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Movie Review

When Eden Sinclair tells someone she's keeping an eye on them, she really means it.

See, Eden can—and does—put her eye on all manner of objects: a table, a chair, the floor. She might even play Ping-Pong with it, for all I (eye?) know. Thing is, it's not a natural eye at all, but a little mechanical wonder that she can place in one spot and "see" with it when she's yards away. Outlandish, you say? Perhaps. But it is 2035, after all ... maybe by then you'll be able to buy the things at Wal-Mart.

But as nifty a gizmo as her high-tech eye is, there are surely days when Eden wishes she had her old eye back. Outside the unsanitary aspects of picking your eye off the floor and slapping it back into its socket without so much as rinsing it off, she has to miss it, seeing as she lost her natural eye when she and her mother attempted to escape from Scotland.

Escape from Scotland? Yep. When Eden was a wee little lass, you see, the country was at the epicenter of a new and very unpleasant virus that, once you get it, all you can do is vomit, grow horrible bloody bumps on your skin and die. There is no cure (is there ever in these sorts of movies?), and so the authorities did the only responsible thing they could do: They built a gigantic wall around the entire country (even in the ocean) and waited for all the quarantined Scots to expire.

Years later it's London's turn. And Eden once again stares into the face of horror. But there's a thread of hope. Even though Scotland's been walled off from the rest of the world for nearly three decades, it seems that some folks are still wandering around over there—if you can call killing and eating each other wandering around. Still, maybe somebody's found a cure! Eden seems to be the perfect woman to track it down.

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Positive Elements

One member of Eden's team is a glass-half-full kind of guy. After he and the rest of the team are captured and taken to a medieval castle—the road to which is lined with corpse-decorated pikes—he boldly tells the king "there's always hope." He is, incidentally, just one of a handful of folks who make it through the entire film without being killed. That's the power of positive thinking for you.

A soldier gives up his spot in a helicopter to save Eden's life when she's a tiny girl.

Spiritual Content

Not much beyond the fact that Eden's name is mentioned several times in the first book of the Bible where it refers to a much happier place than post-virus Scotland.

Sexual Content

Doomsday isn't so much concerned with sins of the flesh as it is with the blood and guts underneath. Still, audiences do see a bare-breasted buxom blond in a bathtub early on; she's gunned down before she can even stand up. And a surprisingly large array of female cannibals frolic in bikinis and thongs. Two such women dance in their skivvies and fishnet stockings to entertain the cannibalistic tribe before dinner, writhing about on poles. The tribe's leader, Sol, dances with them, and he slaps both on the buttocks at the conclusion of the number.

Somebody spends the film covered in black leather and serves as a kind of pet for Sol, who actually leads the creature around on a leash. Fat men in kilts dance the cancan.

Violent Content

Scotland, always a rough place during soccer season, has degenerated into a Darwinian nightmare, where wild packs of humans with a penchant for Mohawks and garish tattoos hunt, kill and eat interlopers—not necessarily in that order.

But first, let's talk about the disease itself. Its lumpy victims are masses of bloody blisters that are either moaning, vomiting or killing other people.

OK, that's enough about the disease.

Soldiers gun down people trying to escape from Scotland as if they were tin cans lined up for target practice, and we see blood, gore and even limbs fly. Frantic Scots pull soldiers off fences and beat them to death. People cling to fences coated with razor wire, blood gushing from their wounds. One man puts his hand inside a huge, elevator-like door—the last passage out of Scotland—and we see his fingers crushed. And we see Eden, probably about 3 years old, gush blood from a now empty eye socket.

Most of Eden's team members die in a variety of ways. One has his throat cut wide open. Two succumb to injuries via arrow. One's impaled on some sort of sharp, homemade weapon. One is roasted alive, and the camera refuses to turn away as the fire licks his face and blisters his skin. His still smoking corpse is then decapitated and the crowd rips pieces of flesh from his body.

One cannibal slides a plateful of partner over to an imprisoned Eden. "If you're hungry, why not try a piece of your friend?" he says.

Eden is punched, kicked and has various parts of her face bitten bloody. But she doles out plenty of punishment, too. She kills one bad guy by plunging an ax through the top of his head. She partly disables another by ripping a chain, held in place by two piercings, off his face. She cuts off the hand, then the head, of Sol's girlfriend. (Sol reclaims the body and continues to cruise the deserted streets of Scotland with the corpse—though her head occasionally tumbles off her body.)

Sol is later blown up in the climactic car chase, and his head actually hits—and splatters on—the lens of the camera. Eden brings the head back to Sol's onetime tribe, throws it at their feet (it makes a squishing sound) and then repeats the "If you're hungry" line. The tribe yells in appreciation.

We see people messily squashed by military vehicles. Someone's head gets blown apart by a shotgun blast, another's is gutted by a morning star. We see cows mashed into ground beef. We even see a cute bunny rabbit shredded by bullets. Great Britain's prime minister commits suicide by shooting himself in the head, and we see the gore splatter across a mural.

OK, enough about that, too.

Crude or Profane Language

The f-word is blurted out at least 60 times—pretty remarkable, since explosions and guttings and such keep conversation to a minimum. The s-word is used another 20 times. Jesus' and God's names are abused. And a host of other curses (American and British) are sprinkled throughout the carnage.

Drug and Alcohol Content

Eden smokes, and she occasionally asks her superiors (who also smoke) for a cigarette. A cannibal pours a can of beer over Eden's head when she's imprisoned.

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Some might call Doomsday a horror flick. Others might label it a thriller. Still others might even classify it as a campy, grotesque comedy. All would be on to something since it seems to lift inspiration from about 36 other movies, from 28 Days Later to Apocalypse Now to, believe it or not, The Lord of the Rings.

But no matter how many shout-outs it makes to often better films, Doomsday is really nothing more than an excuse to showcase cannibals and swim in a septic tank full of blood. Audiences would get more benefit out of watching a cockroach crisscross a kitchen floor for two hours—and hopefully be more entertained.

A parting shot: Eden lost one of her eyes in childhood. If she were forced to watch this film, she'd probably start clawing at the other one.

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Plot Summary

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