Search This Blog

3.20.2008

Doomsday = Cinema Casserole

















Let me preface this by saying I detest casseroles. When I was a kid, I was fiercely pro-segregation when it came to my food. I hated it when the run-off from some crappy vegetable mingled with my rice or mashed potatoes. I couldn't stand it when my bread would get soggy from some sauce or another running across the plate.

And it didn't help to have my parents parroting that tired ass "It all goes to the same place" argument at me all the time.

And that's basically what a casserole is, right? You take a bunch of the leftover funk in your refrigerator and add a can of cream of mushroom soup and a layer of those weird crispy onion deals and then bake it all for an hour at 350. No way. I can say with pretty good confidence that I'll never subject my kids to such a meal.

That said, I really, really, reaaalllllllyyy like what Neil Marshall did with Doomsday. He raided the fridge for some of the best in the pantheon of genre film and threw it in the oven at 350 and created a classic. Here's the list of ingredients for this fine film. Feel free to highlight any I missed, as I'm sure there are many:
  • Escape from New York
  • 28 Days Later
  • Romper Stomper
  • Mad Max--Road Warrior
  • Mad Max--Thunderdome
  • Death Proof
  • Running Man
  • Braveheart
  • Outbreak
  • 28 Weeks Later
  • 12 Monkeys

Marshall takes a dash of each film, pulls a fantastic performance out of Rhona Mitra and creates a devastating post-apocalyptic nightmare in this rip-roaring ode to the bizarre. Marshall keeps the pace frenetic. This one kicks you in the teeth and then moves on to your vulnerable spots.

It's an interesting look at social devolution, a virus in its own right that even seems to afflict our protagonist in Mitra's Eden Sinclair. In one particularly gruesome scene, watch as Mitra comes to her senses. Just prior to her gladiator-style execution, Malcom McDowell's Marcus Kane asks her, "And what have you lost?"

In front of a crowd frenzied for blood his words echo in her mind. Sinclair puts things in perspective and shouts aloud, "I've lost my fucking mind!" She then turns to dispatch her subdued opponent, but the message is clear: In times of chaos, absurdity is the rule and not the exception.

I can't think of anything bad to say about the movie. I know most critics have dismissed it and that many of you that read this web journal will consider it mule dung, but the movie is so preposterous--and so much fun--that I have to give it an 'A'. I can't wait to buy it on DVD.

No comments: