Reed Alexander's Horror Review of 'Doom' (2005)
It's not 'Doom,' but still good.
You know what? I'll fucking say it. Doom wasn't that bad. It was kind of silly at times, definitely had fuck all to do with the video game, and certainly was trying to rip off Aliens, but it was fun. Isn't that all that matters? That the movie is fun?
The biggest complaint that I heard was that Doom didn't stay true to its horror elements. I have to whole hardheartedly disagree. While it was clearly more action adventure, it had deeply rooted horror elements. Sure, all of the Satanic symbolism from the Doom video game was removed, and no, there aren't any demons, but there was still some pretty fucked up stuff.
The acting is on par for standard horror. Sure, that ain't great, but if you're a horror head, you've got no legitimate complaint there. The atmosphere was actually pretty solid. Sure, the set recycled the same few corridors and rooms over and over again, but it worked. And the movie was fucking dark, forcing me to turn the lights off. Something I'm not going to stop hammering on because it really helps to set the mood. They used mostly practical effects, of which I appreciate deeply. While there was some CGI, they didn't over do it. The plot was simple, straight forward, and made sense. There were a few holes, but nothing that couldn't be overlooked.
I'd actually recommend this movie to riffers and horror fans. It's not perfect, but it really isn't bad. I think the only people this movie would offend are mouth breathers hung up on the fact that they messed with the origins.
Look, when I was 12, I went by the tag SAMAS and was the New London hub Doom Online Champion. I held the record for highest frags on the Hartford hub. I knew the insides and out of the game AND I READ THE FUCKING BOOKS!
This movie might not have much to do with the game, but it was just fine.
The biggest problem this movie had was how it justified the science behind the monsters. The overall premise wasn't a problem. Once you get infected, you turn into a zombie with super soldier like abilities, then you become a creepy alien mutant thing, then you become a giant ugly ass mutant thing. It seems to peak there. So the first person that was infected became the big ugly ass mutant thing, while everyone else was in various stages of transformation. But then latter on, a character called Pinkey is clearly freshly infected and somehow turns into a completely new giant ugly ass mutant thing.
What's even more fucked up is that the infection is only supposed to effect "evil people" so to speak, but somehow manages to infect dozens of humans. Not just a large portion, or half, but the clear majority of them. Is this supposed to be a play on how human's are evil? The problem is the infection supposedly targets individuals with clear psychosis or violent tendencies. It's not like this was a prison camp or something. Most of these people were scientists, scholars, and administrative staff. It just doesn't make much sense.
I did find it interesting that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson was billed as the main character—as sort of fill in for the face on the life bar from the video game—and he turns out to be an antagonist. There's even this scene when he's being dragged off by mutants and zombies and says, "I'm not supposed to die." I was thinking the same thing. It gave me a bit of a chuckle.
And they just had to try a "first person" sequence. Alright, it was cute, but it just didn't work man. I know they were trying to give a nod to the game, but they threw that out the window at the beginning of the movie, so why bother? What is clearly an attempt to try a new form of immersion makes the movie silly and cartoon-y. It actually makes the movie less immersive. They could have frankly done without it.
But overall, it really wasn't bad. I enjoyed it. Give it a shot.