Doom

on October 21, 2005 by Tim Cogshell
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The original "Doom" was a First-Person Shooter game that came out in the early '90s, when most computer games were still actually played on computers rather than the many boxes and cubes that the hold the attention of teenage boys for hours on end today. Unfortunately, one cannot say the same for its filmic namesake. "Doom" the movie is a bit of a bore. It's noisy and dark, badly scripted and constructed, and not even particularly gory despite the R rating. Its only interesting notes are the performances of leads Karl Urban ("The Bourne Supremacy" and "The Chronicles of Riddick") as John Grimm (aka: The Reaper) and The Rock ( "The Rundown") as Sarge, the no-nonsense Marine who shoots first... then shoots again.

The storyline stays close to that of the original game, though elements of later incarnations, particularly "Doom 3," are incorporated. Something has gone wrong at a corporate research facility on Mars. It requires a Level 5 quarantine (as it always does), and a Rapid Response Tactical Squad of "hardened Space Marines" are sent in to sort things out. What they face are the results of conflicting experiments gone badly, and now the facility is swarming with demon-like monsters that snatch people unceremoniously from the frame. There is one sequence in which director Andrzej Bartkowiak ("Exit Wounds," "Cradle 2 the Grave," and "Romeo Must Die") leans entirely on the game, staging an FPS point-of-view when Grimm must make his way through an infested lab just as a player of the game does when they reach an advanced level. This is fun, but not as much fun as just playing Doom. Starring The Rock, Karl Urban and Rosamund Pike. Directed by Andrzej Bartkowiak. Written by Dave Callaham and Wesley Strick. Produced by John Wells and Lorenzo di Bonventura. A Universal release. Action/Horror/Sci-Fi. Rated R for strong violence/gore and language. Running time: 100 min

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