffee addiction. New horror novel due for 2017. This is my blog, offshoot from my website. It will be where I post current thoughts, opinions, views, reviews, or discussions about contemporary film, movies, books, video games, television series mostly in the horror, science fiction, fantasy and their sub-genre offshoots. The entertainment not in the mainstream (for the most part) and proud of it. Also follow me on twitter- @ParsonsFiction, and facebook - James E Parsons


  1. engochick

    I think that it’s always a good thing when the films or television series differ a little from the medium the story is coming from — be that a game or a book. After all, we love to be surprised and it’s wonderful when an even better story comes out of something we love. Of course, the risk is that the creators will ruin the original story. But I think it’s worth the risk. Another thought: Mila is getting a bit old. Does that kill the flame for the guys? Hard to say since I’m not one.

    • Thanks for taking the time to read. I totally understand what you suggest here about the potential for filmmakers to do something fresh, different or alter the source material. Yes, I think there possibly are a few examples out there where this has produced an interesting result definately. Especially these days with so many spin-offs, off shoots, homages and parodies. Is Milla too old for all this comcical butt-kicking zombie fighting? Well maybe or perhaps not. I was reminded that recently read of Sigourney Weaver and the ALIENS movies. She may still do action roles/strong female lead roles and has recently turned 62. Remarkable.

  2. No, you are most likely very right there. Probably connection to the advances in film marketing and advertising, depending on the imagery of Mila, target audience being mostly young video game playing men. The Ripley and Alice characters are both strong, independent ones, but yes certainly more depth and feminine voice in the ALIENS films.

  3. Also while I am a fan of both ALIEN and RES. EVIL franchises, ALIEN did not being as a video game. It has always been a film series firstly, games, books, comics appearing afterwards. The RESIDENT EVIL movies from the start had a videogame, arguably had a mostly male audience when the first film appeared and probably largely remains the same audience after the sequel movies over the last decade.

  4. This probably limits and restricts the scope of the movie narratives and potential, not wanting to lose their loyal majority audience of returning fans for every sequel. And as mentioned, it seems a difficult problem for the ALICE character to be more than zombie butt-kicking eye candy. I believe that MILA does have a good amount of input in the production of the movies, but that she herself sees them as basically simple action movie fantasy fun, besides the brief handful of wide comments on the acts of governments, corporations, military which is a positive aspect.

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