It’s been eight years since the original Resident Evil made the leap from videogame to big screen. And unfortunately the movie companies have decided there’s still money to be made. Afterlife, the fourth in the series, follows the same trails as those before it adding only the barest necessities. Oh and 3D. Lots and lots of 3D.
The first film was enjoyable. A good zombie romp with a decent cast and palatable story. Ever since it has devolved into some hair-brained tale of superpowers and even crazier bad guys competing for the worst accent award. I doubt the studio would have bought the series back to life had it not been for the uptake of 3D and the extra profit it generates.
Afterlife takes place some time after the last film, with Alice taking out the corporate bigwigs of Umbrella. The opening scene, in which she eliminates the Tokyo HQ, also helps to remedy the two main threads people were wondering about: namely the numerous Alice clones and her newly discovered telekinetic abilities. Needless to say, fifteen minutes in she’s back to her normal self and all alone. Wow, what a clever way to tie those loose ends off.
The rest of the film is spent following Alice as she tries to reconnect with others. The only downside however is that the people she does meet are killed off so quickly and frequently you begin to wonder why she even bothers. You can tell who is meant to survive and who’s just a walking Happy Meal in the first five seconds. And unfortunately the battles themselves are also over far too quickly, leaving an anticlimactic feeling in your stomach.
By the end of the 97 minute runtime you’ve seen a lot of explosions, had all manor of things fly out of the screen and watched more people die than you care to remember. Unfortunately, if not inevitably, a fifth film is hinted at but this really should be the last. Watch the first again, maybe the second. But after that? Go elsewhere, Resident Evil has been done to death.
My rating: 40%