Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Science Fiction > Post Apocalyptic > Doomsday (2008/Blu-ray + DVD-Video/Universal)

Doomsday (2008/Blu-ray + DVD-Video/Universal)


Picture: A-/C+     Sound: A-/C+     Extras: A-     Film: B



By default, Doomsday remains not only Neil Marshall’s most ambitious work, but also his best work and I was a bit surprised by just how much of this film worked, even when it was clichéd. The film shows the government in action against a deadly virus called “The Reaper Virus”, where hundreds of thousands of people are killed and action is taken.  The government constructs a wall to keep the quarantine in effect, but those people are long-forgotten as time goes on.  But before you can say “28 Days Later” 30 years passes by and the virus breaks loose again, this time Major Eden Sinclair (Rhona Mitra) is sent in to find a cure in order to bring order back to the outside world and what transpires is not only all-out anarchy, but a great action/thriller that will surprise most. 


Cinematographer Sam McCurdy has worked on Marshall’s previous films and his work here is perhaps his best giving the film a great nearly post-apocalyptic appearance without being too gutted of color or depth, the 1080p 2.35 X 1 anamorphic High Definition image on the Blu-ray looks terrific and is one of the better discs issued to date.  The film was shot in Super 35, so by default there are some moments where the image doesn’t quite look nearly as sharp and has some of the grain quality that is often associated with Super 35.  Despite that, it still looks fantastic.  The anamorphically enhanced DVD version has weak Video Black and detail issues for whatever reasons.


Then there is the sound, which is presented in superb DTS-HD master Audio lossless 5.1 mix that is never dull and is constantly engaging in some way, shape or form.  This, like the picture, is one of the best released in Blu-ray to date and we can only hope for more to come.  The mix is sonically pleasing with tons of action and the surrounds are active with lots of depth and detail, the low end is also booming and will give any Home Theater setup a good workout.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 on the DVD is much weaker, has an awkward soundfield and dialogue/voiceover in the center channel is substandard.


As if this wasn’t enough the Blu-ray also features a great wealth of extras that are not only interesting, but engaging as well with this release being a “U-Control” exclusive allowing some in-depth moments during the viewing of the film, including segments on the Reaper Virus, technical specs on the Bentley in the film and several weapons, plus picture-in-picture allowing the viewer to access behind-the-scenes and cast information while watching particular scenes.  As if these extras aren’t enough to enhance the Blu-ray experience there is a fantastic commentary by Marshall and several cast and crew members to top it all off.  The DVD has the rest of the extras too, including a choice between the theatrical and uncut versions of the film.


Doomsday could in many respects be one of the gems of 2008, even with its flaws, it beats much of the run-of-the-mill material that we have seen thus far and continue to see.  It won’t win any Oscar’s necessarily, but it’s a fun film to watch and this Blu-ray takes the viewer beyond the movie and gives fans more than they could bargain for.  Plus, it’s one of the better performers in the audio/visual realm and will or should be in most serious collections on that note alone.



Alternate opinion (NS): Marshall could have established himself as the potentially formidable filmmaker some of his previous films suggested he could become, but we instead (in either cut) get a film that is an awkward amalgamation of every film we have seen before.  Instead, his films have shown a slow but evident pattern of decline.  We have covered some of Neil Marshall’s films before here at this site and have had mixed feelings about his work.  You can read about his films at these links:


Dog Soldiers: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/2373/Dog+Soldiers+(DTS


The Descent: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/5079/The+Descent



-   Nate Goss & Nicholas Sheffo


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com