Review: Resident Evil (2002)

Resident Evil (2002)

Directed by: Paul WS Anderson | 100 minutes | action, science fiction, horror, thriller | Actors: Milla Jovovich, Michelle Rodriguez, Eric Mabius, James Purefoy, Martin Crewes, Colin Samon, Ryan McCluskey, Oscar Pearce, Indra Ové, Anna Bolt, Joseph May, Robert Tannion, Heike Makatsch

‘Resident Evil’ is an action/horror film written and directed by Paul WS Anderson, based on the computer game of the same name. The film begins with a scene in which we see a poisonous gas being spread through the air ventilation system. The computer that runs the company, called Red Queen, goes haywire. Sprinkler installations are switched on, all doors are closed and the employees of a company are locked up. Everyone drowns or suffocates. Original or not. The ideal situation has arisen for an old-fashioned horror film.

Milla Jovovich plays Alice, a woman who suffers from amnesia and wakes up on the floor of a bathroom. She doesn’t know what she’s doing there or how she got there. Alice carefully investigates. Now and then she sees images from her past in her mind, but she is not yet able to make connections. Soon she meets a man who is at the house where she is. He impersonates a police officer but is captured by a group of soldiers immediately after their meeting. Alice is recognized by the military as a security guard. The situation is further expanded because the main character suffers from amnesia. This creates an additional fear dimension. After all, the film is mainly experienced from the main character’s point of view.

It turns out that under the house is an underground train station. They take the train that is there and drive to the company that is located deep underground. During the ride they are confronted with a man on the train who is also recognized by the military as a security guard, but just like Alice, suffers from amnesia. It turns out that a poisonous gas that can be used for war purposes is secretly developed within the company. The task of the group of soldiers is to restart the computer and search for survivors. The script could have been created by horror king George A. Romero. Just take a look at his unsurpassed Dead trilogy.

To make things even more exciting, there is a time limit. If they fail to complete the job within that time, the underground company will be permanently cut off from the outside world. There is no going back for them. It will come as no surprise to anyone that a seemingly simple job does not run smoothly.

The film is exciting from the first moment and has several scares, although some moments are predictable. In addition, it becomes clear during the course of the film what actually happened. Of course Alice gets her memory back on the basis of what she is experiencing now.

It is clear from the environment where everything takes place that it is based on a computer game. The locations are made as if they were copied from the computer game. This is not to the detriment of the film, by the way. Despite the fact that we are dealing with zombies, which are excellently made up, the film is not gory, as is to be expected in this genre.

Acting performances are of course subordinated to the special effects and zombies. This is also common in this genre. Only these points, however, are not so well taken care of that the film does not rise above the level of an average zombie film. That’s a shame because there might have been more residents.

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