Not surprisingly, the latest Resident Evil film did not screen for critics. Astonishingly, though, it's the fifth in the series. Somebody has to be watching these things. To figure out why, we called upon the biggest fan of the franchise we know: Willamette Week Production Manager Kendra Clune.
What it's about: The zombie apocalypse will happen. It's just a matter of time before some monstrous Umbrella Corporation-like superpower decides to mass-produce a nasty virus, like the T-virus featured in the Resident Evil franchise. Sure, it will start deep underground. But people always get curious, go in to check it out, and then—surprise! zombies! Fortunately, the same company will have performed some unethical human experiments, and created an extraordinary zombie-killing machine named Alice (Milla Jovovich). She'll also wear bitchin' tattered outfits.
Latest film: Resident Evil: Retribution takes Alice on a world tour to save what's left of humanity on a planet quickly becoming a giant desert. She has more powers, wears a tight vinyl jumpsuit and has a great haircut. And Oded Fehr is back!
Best scenes: A chamber full of lasers meant to cut a person into hundreds of little pieces? Sure! A sky full of zombie crows (my worst nightmare) lit on fire by Alice's superpowers? Yup! An ax man chopping some dude in half from the top down? Let's see it again! A badass heroine propelling herself off a rooftop, leading a horde of zombies to their last fall? Why not?!
Why it's awesome: I really can't get enough of the Resident Evil franchise. Paul W.S. Anderson has used the video game as a loose template for the movies, but departed enough to make them interesting on their own. In fact, Alice doesn't appear in the video game, but she has become an icon for the film series. She is a refreshing departure from the typical stiletto-wearing, ass-kicking females dominating many action films. She's believable—as much as you can believe slow-motion bullet-dodging—and a strong female lead who doesn't need a man to save the day or screw her to make her feel feminine and worthy. And did I mention Oded Fehr is back?! R.
SEE IT: Resident Evil: Retribution opens Friday at Lloyd Center, Cedar Hills, Clackamas, Eastport, Cornelius, Pioneer Place, Bridgeport, City Center, Evergreen Parkway, Movies On TV, Sherwood, Tigard, Wilsonville.