Resident Evil started out with a movie that pissed off a lot of the fans of the video games because it had little to do with the actual game story and focused on a character named Alice that had nothing to do with the games. Despite this, it was a fun horror action movie that worked well outside of the realm of the game’s world.
As the movies marched on, things from the games started to show up but the biggest complaints were that the overarching story had plot holes that people could drive trucks through and characters that dropped in and out of movies with little to no explanation. Resident Evil: The Final Chapter continues that pattern, delivering a lot of crazy action while seeming to ignore a lot of what came before.
However, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter did something I never expected. It actually cleared up a lot of the franchise’s plot holes and delivered a satisfying finale to the plot that kicked off in the original film. It also showed why Alice was so important to the story and actually delivered on some hints dropped a couple of movies prior to the finale.
As fans of this movie series might expect, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter started out at a very different time and place than fans expected. For those that remember, Resident Evil: Retribution ended with Alice (Milla Jovovich), Jill Valentine, Ada Wong, Becky, and Leon at the White House. Albert Wesker (Shawn Roberts) has taken over the Oval Office, reinjects Alice with the T-Virus, giving her powers back, and telling her they have to save humanity from the monsters that the Umbrella Corp released.
That sounded like Resident Evil: The Final Chapter would be an amazing action movie.
It never happened.
When Resident Evil: The Final Chapter opens, it turns out Wesker betrayed everyone and didn’t really give Alice her powers back. As a matter of fact, Alice is the only remaining survivor, meaning awesome characters like Ada and Jill were basically killed off-screen in between the two movies. It basically meant that the film franchise was cheating fans just to tell a different story.
The good news is that the story they told was pretty great.
The Red Queen (Ever Anderson) is back and this time she wants to help Alice. Remember back to the first movie that the reason that the Red Queen was trying to kill everyone was to keep the T-Virus from getting out to protect humanity. For fans who wonder why, it is because the Red Queen was programmed with two initiatives – never betray Umbrella Corp and respect the importance of human lives.
With that conflict, the Red Queen lets Alice know that she can’t betray Umbrella Corp to save the remaining strands of humanity but Alice can – if she returns to the Hive from the first movie – the underground facility that the T-Virus originally escaped from. That means that Resident Evil: The Final Chapter returned to the location of the first Resident Evil so that Alice can stop the final deaths that would result in extinction for most of the human population.
Without spoiling too much, Wesker and Dr. Isaacs (Iain Glen) were part of a major coup that the series showed a little of over the series (remember the Tokyo scenes). This movie shows exactly what caused the original virus, how is wasn’t meant to be bad at first until evil men got hold of it, and then explains the use of clones throughout the series and why they were so important.
And, as I said, you finally learn why Alice is so important to this story.
The ending was pretty great and a very satisfying conclusion to the movie. There were some problematic points to the plot strand from the first movie to this last one, and while the film doesn’t try to explain everything, some of these problems actually make sense the more a person thinks about it (why was Alice there in the first movie and what was her purpose? We learn who she is, and when I think about it, I know exactly why she was placed there to begin with. This was all a long con).
Now, that does not mean this was a great movie. Now, like I said, I loved the story and how it all wrapped itself up. However, I hated the fact that so many characters we thought could be important were just dumped with no explanation or even given a satisfactory farewell. The biggest crime was Jill Valentine just disappearing from the story completely. Getting Claire (Ali Larter) back was cool but what happened to Chris? She never said.
Outside of that story problem, I felt the action scenes were too hastily patched together and the cutting and editing was just too much. It is not fun to watch fights and monster battles when the camera edits make it too hard to follow along. This was probably Paul W.S. Anderson’s worst editing job when it comes to the action scenes in this entire franchise. Since 80 percent of this movie was fight scenes, that made it a labor to get through at times.
For fans of the Resident Evil movies, I would say that Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is worth your time. It is a satisfying conclusion to the story and I felt it was highly creative and inventive, something I never could have expected after watching the first movie in the series. The action was a little too crazed to enjoy and important characters were thrown away without a care but it was nowhere near as bad as it could have been.