Friday, September 21, 2012

Escape to The Movies: "Resident Evil: Retribution"

It could've been worse.

"Intermission" is about retail stories.


RarerMonsters said...

Bob, I'm with you in thinking that the RE storyline is rubbish... but at the same time it's their storyline, beloved by RE fans for its camp quality and charm.

The problem with these movies isn't that they aren't loyal, it's that they are full blown INSULTING to RE fans. Alice is the epitome of a Mary Sue... Fanfic insert character, godlike powers and awesomeness, shows up every canon character, fixes every problem, splayed over every aspect of the movie with the actual characters demoted to extras.

This movie is Anderson saying "Hey RE fans, your games suck, so I'm going to make my own movie about my hot wife and then have her be better than your crappy game because I hate you."

Add to that the movies are themselves bad, the stories nonsensical and stupid, the original characters (including Alice) bland and terrible, and you can see why RE fans find this series so crushingly awful... out of context game references not withstanding.

In fact, I'd go ahead and call this the template for how NOT to make a game movie:
1. Insert original characters who dominate all screen time.
2. Include imagery and references to games without context or reason.
3. Ignore game story in order to splice in the treatment that you've been wanting to produce for months but haven't had any takers.

(For a more thorough take, look up Phelous' reviews on TGWTG)

Pat said...

Hey Bob, think you might do a Big Picture about the Guardians of the Galaxy? We all love your "COMICS ARE WEIRD" episodes and Cosmic Marvel is about as weird as it gets.

It would also be nice to have a video I could point people to when they ask me "Who are the Guardians of the Galaxy?" (a question I anticipate becoming more and more common over the next two years). Not gonna lie, your videos have saved me a lot of long-winded explanations about many comic book shenanigans.

Chris Cesarano said...

I'd potentially be on your side, RarerMonster, except the Resident Evil story started to suck at 2. I know people wanted the scale to always get larger, but part of the reason Resident Evil 1 and 4 work as well as they do is because they are isolated.

Even then, the only one of those two with a story worth diving into is the first game, at least based on the GameCube remake (never played the original on PSX myself). While I agree that it's a bit ridiculous to be calling it Resident Evil while there are only a handful of similarities, well, The Lost World: Jurassic Park got away with just as bad, really. At some point you gotta just shrug and say "Whatever".

I would rather a competent writer and director tackle the Resident Evil films, but then again, I'd rather Resident Evil 6 not look...I dunno. Whatever it looks like. Thank God for Revelations, otherwise I'd be totally apathetic on this franchise.

@MovieBob - Both of those anecdotes hit something personal for me as well, actually. Y'know what? You should do that more often. Allow people to get to know you beyond the movie opinions and the politics.

In any event, your first anecdote reminds me of when I graduated College and, end of summer 2009, desperate for work, I applied to work at GameStop again (I had worked there in high school from 2001-2003). So I'm sitting there during the interview, and they ask me about how I helped customers. Now, before this they were trying to illustrate that the GameStop I knew "was gone".

So I describe times when parents would come in looking for Mario on Playstation, or Halo on GameCube. I would have to say "I'm sorry, but that game is owned by 'company-name' and is only available on that system. However, I can provide you with a number of similar games." Makes sense, right? Especially because these are parents that are clearly not completely aware of the product they are purchasing.

Then the guy nods quietly. "Okay. Alright. That's good. But what you really should have done was offer them to buy a GameCube, or an Xbox".

I nodded quietly, but in my mind I was screaming. Are you kidding? A parent comes in looking for a $50 game and you expect them to just buy a $300 system (at the time, can't imagine this new generation) with ease? Most parents would scoff. "I already got one system, why do I need another? I don't need two VCRs to play movies!"

I left the interview as my friend was trying to buy a game. The guy at the counter first asked if he wanted to reserve a game, and my friend said no. The clerk then said "Are you sure?" and listed off several games. Another no, and the guy then asks about his subscriptions or whatever. It sounded like he was begging for sex.

I just shook my head. It amazes me how short-sighted a lot of these management types are, though it's not always their fault. They have pressure from the district manager, who has pressure from regional, etc. But I got more sales, reservations and subscriptions from returning customers that learned my name and trusted my opinion, even to the point that if I wasn't working then the customer would leave and return a day that I was working.

