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Dissecting Milla Jovovich!

11.24.2015by: Jake Dee


Damn I love me some Milla time! Who doesn't, right?! Seriously, ever since spotting this chick as a chilled out, laid back, mute-hippy-hash-head-artist in DAZED AND CONFUSED when I was like 11, I haven't been able to get enough! Who could? This tall drink of sexier-than-hell but still disarmingly down to Earth is every living man's dream...a cool, crazy, comfortable, easygoing Ukrainian model towering at over 5 feet 8 inches. Chick's a goddamn paragon...of a paragon!

But you know what really makes Milla so damn groovy? Her clear cut devotion to the horror realm of cinema, followed only thrilling action pieces. We all know she's made her bones by single handedly holding down the entire RESIDENT EVIL franchise, but if a closer look is taken at her body of work in totality, there's more genre credits than not. It likely started with THE FIFTH ELEMENT in 1997, and has since extended to flicks like MILLION DOLLAR HOTEL, ULTRAVIOLET, .45, A PERFECT GETAWAY, THE FOURTH KIND, and of course, the various subtitled RESIDENT EVIL strands: APOCALYPSE, EXTINCTION, AFTERLIFE, RETRIBUTION, and soon THE FINAL CHAPTER.

With that friends, what better time, three weeks before her 40th birthday, to finally give the gorgeous Mrs. Milla Jovovich the respectful AITH treatment she deserves. Yup, we're slicing the chick open. It's Dissection time!



Not debatable. When the seminal role of Alice - a strong, sexy, ass-kicking heroine known the world over - accounts for roughly 14% of your total acting credits - yup, it's safe to say Milla has been gifted the role of a lifetime by headlining the RESIDENT EVIL franchise. And the thing is, her bubbly persona and ostensibly approachable demeanor - both on and offscreen - is just as infectious, and perhaps harder to kill, than the damn viral-zombie-strain of the movies themselves. Go figure!

A 15 year role over the narrative course of six pictures, from 2002-2017, Milla's portrayal of Alice is impressive in a variety of ways. First off, the sheer commitment. The longevity. It's always a fear of actors to be pigeonholed, yet Milla has not for one second shied away from continuing to breathe new life into a what has become an international phenomenon of a mega-movie franchise. Pretty damn good after admittedly taking on the original film because her brother was such a huge fan of the videogame. Not in her wildest dreams could she have imagined what a gift Alice has been in her acting career. Then there's the physical toll. Word is Milla has performed most to all of her own stunts over the course of the six-picture franchise run. That's a whole lot of stop, drop and roll!

Along similar lines, it's Milla's utter omnipresence in these damn films that just may be the most impressive. She dominates nearly every single frame of all five franchise entries (soon a sixth), and does so by imbuing her character with the epitome of feminine strength. Alice is a survivor, yes, but she's also a protector, and a burdened heroine tasked with carrying the literal future of the world on her shoulders. And never for once does she seem not up to the task. The opposite actually. Alice is a fierce warrior, a born leader, and no matter what virulent strain of nasty zombie-inducing sickness gets in her face, she more than willingly quarantines such with a barrage of weaponry and hand-to-hand combat. Real shite, through course of five releases, Alice has blasted more heat than motherf*cking Vesuvius. Uzis, techs, pistols, revolvers, 9mms, .45s...the whole damn arsenal is unleashed!

All in all, it's quite clear Alice in the RESIDENT EVIL flicks has been the most lastingly gratifying of all of Milla's movie roles!


Like most actors with two and half decades of experience and almost 50 assorted credits to their name, there's bound to be some visible blemishes on the facade. No worries though, Milla's too damn fine to let such hamper her innate beauty. That said, there's one recent Milla movie that's so woefully confounding and unpleasant to lay eyes on that it must be at least considered as her acting nadir. If you've seen it, you already know it...FACES IN THE CROWD is one Jovovich might hope gets lost in the shuffle.

