Tall, Dark, and Dead – 90 – Resident Evil

Title: Resident Evil
Year: 2002
Director: Paul W.S. Anderson
Leads: Milla Jovovich, Michelle Rodriguez, James Purefoy, Colin Salmon

Favorite quote: “I don’t want to be one of those things. Walking around without a soul.”

Thoughts: Silverback loves the RE films. So, having seen them with her countless times (and having heard her watching them in her end of the house countless times more), I figured that if I were ever going to accept outside help with my reviews, it’d be for these.

So, I kinda convinced her that if she did my blog posts for me she could get a press pass to SD Comic-Con, gave her a box of crayons (yes, like a five-year-old), and told her to go to it. After hearing about my process before, she was more than happy to “do it right” for me.

The results are…magical. Truly, I am going to treasure these my entire life. When she is dead and gone (heaven forbid), they will be blown up on a massive screen at her memorial service.

Anyway, before that, I did want to say a few things – because this movie is an excellent jumping-off point for discussing the relationship between zombies and mutants. I’ve talked before about how the future of zombies lies not with the classic dead-and-hungry model, but with various takes on living and hybridized zombies – that just seems to be the direction zombies are taking. Some might accuse people who go down that road of “sanitizing” or warping zombies, but I’m eager to see what comes of it, myself. After all, it’s my personal belief that similar tactics could prove the way of salvation for vampires in current western culture – The Passage, with its science-gone-wrong vampires, was one of the best vampire stories I’ve read in a loooong time.

I think the key thing to keep in mind when dealing with zombies of this persuasion is that violent, bombastic mutation is but another example of “exaggerated” life. It can be difficult to describe, but when watching zombies in action (especially the modern crop of fast zombies), I’m always captivated by the fact that they seem to exhibit an overabundance of regained life in order to compensate for the fact that they are, at heart, dead bodies. In fact, this is what a lot of modern visceral zombie horror (and comedy) stems from. It’s also yet another example of “life that should not be.”

Since both zombies and mutated monsters dovetail so nicely on these matters, it makes sense to combine them. I find it far from offensive.

The RE series is also fabulous for talking about issues of control. It is not only the dead who have lost their minds, but Alice and Spence, via amnesia. We could also discuss the manipulations of the Red Queen – who is, for all her charm, artificial. Yet an further example of “life that should not be.”

But…you want to see what my mother thinks. Behold.



(Click for larger versions!)


Links: Resident Evil at IMDB
Resident Evil on Wikipedia

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