Love Makes People Do Some Creepy Things – Resident Evil: Vendetta Review

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Some of the best gun fighting action sequences in any genre and the creepiest case of “You look like someone I know.” – Resident Evil: Vendetta Review

Last night, Capcom, Sony Pictures, and Fathom Events hosted a special one night only US release of Resident Evil Vendetta. And starting today, it is available via on digital channels and will be available on 3-Disk 4k Ultra HD/Blu-Ray Combo Pack and 2-disc Blu-ray and DVD July 18th. If you missed your chance to catch the film on the big screen, you now know how you can watch it on all your other screens. Fans of the Resident Evil series, zombies, and bad ass martial arts choreography will not want to miss this.

Resident Evil: Vendetta is the third installment of the CG animated franchise of Resident Evil. Starring the voices of Kevin Dorman, Matthew Mercer, and Erin Cahill, Vendetta follows fan favorite characters, Chris Redfield (Kevin Dorman), Leon S. Kennedy (Matthew Mercer), and the film debut of Rebecca Chambers (Erin Cahil) as they aim to stop Glenn Arias (John DeMita) spread a deadly virus that threatens New York City. The events of the film take place between RE6 and RE7: Biohazard. Arias has developed a strain of the virus that can not only turn people into zombies but also efficiently weaponize them to only attack designated targets. The effectiveness of this new virus strain was demonstrated to Chris by taking out his entire BSAA unit and someone close to him. In order to stop Arias, Chris goes to Rebecca, who is researching a zombie cure and gets there just in time to save her from an ambush by Arias. Chris and Rebecca then go to recruit Leon, who initially refuses and wants to be left alone with his whiskey. However, Arias’s team surprises them and kidnaps Rebecca. Now it is up to Chris and Leon to stop Arias and rescue Rebecca.

There were three major standouts in the film, the fight choreography, the horror, and the creepiness of Arias. The fight choreography was insane. In terms of their Capcom brethren, Chris Redfield and Leon S. Kennedy were putting Dante to shame. Their gunkata was second to none. What was really amazing about it, at least personally, is how it was incorporated into many situations and also the differences in Chris and Leon’s styles were highlighted. Chris’s style was much more direct. It didn’t lack any flare or style, but it was geared towards getting the kill and moving on. Whereas Leon was I want to say more of a show. It would use bodies as shields and involved more twists and contortions, which were never wasteful and made use of his enemies, but he also could have gone straight for the kill. It was an amazing spectacle to watch the two go at it against of horde in an enclosed space. The fight scenes alone are worth the price of admission.

Horror is something that I feel naturally gets toned down as zombies continue. It’s terrifying at first, but as the world adjusts, they are seen as another obstacle. No less dangerous, but the world is more prepared. Resident Evil as a franchise followed the trend in both the movies and live action films. Vendetta localized the trend into the film. With the help of Takashi Shimizu, the early parts of the movie are pretty scary. They also use a zombie kid, and kids always make things way scarier. I am terrified of children, especially on dark and quiet nights. My cousin found out the hard way when he stood in the middle of the hallway moaning and glowing and I punted him. [Full disclosure, he was using his phone light to find the bathroom, and was yawning]. Shimizu masterfully incorporated remote control cars, flashlights, and moonlight to create some truly terrifying scenes. But despite the heart pounding, jump out of your seat, terror, the soul touching creepiness was from Arias.

The next part contains a ***BIG SPOILER***, it doesn’t give away the ending or a twist, but it’s something that is likely a lot more impactful as you see it play out.

What I failed to cover in my synopsis, is a little bit back story of Glenn Arias. On his wedding day, a massive attack killed everyone he knew and loved, leaving only himself alive holding the hand and arm of his wife, as that is the only piece of her left. This would understandably drive anyone crazy. Coincidentally, his wife happened to look a lot like Rebecca and share a lot of similar characteristics. Which is why Arias kidnaps her. Still kind of understandable, not acceptable, but understandable. However, when Rebecca wakes up, she is in Mrs. Arias’s wedding dress in a recreation of the wedding. Then Arias informs Rebecca of how happy the three of them will be together. When Rebecca asks the questions she has too, Arias reveals the arm! Rebecca of course refuses, upsetting Arias, who now has the idea of replacing Rebecca’s arm with his wife’s arm. The situation is crazy enough, but the rendering and Demita’s performance drove that moment home.

The only downside to the film is that it feels short. There’s not enough time to really develop the characters, and thus not enough time to give the performers opportunities to really express the characters. It helps to have known the characters for so many years, and we do get to learn where Rebecca has been, but it just doesn’t feel like we get enough time with them. The film is developed for a mass audience, but I feel that the ones who will watch the movie are the dedicated fans and would have really appreciated a more in-depth approach to the three fan favorite characters. There are some deaths in the film, that don’t feel as impactful as they should because they sort of just happen after the character’s backstory is immediately revealed with no real time to process it. The only character who really gets to develop is Arias. There’s nothing wrong with how it’s done, and it’s all logical, it just doesn’t quite resonate. It’s close but just short.

Resident Evil: Vendetta will make your heart beat faster many different ways. It will terrify you, amp you up, and creep you out. The horror is what you want out of Resident Evil without knowing what it is and the action is absolutely brilliant. You get glimpses of it in trailers and clips, but seeing it play out in its entirety is just awesome! Then there’s Arias’s soul touching creepiness that will make you understand him, and yet make you want to have a legally mandated distance between you and him. Despite feeling a bit short, the movie is a thoroughly thrilling time that fans of the franchise, zombies, and kick ass action will love and enjoy. My Resident Evil: Vendetta review gets an 4/5 stars.

Resident Evil: Vendetta is available now on digital on numerous platforms and will be available physically on July 18th.

Resident Evil: Vendetta
4

The Verdict

Resident Evil: Vendetta will make your heart beat faster many different ways. It will terrify you, amp you up, and creep you out. The horror is what you want out of Resident Evil without knowing what it is and the action is absolutely brilliant. You get glimpses of it in trailers and clips, but seeing it play out in its entirety is just awesome! Then there’s Arias’s soul touching creepiness that will make you understand him, and yet make you want to have a legally mandated distance between you and him. Despite feeling a bit short, the movie is a thoroughly thrilling time that fans of the franchise, zombies, and kick ass action will love and enjoy.

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