Doom has never been about epic storytelling. This is well known, and people are fully aware that if you’re buying a new Doom game, you aren’t going to be presented with intricate characters and rollercoaster storylines. What you would expect though, is to be able to blast countless zombie-aliens for hours and hours. However, because of this reason, it seems like nobody is willing to actually ‘try’ when it comes to writing Doom scripts. Unfortunately, Doom: Annihilation is just another cookiecutter sci-fi film, that if it didn’t have the Doom tag, wouldn’t even get a look in. In fact, Doom’s official Twitter account has tweeted that they had zero involvement with the movie.
As can be expected, Doom: Annihilation follows the simple plot details of the first game, where scientists discover ancient alien technology on one of Mars’ moons. A small team (why are the teams always so small..?) of UAC marines get sent to the moon-base, only to find it filled with monsters. The base’s power supply is on its last legs, which means the marines have to conduct their search and rescue mission with haste. Unfortunately, the teleporter device the scientists had found and had been working on, created a portal to Hell.
As I mentioned previously, the presentation of Doom: Annihilation is very cliché, and seems to have taken a lot of directional inspiration from the film Aliens. Doom fans will be disappointed to learn that the ‘monsters’ are very un-Doom like, and are almost laughable. The bulk of the immersion is conducted via quick cuts and lousy jump scares, which helps to hide the low budget and quality of the special effects and costumes.
However, it’s not all ‘doom’ and gloom. Some of the acting is surprisingly well done, and the sets do look pretty good. There are also a fair few references to the video games and id Software, that fans may enjoy noticing.
As much as I love the Doom franchise, Doom: Annihilation is still an easily ignorable and forgettable film, which only gained any attention due to the title. If it were released as a different name, then I’m sure even fewer people would have watched it.
On the plus side, Doom Eternal is released soon.