Resident Evil: Extinction (2007)


Today’s Horrorthon movie came as a request from Alex, who requested a movie from this series, but not a specific one.  I hadn’t yet gotten around to it until coworker Merg mentioned that she randomly decided to binge them all in the same day.  I decided to join her, but unfortunately for me, I only joined in when the movies in the series started getting bad.  But that also means that they get easier to make fun of, which is fortunate for me.  That series is Resident Evil, and the first one I watched in said series is the third one Resident Evil: Extinction, written by Paul W. S. Anderson, directed by Russell Mulcahy, and starring Milla Jovovich, Iain Glen, Ali Larter, Spencer Locke, Oded Fehr, Mike Epps, Ashanti, Jason O’Mara, and Madeline Carroll.

Alice (Jovovich) wakes up in a facility like the one from the first movie, and wanders the halls until she’s killed.  End of film.  Nah, just kidding, it’s a clone.  Get used to that in this series.  The real Alice is wandering the desert somewhere and Dr. Sam Isaacs (Glen) has been trying to perfect a clone of her, but needs the real deal to get it right.  Alice runs into a group of other survivors led by Claire Redfield (Larter) and Carlos Oliveira (Fehr) who are looking for a way up to Alaska to a place that is supposed to be safe.

One might be so inclined to call this movie garbage, but as I also rewatched the rest of the series, I feel like I need to hold on to that for later.  This is only the start of where they go downhill.  I feel like maybe they had gotten bored of making shitty zombie movies, so they decided to try to make shitty zombie Western with some Mad Max in there.  Because apparently zombies make the world a desert, I guess.  …Somehow…  At least for this movie.  I guess when zombies ate all the people, they started looking for vegetarian options and started eating the brains of trees.  But you really can’t go into even most zombie movies expecting them to make too much sense, and especially if they’re THESE zombie movies.

The look and visuals of these movies is pretty much what you expect.  Since they decided to go all desolate with it, it certainly doesn’t give you a terribly great landscape to look at.  Vegas might have been a good visual landscape, but they covered it in about 5% more dirt than the real Vegas and seemingly moved all the casinos of note into the same block.  The T-Virus is weird man.  It can do basically whatever it wants and ignore logic, just like writers on bad movies. 

Alice continues to get more and more overpowered in these movies.  I feel like in the first movie she was just a regular girl who was maybe really good at martial arts.  Like in this movie when she gets abducted by rednecks and one of them intends to flat out rape her in front of his family, she just kicks that dude in the face and kills him in one blow.  That would be much more impressive if she didn’t just decide to stop right there for some reason and relish in her sweet kick so that the other rednecks could knock her out.  At some point she also gained telekinesis.  I assume that happened in the previous movie because she didn’t seem terribly surprised that her motorcycle was hovering when she woke up, but I also wouldn’t put it past these movies to not sell that properly.  Mike Epps’ character annoyed me too because he was the classic zombie movie character that gets bit early on and just decides to keep it to himself.  To what end?!  You know damn well what’s going to happen and it’s not going away!  If you’re worried about them killing you, well that’s what’s going to happen when you turn anyway.  And you might kill some of your friends on your way out!  Just tell them and peace out or have someone kill you!  I also liked the character of Kmart – so named because she was found in a Staples – but I mostly only liked her because I enjoyed calling RC Willey by different retailer names.  Other than that, I had no thoughts about Pic ‘N Save.

So those are my thoughts on Resident Evil: Extinction.  It’s not a great movie, but the series has only yet begun to become terrible and this movie still manages to be fun enough that you can enjoy yourself while making fun of it.  It doesn’t make a lot of sense and the characters are mostly stupid, but things blow up and there are zombies.  It’s good enough.  Resident Evil: Extinction gets “Yeah, you’re the future alright” out of “It really is the end of the world.”

WATCH REVIEWS HERE!  YouTube  OTHER JOKES HERE!  Twitter  BE A FAN HERE!  Facebook  If you like these reviews so much, spread the word.  Keep me motivated!  Also, if you like them so much, why don’t you marry them?!

