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Resident Evil: Degeneration (Blu-ray / DVD)

Resident Evil: Degeneration on DVD and Blu-rayReviewed by Uncle Creepy

Starring the voices of Alyson Court, Paul Mercier, Michael Sorich

Directed by Makoto Kamiya

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment


Let me make this perfectly clear — I am a die-hard Resident Evil fan. I know the mansion from the first game better than I know my own house. I played through each Resident Evil entry several times including the horrible first person shooter ones. Like many of you out there I’ve been pretty disappointed by the live-action films. The first one … well that was a Paul Anderson movie, the second barely had any zombie action at all, and the third? Well, at least there were truck loads of the undead.

When I saw the trailer for Resident Evil: Degneration, an all CG movie from Capcom itself, I thought we had hit paydirt. It certainly couldn’t be worse than the movies could it? Well, no, but sadly it’s not much better either.

For a more detailed look at the film’s storyline, allow me to point you in the direction of Andrew’s Resident Evil: Degeneration review, because I have got some stuff I really need to get off of my chest.

One — the violence factor or should I say the lack thereof? Yes, we see people getting bitten and the occasional head shot or two, but where is the gore, man?!? Most kills take place off screen or just out of frame. This thing is rated R, for god’s sake! We see heads in the game get reduced to bloody chunks! Why so shy here?

Resident Evil: Degeneration on DVD and Blu-rayTwo — the zombies or should I say the lack thereof? The beginning of Resident Evil: Degeneration is stacked with zombie action. We get a solid thirty minutes of it. The trouble is due to the lack of gore it’s not very good and after the first half an hour the zombies all but completely disappear. Um … Hello? Am I to assume no one at Capcom ever played the game? How in the world a Resident Evil flick from them of all people could be light on the undead is absolutely beyond me.

Instead of the ghouls we love, or the Lickers, or even just some giant mutant insects, the last third of the film focuses completely on a battle with a totally uninspired looking over-sized mutant that echoes Tyrant. And what does this hulking brute do? Not much. Yeah, he hits a couple of people, but mostly he just runs around, engages in epic staring battles, and screams. Are you kidding me? Wow. Just wow.

It seems as if director Makoto Kamiya sole purpose for making this game was just to have Leon S. Kennedy stand around looking cool with his hair blowing in slow motion. Mission accomplished, slick. Thanks a lot.

Resident Evil: Degeneration on DVD and Blu-rayHaving seen both the DVD and the Blu-ray side-by-side let me just say this … If you have the tech and you’re jonesing to see this thing despite my warnings, watch the Blu-ray version. The DVD at times looks very dark and muddy whereas in 1080p everything looks nothing short of vibrant and stunning. I’m talking a major difference here, people.

In terms of special features there’s really not much. First up is your standard half-an-hour long making-of featurette in which the filmmakers promise lots. This is made all the more infuriating when thinking about how little they delivered. Sigh. The voice bloopers are forgettable, and the Faux Leon interview is utterly senseless. They interview a dude in a motion capture suit. Not even the real voice actor. Um … why? Just why?!? The character profiles are just as lame, and truth be told this package’s only saving grace are a couple of trailers for Resident Evil 5.

For you hi-def heads there’s a pop-up trivia track, and a couple of different picture-in-picture viewing modes that allow you to access storyboards and animatics while the film is playing. Their endeth the Blu-ray exclusives.

I give up, man. We’re never going to see the Resident Evil movie we’ve all been dying for. The last time I had this much of a lukewarm time watching a CG movie was when I beat Metal Gear Solid 4, but at least then I could just hit “X” and move on once I got bored. Rent it for the first thirty-minutes. After that pretend there’s nothing else to see. I can assure you … there’s not.

Special Features:

  • Picture-in-Picture viewing options (Blu-ray only)
  • Pop-up Trivia track
  • The Generation of Degeneration featurette
  • A look at Resident Evil 5
  • Voice Bloopers
  • Faux Leon Interview
  • Character Profiles

    Film:

    2 1/2 out of 5

    Special Features:

    2 1/2 out of 5

    Discuss Resident Evil: Degeneration in the Dread Central forums!

  • Steve Barton

    You're such an inspiration for the ways that I will never, ever choose to be.

    • Zayzie

      I actually think the underlying fear of the Resident Evil games is that someone made all those zombies because of an experiment gone wrong, and that they don’t really care about these walking undead. And I think the monster at the end looks like a Tyrant clone because it kind of is? This filmed seemed more of an RE comfort film, not a thing that invented new zombiriffic creatures. I also think the lickers would be a little out of place in this film, plotwise. Just kind of odd, since the setting needs be set like a claustrophobic nightmare, and not an airport surrounded by whatever evil corporation was taking responsibility for it at the time.

      Honestly Resident Evil isn’t about hordes of monsters coming at you, it’s about scientists that are just so wrapped up in their experiments that they become indifferent to the decaying world around them, and people who do care are the characters they follow. Remember, it was Biohazard before Resident Evil, and was never named Zombie XXXXXXXX. So the resulting hordes of monster they fight off is only as fun to fight off as the diabolical scientist who created them, who’s usually infected with the virus anyways, so is anyone really human anymore?

      The only real beef I had with this movie was the script of the characters, very corny dialogue, like most of the RE games, to be honest. And it seems like the first part of the movie and the second part of the movie are almost different things, but I feel this was a lack of characterization to pull those two completely together. It relied more on the fact that people have played the games and inherently understand what’s going on, thus easily linking the plot together. I mean, I don’t think anyone but RE fans will enjoy PARTS of this flick. Now I totally agree with you on the score, the movie is average at best, I just don’t really agree with your reasons.

      There was this short 20 minute RE film though, that I watched that I really liked. That embodies all the RE/Biohazard goodness I like, Biohazard Executer, or something.