Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City - Wikipedia
Resident Evil – Welcome to Racoon City – 2022

Written and Directed by Johannes Roberts
Starring Kaya Scodelario, Hannah John-Kamen, Robbie Amell, Tom Hopper, Avan Jogia, Donal Logue, Neal McDonough

First of all, I have to say, I don’t hate this movie. There is something to admire in the willingness of the studio plugging away at a franchise beaten to a pulp by Anderson and Jovovich’s tangential series. I am pretty sure I saw most of them. I just have no real clue what I saw back then.

This time, what we’re seeing is a closer amalgam to the first and second Resident Evil video game stories, for better or worse. We have Scodelario as Claire Redfield, working her way back into town to meet with estranged brother Chris (Amell) who is a member of the local police force of what remains of Racoon City. The city itself has been abandoned, for the most part, by the evil Umbrella Corporation. There are some people there. Some of them look like late stage cancer patients and others who dismiss that drop of blood coming from their eye, as if on queue. No mention of lawsuits or 60 Minutes, even if we hear some music of the time, which is 1998.

There are Donal Logue and Neal McDonough doing the things we are used to seeing each of them do in second rate films. There are a few expendable people who are there to become fodder for the turned. There are several faithful recreations of pivotal moments from the first two games. These ring hollow when we see characters who should be eaten repeatedly and inexplicably fight their way out of a crowd. After a while, the cycle becomes annoying and never approaches being as scary as the building of tension wants to suggest.

The end has entirely too many survivors, but once more, they’re playing the long game. The mid-credits scene will surprise no one. The real surprise will be if this film has a sequel green lit with all of the cast.

The cast beyond the afore-mentioned cads is serviceable, but there is no one there that will be remembered. This is the one difference with the previous live action series: at least we had Milla to stick in our mind.

This film is appreciable for it’s dedication for recreating the original stories. The problem is, the story is better when you are playing a video game at 3 a.m. all hopped up on Mountain Dew. For someone sitting there expecting to be scared or entertained without a Sony Playstation joystick in their hands, this will not do much.

(*1/2 out of *****)

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