I'm over 18, Dutch and if you want to know what I'm into, have a browse through my tumblr. If you are friends with me in real life and you have found me, hello! I don't think you'll stumble onto any new things on this tumblr.
If you are one of those people who reblogs those 'amazing fact!' or 'signal boost!' or 'omg I never knew this!' posts without spending one minute searching online to check if it's true, please go away.
I am kind of impressed that The Strain manages to pack so many lazy clichés in one episode.
Apart from our manly hero (he’s a workoholic AND an alcoholic who has been sober for like a year AND he just loves his son so much!) having all the usual Tragic Manpain, we now have, in this vampire show…
A SIGNIFICANT AND MAGICAL ECLIPSE!
I haven’t seen significant and magical eclipses since Heroes and we all know what happened to that show.
(Also how come Del Toro, who did Pan’s Labyrinth, is so rubbish at writing female characters?)
Eden Sinclair is everything Hollywood is afraid of. A strong woman that is equal to the men. And in a lot of cases, stronger. And Rhona embodies the role.
Neil Marshall is awesome. I have to admit that, having watched horror movies since I was young, it’s left me kind of immune to a lot of stuff. But The Descent scared the crap out of me. And at the age of 24/25 at the time I don’t mind admitting that I left the light on all night. Powerful stuff.
So after seeing that and the awesome Dog Soldiers, it was safe to say that I was a fan and absolutely buzzing in anticipation of Doomsday. And it didn’t disappoint me.
From the off this movie doesn’t hold back. A highly contagious reaper virus spread through Scotland is wiping out the population fast. People are frantically trying to clamour to safety as soldiers mow them down quicker than you can say : “dude, you just shot a kid in the eye.”
And it was here where I realised Marshall wasn’t holding back.
As they close off the walls dividing England and Scotland for good, said kid’s mother frantically pleads with soldiers to take her daughter. They oblige, and its a good job they did. That kids gonna save your sorry ass.
Enter a grown up Eden Sinclair :
As soon as I saw how badass she looked with that eye-patch I was transported back in time to growing up with Snake Plissken in Escape From New York. I would later revisit a similar feeling throughout this movie with memories of The Warriors and Mad Max.
Eden now has an artificial eye with a camera built in, and its so cool to see her throw it round corners to see who’s about via her watch.
And seeing her take out a slave smuggling ring so coolly sends my heart a flutter.
Bob Hoskins is awesome in this movie.
He works for the government who have found survivors through satellite footage in Scotland. As the Reaper Virus starts to infect London they believe that Scotland must have a cure.
It’s worth noting that Bob Hoskins character is the only one working for the government that is the good amongst a group of, well, horrible bastards. He’s such a loveable guy in this, and Edens one trusted ally.
The rest are willing to leave London to rot and save themselves until Hoskins says that he may have their ‘man’ capable of jumping the border and finding a cure. You know what’s coming don’t you. ;-)
The answer may be in a man named Doctor Markus Kane. If anyone up north could have created a cure, he would be the one responsible. So this is the first port of call.
As she meets the team assigned to her, Eden oozes power and demands respect through just being her. This is achieved by all but one of the crew who clearly doesn’t like being told by a woman.
The look the male sergeant throws him, and the smile Eden throws out, screams : “Keep talking little man.”
Again I have to give props to Neil Marshall here. There are plenty of strong women in film but its still in the minority compared to the male equivalent. For every Doomsday there are 10 Die Hard-A-Likes. Muchos Respectos for having the balls to go with your vision Mr Marshall. Mwah.
As they enter Scotland its an amazing sight. You really get that feeling of stepping into the unknown. Great job.
I love that the entire flick is scored with the odd pang of 80s synth here and there and the 80s action score accompanying it shows you where Neil Marshalls love was at.
It’s like my ideal dream. It’s the female badass we never had, growing up with the Arnies and the Stallones. It’s like Kurt Russell had a sister in an alternate universe in my weird brain.
And its not more than 5 or so minutes before these crazy Mad Max-like Punks appear and overpower the team.
Edens squad have all this high-tech gear but they’re completely overrun by psychopaths with crossbows, firebombs, axes. They take a proper old school kicking. And the few of the team remaining get dragged to their leader, Sol.
But not before we’ve met his better half, Viper :
And if she ain’t the coolest looking villain I ever did saw. Watching her pace back and forth just shouts ICONIC. I love her so so frackin’ much. It’s a shame she wasn’t given more screen time as she would have been the perfect leader. But then, Sol ain’t bad either :
Man this guy is a piece of work. Sol gives our heroine a beating believing her to be in cahoots with Dr Kane. Turns out they’re at war in this fucked up wasteland.
When Eden tells him she came from over the wall, Sol then sees it as his and his families way out of this hell.