The story centers on Jovovich's character, who has been beset with a rare condition of face-blindness. That is, every time she tries to focus on the particulars of anyone's face, she's invariably met by a blurry cipher that disallows her to identify any discernible features. Ever. So, when she happens to survive a vicious attack from an unknown serial killer, her inability to identify a single soul comes a major f*cking problem. Cool conceit actually, but abysmally realized by second time filmmaker Julien Magnat. I admire Milla for taking the chance on a movie so outside her groove, so to speak, but in the end the film never capitalizes on Jovovich's inherent charm and charisma, instead reduces her to a frowningly confounded heroine we can't really identify with. To her credit, Milla does all she can, but the maddening visual design (of the blurrily faceless) and undercooked script unfortunately make this one, certainly in retrospect, a risk not worth taking. Of course, if you ask her, Milla will tell you that she thinks THE RETURN TO THE BLUE LAGOON (1991) is the worst movie she's ever done. You know what, never argue with a lady!



It may be a bit reductive to limit Milla's trademarks to the physical, but hey, when you're cursed with world class beauty, it comes with the territory. The husky voice, the alabaster skin tone, the multicolored orbs, the feline eyebrows, the statuesque physique...they're all too damn pronounced to overlook. Chick is stunning! More than that though, it's her effervescent personality that really jumps off the screen. Whether she's giving cordial interviews or playing on-set pranks, updating fans on social media, or flat out acting...by all accounts Milla has a genuinely grounded, relatable demeanor that most people of her stature simply do not possess.

As for the acting itself, it's clear these very attributes of radiant physical imposition and charismatic allure are ones that make Milla's movies so memorable. To this end, it's no secret that her hubby Paul W.S. Anderson has personally helmed four of the six RESIDENT EVIL flicks (AFTERLIFE, RETRIBUTION, FINAL CHAPTER, in addition to the original). After all, what person on this planet could better tailor such an epic leading role around the inherent characteristics of the actor in question? No one. Anderson perfectly molded the part of Alice around the strengths of his (real life) leading lady, a trademark that has now endured for a good decade and a half!



When you're so easily identifiable with one major character, as Milla is with Alice, it's easy to tuck some of your lesser parts under the massive shadow of such a towering figure. In that regard, it's worth mentioning Milla's offbeat role in Wim Wenders' oddly intriguing MILLION DOLLAR HOTEL, even if it doesn't adhere to strict genre stylings. We could mention the movie she made with Bob Rafelson called NO GOOD DEED in 2002, right before embarking the aforementioned lifetime journey that is RESIDENT EVIL. Yet instead, it's a pair of movies from 2009 that we think deserves further examination. So let's examine!

Color it a bit of a guilty pleasure if you please, but David Twohy's A PERFECT GETAWAY is a better movie than it's perhaps perceived. Not great, but as far as a twisty piece of entertainment is concerned, one that not only keeps you guessing, but allows Milla a chance to play a new kind of character, you could really do a lot worse. Shot on location in Hawaii and Puerto Rico, the lush scenery and gorgeous photography almost mask the ugly ulterior motives the characters continue to unveil. Milla plays a newlywed honeymooning with hubby Steve Zahn, only to learn that a similar vacationing couple has just been found dead on the island. When they meet another pair, played by Tim Olyphant and Kiele Sanchez, a whodunit cat and mouse game ensues on the info that a man and woman couple are the likely killers. David Twohy scripts the mystery quite tautly, with enough red-herrings and scent-throwers to keep the action unsolvable. Milla in particular gets a chance to get to layer a performance, to act within acting so to speak, as her character (like the others) turns out to be pulling quite the charade. Fun movie, with Milla getting the gorgeous background and complex character she deserves.


That same year, Jovovich landed the frigid Alaskan chiller THE FOURTH KIND, based on true events. The title refers to the 4th stage in UFO encounters: alien abduction. Milla plays psychologist Dr. Abigail Tyler, assigned to a rash of such cases in the harsh winter conditions of Alaska. She documents, on video, a series of disturbed patients who all claim to have been abducted at one point in their past. I won't spill out the particulars of the plot, but what stands out most to me, is the reserved and sympathetic character Milla gets to play in the film. So different is it from her tough gal action-star persona, here she gets a chance to emote through subtle eye work and facial expression...a lot of which coming during these tormented sit-downs with her patients. It's a solid performance, based on a real life character, one that three dimensionally feels as such. Check it out if you haven't already, or if you've confused it with the similar but far inferior Antarctic chiller WHITEOUT. This one is the winner!


