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Here Is Why The ‘Resident Evil’ Films Deserve A Second Look

Here Is Why The ‘Resident Evil’ Films Deserve A Second Look

Today, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter debuts in theaters. The Resident Evil film series has caught a lot of flack over the years from movie fans and film critics alike. This disdain for the franchise is due to its wavering from the video game source material. Resident Evil started as a zombie, horror video game developed by Capcom.

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But what makes fans so angry is aside from a few video game character appearances and the zombies, the movies have original characters to include Alice (played by Milla Jovovich), and an entirely different origin story. The sentiment is understandable–when you walk into watch this type of film, you want to see what is familiar. However, the series is judged unfairly and deserves more respect.  Now, you may ask yourself, Why bother? First, this project is female lead with Milla Jovovich as the brains behind the project. Secondly, the series is an explosive money maker at the box office and the most successful film in its genre.

Actress Millia Jovovich got the idea for the Resident Evil film because she has always been a huge fan of the game. Jovovich, with writer and director Paul W. S. Anderson, wrote an original story loosely based on the Capcom game.

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© Screen Gems

The script for the first movie features Alice, a brand new character who only exist in the cinematic world. Alice is the central character in the story. She was the perfect actress for the series as Jovovich has long solidified herself as an action film heroine. In 1997, she starred in the Luc Besson film, The Fifth Element as Leeloo Dallas. Jovovich has extensive martial artist training, which helps bring the characters to she portrays to life. She is trained in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Tae Kwon-Do, and does the majority of her stunts. In an interview with Rotten Tomatoes, she stated that in Resident Evil: Apocalypse that she performed a six-story drop off the side of a building.

“I did some really dangerous stunts that I felt like you didn’t really see what was happening,” she explained. “What we did was insane. And when I saw the freaking shot, I was like, you can’t even tell that that’s me, you can’t even tell how high I am, you can’t tell…and I’m telling everyone I jumped off a six story building!”

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© Screen Gems

In addition to Jovovich being committed to her stunts, she has shown she is also committed to diversity. The series has amassed a talented and experienced group of actors who’ve all held significant roles in the last five Resident Evil movies. Some of the actors include: Mike Epps, Oded Fehr, Michelle Rodriguez, Lee Joon-gi, Ashanti, Boris Kodjoe, Li Bing Bing, Wentworth Miller, Ruby Rose, Ali Larter, Sienna Guillory, and Colin Salmon.

It could be said that this level of diversity has helped the series maintain its longevity and financial success. With the last film on the horizon, the series will break financial barriers as the Resident Evil movie series is set to join the billionaires club.

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All five films have earned well over their budgets, and the series combined earnings are somewhere between $915-$925 million dollars (that includes foreign and domestic ticket sales). With the release of the final Resident Evil film in 2017, it only needs $80 million to put the series at $1 billion which will be the first ever for a female-led series.

Despite negative fan and critical reception, the achievements of the Resident Evil series should be acknowledged and respected, especially, when the series has excelled where other Hollywood adaptations like it have failed. Think about it–what if Resident Evil stuck strictly to the original cannon? Would the films be as successful as they are now?  Call me delusional, but something tells me, Milla Jovovich, as Alice is the saving grace.

Look, the film series isn’t Oscar-worthy or anything but aren’t meant to be. The Resident Evil movies are great popcorn flicks, with loads of CGI and endless bullets flying. Not much of a story but still fun and financially successful. Love it or hate it, give props where it’s due. The Resident Evil films deserve at least that.

How do you feel about the Resident Evil movies? Are you going to see the last one in theaters? Let us know if the comment section below.

Feature Image Credit: Sony Pictures

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