resident evil welcome to raccoon city
via Sony

An ill-fated reboot that fared so much worse than any of its predecessors stares down the barrel on streaming

Pulling the trigger far too early on a reboot ended in disaster.

Even though none of the six installments fared particularly well with critics, Paul W.S. Anderson and Milla Jovovich’s Resident Evil franchise had plenty of fans, enough to ensure that it went down in history as the highest-grossing string of video game adaptations ever made after the coffers swelled to over $1.2 billion.

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Refusing to let a dead horse lie for even a second, production company Constantin Film plunged a reboot into development mere months after The Final Chapter had released, only for Welcome to Raccoon City to go down in a ball of box office flames. Sure, the pandemic was partly to blame, but we can’t overlook the fact the movie wasn’t very good.

One of the most worrying things you can hear when a popular IP is being brought to the big screen is that it was “made by the fans for the fans,” which is typically a sign that it won’t appeal to anyone beyond a niche audience. That definitely proved to be the case with Johannes Roberts’ unnecessary retread, which could only scare up $42 million at the box office on a $25 million budget.

By comparison, the lowest-grossing Resident Evil flick before that was the 2002 original’s $103 million haul, which is the equivalent of roughly $155 million when you factor in two decades of inflation. Any plans for a rebirth are pretty much dead in the water, then, but Raccoon City is being welcomed with open arms by HBO Max subscribers this week.

Per FlixPatrol, the thunderously uninteresting zombified shoot ’em up has nestled comfortably on the platform’s Top 10 in 20 countries around the world, even if we get the feeling it’ll be a one-and-done enterprise.


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