As we already know, and anticipate with bated breath (some of us anyway), Ms. J is all poised to pump one final pulsing panacea into the ill zombie scourge of the RESIDENT EVIL franchise. A final f*ck you farewell to the odiously infected! Unfortunately for us, doubly, is that we have to wait until January 27, 2017 to see how the whole thing wraps up. Until then, here's a pretty in-depth synopsis for the flick to keep your whistle whetted:

Picking up immediately after the events in Resident Evil: Retribution, humanity is on its last legs after Alice is betrayed by Wesker in Washington D.C. As the only survivor of what was meant to be humanity's final stand against the undead hordes, Alice must return to where the nightmare began - Raccoon City, where the Umbrella Corporation is gathering its forces for a final strike against the only remaining survivors of the apocalypse. In a race against time Alice will join forces with old friends, and an unlikely ally, in an action packed battle with undead hordes and new mutant monsters. Between losing her superhuman abilities and Umbrella's impending attack, this will be Alice's most difficult adventure as she fights to save humanity, which is on the brink of oblivion.

While it kind of sucks we must wait so damn long, rest easy friends, for there's a really intriguing project that was recently announced to have Jovovich tightly attached...one that ought to keep us occupied until Alice makes her final stand. The flick is of course Adrienne Barbau's long awaited adaptation of LOVE BITES (known literarily as VAMPYRES OF HOLLYWOOD), which has been gestating since the tome was published in 2010. Here's how the story shakes out:

LOVE BITES centers on Ovsanna Moore, a gorgeous Hollywood scream queen with a secret no plastic surgeon can rival: she’s a 450-year-old vampyre. So when Beverly Hills Detective Peter King discovers that Ovsanna’s pearly whites are really fangs, instead of grabbing garlic and a wooden stake, he asks her out. And a romantic Christmas Eve turns into a holiday of horror.

First there’s the werewolf attack, then the mutilated body at the Sportsmen’s Lodge, and finally, Orson Welles and Mary Pickford in a rat disguise and a Cyndi Lauper costume. And it doesn’t help that Ovsanna’s personal assistant and sometimes lover, Maral, will do anything to get Peter out of the picture.

Peter and Ovsanna end up fighting for their love affair and their lives. Ovsanna enlists her clan, the Vampyres of Hollywood, to help battle a menagerie of supernatural beasts straight out of Alien Vs. Predator. This isn’t a box-office ratings war, it’s a fight to the death.

A pretty mad and murderous mash-up, no? And one need just one gander at the book's cover to realize what spot-on casting for the part Milla is. Perfection.


What can I say that you don't already know in your bones to be true. Milla Jovovich is a f*cking beast! Never have we seen such a world class beauty combined with such an unpretentious air of every-gal coolness. At least, we've never seen such in tandem with a bona fide action goddess like we have with the continuously impressive screen career of Mrs. Milla! Not just in the wildly successful global phenomenon that is RESIDENT EVIL and all of its gloomy offshoots - APOCALYPSE, EXTINCTION, AFTERLIFE, RETRIBUTION, and FINAL CHAPTER - but also in varied horror and sci-fi thrillers like THE FIFTH ELEMENT, MILLION DOLLAR HOTEL, ULTRAVIOLET, .45, A PERFECT GETAWAY, THE FOURTH KIND, etc. No matter part she chooses to portray, there's an innate likeability - a charm and charisma - that extends beyond the mere drop dead model appearance. A better compliment you cannot find!

With that, keep on keeping on Milla! We all wish you a happy and humble 40th here at AITH, as well as wish you all the best to your endeavors post RESIDENT EVIL. Whatever you chose to do moving forward, we'll be watching for another 40!

Extra Tidbit: What's your favorite Milla moment?
Source: AITH



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