Doomwatch - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Doomwatch Reviews

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Harlequin68
Super Reviewer
May 12, 2011
Doomwatch, a government agency tasked to monitor threats to the environment, sends Dr. Del Shaw(Ian Bannen) to a remote island to look into a recent oil spill. He finds the villagers little help in his inquiries as the only person who is willing to talk to him is Victoria(Judy Geeson), the young schoolteacher who has been there all of two years. Despite this, he discovers enough to continue his investigation past the first day. It's a good thing, too, because that's when the body turns up under a watchful eye.

Created by Gerry Davis and Kit Pedler, "Doomwatch" is a decidedly uneven thriller with a good mystery. There are some very suspenseful moments but the movie gets sidetracked when it focuses too much on the scientists and away from the island. Overall, I applaud the movie for its subtlety in not revealing too much at first. This kind of approach never goes out of style while the movie's warning concerning the environment and against ignorance are still as necessary as when the movie was made which can also be seen as something of a tragedy, I suppose.
½ May 13, 2014
Oh dear. What a terrible pickle. What will the islanders do when they are told that they are not inbred hillbillies suffering the divine punishment of god, but instead are actually being poisoned by a bad dumping of toxic wastes? probably cry. mark my words. Silly and boring.
½ May 13, 2014
Oh dear. What a terrible pickle. What will the islanders do when they are told that they are not inbred hillbillies suffering the divine punishment of god, but instead are actually being poisoned by a bad dumping of toxic wastes? probably cry. mark my words. Silly and boring.
½ June 2, 2012
Environmental take on The Wicker Man (though Whisky Galore also comes to mind with the closed island). Rushed ending feels a bit of a damp squib.
July 31, 2011
Reasonable spin-off from the early 70's BBC series. The script by Clive Exton starts out like a horror with it's unfriendly villagers hiding a terrible secret, the outsider, the isolated location, dead bodies & deformed people but then goes into thriller mode as the illegal chemical dumping takes center stage while the whole movie is wrapped up with plenty of moral & environmental message's which in todays ultra polluted world are very relevant & pretty topical. Some have said how slow Doomwatch is, this is something I disagree with as I found it very entertaining, consistently engaging & a very worthwhile way to pass an 90 mins. I liked the story a lot, it manages not to give too much away too early which keeps things interesting.

There's a cool atmosphere that you might expect to find in a Hammer movie of the period, the director manages to create some nice tension & some effective scenes although it's not really scary overall. There's no blood or gore but that's not what Doomwatch is about. Technically Doomwatch is fine, it has 70's written all over it but that suits the story perfectly. It's generally well made on location in Cornwall which looks cold all the time. The acting is good.

Doomwatch isn't for everyone but I liked it a lot. I liked the story, the mystery, the well thought out script & atmospheric locations & make-up effects. I doubt I'll watch it again anytime soon but if your looking for something a bit different and your a sci-fi/horror/thriller fan then Doomwatch may be worth an hour & half of your time.
July 31, 2011
Reasonable spin-off from the early 70's BBC series. The script by Clive Exton starts out like a horror with it's unfriendly villagers hiding a terrible secret, the outsider, the isolated location, dead bodies & deformed people but then goes into thriller mode as the illegal chemical dumping takes center stage while the whole movie is wrapped up with plenty of moral & environmental message's which in todays ultra polluted world are very relevant & pretty topical. Some have said how slow Doomwatch is, this is something I disagree with as I found it very entertaining, consistently engaging & a very worthwhile way to pass an 90 mins. I liked the story a lot, it manages not to give too much away too early which keeps things interesting.

There's a cool atmosphere that you might expect to find in a Hammer movie of the period, the director manages to create some nice tension & some effective scenes although it's not really scary overall. There's no blood or gore but that's not what Doomwatch is about. Technically Doomwatch is fine, it has 70's written all over it but that suits the story perfectly. It's generally well made on location in Cornwall which looks cold all the time. The acting is good.

Doomwatch isn't for everyone but I liked it a lot. I liked the story, the mystery, the well thought out script & atmospheric locations & make-up effects. I doubt I'll watch it again anytime soon but if your looking for something a bit different and your a sci-fi/horror/thriller fan then Doomwatch may be worth an hour & half of your time.
July 14, 2011
rather tepid ecological zombie horror. A distinct lack of Zombies and horror give its zombie horror film status a rather weak look to it.
Harlequin68
Super Reviewer
May 12, 2011
Doomwatch, a government agency tasked to monitor threats to the environment, sends Dr. Del Shaw(Ian Bannen) to a remote island to look into a recent oil spill. He finds the villagers little help in his inquiries as the only person who is willing to talk to him is Victoria(Judy Geeson), the young schoolteacher who has been there all of two years. Despite this, he discovers enough to continue his investigation past the first day. It's a good thing, too, because that's when the body turns up under a watchful eye.

Created by Gerry Davis and Kit Pedler, "Doomwatch" is a decidedly uneven thriller with a good mystery. There are some very suspenseful moments but the movie gets sidetracked when it focuses too much on the scientists and away from the island. Overall, I applaud the movie for its subtlety in not revealing too much at first. This kind of approach never goes out of style while the movie's warning concerning the environment and against ignorance are still as necessary as when the movie was made which can also be seen as something of a tragedy, I suppose.
December 27, 2010
Intelligent eco-thriller about a scientist from an environmental watchdog group who investigates the effects of an oil spill on an island, but gets more than he bargained for when he realizes the people on the village are hiding a mysterious secret.

Topical of its time, in the wake of the recent BP disaster, one realizes the degree that corporations, the military, and subcontracted businesses harm nature just to make a profit. Good performances by Ian Bannen and John Paul. What this world needs is more activist gadflies like Bannen's character, Dr. Shore, and his boss, Dr. Quist, played by the Jon Pertwee-ish John Paul.
May 22, 2010
Slooooooooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwww...
September 8, 2008
Hmm, don´t know what the clip below is from, but it´s not the Doomwatch movie I know. This is pretty good actually. Back in the days of Hammer Horror, Amicus etc. Watch out for an early performance by Pat Butcher from Eastenders as one of the radiated villagers. Seriously big brows and sausage fingers and a constant "You be a stranger here, we don´t like like strangers" mentality, it´s a wonder that Ian Bannen takes so long to catch on! It won´t keep you on the edge of your seat but like Warlords of Atlantis, it´s comfortable to watch on a Sunday afternoon.
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