Resident Evil: Damnation (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)

September 18, 2012 by  

Exciting, action-packed and featuring fantastic CG animation and use of motion capture, “Resident Evil: Damnation” is a popcorn action film that focuses a little too much on the action, while the storyline feels as if it is not important nor does it have any affect on the actual video game series storyline involving Umbrella.  But if you are a “Resident Evil 4” fan and want to see Leon S. Kennedy and Ada Wong together again, then “Resident Evil: Damnation” is for you!

Images courtesy of © 2012 Capcom Co., Ltd. and Resident Evil CG2 Film Partners. All Rights Reserved.

TITLE: Resident Evil: Damnation


DURATION: 100 Minutes

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition (1:78:1), English, French, Portuguese 5.1 DTS-HD MA, Spanish, Thai 5.1 Dolby Digital, Subtitles: English, English SDH, Chinese, French, Korean, Portuguse, Spanish, Thai

COMPANY: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

RATED: R (for Bloody Violence)

Release Date: September 25, 2012

Originally created by Shinji Mikami

Directed by Makoto Kamiya

Screenplay by Shotaro Suga

Music by TS Music Col., Ltd.

Produced by Hiroyuki Kobayashi

CG Director: Atsushi Doi

Featuring the voices of:

Matthew Mercer as Leon S. Kennedy

Courtenay Taylor as Ada Wong

Robin Sachs as Ataman

Carolun Lawrence as Ashley Graham

Wendee Lee as Svetlana Belikova

Salli Saffioti as Ingrid Hunnigan

Dave Wittenberg as Buddy

Val Tasso as JD

United States Special Agent Leon S. Kennedy sneaks into a small Eastern European country to verify rumors that Bio Organic Weapons (B.O.W.s) are being used in war. Right after his infiltration, the U.S. government orders him to leave immediately. Determined to uncover the truth, Leon ignores the order and enters the battlefield to end the chain of tragedies caused by the B.O.W.s

It’s a month of “Resident Evil” as the live action film “Resident Evil: Retribution” was just released in theaters nationwide and the video game “Resident Evil 6” is slated for release on October 2, 2012.  So, why not add another CG film to the mix with the release of “Resident Evil: Damnation”, the second full-length motion capture CG animation feature based on CAPCOM’s “Resident Evil” game series.

While the film will be released in theaters in Japan in October 2012, the Blu-ray and DVD will be released in the U.S. on Sept. 25, 2012.

“Resident Evil: Damnation” is set in Europe with rumors that Bio-Organic Weapons (BOW’s) are being used in East Slavic Republic’s civil war.  As the United States and Russia are possibly planning to intervene, U.S. federal agent Leon S. Kennedy is called from vacation to sneak into the country to verify the rumors.

But as soon as he gets there, he receives orders to pull out.  But feeling that he didn’t come all the way to the country for nothing, Leon defies orders and enters the battlefield and check to see if BOW’s are being used on people.

And not long after he arrives, he sees it for himself as a grotesque monster-like thing goes after him in a parking garage. As Leon tries to fight the monster, he is caught in an explosion and knocked unconscious.  And as the monster gets near him for the kill, it appears that the monster quits after being instructed by a mysterious person.

While Leon awakens, he finds himself tied up and a held hostage by one of the anti-government groups who wonder why he is in their country and if he’s helping the government out.  Meanwhile, Ada Wong, who introduces herself as a special investigator from the UN counter-bioterrorism agency BSAA is sent to the East Slavic country to find Leon and capture him for defying government orders.

As Leon tries to tell his captors that he needs to be released, so he can obtain the proof that the government is using biological weapons on its own citizens, it appears that people who are holding him hostage may know quite a bit about the biological weapons themselves.

As Ada Wong arrives in the East Slavic country works with the President and hopes she can find Leon before he gets himself killed, the President and her people uncover news that Ada Wong does not work with the BSAA and now the government wants her dead.  Caught in a Civil War in a country bent on destroying each other, will Leon and Ada live to see another day?


“Resident Evil: Damnation” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1).  And the first thing you will notice is how much more detailed the CG animation is with “Damnation” compared to the “Resident Evil: Degeneration” released back in 2008.  The motion capture is fantastic as the expressions and mannerisms of a character is well-captured.  But the detail of facial characteristics on Leon S. Kennedy’s, Ada Wong and the President’s face is remarkable.  There is a lot of detail that can be seen with the characters, as well as the monstrous beasts.  Overall, the CG for “Resident Evil: Damnation” looks fantastic in HD!


