Film Corner: Resident Evil 2

Resident Evil 2

KISSMATE: Another day of Resident Evil movie series! Today is Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004) dir. by Alexander Witt. With hopes high and expectations low, let's blow this casket open!

The naming schemes for the titles are garbage. The only way I know for sure that RE: Apocalypse is next is because I looked up the years. The words after the main title either need to explain the chronological system, or just add a number after the main title. I'm looking at Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies as I say this, though not proudly. Good movies suffer this too. Still, it's difficult to bring newcomers into these series if you can't even keep the order labeled and obvious.

Alice is Red Dress' name! She gives us a quick run-down of last movie. Scientists in hazmat go into a sealed door. T-Virus contaminated beings devour them quickly. Black vans rush to get important Umbrella members out of the city for protection. This movie starts us very quickly, which is similar to last film. We see a man in a wheelchair taken to safety, and by his daughter's looks, he's the lead programmer. His daughter looks very much like Red Queen, but higher definition and not red-scale colored.

As the daughter is taken to safety in a separate car, it's hit by a semi. The two in the front die from not wearing seatbelts. The daughter is fine, though, because she DID wear her seatbelt! Lessons were learned this day. I had to look at the Resident Evil 2 intro again, but there are some details that made me think they took some notes for the film:

-Semi crashing into car
-Seatbelts saving lives during the crash

Ok, it's not a LOT of notes, but it had a similar enough feel.

We see Jill in her apartment full of exposition while listening to police scanners. The papers say she was suspended. Did the mansion incident still happen and we didn't see it? I thought the first film was an AU. Was this an AU *and* a parallel story to the games? Jill hears that shit is going down and decides to take matters into her own hands. She goes into the police station and kills all the zombies that are being arrested with one shot each! What an entrance!


The movie makes it clear that Jill has dealt with the T-Virus before. She even tells off one of the cops to "aim for the head". I feel bad for anyone who watched this movie and didn't know about the games. Otherwise, there would be SO many questions! We see someone release Alice and we relive the screaming pain. She wanders the abandoned street and finds the shotgun again. Enough about her! We go to a city checkpoint where anyone who wants out has to be screened carefully one by one. It's a compacted mess!

[TW: Self Harm] We see a woman get bit while escaping zoms. A combat force breaks orders to save her, but it's too late and she knows it. Instead of letting them help her, she jumps off a building so she can die as herself.

Jill pushes her way to the front of the checkpoint. She witnesses her friend Peyton get bit. The city gets everyone to go back into the infested city under threat of death. I'm just amazed they're handling quarantine better than COVID-19. The same asshole that ordered citizens into the city now tells Head Programmer Dr. Ashford to leave while he can. Ashford stays, refusing to leave without his daughter. He hacks into the city's cameras looking for his daughter, or someone to find her for him.

Alice starts looting gun shops and dead bodies. We see her in pain again as memories of the doctors infecting her flash across the screen. Jill, Peyton, and a news reporter walk into a church where a scared citizen also joins their group. No names for them, so... Jill checks out the church and sees a priest was feeding his zombie!sister body parts. Jill tries to kill her, but sis attacks the protective priest. I think this is a reference to the games because the scene is really short and it doesn't tie back to anything.

News Lady gets scared and opens the doors, with ZomHoard waiting on the other side. Oh she's going to get someone killed, I can tell. A licker is in the church! Frightened runs off to a lonely part of the church, and promptly dies. Poor Frightened... Jill carefully makes her way through the church where Licker gives her Frightened back as a jump scare. Jill makes it back to the others where we see 3 Lickers on the prowl! Jill and Peyton are all out of ammo and are looking pretty tasty...

Alice drives through the stained glass windows on a motorcycle, where she blows it up in a Licker's face! She squashes one with the huge cross and finishes them off with shotgun blasts. Jill: "Who the fuck... are you?" I mean I agree. Why did Alice come here? [ANA's note: She was hunting Lickers! She senses them now! I'm pretty sure!]

We see a Black man driving around, running over cops, and staring at Zom Tits. He crashes his car and heads to the gun noises. Gun noises are the clean up crew killing a bunch of undead. They're getting overrun, though. Alice gives some info and we get the "zom bites make zoms" speech. Suddenly, the cemetery around them bursts open with tons of undead bursting from the graves. What, did the corpses underneath get infected too? If so, how? They're all in boxes and 6 feet under!

