A Comprehensive Guide to the Resident Evil Film Order

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The Resident Evil franchise has become a juggernaut in the video game world, captivating fans with its chilling narratives and suspenseful action. This success spilled over to cinema, creating a series of live-action and animated films that offer a thrilling – and sometimes confusing – cinematic journey.

 With the recent release of “Death Island” in 2023, navigating the ever-expanding film order can be a challenge.

This guide equips you with the knowledge to tackle the hordes of this movies in the order that best suits your viewing preference. We’ll delve into the different storylines, explore the animated features, and answer the burning questions fans have been asking on YouTube and Google.

The Two Main Branches: Alice Chronicles vs. Reboot

The film universe features two distinct narrative branches:

The Alice Chronicles (Live-Action): This is the main series, following the original character Alice (Milla Jovovich). It takes a significant departure from the video games, offering a unique story arc.

Reboot Route: Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (2021): This 2021 film throws away the Alice storyline and offers a fresh take, drawing inspiration from the earlier video games Resident Evil 1 and 2. It follows a group of characters trapped in the nightmarish Raccoon City outbreak.

Delving into the Alice Chronicles (2002-2017):

This interconnected series is best viewed chronologically for a cohesive narrative:

Resident Evil (2002): Welcome to Raccoon City, a seemingly idyllic town harboring a dark secret: The Umbrella Corporation’s subterranean laboratory, the Hive, has been compromised, unleashing the deadly T-virus and transforming its inhabitants into flesh-eating monsters. We meet Alice, a woman with amnesia who awakens amidst the chaos and joins forces with a special ops team to escape the nightmare.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004): The T-virus outbreak spills into Raccoon City, forcing Alice to team up with familiar faces from the games like Jill Valentine and Carlos Oliveira to survive the zombie hordes and uncover the Umbrella Corporation’s sinister agenda.

Resident Evil: Extinction (2007): The world has become a wasteland overrun by the undead. Alice, now possessing superhuman abilities, fights for survival alongside a group of survivors searching for a safe haven.

Resident Evil: Afterlife (3D) (2010): Alice embarks on a desperate search for a rumored safe haven in Los Angeles, encountering 3D thrills and confronting her own mysterious past along the way.

Resident Evil: Retribution (3D) (2012): The action ramps up as Alice infiltrates the heart of the Umbrella Corporation, uncovering their true motives and facing her most formidable opponents yet.

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (2017): The fight for survival reaches its epic conclusion as Alice faces her greatest challenge yet – saving humanity from total annihilation by the T-Virus.

Exploring the Reboot: Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (2021):

This 2021 film offers a more faithful adaptation of the video game experience. It follows a group of characters – including Chris Redfield, Claire Redfield, Leon S. Kennedy, and Jill Valentine – as they investigate the secrets of the Spencer Mansion and the Umbrella Corporation, leading them straight into a terrifying nightmarish outbreak in Raccoon City.

A Universe of CG Animation: The Animated Films (2008-2023):

The universe also encompasses four CG animated films:

Resident Evil: Degeneration (2008): This film features Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield investigating a bioterrorism incident at an airport.

Resident Evil: Damnation (2012): Leon S. Kennedy gets caught in a civil war between a fictional Eastern European nation and a rebel group, with both sides harboring their own bioweapon agendas.

Resident Evil: Vendetta (2017): Chris Redfield, Leon S. Kennedy, and Rebecca Chambers team up to take down a criminal organization wielding a powerful new bioweapon.

Resident Evil: Death Island (2023): This latest entry follows Leon S. Kennedy on a mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist from a mysterious island prison crawling with infected creatures.

These animated films offer unique storylines set within the universe, featuring characters from the games. While they’re not essential viewing for the main live-action plot, they provide further lore exploration for die-hard fans.

FAQs

Q: How many Resident Evil movies are there?

A: There are currently eight live-action films:

 The Alice Chronicles (6 films): Resident Evil (2002) – Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (2017)

 Reboot Route: Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (2021)

 Additionally, “Resident Evil: Death Island” (2023) just released.

There are also four CG animated films set within the universe. 

Q: What is the difference between the Alice Chronicles and the reboot?

A: The Alice Chronicles (2002-2017) is a six-film series following the original character Alice (Milla Jovovich). It takes a significant departure from the video games, offering a unique story arc.

The reboot, Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City (2021), stays truer to the video games, particularly Resident Evil 1 and 2. It follows a group of characters familiar to fans, like Chris Redfield and Claire Redfield.

Q: In what order should I watch the Resident Evil movies?

A: There are two main approaches:

Chronological Order by Release: This is the order the films came out in, offering a chance to see the franchise evolve. Start with “Resident Evil” (2002) and follow the Alice storyline through to “The Final Chapter” (2017). Then, if you’re curious, jump to “Welcome to Raccoon City” (2021) and “Death Island” (2023).

Start with the Reboot: “Welcome to Raccoon City” (2021) offers a more faithful video game experience.  Then, if you want more action-packed adventures, you can delve into the Alice chronicles.

Q: Are the animated films essential viewing?

A: The CG animated films (Degeneration, Damnation, Vendetta, Death Island) are not essential viewing for the main live-action plot. However, they offer unique stories set within the universe, featuring characters from the games. They provide further lore exploration for die-hard fans.

Q:  Where do the animated films fit in the timeline?

A: The animated films don’t have a strict chronological order within the live-action universe. They tend to be standalone stories set between the gaps of the live-action films.

Q:  Should I play the games before watching the movies?

A: You don’t necessarily need to play the games to enjoy the movies, especially the Alice Chronicles. However, familiarity with the games will enhance your appreciation for the characters and references in the reboot and animated films.

Q:  Where can I watch the Resident Evil movies?

A: Availability can vary depending on your location and streaming service subscriptions.  You can check popular streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, or HBO Max, or do a quick internet search to find where the films are available for purchase or rental.

Bonus! Q: What’s next for the Resident Evil film franchise?

A: With the success of “Welcome to Raccoon City” and “Death Island,” there’s a good chance we’ll see more films in the reboot universe. There haven’t been any official announcements yet, but fans can stay tuned for future developments.

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