The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior (2008)


Scratch Any Hero, and You Will Find a Monster Lurking Inside

Continuing onward with the Scorpion King trilogy, but starting with the ones that may lead to my untimely death.  Today’s movie is mainly serving to connect the movie that I was happy to watch (The Scorpion King) with the movie I am required to watch because my friend Eric requested it.  I never saw this movie before today because I tended to make good decisions for my entertainment before I started doing reviews.  I knew it existed, I just didn’t want to see it.  Was I right to assume this, or will I be tremendously surprised by the movie?  We shall see as I review The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior, written by Randall McCormick, directed by Russell Mulcahy, and starring Michael Copon, Randy Couture, Karen Shenaz David, Simon Quarterman, Natalie Becker, Tom Wu, and Andreas Wisniewski.

The Black Scorpions are a group of elite Akkadian warriors lead by Sargon (Randy Couture), a powerful warrior and magician.  After the suspicious death of his father, Mathayus (Michael Copon) joins the Black Scorpions for 6 years of training.  Upon his return, he runs afoul of the newly appointed king of Akkad, Sargon, by refusing to kill his old friend Noah.  Sargon kills Noah anyway, and Mathayus goes to find a weapon powerful enough to defeat Sargon, getting joined by his childhood friend, Layla (Karen Shenaz David).  They also meet up with a Greek poet, Ari (Simon Quarterman), who tells them of a weapon called the Sword of Damocles that can accomplish this task.  They go to Greece and face a Minotaur, which causes other prisoners to join them.  They also save the life of a man named Fung (Tom Wu), who follows them simply to make sure the audience does not go long without being annoyed by something.  In the Underworld, they face the goddess Astarte (Natalie Becker), who tries to kill Mathayus and Layla while Ari and Fung find the sword.  They get it and escape.  Astarte goes to her servant, Sargon, and tells him to kill everyone, including Mathayus.  Our group return to Akkad to find that everyone has been lured into the arena to be killed in elaborate fashion.  Fung and Layla stop them from getting killed while Mathayus and Ari go to fight Sargon.  We think Ari betrays Mathayus, having been paid by Sargon, but then Ari double betrays Sargon and helps Mathayus.  Mathayus kills Sargon, Layla says she’s in love with Mathayus, Mathayus loves battle more and leaves.  The end.

This movie kind of sucked out loud.  Take the story and dialogue of The Scorpion King, make it worse and stupider, and remove all signs of the fun that made The Scorpion King work in spite of the writing, and you have this movie.  It was boring and predictable, the fight scenes were not interesting, and the dialogue ranged from mediocre to awful.  The story just starts in Akkad, makes a really long round trip where apparently Akkad is standing relatively still and nothing interesting is happening for us to check back in on, and then just ends ups back in Akkad.  I was so disinterested with the story that my mind kept focusing on what I saw to be a continuity error about Mathayus having a scorpion tattoo that he didn’t have in The Scorpion King or The Mummy movie.  Thankfully, they did answer this question by having him burn it off with a sword that was hot for no reason, so I didn’t have to wonder anymore.  The decision to make Ari betray Mathayus was completely ill-conceived because it happens and then turns him back into a good guy all within the span of about three minutes.  Had we been given an idea that he was a bad guy from the time we met him, we would be more happy to see him turn good at the end.  The poor state of the dialogue is in matching to the story, being a few failed attempts at witty one-liners or just exposition.  The narrator goes on far too long into the movie.  You’re only necessary to give us backstory, we don’t need you to tell us what we’re watching.  And as for the “witty one-liners”, there’s one part where Astarte tells Layla that she’ll rip her face off and Layla says “Good, then I won’t have to look at you.”  Good comeback.  Though to a lesser degree, The Scorpion King suffered some of the same problems, but the fun of the movie and the cool fight scenes elevated it.  This movie decides instead to have uninteresting fights, spread far between, and amp that shit up by using slow-mo to accentuate moves that aren’t that impressive.

