Resident Evil: Degeneration (2008)

DVD Cover (Sony Home Entertainment)
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Overall Rating 57%
Overall Rating
Ranked #1,961
...out of 8,684 movies
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Connections: Resident Evil

Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield must battle a rogue warrior seeking revenge after unleashing the deadly G-Virus, whilst a mutated monster goes on a rampage. --IMDb
Paul Mercier
Paul Mercier
Alyson Court
Alyson Court
Laura Bailey
Laura Bailey
Roger Craig Smith
Roger Craig Smith
Crispin Freeman
Crispin Freeman
Review by Chad
Added: May 08, 2012
I recently finished playing Resident Evil 5 on Xbox, and I enjoyed the hell out of it. I'm not exactly a huge fan of the series (I only played the first two games to completion and dabbled in a few of the others), but something about this one clicked with me. So, having finished the game and finding that I have to wait another four months for the next real game in the series to come out, I decided to sit down with one of the movies. Since I have an intense disdain for the live-action movie series, I decided to venture into the world of animated movies and see how the story fared over there. I was pleasantly surprised.

The story begins in an airport lobby, where Senator Ron Davis (voiced by Michael Sorich) is making a pit stop. This man has a mob of protestors following him around courtesy of his involvement in the Raccoon City incident, and thus, he is flanked by security at every turn. Of course, this doesn't stop Claire Redfield (Alyson Court) from pointing him out and getting a mini riot started, but that will soon be the least of everybody's worries as a zombie infected with the T-virus mysteriously appears and takes a chunk out of a police officer's neck. You know where it goes from there: one zombie becomes two, two becomes four, and before you know it, the airport is crawling with the undead.

The military sends in the SRT team to deal with this, and led by Angela Miller (Laura Bailey), the crew is almost up to the task. They just seem to be missing that one vital team member... oh, cue Leon S. Kennedy's (Paul Mercier) entrance right about here. Together again, Leon and Claire team up to put an end to this outbreak, while Angela proves that she is more than capable of handling her own. There's more to the storyline that takes place outside of this airport, but that's really all you need to know prior to watching the film.

From what I've read online, this film was supposed to bridge the gap between Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5 - sort of like a Resident Evil 4.5, in movie format instead of game. Now, I only played the fourth entry in the series for about ten minutes way back when it was released in 2005, so I'm really not an authority on the storyline found there; however, I can definitively tell you that it has absolutely zero connections to the fifth game. That's not necessarily a bad thing, mind you, just throwing it out there for those who are hoping for a prequel to that game.

Anyway, the film is done with motion capture CG animation, and I have to say that it looks absolutely beautiful. There are a few problems here and there and I can't rightfully call it perfect, but I'd say that a solid 95% of the running time is pure eye-candy. More than a few of the scenes look downright real, and there were times where I found myself wondering if the filmmakers inserted "real" video into the film and spliced the animated characters onto it. It's that convincing. Again, there are a few problems here and there, but the only thing that really bothered me was the dubbing. The lips and the words that are coming out of them are in no way lined up together, and it's very distracting at times. Other than that, I have nothing but praise for the animation work found here.

I also enjoyed the storyline, but I can't quite praise that part of the movie as much. You see, it starts off in that airport, and I have absolutely zero qualms about that part of the film. It has badass characters, it has zombie action, and it's all lined with shady government cover-ups - everything one would expect from a movie based on this game series. That part ends about forty-five minutes into the running time, and from there, things sort of start to go downhill. It's like the filmmakers tried to do too much in one movie, while also trying to explain things that we just saw for the slower members in the audience. It does lead to a great battle between the heroes and a G-virus-infected beast, but the story leading to that feels padded and jumbled.

Still, I did enjoy the movie. It's not perfect by any means, but I did have fun with it even though I generally stay away from animated films and don't have a huge vested interest in the Resident Evil series. There are some great characters to root for, there's plenty of zombie ass-kicking to cheer for, and although the storyline isn't the best I've ever seen, it does a fair job of keeping things moving. If you're a fan of the games or if you just like zombie movies in general, check it out. 7/10.
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