Watchmen the movie is finally here after a legal battle between Warner Bros. and Fox - Fox owned the rights to the film, and only let Warner Bros. know after the film was ready to go. Many die-hard fans were worried the film would have never actually been released, and Fox would have probably gained a sea of new haters. Alas, we are finally able to see what directer Zack Snyder was able to do after a three-year hiatus since the release of 300. The film stars Patrick Wilson (as Nite Owl II), Jackie Earle Haley (Rorschach), Billy Crudup (Dr. Manhattan), Malin Akerman (as Silk Spectre II), and Jeffrey Dean Morgan (as The Comedian).
When the teaser trailer for Watchmen was released, it proclaimed Watchmen to be the most celebrated graphic novel of all time. Written by comic book legend, Alan Moore, Watchmen has received an astounding amount of awards. After reading this comic book, you have to ask yourself, “Why?” Watchmen is not fast paced. There isn’t a lot of action. The plot can be summarized in a sentence. Almost none of the characters have super powers. So, why does it have the love of so many people? The answer is actually quite simple. Watchmen is much more than a graphic novel, it is a piece of literature. With incredible foreshadowing, extremely complex character development, and a story that is timeless, Watchmen deserves the praise that it has received. And now onto what our writers thought of, Watchmen the movie!
What did you think, Mary-Go-Round?
Watchmen immediately strikes me as much ado about nothing. Watchmen the comic book was an exercise in reflection on the comic book medium and therefore not necessarily the type of thing that transitions easily into a movie. As a matter of fact, I found myself wondering what the hell this move was about more than halfway through. The preachiness of the whole comic book genre with themes that tend towards the grandiose eventually become tiresome and quickly lose their relevance. Perhaps the biggest problem with the whole thing is the lack of character development (for the most part) and the characters which are focused on most heavily are not really that easy to emphasize with. Rorshach is a right wing psycho who obviously has not taken a single college level sociology class. Dr. Manhattan is an asshole and the Silk Spectre (II) is just as flat of a female character as you would find in any golden age comic book and in whom one would be hard pressed to find a reflection of modern femininity that goes beyond Hollywood archetypes.
The aging Silk Spectre classic is the best character in the entire movie despite her very limited amount of screen time, in large part because Carla Gugino is given the chance to play a role that taps into the kind of real emotions and pain that are an end in itself. All this is at once the nature and the disadvantage of making movies out of comic books. The sweeping premise and lavish style makes the movie a nice thing to watch, but it lacks all nuance and opportunity for true acting that makes a really good movie.
What did you think, Mojammad?
I've read the graphic novel and I've seen the motion comic. I'm not a big fan of Watchmen. I felt the movie was kind of boring and could have benefited greatly from a trimmed down run time. There is so much back story to all these characters that all the flashbacks really interfered with the main plot. The main plot though was great and I wish the movie got a little more involved with it. One of the plot twists toward the end was completely pointless. The Comedian is Silk Spectre's father, big deal! It doesn't change the plot, it doesn't change anything! It's just there for pointless melodrama! The prison break scene I almost laughed at because it's nearly a carbon copy of a scene from 300. The highlights of the movie are Rorschach, Dr. Manhattan, and the final plot twist. I loved the ending and for me it elevated this movie from being "kinda stupid" to being "all right." If you're a fan of the comic then go watch Watchmen cause you will eat it up. If you aren't familiar with the graphic novel then you can easily wait for the DVD or Blu-ray.
What did you think, Psych?
I know many people that have refused to see Watchmen on the basis that it was directed by the “visionary director of 300.” After the bloody, anal rape that the Dark Phoenix Saga received with X-Men 3, after the desecration of the Venom story that occurred with Spiderman 3, after the...there aren’t even words for what happened to Wanted, it’s hard to blame their skepticism. But, it turns out, they were wrong. If you like the graphic novel, you will like Watchmen the movie. It’s unquestionable, as there was almost nothing changed. The comic book was brought to life unerringly, with the exception of The Tales of the Black Freighter, which is sadly unmentioned. Far from being butchered, there is only one word for Watchmen. Pristine.
What did you think, Fierce Pussy?
If you’re looking to have 3 hours of your life unjustifiably stolen, please view the movie rendition of Watchmen. I viewed the movie with much anticipation and no knowledge of the comic’s background only to be caught in an entanglement of “novella” type stories, horrible, vapid, Hollywood blockbuster antics and a minuscule peak of genuine plot. Each character encompassed a rather lengthy introduction that left me overwhelmed and ultimately confused. There were some pertinent thematic attributes to the film that gave it some substantial credibility which I’m sure originally transpired from the comic. However, the dignity of the themes were not honored with the intentions of marketing this film solely as a vapid Hollywood blockbuster film (soft core porn scenes, really...). As for plot, I discovered that I had a better chance of finding a bloody band aid in my hot dog then piecing together the plot.
What did you think, Redmanthatcould?
This movie was way too long, and covered far too much story. Patrick Wilson played the second "edition" of Nite Owl, and his was the only character we didn't get a background sequence about - if you're gonna bore us with each character's history, why not the main character? There was not enough action for how bad ass the film could have been; and there were no memorable one-liners. Aside from Jackie Earle Haley (as Rorschach), and Billy Crudup (as Dr. Manhattan), the acting was terrible.
There was an over-the-top love scene that really did not fit the film, and I didn't understand why some scenes Dr. Manhattan was clothed, or had "superhero underwear" and other scenes his blue shlong was hanging proudly for the world to see. Only two scenes were really cool to watch - The Comedian getting his shit ruined, and seeing the unfettered breasts of Malin Akerman. I suspect fans of the graphic novel will eat this up, but this film is not for the average movie-goer.
What did you think, J.M. Banks?
I had a hard time seeing Jeffery Dean Morgan play bad good guy, The Comedian. I’ve seen him play dark characters before, but this was by far the darkest and meanest I have ever seen him and I didn’t like it. It made my insides all twisty. In contrast, was Patrick Wilson’s Nite Owl. He was very cute but I kept waiting for him to burst into song and was disappointed that he never did. Another great character performance was Carla Gugino as the aging Silk Spectre/Miss Jupiter. Basically, the whole cast was great and I even have to give it up for Billy Crudup and his computer generated penis.
Numb. That is how I felt after viewing Watchman. My favorite scene was at the end when Rorschach wouldn’t compromise his beliefs, even if it was for the greater good of humanity. I loved that. I even cried. I will recommend this film to anyone who doesn’t mind a lot of sex and violence. This is definitely a movie that you will have to see and make up your own mind. It will guarantee a lot of thought provoking conversation with your friends, so if you don’t want to have to think then this film is not for you.