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Resident Evil Movies Ranked from Worst to the First One

The Final Chapter takes us back to the beginning, as the reason for the T-virus’ invention and its spread are finally laid bare for the very few people who were in this for, y’know, actual answers. Alice and her friends, having been inevitably betrayed by Wesker, are now in his endgame. It’s the last stand of their apocalypse, and a last chance to unleash an antivirus that could save the world from zombification, so Alice teams up with the Red Queen back at The Hive to get it done. Down there, we find out that Alice was originally cloned from Alicia Marcus, daughter of the creator of the T-virus, and Jovovich plays that character in some rather unconvincing aging makeup. All this lore gets in the way of the action. It’s clear the franchise has run out of steam and is straining for an emotional conclusion, but sadly it doesn’t quite manage to achieve one in The Final Chapter.

4. Welcome to Raccoon City

The main issue with Welcome to Raccoon City is that it loves the first two Resident Evil video games a little too much. The reboot strives to honor them wherever it can, aiming to set itself apart from the nonsense of the other movies and tell the unsettling story of the games.

The result is that despite having a more coherent vision with a much darker tone than the films that came before it, Welcome to Raccoon City is kind of, well, dull. It turns out there was a load-bearing Paul W.S. Anderson. Missing the action and nonsense of the Alice-focused movies, the creepy zombies of Raccoon City are simply nothing we haven’t seen before. The Easter eggs and fanservice may win over hardcore Resi players, but for those who have already seen the franchise be taken in a wilder direction, this reboot is just a little underwhelming.

3. Resident Evil: Afterlife

Resident Evil: Afterlife starts with what tantamounts to a music video. Tomandandy’s score pumps out deep beats as we see rain fall slowly on Tokyo and a young woman turns into a zombie, attacking a passerby. This is how Japan fell to the T-virus. In the present day, an insanely overpowered Alice and her clones take down Umbrella HQ in Tokyo, but Pesky Wesker gets away, and writer-director Paul W.S. Anderson makes Umbrella’s most ridiculous villain do the smartest thing he can for the franchise: remove Alice’s superhuman abilities. From there, Afterlife has some of the highest stakes in the series, as Alice can simply just die.

Alice and Claire Redfield travel to Los Angeles in pursuit of the safe haven Arcadia, and must escape a prison with Claire’s brother Chris (a phenomenally hammy Wentworth Miller). By the time the crew get to the Arcadia and have their inevitable slow motion battle with Wesker, the movie is only concerned with having as much fun as it physically can while eschewing the laws of physics completely. Wesker parachuting away from a final CGI explosion takes the cake in Afterlife, but his laughable “Mr. Smith” sequence aboard the Arcadia should get an honorable mention. 

2. Resident Evil: Retribution

2012’s Retribution was the fifth installment in the Resident Evil film series, and by this point the franchise had gotten so ludicrous and over the top that it had room to vary the stories that it wanted to tell, as long as they were hung loosely around preposterous action, gunplay, and combat. This one has a killer sequence near the beginning that’s reminiscent of Zack Snyder’s best movie, Dawn of the Dead. A cloned Alice wakes up as a happily married suburban mom in a twisted Umbrella simulation that peppers in clones of the first movie’s cast, including Colin Salmon as strike team leader James “One” Shade.

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