We see Asshole (Cain) noticing how bad the infection is getting, so activates Nemesis Program. Back to Clean Up Crew (Olivera, Yuri, and Nikolai). They find weapon cases dropped in the hospital, but now empty. And Yuri turns zom and bites Olivera. I feel like the movie has so many stories to tell, but can't focus on one for too long. It's hard keeping all these stories and characters straight. And then to have random action happen just so the audience doesn't leave? This could have been dealt with better.

A STARS sniper saves the Black man from earlier (not Peyton). Because I have nothing else to call him, I'm going to give his name away: LJ. He runs into the alley near the sniper and is met with officers of STARS ready to shoot.
"Maybe I was safer outside!" LJ isn't there long before- Oh. OH. OOOH! IT'S NEMESIS! He looks SO COOL! He destroys the STARS Unit with a rocket launcher and a Gatling gun! He even says "STARS" all menacingly!

But wait. In RE3, he was made to kill STARS, but we don't know the reason why he was created here. [ANA: Just as part of their military technology program. STARS was a test, not the reason.] Either way, Nemesis kills STARS but leaves LJ alive since he's deemed "not a threat". We do see that Cain is controlling Nemesis through computers, and we can assume the weapon drops were for him. It still doesn't explain his lore, but maybe we're not there yet.

Jill mentions that Alice is superhuman, and Alice says she doesn't even feel human anymore after what they did to her. Ashford calls a phone nearby and tells them all about his daughter in exchange for passage out of the city. But it's more complicated! Ashford tells them an atomic bomb will drop at sunrise and be blamed on the nuclear reactor. It's a fucked up plan and a fucked up deal, but it's one they can't say no to lightly.

As they head to the school, they run across Nemesis. He kills Peyton easily as Jill and News Girl run. Alice stays behind to fight him. She recognizes Nemesis by name and look. They say that Alice is the primary target. Did something happen to Alice between films? Because she's not acting like herself. I feel like I'm watching a whole different series. Also, was Nemesis created to kill Alice? Or maybe experiments that broke out? And why do they want Alice killed? Fight happens that's mostly Nemesis firing and Alice dodging.

Jill and News Girl hotwire a car. Zom Peyton tries to kill, but Jill puts him down with a bullet and a tear. They come across LJ, who they pick up. Oh, and Olivera and Nikolai get called by Ashford. Maybe it's just me, or the film trying to tell its story as well as the games', but there's a whole lot of stories being told and instead of concentrating on one for a few minutes, we're being zipped around as often as possible. Adaptions need to adapt the story to a film format. Instead of trimming away unnecessary plots, this film decided to add more! At least if you're going to focus on all these characters, have one we focus on the most. The film fails to do this.

Alice feels like she has a direct line to the writer and knows everything that she needs to know. She saves Jill and Co at the nick of time. She knows Nemesis is RIGHT THERE, even though no one else can see him until it's too late. Maybe it's me. Jill, LJ, and News reach the school. They split up on different floors. Olivera finds LJ. News gets eaten by kids! Jill finds his daughter, Angela. Nikolai dies to zoms and saving Jill. After some run-about in the kitchen, Jill and Angela meet up with Alice.

Alice and Angela both note that the other is infected. Angela is because her father made the virus to make her better. Olivera and LJ meet up with them, completing the group. Ashford tells them there's a chopper leaving in 47 minutes at City Hall. Ashford gets caught by Cain but not killed, oddly enough. Alice and Company cure Olivera and break into the flight.

But Cain was waiting there whole time! With Angela taken hostage, all of them are put in zip cuffs. Nemesis watches on. Because Cain misses the gladiatorial pits, he orders Alice to fight Nemesis. To prove he's not fucking around, he shoots Ashford. Big man for shooting a guy in a wheelchair. Asshole. (Huh, Cain killed Ashford... Nope, can't make that a Cain/Abel reference.)

ROUND ONE, FIGHT! The camera is moving too much and too close to let me know what's going on, but she ends up winning! But, it was Matt, the cop, all along! Cain demands she "Finish Him" but she can't. Ends up being good for her as Nemesis goes rogue! Alice and Nemesis start shooting bad guys, while Olivera and Jill cut themselves free of their cuffs. LJ punches Cain out. Jill protects Angela. Nemesis gets crushed protecting Alice. I wish he'd live, but we must bid Matt/Nemesis farewell.

