Reviews

Resident Evil: Retribution

2

Zzzzombie wars, part five for Milla Jovovich

The fifth one of anything is rarely the best, whether it's movie franchises, beer, tacos, or marriages. And - again, much like beer, tacos, and marriages - if you've gone that far, the fifth is rarely the last.

So it goes with Resident Evil: Retribution, the latest in this never-ending sci-fi/shock-horror series.

Based on the popular ’90s video game, the films follow the bone-cracking trials and travails of Alice (Milla Jovovich), Resident Evil's resident super-soldier, a rogue ex-operative of the Umbrella Corporation, a sinister global organisation responsible for accidentally unleashing a deadly virus that kick-starts a zombie apocalypse.

Retribution finds Alice trapped in a cyber-psychedelic prison in the bowels of Umbrella's stronghold, deep under the ice, in a remote corner of Russia.

She is released by a group of freedom fighters and forced to battle zombies, axe-wielding giants and screeching brain monsters to reach the surface and then, eventually, save whatever's left of the human race.

Series mastermind Paul W.S. Anderson takes the directorial reins for the third time, belching up another hyperactive gorefest full of gruesome mutants, flesh-ripping zombies, endless machine-gun battles, and skin-tight Lycra jumpsuits.

As if (correctly) assuming that his film rarely makes any narrative sense, Anderson wisely stops the action every 10 or so minutes and allows his characters to explain what's going on in tersely worded monologues.

The rest of the time, it's all brain-smashing, eye-gouging mayhem, anchored by the steely Jovovich and an equally stoic Michelle Rodriguez, back in the game for the first time since the 2002 original.

Retribution
is the second RE presented in 3D, and unlike the flat, drab Afterlife (2010), this one takes better (or more obvious) advantage of the medium, showering the viewer in glass shards, black rain, and bullets at every turn.

Otherwise it’s gory, ear-shattering business as usual; only die-hards need apply.

Verdict:

Giant brains with teeth, suburban mutant zombies, more bullets than a John Woo film festival, and hot girls in skin-tight S&M outfits pummelling each other to a deafening dubstep soundtrack. If you're looking for brainless, blood-guzzling carnage, you've found it.

Film Details

User Reviews

    • Trickycustomer

      Sep 21st 2012, 11:33

      Reboot time! Just not with Paul as Anderson attached, he's f****d this up enough!

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    • ChrisWootton

      Sep 21st 2012, 12:50

      So, how do hey explain the fact that both Rodriguez and Fehr both died in previous outings? .. actually, I don't care

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    • MillerCrosses

      Sep 21st 2012, 13:09

      I like how alongside these terrible reviews totalfilm always has an article or feature telling us how Anderson and Jovovich are game changers and we all have to take notice.

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    • 2Dglasses

      Sep 21st 2012, 14:39

      @ChrisWootton, i think one is a clone and one part of a computer simulation, or something. But to be honest i stopped caring the minute that Alice got supernatural powers. Until then the series was OK to be fair, if mired with the now tedious "there's an evil corporation that is all powerful yet still greedy and also stupid". We get it, they're evil.

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    • Hadouken76

      Sep 21st 2012, 16:56

      Go to Youtube and watch Angry Joes review of Resident Evil: Afterlife 3D review. The first 30 seconds crack me up everytime, and everything he says basically sums up the entire film. All his game / movie reviews are brilliantly put together. Sorry, just had to put it out there. So...Total Film... 'One of the best films between now and Christmas' eh? Who would have thought that would be proven wrong? Try EVERYONE.

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    • Eggman72

      Sep 23rd 2012, 12:05

      This s**t seems to be critic proof they have gotten worse (not that they was ever any good) it seriously needs someone else to take the reigns & reboot it as an adult franchise like the games & not dumbed down for kids c**p..

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    • MoodyMonkey

      Sep 27th 2012, 10:57

      I was going to make a serious comment about this godawful franchise until i realised that these films are not designed for anyone who bought the original games and probably never will be...sigh... Sod it, im digging out the 2nd game again. even the acting is better in that one than any of the films.

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    • comicgirl21

      Oct 3rd 2012, 20:04

      I prefer to believe that a) these are bad-good and b) someone's done a deal with Satan - if these ever stop being made, we'll actually experience a zombie armageddon. Of course, that RE movies keep being made may actually be a sign of the coming apocalypse, but I have to agree with Cracked's recent article on the RE movies: they're better than the games. No matter how die hard a fan you are, let's be honest here, at least the movies have continuity, show the action (I give you death of Umbrella on-screen, rather than off) and are dumb fun. Of all the game-to-movie transfers, the only one that's managed to do better is Silent Hill. With that as your benchmark, frankly either hope people start making better game-to-movie transfers, or embrace the suck.

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    • georgeWW

      Oct 3rd 2012, 21:07

      embrace the suck I say, no one is expecting schindler's list If you wish they were like the games don't watch them go play the game ... other than not hugely moving the story forward it's what is expected the review has the film in a nutshell

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    • Seedorf

      Oct 10th 2012, 1:33

      Yay, more mindless zombie nonsense. I'm thankful for the animated RE films. They are much better than these stupid live action films, and actually feel like they belong to the world of RE.

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    • ProjectJames

      Oct 12th 2012, 11:08

      4

      Love the series, and this is a great addition. Afterlife is the best, but Retribution is the most violent and most epic. Although the story is quite basic, almost every other aspects works. From insane 3D visuals, the awesome Milla Jovovich, a barrage of explosive action sequences and one of the most amazing final battles I've ever seen in a film, this is pure popcorn entertainment.

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    • astridgamez

      Feb 19th 2013, 2:01

      5

      My opinion is that A- The best movie out of ALL R.E is Resident Evil:Extinction and this one is the Second best .B-I dunno how people say the R.E movies are bad or they f-ed up the movie.Because it seems too me that its showing the back story of it all or its showing you the background info. of how it started(in which case we all know in the first movie it shows how it all suposaly started)but it also shows how Alice(Milla Jovovich)is trying to put an end to this "Zombie-Apocalypse" outbreak(that the Umbrella Corporation is responsible of).And i do have plenty more too say but id rather not say anything anymore at least i got out what i had too say about this movie. :)

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