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brotherkirk's blog

11:28 PM on 10.10.2007

28 Days Later saga > Resident Evil Films? You Bet!

28 Days/Weeks > Resident Evil (film)? You Bet!

Here's why:

Last night, I caught 28 Weeks Later after many months of neglect. Say what you want, but I definitely regret not seeing this in theaters. Despite the logic gaps of it (as well as its predecessor), the movie works incredibly well, taken in the context that it could be based on a videogame. I always thought that 28 Days Later did a good job in the military-run mansion, looking more like the RE house than anything in the first film. From the beginning of that movie, I couldn't help notice that the focus of the film was on survival, speedfreak, blood-spewing rageaholics or no.
Capcom coined the phrase "Survival Horror" with their first game, but you couldn't tell that by watching the movie. I haven't seen it in a while, but I remember these things (tell me if you remember these moments events in the first game, cause I sure as shit don't) :

- Flippin' And Dippin All Up In The LaserGrid. It's like Paul WS Anderson said "hey guys, I saw this really cool movie called Cube, where somebody gets cut to hell with some insane razor wire. Let's take that, because kids love lasers. This movie will print money--I've already seen to it that champagne bidets are installed in the corporate lavoratories."

-Nü-Metal. I know that the first thing I remember about the ambience of the RE series was the hard-blasting, take-no-prisoners, I-never-forgave-my-daddy phenomenon known as Nü-Metal. I personally know that nothing's scarier than Slipknot trying to shove spikes into my skin while I play a videogame. Seriously, I saw this movie in the theater, and I think it may have been the beginnings of my tumor (other hypotheses: too much cereal, Enzyte commercials).

-Alice. What? Yeah, she's totally in the game. You didn't...what? No. She's in there! All you have to do is play the game 100 times, then send your save to Capcom (the Japanese branch), and they'll give you a special memory card in which she is playable. You will also be able to do her special move, the Wall-Running Dogkick. Fact.*
Does anybody besides me notice that Milla Jovovich has played a Genetically Altered Superwoman in at least five movies? It's six if you count Zoolander. Debatable!

Anyway, I can go on about how that first movie and the sequels suck the Assatopolis, but I've got to make my point (and get some rest). 28 Weeks Later succeeded better as a Survival Horror game adaptation because it contained:

-Believable, flawed characters. Begbie leaves his family during a house rampage? Drama. A dedicated duo of soldiers leaving posts, going the distance to end the virus? That's your Leon/Claire/Chris Redfield archetypes right there. Kids devastated over the loss of their parents, left to fend for themselves? That's a little bit more than the game ever gives you. There's a calculating General who takes security measures into overdrive, shades of Wesker, and the (implausible) fact that Robert Carlyle's cardinal sin comes back to bite him on the ass--and nearly literally at that--makes him into a character of Tyrant era proportions. No rocket launcher, though.

- Levels!
My friend thinks that the movie is just a set-up for set piece after set piece, but in the context of a videogame, it's exciting and fun. Check it:

Opening sequence (hand-to-hand combat mission): Grab your crowbar and escape from the boarded up-shack and race for your life to get to the boat to safety? Can you save your wife that ran up into the attic like a moron? Choose!

Abandoned Britain (stealth mission): Sneak out from under the noses of lazy American patrol groups and ride a scooter at your hearts desire. Watch out, though!

Sniper Mission: Shoot some infected to save the general populace, then abandon your post and dodge friendly fire as you save a potential vaccine donor from the madness of martial law! This leads right into the...

Driving Level: You've escaped the firebomb, now can you make it to the car and drive out of the chemical gassing? Better drive until you see the...

Subway. Armed with nothing but an M4 Rifle with a night-vision scope, you've got to keep the kids safe from falling prey to the Infected, as well as be on the lookout from a certain Trainspotting co-star.

There's also room for a Helicopter flying mission, as you could control Harold Perrineau (aka Michael from Lost), as he spots safe passage for the sniper. He also gets to try for rescue, destroying a whooooole mess of Infected with the blades of his chopter (sound familiar, horror-heads? Note: they're too close in production date to scream copyright--seems like the same idea got filmed by two very different approaches). There's room for online co-op play in there.

When all is said and done, the 28 series pretty much houses the Resident Feeble movies, and I hope they know to leave well enough alone and stop at two.

P.S. Mike Epps, I love you sometimes, but I'll kindly ask that you stay the fuck out of what could have been one of the best horror franchises, seriously. Somebody let me know, did they kill him in three? Maybe there's a way to outshuck and/or jive a zombie.

*Completely unfounded.   read

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