Cain is left to get eaten by a now zombie!Ashford. The helicopter flies off with our heroes and the bomb explodes. Alice gets stabbed by a flying piece of metal as the chopper goes down. Alice's body is found at the falls, but no one else. Someone survived that? We see news reports of a video tape (the one News Girl was making) being a fake as the nuclear cover up is the story that gets pushed out.

Alice is now in a healing tank? She gets taken out. She seems disoriented and possibly brain damaged? Nope! She was just a little groggy! The doctor asking her questions was the one who hurt her and Matt! Oh, she's pissed! She breaks out, covered in nothing but a towel. She even kills a guy with her mind through the cameras? Dafaq?? When could she- What? At the exit, Umbrella guards are waiting for her. Some people take her away in a Van. Wait, that's Jill, Olivera, and LJ! The doctor says "Project Alice is activated". Wait, is she under their control? Is she herself? THE END?

This movie wasn't as good as the first. There wasn't a lot of good zombie fighting and the stories took a LONG time to finally come together. Maybe with some better editing and decent camera work in the action scenes, it would have made a fine movie. All-in-all this movie was alright, I guess? It wasn't a good sequel to the first film. It was an ok film on its own. There just wasn't anything I felt I could latch on to. Maybe just not for me. 4/10, maybe after a playthrough of Resident Evil 3. For funsies.

ANA: Tonight's Resident Evil movie in the RE movie marathon Kissmate and I are doing is the second one, my favorite one, Apocalypse! Here's Kissmate's thread. He's never seen the movies before this but is very heavily invested in the games. (Whereas I haven't played the games but love the movies, lol.)

We paused for a little to talk about Oded Fehr and how gorgeous he is.

Alice starts us out with the mandatory flashback-and-explanation that kind of haunts this series because you really do need to know what happened in the last movie(s), lolsob. Ahh, I love the effective speed of the opening? They open the hive, you hear a zombie scream, and BAM the team is just gone. No gore, just sudden. And then the company is panickedly extracting Key Employees from the city, so you know things are BAD.

JILL AND HER HEELS, god I am so bisexual. I love her and her actress and her outfit. We've had to pause several times to talk about Jill and her blue tube top, for very professional live-tweet reasons. But seriously, I do love how they introduce Jill: she's suspended for reasons but hears on the radio that they need backup, so she grabs her gear--doesn't even take time to change clothes!--and goes to help her mates. I do like how the radio has the cops saying the plague is "just like Valentine said" and when she bursts in shooting, they all assume she had a good reason and is justified. They aren't doubting her anymore.

Olivera is so good and brave. Rappelling down from the helicopter in spite of orders to the contrary because a woman was in danger, goddammit. Also? Covid has basically changed ALL my movies.

God, when the Major is like "welp, the city is fucked anyway, might as well use it as a playground for Nemesis since we've wanted to test him out" it's just. Believable and infuriating and terrifying. Like, this fucking bastard sees a city full of doomed people and all he can think about is his little science dolls.

The STARS cowboy sniping while listening to music is- I love him and I don't know why. Kissmate hates him. I'm laughing so hard. He's just so Texan? The apocalypse is happening but he's determined to make the best of it, lol. "Shit! Maybe I was safer outside!" Said by a Black man to a room full of cops with guns. Best damn line in the movie, best delivery, best everything. I love LJ.

The Nemesis design is so good in this movie, I just love him so much. And we're actually invested in him in a really emotional way because he's a character from the first film who was turned against his will. We do not talk often enough about how terrifying the Raccoon Middle School is, and how frightening that one mob of zombie children is, like, holy SHIT.

Okay, but it is not FAIR that Alice and Olivera didn't have a chance to make the beast with two backs. They're both so pretty. "Why haven't we taken off?" "Because I usually drive a Cadillac!" God, I love this movie so much. I love the power fantasy of a strong superhero woman kicking ass like she's Batman in a zombie apocalypse. I used to watch this movie over and over on a loop when my back was acting up and I was confined to bed. This amazing powerful woman who was in pain and yet numb, strong and yet felt empty and wrong.

Give me all the power fantasies with women in badass roles, please.


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