Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

In 2002, Sony Entertainment kicked off the Resident Evil film series based on the popular zombie apocalypse video game of the same name. Fifteen years and five sequels later, the beleaguered franchise comes to a close… sort of. Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is technically the last installment in the long-running series, but plans are already afoot to reboot the entire franchise and start over again from square one. The expression “beating a dead horse” springs to mind, but I digress.

The Final Chapter follows the original Resident Evil and its respective sequels (Apocalypse, Extinction, Afterlife, and Retribution), chronicling its long and convoluted story line involving the evil Umbrella Corporation, its secret base of operations called The Hive, the dreaded virus that killed seven billion people, the zombie apocalypse that followed, the depraved mastermind behind it all, an artificial intelligence known as The Red Queen, a rag-tag band of human resistance fighters, and the fetching, kick-ass heroine, Alice. The particulars of these core elements and how they all coalesce are not really important; suffice it to say that there’s plenty of action and carnage to feast your senses on, and that’s what it’s all about. resolution typically works best in a real-world environment, and while Final Chapter seems to rely more on practical special effects and less on CGI, the overall color scheme is washed out and flat, which gives the 4K resolution very little to enhance. This is a dark film both thematically and design wise, and the 4K only makes it darker. Textures and background detail take only a marginal jump from the counterpart HD version. The companion 1080p HD has some minimal strobing issues in sequences of rapid movement but offers a brighter and oftentimes clearer color scheme.

The 4K is rendered for a thoroughly immersive Dolby Atmos surround mix, while the standard HD sports a DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio track. Both mixes are outstanding, but the Atmos gets the edge with the wider field of ambience. Screeching zombies, mutated beasts, explosions, gunfire, and all other manner of chaos will thunder through your surround speakers with full force and superb directionality from all sides.

Extras are featured on the HD Bluray and include a picture-in-picture, behind-the-scenes commentary with Paul Anderson and Milla Jovovich that runs concurrently with the film, three short featurettes, and more. Digital Copy included.

Studio: Sony, 2016
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Audio Format: Dolby Atmos (4K), DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (HD)
Length: 106 mins.
MPAA Rating: R
Director: Paul W.S. Anderson
Starring: Milla Jovovich, Iain Glen, Ali Larter