I’m not sure it’s possible for my expectations to be lower than they are for any given Resident Evil movie project, but the subtitle “Welcome To Raccoon City” might just have lowered them further. Thankfully I’ve just watched the first official trailer, and hey, this looks fun! This looks competent.
I’m not a fan of Paul W.S. Anderson’s numerous films, but Welcome To Raccoon City is a full reboot with a new cast and director. It also looks to hew closer to the source material. The trailer above shows Leon, Claire, Jill and Wesker exploring locations familiar from the games, including a dusty old mansion, external glimpses of the police station, and even some specific shots directly taken from the games.
The original games weren’t exactly high art, of course, and I don’t need all adaptations to be authentic. But if you make a Resident Evil movie without the enduring elements from the original games, then it may as well just be any other zombie/mutant/horror film.
It helps that, with some rough CG monsters aside, Welcome To Raccoon City doesn’t look as cheap and poorly acted as the previous films. I am encouraged by the appearance of Neal McDonough as Birkin, because McDonough almost exclusively appears in enjoyable trash and makes them 10% better everytime.
Welcome To Raccoon City will open in US cinemas on November 24th, with a UK release on December 3rd. It is not to be confused with Netflix’s live action Resident Evil series starring Lance Reddick as Wesker.