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</script></div>{/googleAds}Let's get one thing absolutely clear. If you haven't played any Resident Evil games, especially the first two, you may not appreciate this CG-animated version based on those games. For global video gamers, RE revolutionized the gaming industry, paving the way for a stand alone genre in gaming now known as survival horror. Like it or not, Hollywood has spared no efforts in tapping this market, capitalizing on console to screen adaptations like Doom, Silent Hill, Dead Space and several other survival horror games. So it isn't surprising when gamers like myself, and a million others across the planet occasionally ditch our controllers and use our fingers instead to chow down popcorn while allowing someone else to battle the undead.

Degeneration picks up seven years after the ending of RE2 the video game. It starts in an airport in Newark, New Jersey where Clair Redfield arrives and is met by an angry mob probing the truth behind WilPharma Corporation's government sponsored cover-up that allegedly wiped out Raccoon City and its zombie infested T-virus. Representing the government is Senator Ron Davis, a man as vile as he is sarcastic. But before he can calm the mob down, an airliner infected by the supposedly abolished T-virus crashes into the terminal building, bringing with it utter pandemonium, including undead passengers craving for some raw flesh. While all exits of the airport are cordoned off by the military, a Special Response Team (SRT) assembled by Leon Kennedy prepares for a breach and rescue mission assuming the Senator and survivors would be held up in the airport VIP lounge. A former Police officer of the Raccoon PD, Leon, along with Clair, the Senator and a few others barely make it out unbitten by zombies, only to learn that this latest outbreak appears deliberate and the virus may be in the hands of a terrorist. Worse, is their discovery that a more potent mutation called the G-virus is being harvested in WilPharma's research facility with the sole intention of selling the virus to the highest bidder in search of the ultimate bio-weapon.

Resident EvilFanboys of the franchise will be happy to see Clair and Leon team up again after their blood and gore fest through the meandering alleyways of Raccoon City. True to the game in general are some puzzle solving scenes against a ticking clock. There is also the all too familiar platform jumping, resulting in a boss battle finale. CGI rendered Animation is superb and close ups of characters almost seem like wax models were used. One particular scene even has virtually realistic heat waves emitted by a taxiing aircraft. Even so, if budgeting were a bit more on the generous side, computer imagery could have easily rivaled the best out of Pixar studios. Fans will agree that the film in its entirety forms the longest cut-scene ever seen in the RE franchise. However, voice overs don't appear to be in synch with lip movement in most scenes, a tell tale sign that the film was dubbed into English after the native premier screening. Character movement is also choppy and somewhat similar in movement within the gaming world. But the biggest problem is the cheesy, unfinished script lacking in character introduction and plot history. Being the only RE film incorporating elements from the game's origins, first time viewers will surely have questions about Raccoon City and the Clair/Leon history. Moreover, origins of the Umbrella Corporation and its brainchild the T-virus are almost never cited. While Paul Anderson's adaptation relied heavily on cinematic eye candy with real life actors like Milla Jovovich, Sony Entertainment Pictures in conjunction with original producers Capcom remain pretty much within the confines of the RE universe. Ultimately, the big question is whether this is Capcom's tribute to their longest running gaming franchise, or a mass media stunt in the form of an expensive sales pitch announcing the PlayStation 3 release of Resident Evil 5. Either way, as of June 2009, three months after its release, their latest game has sold over 5 million copies worldwide, making it the highest selling game in the series since its inception in 1996. And that figure is only associated with PS3 compatible games.

But enough of analysis; at the end of it all, I'm torn between my love for movies and my passion for gaming. In trying to strike a balance, I'm forced to give an unbiased average rating for this film as this site reviews movies and not video games. For the fanboys alone, my rating is 4 stars. For the movie experience barely 3, especially when compared to Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later.


Component Grades
Movie
DVD
3 Stars
3 Stars
DVD Experience
3 Stars

DVD

DVD Details:

Screen Formats: 1.78:1

Subtitles: English; Portuguese; French; Spanish

Language and Sound: Dolby Digital w/ sub-woofer channel; Dolby Digital Surround

Other Features: Color; interactive menus; scene access; bonus featurettes; character profiles; bloopers; interview; trailers; game footage.

Supplements:

* Commentary
o No commentary track available.
* Featurettes
o A look at the Resident Evil 5 video game
o The Generation of Degeneration
o Faux Leon interview
o Character profiles
* Deleted Scenes - Voice bloopers
* Previews - For Resident Evil: Degeneration

Number of Discs: 1 with Keepcase Packaging

{pgomakase}

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