But first he must throw a party to celebrate :
This scene is amazing. Sol comes onto an arena stage in front of thousands of his loyal followers to the sounds of Good Thing by Fine Young Cannibals.
It shouldn’t work at all. But its amazing. He’s all booty slapping and henchman punching while he throws out his shapes. And its awesome to witness.
Then Viper sets fire to one of Edens guys and everyone eats him :
As you do.
While all this is going on, Eden is told by a guard :
"If you’re hungry, try some of your friend."
And he just throws her a piece of the burnt cop. Yck.
I was so glad when that dude had his ear ripped off. ;-)
Then comes the inevitable confrontation with Viper :
Which is awesome. I was gutted to see Viper go but loved the way Eden lopped off her head :
RIP Viper. We love you.
As Eden is trying to escape, a fellow female prisoner offers to take her to Kane. Turns out its her father. And Sol’s her brother.
What a truly fucked up family.
The escape is ace too as they’re chased down Mad Max style by buses and crossers laden with graffiti. What I love about this movie is the subtleties too. Like the fact that the bus has a cardboard sign in the window saying : “OUT OF FUCKING ORDER”.
It’s the little things you know.
Marshall truly did throw everything at the screen and I fucking love it.
The fact that they escape on a steam train makes it even more poetic.
As they put miles between them and enter into the woods they take a shortcut through an underground system with storage containing god knows what. As they come back into the wilderness they come across this dude and are taken to Kane :
Can a sister get a break around here. Hot damn.
It’s at this point where I truly started to fall in love with this film. As you see at the start, London is in chaos but its still a thriving modern city. As they go north to Scotland they meet the Mad Max crazies like something out of the 80’s. Then when we get farthest north to here it’s gone medieval. The further north and away from civilisation we get, the further back in time we go. Its amazing. And a perfect excuse to throw many genres in at once.
Many people have complained about this movie trying to be too many things at once. To me that’s its pull.
Also a gripe was that it took ideas from too many films. Its the ultimate homage. If you can take what was great about other classics and still put a spin on it to make it your own thing, then surely that’s a good thing. We’ve been doing it since the beginning of time with everything.
TO THE CASTLE!!!
And to Markus Kane. And if it aint Malcolm Mc-friggin-Dowell. And he’s awesome in it.
He really throws himself into his role and you kind of empathise with him when he explains how he lost his family when England closed the gates.
Turns out there is no cure, the survivors were simply immune. Natural selection as Kane puts it. He moved north as he knew the government would be watching the cities and they just wanted to be left alone.
That would be all well and good, but did he really need to set a big bloody brute on our beautiful heroine :
This battle is immense. It really was a heart-beater And also the first time where you wondered if Eden could handle herself such is the great and powerful way she has been written and portrayed.
After this Its all cannonball explosions and medieviality (yeah I totally made that up) as our group escape back into the woods.
Here’s a nod to Adrien Lester. He may be seen as a small part in this as Edens backup because of how Amazonian our heroine is, but he really captured me. Not only was he a badass but he also had some really deadpan hilarious lines :
"I think your plans shit but I guess I’ll stay with you."
Love Love Love.
Going back through the underground system, we find out what was in storage all this time : All the rich peoples stuff.
Edens crew need an escape from the pursuers. And they get one. In the form of a Bentley.
If the Viper fight was brilliant. And the Medieval battle was amazing. Then the car chase as the Mad Max punks come back is nothing sort of epic.
It starts with an 80s cop car :
Then it just escalates from there :
What’s great about this movie is that its 99% practicality. Therefore very little CGI. This is the old school baby. Welcome to the good stuff. All to the sounds of Two Tribes. Niiiiice.
It’s a black-cab flipping, head crushing, car-jumping, bus exploding delight. Take that Michael Bay.
As our heroes get away, Eden hands over Sols sister to the corrupt Prime Minister. She is immune so they can make a vaccine from her blood. It’s sad to see her go, not knowing what will come of her and you wonder why Eden would let it happen.
Just before the Dick Minister leaves, he tells of his plan to let the infected die off then become the hero with a cure for the rest. Dickhead.
Eden goes to visit her childhood home in Glasgow where Bob Hoskins character is waiting. She hands over some device from a watch and leaves.
Then comes a beautifully satisfying double whammy.
As we see Eden driving back through Scotland rather than go home we see that, back in London, there is a recorded video of everything Dick Minister said to Eden via the news.
And If that isn’t enough, she’s driven back to Punk territory right in the middle of the gang.
She throws Sol’s head towards them and utters the immortal line :
"IF YOU’RE HUNGRY……..TRY SOME OF YOUR FRIEND."
And I’ll leave you with that beautiful Victory Smile.
Thank you for taking the time.