The year is 2008 and a deadly plague known as the Reaper virus has begun to ferociously spread through Scotland. Fearing the virus will destroy the human race if left unchecked, the British government quarantines Scotland, erecting a massive wall around it. Those inside the walls are left to fend for themselves, to die at the hands of the Reaper or each other.
Jump forward 30 years.
The Reaper virus has emerged. This time on the streets of London. For the past 30 years, they’ve been watching and recording the happenings behind the wall. They’ve seen survivors. People that show no effects of the Reaper virus. The government orders a group of elite military forces to retrieve what they believe to be the cure to the virus from behind the wall. Agent Eden Sinclar (Rhona Mitra) is just the woman to lead the group. Having been torn from her mother’s arms the night when the wall separating Scotland from the rest of the world, she has the motivation to return if for no other reason than to know her mother is truly dead.
Once behind the wall, all Hell breaks loose when the group is attacked by a gang of Marauders. Several of the members are killed in the attack. Others, like Sinclair, are taken captive to be interrogated or, worse, eaten. In the decades that have passed since the wall was sealed, the community left behind has grown less and less civilized until finally, they broke into clans. The Marauding clan, led by Sol (Craig Conway), has turned to cannibalism not just in an effort to survive, but in rebellion against the society that left them for dead.
Doomsday goes off the rails at this point, spiraling into little more than a hot mess. The action sequences, which could have been amazing, are muddled in a tangle of quick, choppy edits that make them difficult to follow. The unrated version of the film is full of superfluous blood, ooze, and gore – bonus for some, but droll for others. As the film progresses, the viewer is led from the post-apocalyptic wasteland of Glasgow, inhabited by the Marauders, to medieval times.
Here, they finally come into contact with Kane (Malcom McDowell) to whom all hope of finding the Reaper virus cure have been hung. Kane and his followers have taken up residence in a castle. Yes. You read that correctly (I am suppressing a laugh). Not only have they taken up residence in a castle, but they have taken up the old ways as well, straight down to their clothes.
You’ve basically reached the point of no return as far as Doomsday is concerned. If you made it this far, you might as well thrown down and finish up. At worst, open yourself a drink (or make some coffee) and have a laugh. Doomsday is not a film that you should feel required to take seriously, nor does it ask you to watch it through the critical lens of a serious filmgoer. There’s plenty of self-deprecating awesomeness to be found in the film. And did I mention, there’s psycho-punk-marauding-cannibals? If you’re a fan of the Fallout video game series, you may appreciate that bit.
What makes Doomsday a fun film to watch is its pure, unadulterated ridiculousness. Sure, all of the elements are there. A deadly virus that could kill all of humankind. Strife running rampant between the Scots and the Brits. A giant wall separating families and communities. Betrayal. Government corruption. Cannibals! Mace-wielding knights! When compiled in a different manner, however, it could potentially end in the creation of a truly, epically fantastic apocalyptic film. But, in its current configuration, director Neil Marshall (The Descent) presents you with a (I’m sorry to say because I loved, loved the movie The Descent) laughable vision of the end of the world.
Still, I appreciate the screen time given to actress Rhona Mitra in her portrayal of Major Sinclair. We can’t have too many strong female lead characters in film. Truly. For this reason alone Doomsday is worth a watch.
Explore more –
Official site: Doomsday official site
Wiki facts: Doomsday on wikipedia
Watch the trailer: Doomsday trailer