“Resident Evil: Damnation” is presented in English, French and Portuguese 5.1 DTS-HD MA and Spanish, Thai 5.1 Dolby Digital.  For an action-intense film such as “Resident Evil: Damnation”, I was expecting an immersive soundtrack.  While the dialogue and sound effects did sound good, coming from the front channel, I was hoping to hear more LFE and the surround channels.  To have a more immersive soundtrack, because there is so much action.  The lossless soundtrack is good but I was expecting much more ambiance, good directional use of bullets being shot and explosions to be much more immersive.

Subtitles are in English.


“Resident Evil: Damnation” comes with the following special features:

  • Conceptual Art Gallery – Using your remote, you can cycle through the various art throughout the film. (a Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Las Plagas: Organisms of War  – (6:59) A short feature about the parasites that can be used for biological warfare.
  • The DNA of Damnation –  (30:05) Interviews with the Japanese creators of “Resident Evil: Damnation”.
  • Gag Reel – (6:03) English voice dub outtakes.
  • Resident Evil 6 Trailer – (3:54) The video game trailer for “Resident Evil 6”.
  • Devil May Cry Trailer – (2:14) The video game trailer for the upcoming “Devil May Cry” game.
  • Dragon’s Dogma Trailer – (2:06) The video game trailer for Dragon’s Dogma.


“Resident Evil: Damnation” comes with a UltraViolet redemption code.

Since the release of the first “Resident Evil” game for the Sony Playstation back in 1996, I have been a fan of the series purchasing the many games that have been released on various consoles, portable consoles and have also enjoyed the live-action films, despite the differences with the video game series.  As well, as enjoying the first CG film, “Resident Evil: Degeneration”.

With the release of “Resident Evil: Redemption” in theaters and the exciting trailer for “Resident Evil 6” having been unveiled this past summer and wowing video gamers for its incredible detail and amount of characters being featured, when I found out that “Resident Evil: Damnation” was coming out, I was happy because it featured the reunion of Leon and Ada, two characters who were fantastic together in the hit video game “Resident Evil 4”.

Watching “Resident Evil: Damnation” and seeing these two characters once again, I’m a little torn of how I feel for the CG animated film.  In one sense, I felt the CG animation, the motion capture effects and the detail of Leon Kennedy and Ada Wong in this film were fantastic.

In fact, there are times where I felt this film was more “visual eye-candy” as it not only showcased the sexiness of Ada Wong’s character but also showing us why she is an exciting character that can kick a lot of butt but also why she is also a dangerous character that can’t be trusted.

And of course, Leon is the ultimate hero but also becoming more of an unstoppable character in the “Resident Evil” series.  Awesome with weaponry, great at fighting and both he and Ada were popular characters that no doubt were showcased because people want to see more of them.

In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the details featured in “Resident Evil: Damnation” have some tie-in with “Resident Evil 6” and seen with the trailer, Leon and possibly Ada have an important role in the upcoming game and it looks as if Leon is the protagonist once again.

So, while CG animation and the action sequences were magnificent, the storyline was not as OK.  If anything, this CG animated film is pretty much a popcorn action film to showcase both Leon and Ada kicking butt.  Nothing more, nothing less.

I don’ t think there was anything related to the story that captured my attention.  If anything, those moments to see Ada taking on the president in hand-to-hand combat was impressive, seeing Leon taking on these hulking monolith army was reminiscent of the older “Terminator” films.  And that is what impressed me the most about this film.  Primarily the action sequences, rather than the storyline which was forgettable and if it was to be important, the writing surely didn’t make us care at all.

The Blu-ray release showcases the amazing CG animation of this film.  Details on HD are impressive, especially the closeups.    The lossless soundtrack was not as great as I was hoping.  I was hoping for more immersiveness, because this film featured so much action.  But while dialogue and action were crystal clear from the front channels, I was hoping more noticeable uses of the surround and rear surround channels and LFE.  There are a few special features that were included and it was cool to hear from the Japanese creators of the challenges that went into making this film.

“Resident Evil: Damnation” will excite “Resident Evil” fans who loved seeing Leon and Ada kick butt in “Resident Evil 4”.  The two are reunited again and it’s their action sequences that will no less excite fans who are eagerly awaiting the video game release of “Resident Evil 6”.  This is the best I have seen of Leon S. Kennedy and Ada Wong and I’m sure fans will appreciate that.  But as far as the story is concerned, those who have never played the “Resident Evil” games can easily watch this film without knowing the background of the video game series or knowledge of its characters.

Exciting, action-packed and featuring fantastic CG animation and use of motion capture, “Resident Evil: Damnation” is a popcorn action film that focuses a little too much on the action, while the storyline feels as if it is not important nor does it have any affect on the actual video game series storyline involving Umbrella.  But if you are a “Resident Evil 4” fan and want to see Leon S. Kennedy and Ada Wong together again, then “Resident Evil: Damnation” is for you!

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