Resident Evil VI: The Final Chapter

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is the 6th film in the franchise that manages to sequel bait in a movie called The Final Chapter and whose narrator claims this is the end of the story. Lies! Lies I tell you. Regardless of that though, this is almost one of the better movies in this franchise and might actually have been a “good” movie if the action scenes weren’t cut all to hell and largely incomprehensible.
So, yes, Alice (Milla Jovovich) survives the continuity rewrite from the end of the last film. Did you really think this movie would continue in an abandoned White House swarmed over by demons and zombies just because that’s how the last movie ended? Silly goose. This movie has at least four characters who died in previous movies but are back now as clones or hand-waving explanations. Continuity has never been at the top of the list for a movie series that told us in the third one that the zombie disease somehow turned the world into a desert and then kind of forgot that plot point in later movies.
ANYHOW, she is informed she has 48 hours after which the last humans will be wiped off the face of the Earth. She has to get from DC to wherever Raccoon City (the improbably titled city from the first two movies) is, back into the Hive (Evil Corporation HQ), and find an airborne cure for the T Virus zombie plague. Given she has 48 hours to do this because the last surviving humans are being killed off, i’m not sure saving the world in the last couple minutes counts as saving the world. Because I’m not sure the zombie/demon plague was just waiting around for 48 hours to pass before picking off the survivors (like they are waiting at their base, glancing at their wristwatches)…
Anyhow, the story structure and whatnot is ok for this series and this kind of low-rent sci-fi horror flick. There’s a couple plot twists that I guess maybe were not so bad and the villain (who died in an earlier movie) represents a decent challenge, I guess. We get a half second or two of pathos now and again… I’ve seen worse.
But the problem is that the movie’s action scenes are a total disaster of nonsensical editing on a truly impressive scale. I’m pretty confident that they are edited together like an abstract or impressionistic painting. You aren’t supposed to be able to follow any of it but just kind of get the vague point something is happening… It’s so frenetic, shaky-cam, and edited to multiple cuts in a second, I can’t imagine anyone could follow it. It was exhausting and tiresome and sometimes I just had to look away from the screen it was such an assault on the eyes.
Not that it mattered who lived or died in these scenes – this film has a cast of characters who get less backstory or even dialog than any other film in this series. Ruby Rose (last scene in this month’s XXX: Return of Xander Cage) kind of sort of has a character… Allie Larder is back through some hand-waving explanation… but largely these meat bags exist to half-heartedly attempt to give the story stakes or at least someone to kill. Lord knows, I’m not sure how some of them died or who died in any given scene.
Though I will suggest that if you have a killer fan blade in a tunnel that you can’t “Reverse the polarity” of the fan to turn it from blow to suck. They could reverse the fan, but not so sure about its “polarity”. But what do I know about evil corporate lairs?
Anyhow, the movie is barely watchable on a technical assault-on-the-eyes-why-is-it-so-dark level – if they had maybe turned on the lights and definitely not filmed the action scenes in such a scattershot, spastic, edited-to-death way, it might have been moderately enjoyable. It’s not an utter disaster as far as Resident Evil movies go… I mean, if you don’t know the series, no reason to start here. If you do like (or tolerate) the series, there’s maybe something worth salvaging.
Score: 65

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