Resident Evil is a German-British-French science fiction horror film. It is the first installment in the Resident Evil film series, which is based on the Capcom survival horror video game series Resident Evil. The Resident Evil series has a history of do-overs. There are, at a conservative estimate, at least four different scrapped versions of Resi 4. But that wasn’t the first time Capcom canned a game in the series.
Borrowing elements from the video games Resident Evil and Resident Evil 2, the film follows amnesiac heroine Alice and a band of Umbrella Corporation commandos as they attempt to contain the outbreak of the T-virus at a secret underground facility. The film received negative reviews from critics but grossed more than $102 million worldwide.
The very first sequel was cancelled as it approached release due to internal dissatisfaction at the studio. Despite being nearly complete it was all but abandoned, with the team starting over and salvaging just a few scraps of the original idea. This canned version became known as Resident Evil 1.5 to fans and would have been a significantly different game from the 2 we know and love today.
For a bunch of people, the first episode was a pleasant surprise, so it was time to pick up the season pass. Thankfully, Capcom provides a discount for anyone who bought episode one, which means the season pass is only $19.99. Some players who followed this path, however, have found themselves unable to download the second episode.
This lost Resident Evil 1.5 shouldn’t be confused with another Biohazard 1.5 (to give it its Japanese title), a prequel spin-off that earned its name due to it being set between 1 and 2. That went on to become Resident Evil 3: Nemesis when Sony announced the PlayStation 2. With the next generation on the way, Capcom rescheduled its slate and promoted the 1.5 spin off to become a full instalment on PS1, while what was due to be No 3 moved over to the then next-gen systems, eventually appearing on GameCube and PS2 as Resi 4.
This 1.5, however, remains unreleased and as such was never canon, focusing on a story where Umbrella was closed down following the mansion incident in the first game. It still featured recognisable elements from the final sequel: a zombie outbreak in Raccoon City, Leon S. Kennedy as a rookie cop, Sherry and William ‘bad guy monster’ Birkin. But instead of Claire Redfield there was Elza Walker, a motorcycle racing university student; it featured mutant baboons, spider-human hybrids and a boss called Golgotha that according to developer notes on concept art had the face of Wesker on its tail.
For starters, if you were distressed at the abbreviated length of the first episode, the action takes a little longer to resolve in episode two. We’re talking nearly three hours this time, thanks largely to a lengthy and satisfying stretch of sequences with Barry Burton in the second half.
Before we get to Barry, though, we’re catching up with Claire Redfield and Moira Burton. In the first episode, the TerraSave employees are abducted and brought to a mysterious and seemingly distant island. A woman named The Overseer communicates through bizarre bracelets, there’s evidence of grotesque experiments all around you, and monsters lurk in every corner. The two aren’t sure where to head next, but suspect a massive tower at the center of the island holds some answers. When we left Claire and Moira, they apparently failed to send a distress beacon.