Title: Doom (2005)
Rating: 3 out of 5
Tagline: “No one gets out alive.”
My Tagline: “Well ok, a couple people get out alive but that’s all!”
Favorite Quote: “Semper Fi mother fucker.” & “I’m not supposed to die.”
Plot Synopsis: At a research facility on Mars something has gone ape-shit and started killing all of the local scientists. A group of space marines are called in to neutralize the threat as well as retrieve the research data. I wish I could say all hell breaks loose but I spent most of the movie asking, “When is the shit going to hit the fan?” With a lack of anything even remotely resembling Doom a lame plot folds out in front of us involving the same old crap we’ve seen a billion times including less then ethical scientific research and super-human abilities. (yawn) Most of the movie is silly dialogue, tired action sequences, and people VERY intensely asking simple questions while you keep holding out hope that the monsters will eventually show up. Spoiler Alert: They don’t.
I have never read the books (why the hell would you want to write/read a book about Doom?) so I have no idea if the movie in anyway reflects them and I don’t care either. I defy you to find any media about the movie that says something like “Based on the hit book!” No, it’s based on the game according to the marketing department and so I will approach my review of the adaptation from that perspective.
Review: It’s nice to see them make (and of course ruin) a movie about a game I don’t care about for a change. Not that I dislike Doom. I just don’t care about whether or not its movie is any good and I don’t feel there’s anything more to it then just mindless carnage. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. With that said I can’t help but wonder what hardcore fans felt as they watched the Rock bully some chick scientist, anxiously waiting for the shit to hit the fan and the real movie to start. As far as being a faithful adaptation I did like the part where it turns out Sarge wasn’t really the main hero and it became more about Reaper because in the original game the hero’s back-story was that part of the reason he was stuck in the mess was because he refused to fire on unarmed civilians. I found it interesting they upheld that little bit. Other than that though this couldn’t be much farther away from a Doom adaptation. It’s supposed to be about monsters and selfish survival. Instead there are all these characters with mission goals, relationships, personal attachments and motives. And while there are a couple of beasts the majority of the monsters are basically just zombies. There’s all this garbage about 24th chromosomes and Martian civilizations and people arguing with each other about who knows what. Fuck that, I wanna see some monsters damnit! You’re never going to turn this into some kind of brilliant character drama so why bother wasting our time with that nonsense? I’ll never understand why Hollywood always wants to take games that have things like character, plot, subtext, and halfway decent writing and then just turn them into mindless action flicks while at the same time take mindless action games like Doom and try to artificially infuse them with character and emotion. I’m sorry but Doom isn’t about character conflict or morality. It’s about kicking ass and making it to the next level! You had the perfect formula, the perfect thing to adapt into one of your stupid action movies and you fucked it up. Shame on you Hollywood!
The Action and the Acting
The adaptation aspect aside…
It is actually pretty funny watching the actors struggle to do something with their extremely simple lines that they often have to repeat. I wasn’t expecting Oscar worthy or anything but wow that’s some bad acting. It actually distracted from the flow of things when in your mind you say, “What the hell are they doing?” And I don’t know if it was a tense set or the director was giving them strange orders or what but some of the actors seemed to have developed facial ticks. Then as far as the action goes there is a segment deep into the latter half of the movie that is done in a first-person perspective that I must admit I did like a lot. Other than that though the action is mostly just a bunch of retarded and unoriginal melee that, like most of the movie, leaves you sobbing for something that you might actually recognize from the game. So as far as being an enjoyable bad movie it certainly has the elements and there were moments that made me laugh out loud. I imagine those out there who do not share my frustration with Hollywood’s bastardization of video games will enjoy this movie even more than I did. While I may not care about Doom itself it seems to have opened some old wounds. As I said it has all the makings of a great bad movie and no doubt there are those out there for whom this film will resonate with as one of their favorites. I can definitely understand and appreciate that.
You could probably fill a book on the stupid crap that was in this movie but here are some of the major things that bothered me.
You do realize that if you’re being electrocuted you can’t really use your muscles so that whole Destroyer melee scene just wouldn’t work.
I have to believe it takes more than a quick nap to rewrite your entire DNA structure. And really, humans are born with a library of DNA in each of their cells that has every possible DNA code. Which means you wouldn’t need to (and probably couldn’t) create a synthetic chromosome. You would just have to activate the existing lines of code already inside the cells.
Part of Sarge’s mission was to recover the company’s property right? Couldn’t the company scientists be considered company property and so his desire to slaughter them is flawed?
Near the end there Sarge said he had one more shot left right? But the Bio Force Gun is supposed to draw energy from living tissue in the immediate area. Hence, “Bio Force” Gun.
In the bathroom scene couldn’t that guy load his gun with another clip and then try to retrieve his dropped one?
So you’re willing to uphold a piece of the main character’s back-story but you just completely drop the fact the reason why things went crazy is that the researchers were trying to create a teleporter and they accidentally opened a door into a realm (some would say hell) where terrible monsters lived and now they are able to pass into our dimension? You really thought all the crap about Martians and Arks and chromosomes was really better huh? Well they aren’t.