2000s Deathwatch (2002)

Published on October 26th, 2012 | by Chris

3

Deathwatch (2002)

Movie by :
Michael J. Bassett

Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
On October 26, 2012
Last modified:November 1, 2012

Summary:

An awesomely scary and evil trip into the trenches of WWI.

Deathwatch (2002)Continuing with the Halloween horror-war movie fest, is 2002's Deathwatch.  In my opinion, a much under-rated and overlooked movie.

In WWI, British Y-company finds themselves separated from the rest of their forces, and winds up in a nearly abandoned German trench.  But, things are not all that they seem here.

I've been going round-and-round trying to figure out how to best describe Deathwatch without spoiling it or otherwise ruining it.  I think its best summed up like this:  Take an original episode of The Twilight Zone, and turn it up to 11.  Really, its about the best melding of the horror and war movie genres that I think I've seen.  The "non scary" parts are pretty damned horrific in their own rights.  The inhuman conditions of trench warfare during "the big one,"  the dead bodies everywhere in various states of decomposition, the rain, the cold, the mud, the uncertainty and fear....  Let alone the pure terror of what is about to happen to them.

Speaking of which, the "horror movie" aspect of this unfolds in a such a way that never really leaves you wanting more.  It's always pretty original, while still maintaining a certain amount of that old-school Twilight Zone suspense.  And you gore lovers can rest assured that you're not forgotten.  Trust me.

There are a few familiar faces in this movie, too.  Most notably Andy Serkis (Gollum!) as the downright primitive Quinn, and Jamie Bell (Defiance, Flags of our Fathers) as the requisite "rookie" and out-of-place scholar "Shakespeare."  Thankfully, apart from a few tell-tale grimaces, Serkis never once reminded me of Gollum, and actually is pretty scary in his own way here.

The ending?  Well, lets just say it almost, ALMOST, had my mind turned and hating the whole thing.  Because throughout, I found myself going, "boy I sure hope that isn't the case, because that would be dumb and predictable."  Thank goodness they turned it around with yet another nod to Mr. Serling...

Deathwatch gets a full 4/5 stars from me.  Just because its Halloween and I think its actually a pretty good movie.  Oh, and don't ever get paralyzed and left alone in some dark corner of a trench.  Trust me.

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Description

1917. THE WESTERN FRONT. A HANDFUL OF SURVIVORS FROM Y-COMPANY ARE UTTERLY LOST IN ENEMY TERRITORY. THEY FIND SHELTER IN AN ABANDONED ENEMY TRENCH & WAIT TO BE RESCUED. BUT AS NIGHT DRAWS, NOBODY COMES...

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audience Rating: R (Restricted)
Brand: BELL,JAMIE
Manufacturer: Lions Gate
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Jamie Bell
  • Rúaidhrí Conroy
  • Mike Downey
  • Laurence Fox
  • Roman Horák

Features

  • Factory sealed DVD

Reviews

Customer reviews
Average Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All's Creepy on the Western Front!, May 19, 2016
By 
Arika-wani (Tokyo//Kentucky) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Deathwatch (Amazon Video)
I actually want to give it a 4.5, because I really liked it, and enjoyed watching it (5 star movies are rare). Psychopathy, depravity and mental decay, loss of faith and hope, cowardice, fear. Does war really change a man? Or, does it accentuate a man's existing composition? Add the hell of WWI trench warfare, a ton of creepy, and some suspense, and you have the makings of an entertaining flick. I feel that the performances were solid. I enjoyed the setting and wardrobe, the characters, and the unsettling atmosphere.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Stellar, but not Bad..., October 6, 2015
By 
D. Mesaros (Connecticut, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Deathwatch (Amazon Video)
WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS! I wasn't quite sure what to make of this film. It's an interesting, claustrophobic piece from an era (WWI) that isn't really covered in films much these days, and has a good, eerie atmosphere. Some technical nitpicking aside [the British uniforms are more or less period correct, but they're armed with No 4 MK I Enfields from WWII rather than No 3 pattern SMLEs (if you're not a gun person you won't care, but to a collector or a history buff the two rifles look distinctly different), and the German stuff is all WWII from their gear to their weapons], the filmmakers did a good job of recreating the period. However, the film was inconsistent with the supernatural vs. psychological, "degrading nature of war" theme that it was trying to present, and couldn't seem to make up its mind as to whether German zombies or some psychological factor causing the men to turn on one another were the main antagonists of the film. The "war is hell" idea... Read more
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow-going..., May 30, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Deathwatch (Amazon Video)
I really don't know exactly what to think about this one. I generally like movies of this type, but this one moved pretty slowly for me. Acting was good, the story itself was good, the setting was sufficiently creepy, the ending worked. I just couldn't really get into it. You may like it, but I say watch it with patience.
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Deathwatch (2002) Chris

Summary: An awesomely scary and evil trip into the trenches of WWI.

4.0


User Rating: 0 (0 votes)


About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



3 Responses to Deathwatch (2002)

  1. Pingback: 23 Horror-themed War Movies for Halloween | War Movies | Reviews and News

  2. Banananananaaaaaaa !!! says:

    One thing is bugging me : the Friedrich, the German soldier that survives … who – or, rather, what – the hell is he ? That look he gives to the camera, at the very end of the movie, is really creepy, like he’s some kind of demon ? Some kind of boatman of the Dead ?

  3. kevin says:

    Think of the german as st. Peter. Watching the movie it seems to me that all died in the battle. the only radio message that recieved said Y company was wiped out. One of the main characters says he can’t feel his heart beating. They can’t leave the trench. the only one that is allowed to leave is the one who treated him the german with some degree of kindness. Hence he was allowed into heaven.

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