Saw this in 3-D. Nothing amazing, but I honestly enjoyed the 3-D better here than in any of the animated features I've seen, save for Beowulf. Paul W. S. Anderson does not waste the tech on subtle effects; his idea of 3-D means bullets and axes flying toward the audience. Even so, there are lengthy spaces without any noticeable 3-D, and I suppose, on the bright side, I can say that, during those moments, I honestly forgot that I was wearing the glasses. In other words, whenever the glasses were not enhancing my experience, at least they were not detracting from it either, as has been the case in the past. Perhaps I'm just getting accustomed to them.
As for the movie itself, it was what I wanted and more than I expected, which is not to say that it was very good or very surprising.
The first Resident Evil was a movie that I enjoyed more so than I would like to admit that it was good. In fact, it was not very good, but its appealing lead actress and basic laundry list of zombie, sci-fi, and thriller tropes kept things sufficiently entertaining. The second and third films then gave Milla Jovovich telekinesis, becoming very ugly superhero flicks in the process--a bit like Blade but with none of the wit, stunt work, or costuming. They were wretched.
Afterlife sees Paul W. S. Anderson back in the director's chair for the first time since the original (though I don't know if that's actually significant, since I'm pretty sure he's never directed a good film). More inspired by the latest games, it's much more a straight action affair. There are still zombies, but there are also tons of bad humans, and Wesker, the main antagonist, is basically the superhuman Wesker from the games. Milla, meanwhile, loses her own special abilities early on, becoming just a regular, albeit ideal, human, overcoming her enemies with skill, experience, and attitude, instead of conveniently timed and vaguely defined superpowers. Thus freed of its predecessors' most unbelievable element, the movie is by far the most exciting in the series, with action set pieces on a par with the Blade trilogy's. In my opinion, Milla is also better-dressed and better-armed this time, and the whole affair just looks cooler all around.
I had fun. In fact, 3-D or no, I enjoyed it more than The Expendables. And between these movies and Ultraviolet, I'm ready to declare Milla Jovovich the most exciting action star of the last ten years, probably her only rival being Angelina Jolie.