The Doom Generation
Looking back, it’s not a particularly glorious watch. The 90s was a very different time, wasn’t it? It’s intriguing to revisit, but a revival of 1995’s The Doom Generation was a somewhat wince-inducing inclusion in this year’s Sundance Festival.
Not seen in this form since the festival of its release, and now digitally restored in 4k resolution, this tale of a road-worn teenage couple, Amy (Rose McGowan) and Jordan (James Duval), who meet the odd yet enchanting Xavier (Johnathon Schaech) – a spanner in a relationship’s works if ever there was one – descends pretty quickly into a rampant and not inoffensive trail of sex, murder and the like. Elements of the humour have aged about as well as milk that had been left at room temperature for 28 years since the film’s initial release, but some still land, particularly easter eggs in the scenery, which are fun to spot.
This film has guts, in every sense. Gore is rife, as are the raciest of racy themes, a prime example of the even-more-outrageous-than-the-last sub-genre that was enjoying its gruesome heyday. This may be holding it to contemporary standards, but the script is appalling – probably the movie’s most wanting quality. Some good characterisation has just been outlined before someone not entirely unlikable baffles the audience with an absurdly obtuse line that is nothing short of jarring.
Writing and acting aside, The Doom Generation is quite well made. The scenes’ establishing shots are often deft and the twists and turns in the plot definitely pack surprise. The Tarantino-esque gory showdown is certainly fruity, a lot to take in but a fitting conclusion given the piece’s direction before that. Maybe this reviewer suffers a little from a case of modern-day sensitivity, but this film didn’t particularly need digging up.
The Doom Generation does not have a UK release date yet.
For further information about Sundance London 2023 visit here.
Read more reviews from the festival here.
Watch the trailer for The Doom Generation here: