This same-only-different sequel to the video game-inspired RESIDENT EVIL (2002) offers up more of everything: more bloody zombie dogs, more crazy corporate evildoers, more Milla Jovovich unclothed and more over-the-top action scenes. A recap of the first film establishes that in a secret underground laboratory known as the Hive, exposure to a deadly virus turned scientists and other employees into zombies. Amnesiac Alice (Jovovich) was forcibly recruited to find out what happened and barely escaped with her life after sealing off the Hive with the living dead still inside. Recaptured by the Umbrella Corporation and taken to their private hospital in Raccoon City and experimented on, Alice awakens to find the hospital and, indeed, all of Raccoon City a shambles because someone at the Umbrella Corporation made the absurd decision to reopen the Hive. Few humans have been able to survive Major Cain's (Thomas Kretschmann) total lockdown of the chaotic city, but former Special Tactics and Rescue Services (S.T.A.R.S.) member Jill Valentine (Sienna Guillory) and a handful of civilians are still alive. Alice finds them hiding out in a church and puts her take-no-prisoners attitude and heavy weaponry to work taking down some long-tongued mutants known as Lickers. Soon after, brilliant inventor Dr. Ashford (Jared Harris) contacts the survivors and asks for their help: He has access to the city's ever-watchful eyes and knows that his preteen daughter, Angie (Sophie Vavasseur), is alive and trapped within the city walls. He tells Alice and her new comrades that he can help them find an escape route if they'll rescue his only child. With the help of S.T.A.R.S leader Carlos Olivera (Oded Fehr), they track Angie to her hiding place in the local junior high and are about to evacuate the city when they're discovered by the monstrous Nemesis (Matthew G. Taylor), a ghoulish, robotic creature under the control of Major Cain's henchmen. They're using Nemesis to kill abandoned S.T.A.R.S team members before they realize that Umbrella Corporation intends to contain the virus by obliterating Raccoon City. Though this installment loses the sense of creepy claustrophobia that defined its predecessor, opening up the playing field paves the way for bigger stunts, more-expansive action scenes, additional casualties and a more diverse group of zombies, including some vicious reanimated schoolkids. The dialogue is as stilted as ever, yet still seems almost lively in comparison to the wooden antics of the very nearly risible Nemesis.
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