“Extinction” is a good subtitle to give to the final entry of this terribly shabby “Zombie” trilogy – and thank goodness the Resident Evil movie franchise is finally dead. Or is it?!! I don’t know ’cause I fell asleep before the end.
Making absolutely no attempt to pick up where Resident Evil 2 left off, Resident Evil: Extinction instead drops our favorite zombie-slaying heroine, Alice, into the now-familiar Umbrella Corporation laboratory, but fails to give her any clothing (this Zombiephile always approves of Milla Jovovich not having any clothing). Unfortunately, Resident Evil 3 – Extinction basically falls off after that point, quickly descending into a parody of a good horror / apocalypse movie, and barely involving any actual zombies at all.
Never mind the fact that the Resident Evil franchise has always taken great liberties with the concept of zombieness – We’ve had zombie dogs, super zombie cyborg soldiers, badass kung-fu knowing zombie heroines that actually aren’t zombies…it’s been a long, strange trip for RE fans. Based on the popular video game franchise of the same title, the Resident Evil trilogy has always held itself back by trying to be too much like the videogame – and the third movie just takes this to it’s impossibly ridiculous conclusion.
The Apocalyse has occurred between the last Resident Evil movie and this one – and Alice explains in a cheesy voice-over at the beginning of the movie, explaining how the “T-Virus,” the virus that causes zombieness, has somehow spread to the entire ecosystem, drying up rivers and crap like that. Never mind the blatant, patent impossibility of such an occurrance – Viruses are viruses, which means they require a biological host, not a river. But alas, this is one of the movie’s more believable elements, as it turns out.
No longer content just to be able to do nasty Kung-Fu, Alice has somehow developed semi-godlike powers since Resident Evil 2, making her telekinetic, pyrokinetic, and generally even less believable than before. Little attempt is made to explain these powers, and she conveniently can’t use them when action sequences are coming up – total Deus Ex Machina kind of writing. Of course, the Umbrella Corporation, somehow still sitting on massive amounts of capital and resources despite the entire annihilation of the planet, is still messing around with her – not content to destroy the entire world, they still somehow think they’ve got something with Milla Jovovich, despite her repeatedly kicking their asses.
Once Alice conveniently ends up right where her friends from Resident Evil 2 happen to be fighting a giant swarm of zombie birds – that’s right, zombie birds, it’s like Hitchcock, except the birds are zombies – well, after that it’s pretty much just a Resident Evil movie. This Zombiephile is embarrassed to admit that he completely slept through the end of Resident Evil: Extinction, but he can imagine somehow that the trilogy probably didn’t tie up its loose ends – being as that loose ends are all that Resident Evil ever really had.
Final verdict? Skip Resident Evil 3 – Extinction and, instead, get yourself a next-gen console so you can play Resident Evil 5 when it comes out next year, which will doubtlessly by a better videogame than Resident Evil 3 – Extinction was a movie. But you’re probably still going to have to fight zombie dogs – let’s just hope there aren’t any zombie rivers.