As for the Sailor Moon thing, I had to record it for my sister when I was younger because she refused to wake up that early during summer vacation. But y'know what? While I "grew out of it", there was an aspect of me that enjoyed it. It had continuity and character development. It had a catchy theme song. But to a middle school kid just hitting puberty, well, there was a certain allure to them, though mine had nothing to do with them physically. I still saw cartoons. But there was something emotional about it nonetheless about this fictional feminine allure.

So reading about a 7 year old kid whose Dad is worried is sort of amusing to me, but also... heart warming? It makes me wonder how my Dad felt about the fact that I enjoyed it.

Either way, good column, Bob.

Andrew "Nodagamera" Krickhahn said...

Hey Bob, Enjoying the Expo video posts, keep them coming but in relevance to this thread, I really enjoyed both of your stories about your retail experiences. I had one similar to the PS vs Wii my self in a retail store but don't have the outlet to share them with the same context as you so I am definitely casting my vote of thumbs up for more "Retail Tales". You and Yathzee are my favorite contributors at the Escapist so keep up the good work.

Sam said...

Was hoping you'd review Dredd. I think we should all know what to expect from yet another re movie.

Dredd truely deserves some love.

Sam said...

I take back it, commented before I watched the video. Sorry.

TheDVDGrouch said...

Really awesome intermission this week, lord knows it was much more interesting then this new Resident Evil movie.

Daniel R said...

Nice review, I really can't see the Resident Evil movies as anything but harmless. Plain, stupid, generic fluff. Although I still kinda appreciate them, if only for giving Milla Jovovich a much deserved paycheck/vacation-with-her-husband every once in a while.

As for intermission. I really, really liked it. The first story was a bit dry but the second one was great. Really had me chuckling quite a few of times. Brought back some old memories of watching "Sakura Card Captor" (Extremely frilly shojo anime about a twelve year old girl who fights monsters and turns them into magical trading cards... yeah) with my older cousin when I was that young, I recall he had a similar attitude towards it as the dad did. As in, he didn't like it but he knew I loved it so we watched it together, plus it was on right before Inuyasha which now that I think of it might have had a more profound effect on me at that age.


I wants MOAR :D

The Saarai'ari said...

Really enjoyed this week's Intermission column from you MovieBob. The second story you shared about the father and his son who was into Sailor Moon was quite heartwarming. Hope to see more stories like that from you.

Have to admit when I was young I wasn't much into Sailor Moon. It was only later on when I reached toward the beginning of my high school years I started giving the series a second look and I found myself enjoying it. Also have to say the Sailor Moon Abridged webseries on Youtube has also made me a bigger fan of the show.

Oh, and Sailor Jupiter is my favorite scout. Like my women brunette, tough, and with

Anonymous said...

Do you mean to come off as an obnoxious twat in this review? Seriously half baked review.

Sylocat said...

Cracked recently did an article about how the movies are better than the games by now.

They pointed out that there are nine different bioweapons in the game, all of which do one of two things:

1. Mutate humans into clich├ęd zombies, and mutate everything else into whatever the writers want it to mutate into,
2. Mutate everything INCLUDING humans into whatever the writers want it to mutate into.

That's it. Half the bioweapons in the games do the exact same thing, and the characters act like there's a difference.

Aiddon said...

I think about it this way, the games could at least keep my attention due to them never being boring. The movies are dull, tedious affairs that try to pass off a boring, infallible pile of saw dust as an interesting character.

Pyrian said...

Movie firefights need a revolution.

When I was a kid, movie close combat was almost always terrible. Virtually no redeeming features. Now, I have various issues with close combat as depicted in modern movies, but generally speaking, it is far better than it used to be.

Firefights, not so much. A typical modern movie firefight is every bit as terrible as they were twenty years ago. Well, they do occasionally reload now, I guess that's something. But you still routinely see supposedly expert combatants stepping out into the wide open to shoot, instead of leaning out or popping up. And that's just at the most basic level.

Anonymous said...

"more interesting than almost anyone else in the franchise"

I'm having a hard time finding anything remotely interesting about Anderson's Mary Sue.