As bad as those things are in this movie, the graphics of this movie are much worse.  Not always, the sets are all pretty well done.  The Underworld actually achieved a slim level of creepiness with it’s set pieces, and they all seemed to have been crafted very well.  The Rube Goldberg machine that they set to kill all of the Akkadians was pretty interesting, but only assuming you ignore the fact that it was an over complicated way of killing a group of people that were trapped in an arena surrounded by archers.  It still looked good, though.  Everything else was the problem.  If you make it long enough into this movie to see it, the pinnacle of it’s awfulness is the Minotaur.  It was the worst piece of computer animation I can recall seeing recently.  They seemed at least partially aware of it and tried to mask it with shaky camera, or not use it at all and use a prop head next to the camera, but when I saw that animation again I was just bummed out by how bad it looked.  They must’ve figured out that their computer animators only did this as a hobby, because the scorpion Mathayus fights at the end of the movie is mostly invisible.  Problematically, they then decided that they should just have pots fall over a lot to show that it was still there.  But they end it by having Mathayus throw some oil on it so that he can see it again, and then I was bummed out again.  Also, to show that he’s been imbued with Astarte’s power, a drop of her blood lands on Randy Couture’s head and makes a Scorpion, but it actually just looks more like a bad, tattoo comb-over.  But the thing that still gets me is the thing you can see to the right of this paragraph, and that’s the Sword of Damocles.  Would you look at that thing?!  It’s so nondescript that it seems like a placeholder for the real weapon that they’ll make later.  I could make that thing with some cardboard and spray paint!  Shouldn’t mythical weapons have some cool designs on them and not just be a boring hunk of metal with a shiny, sharp thing coming out of one end?  Looking at it’s making me mad.  I’m switching paragraphs.

The acting was generally pretty bad.  Michael Copon had a good look to him, and performed at least adequately, but it’s a stretch of credulity to try to have me believe this skinny guy is going to one day be The Rock.  Also, he lacked the Rock’s charm and presence, so that’s another negative.  Surprisingly, Randy Couture isn’t a good actor.  It’s not really his fault; the casting people shouldn’t have put him in such a big part of a movie anyway.  He did fine in the background of the Expendables, but he needs a little more practice before headlining.  He did really good in the fight scenes, though.  That’s not really a shocker, I suppose.  Karen David was ignorable for her performance, but she was at least pretty good looking.  Her character, however, was the most irritating thing in this movie for me.  I started thinking about it in the first fight she has with Astarte.  Almost every word out of her mouth up to that point is about how she can fight as good as any man.  She then gets into an unimpressive girl fight with Astarte, lord of the Underworld, which starts with “You’re ugly and old!”, “Well you can’t seduce guys!”, and “Well your weave is false!”  Okay, I added that last one.  Inevitably, she loses and must be rescued by Mathayus.  If you weren’t yet convinced that the writers don’t think much of women, by the end of the movie she seems to have not taken to killing and has decided she would rather be Mathayus’ housewife, but he wants to adventure on.  I guess the writers really put her in her place … which is barefoot and pregnant in front of the stove, if the writers had their way.  As for Natalie Becker, she wasn’t a good female character either.  I’ve seen movies where good looking chicks can be intimidating villainesses, but I didn’t see one today.  She was mainly just hamming it up, but was pretty weak and ineffectual in combat.  She was losing to a housewife until she decided to use magic.  SHE’S SUPPOSED TO BE A GODDESS!!

This movie sucks.  Don’t watch it.  Unfortunately for me, I’m moving on to part 3, and this movie has made me pretty nervous about it.  Weak story, lame dialogue, mediocre performances, and atrocious graphics.  But the sets were nice.  And the ladies were pretty.  I guess that’s all I can say about that.  You COULD stream this right now off of Netflix, but why would you?  The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior gets “Please tear my face off so I won’t have to look at you” out of “I fight for what you’ve corrupted.”

Hey, peeps. Why not rate and comment on this as a favor to good ole Robert, eh? And tell your friends! Let’s make me famous!