According to the filmmakers, Resident Evil: Retribution makes a bold genre crossover, staking its claim squarely in the world of science fiction, rather than the straight horror-action of the earlier installments. “The last movie was pure action-survival,” says producer Robert Kulzer. “This time we felt that we had to try something narratively that would make it more of a mindbender for the audience. You go through the movie with Alice and question everything. In this ongoing battle for the survival of humanity, you might find humanity in the least likely places, even in your enemies.”
The army of zombies created when the Umbrella Corporation lost control of the T-virus has become larger and even more dangerous as time has passed. “The Undead are constantly mutating,” says Anderson. “Their evolution is one of the strengths of both the video game and the movie franchise. The Undead from the first movie were slow, shambling zombies. They were horrific, but they have evolved into something even more terrifying.
“Now there are a lot of different kinds of Undead,” he continues. “The Majini Undead, which were introduced in the last movie, are back. They have huge, tentacular mandibles that come out of their mouths. The Lickers make a return but they’ve evolved, as well. We called them the Uber-Lickers because they’re so big.”
And as Alice is about to discover, there are worse things afoot. “The Undead that are infected with the Las Plagas virus maintain motor skills and some degree of intelligence,” Anderson explains. “Some of them can ride motorbikes and shoot machine guns. That gives a whole new level of threat to the Undead and I think that keeps the franchise fresh.”
Producer Don Carmody adds, “The goal was to keep the audience on the edge of their seats, not only with scary things, but by creating unforgettable sequences that thrill and exhilarate and stay with them long after they’ve left the theater.”
Says Kulzer: “We were constantly throwing around ideas to come up with fresh and original ways to ramp up the action, the adventure and the intensity.”
“Everything is coming to a climax,” Anderson says. “The days when humanity could just sit behind the walls of a fortress and keep the Undead back with machine-gun fire and superior technology are dwindling. This really is the beginning of the end.”