Over the years, Paul WS Anderson’s Resident Evil movies they gave a lot to talk about because of how “free” they were in their adaptation of Capcom’s video games. But fans got some hope with the announcement of this Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City.
This time, a new director, Johannes Roberts (which took care of the interesting At 47 meters), tells the story from scratch and, as promised from the beginning, will be much more faithful to the historias de Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine o Leon Kennedy.
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After seeing Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City, we can confirm that this has been the case: the film is a mix of events Resident Evil 1 and Resident Evil 2 reasonably respectful, but as a movie in general … There the thing does not “smell” so good.
The story takes us to the moment of virus outbreak in Raccoon City, when Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine and the rest of his classmates begin to discover the goofs of the Umbrella Corporation and, of course, they go into the Spencer mansion.
For its part, Leon Kennedy is a rookie cop that he also has to come out in one piece on his first day in the Raccoon City police, while assimilating what these “infected” are.
As you can see, the general concepts are the same, although it is true that there are notable changes, such as the origin of Chris and Claire Redfield, which are much more linked to this city.
In any case, Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City seeks to reward the attentive fan of video games, with tons of references and a very, very inspired setting.
A) Yes, Raccoon City Police Station is identical on the outside and its hall to Resident Evil 2 and the woods and the entrance to the Spencer mansion They give an instant nostalgia shot by taking us back to the opening moments of the first game.
The same goes for monsters, from that mythical encounter with the first zombie to other super characteristic beings of the first two games and that we do not tell you here in case the spoilers …
The thing is not there, because there is also little moments of their stories sprinkled here and there (the trucker and his hamburger, certain key weapons, etc.), so, with all that we are counting, things do not look bad, right?
Unfortunately, the problems begin from here, starting with the cast itself. Although the film is rather choral and distributes the moments of prominence, the axis is the Claire Redfield as Kaya Scodelario (The maze runner).
She does what she can with the role, but there are some moments in which her character falls unfriendly and, perhaps, she lacks some forcefulness for the role so “tough” that they want to assign her. In any case, both she and him Chris by Robbie Amell (Ronnie en The Flash) have their moments.
Much more misguided seems to us the casting decision and the recreation of Leon Kennedy, assigned to an Avan Jogia (Zombieland: Kill and Finish) Yes, we are clear that he is very cool, but in the film he plays a … Surely “panoli” is the closest qualifier.
It is disappointing to see how they have converted a character as “cool” as Leon in the comic relief of the film And, although he has certain moments of heroism, he deflates the balloon of our expectations by behaving in such a … Well, so “little Leon”.
The always effective Hannah John-Kamen (Ant-man and the Wasp) does a correct job with the Jill Valentine that he has had to interpret, which for some reason is more pizpireta and “scoundrel” than the original of the games, but we accept ship.
On the other hand, we have a Albert Wesker who, although he also differs from the games in which he starts out being more noble, offers forcefulness on screen thanks to the interpretation and the imposing physique of Tom Hopper (The Umbrella Academy).
We would have the William Birkin’s disheartening case (Neal McDonough, “Dum Dum” en Captain America), which not only seems to be bad “just because”, without a clearer context and that makes us empathize with him, but his role is excessively over-acted, especially in the final bars.
For whatever reason, there are several supporting characters who overreact, such as a police station chief (Donal Logue, Hervey in Gotham) which is too burdensome. It gives the feeling that they want to be amused by how cruel he is to his subordinates, but it remains that he does not like him.
All these characters come together in an argument that, as we said, mixes the events of the first two Resident (with some moment from Code Veronica, eye) and, perhaps, there is one of the main problems of the film: it is too long.
It is true that, once the action has started well, it is satisfactory to see how they manage to “place” each character in their place: the STARS at the Spencer mansion, Leon and Claire at the police station… And they make both stories move in parallel. That’s interesting.
But, to get there, we had to go through a very slow start (and, as we said, something overloaded with characters that do not connect with the viewer), which also, it doesn’t get scary.
In fact, the film is especially weighed down by this lack of terror, although in a sense it may not be their fault, exactly: as viewers, we “feel” that the protagonists, precisely because they are key characters in the franchise, have more possibilities. to survive in circumstances where others would clearly palpate her.
Still, there is certain moments of tension and overwhelm that are reminiscent of George Romero’s classic zombie film stage, like a shootout in the dark starring Chris that is by far one of the best sections of action in the film.
Together, we have Mixed feelings with Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City. On the one hand, it is noted that the director Johannes Roberts He is a fan of video games and has wanted to pay tribute to them to the fullest. That means that, if you are fans of the franchise, enjoy the pecking of details and Easter eggs here and there.
But on the other hand, if this movie were called “Welcome to Whatever City” and it wasn’t based on the games, it would have little room for praise: offers a very irregular rhythm, some performances are inordinate and, above all, it does not manage to give fear or real tension.
Having been inspired by games is his greatest virtue (it is very entertaining to be attentive to the constant references) and his greatest condemnation, since seems so concerned with proving that its managers know the franchise that it forgets what is most important: catch and thrill for itself.
The post credits scene makes it clear that there are intentions (of course!) to give rise to a new film franchise and, sincerely, we hope that it can be so, well there is potential for something more and we truly believe that those in charge want to do something great. But they need to center the shot so that the thing, instead of a great infection, does not remain in a mere autumn cold.
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Review of Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City – Interesting tribute, but failed movie