Resident Evil Reviews
Resident Evil is at its best when it pushes aside the politics of this "secret military group" named The Umbrella, and instead is an homage to the original Alien. When the film takes twists and turns that are supposed to surprise you, when in fact, they feel like a weak attempt at shock, it becomes overwhelmingly convoluted. But in the instances that the survivors, led by Alice (Milla Jovovich), are scrambling through rooms doing anything to survive CGI creatures and flesh eating zombies, Resident Evil is pure guilty pleasure.
Much like the Underworld franchise, I honestly don't care about any of the supporting characters. Knowing where most zombie flicks go, there's really no use to getting attached to secondary characters when you know their deaths are all but guaranteed. I did, however, find Alice to be compelling, as long as the sequels do more to expand her history and explain how she became an absolute bada**. In fact, one can make the argument that Alice is a more likable character than Selene is in Underworld.
As I've said a lot recently, there's nothing wrong with a mindless action adventure if it doesn't take itself too seriously. Resident Evil is actually a pretty serious film, people are dying left and right, and the world is on the brink of an apocalypse. But there's something to be said about a throwback action-horror taking place in one confined space. In this case, it gives the viewer a sense of what a first person shooter game with this story would feel like. I've never played any of the games, but I can certainly see where this story lends itself to the video game medium. Now, is there an excuse for a horrendous looking creature via CGI? Or maybe some truly useless characters with weak (at best) dialogue? No, I can't say there is. But hey, it's a solid cable watch.
+Action that doesn't pull punches
+Alice is likable
-Inexcusably bad dialogue