Resident Evil: Degeneration (Blu-ray / DVD)
Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring the voices of Alyson Court, Paul Mercier, Michael Sorich
Directed by Makoto Kamiya
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?
Two -- 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.
Having 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.
2 1/2 out of 5
2 1/2 out of 5
Discuss Resident Evil: Degeneration in the Dread Central forums!