Monday, March 23, 2009

The Watchmen

Visually, The Watchmen ranks right at the top, with Dark Crystal. 300 runs a distant second. It is photographically true to the artists work. It reaches further by being absolutely, painstakingly true to the original story and writing style as well. This is no loose adaptation, and furthermore it works exactly because of these things. The two-story scale of the theatre version can barely contain it.

I'm pretty inured to screen violence, yet parts of this had me absolutely revulsed. It's not the graphic gore-which there is in plenty-it's that its not treated incidentally. You are meant to pay attention to it. Its meant to be ugly and squalid and disgusting and petty and cruel. And it is.

This movie is a lot of things...visually wonderful, exciting, intense-but it is not a 'fun' film. I thought it was almost as emotionally exhausting as Das Boot was. ( and at 2 hrs and some-odd minutes running time your ass ends up almost as numb afterwards.) This film makes a very caustic, mature statement about idealism vs. reality. It's R rated for a reason. Another large, blue, uncircumcized reason is waving around randomly on Dr. Manhattan for most of the movie. And then theres some hot costumed superhero sex too. So its not exactly a total bummer.

Go see it NOW. And go see it while it's still playing on the big screen. It's worth whatever you have to pay. It really is that good.


  1. I got claustrophobic watching Das Boot so I won't be taking your advice anytime soon.

  2. Oh hey MJ!

    I would like to see it. Especially because of of the big blue reason and superhero sex is hot!

  3. It really wasn't hot superhero sex. It was five minutes of squick inducing soft porn where you don't even see boob set to the weirdest music ever for a sex scene.
    This was not helped by the fact I really like that song and I was watching it with my folks.
    Though I do find myself harbouring a sneaky crush on the Comedian, for all his baby-momma killing ways. Any man who makes a cigar look that awesome has to be hot, right?
    As to Doc Manhatten- not Jewish, obviously...

  4. mj: wimp.

    cyber: well hello sunshine! its kinda darky-dark, so be warned.

    noshit: WHAT VERSION DID YOU SEE? I know boobs. There were BOOBS. Not to mention some pretty awesome simulated, plus full frontal everyone all running around...good lord woman, did you slide out to go burn one in the ladies room? Now you're sorry, huh. see what you missed? We must have got the european print by mistake and NZ ended up with the watered down american version or something.

  5. I like weird but not so sure about dark unless it's that comic book movie Bruce Willis and Jessica Alba was in kind of dark.

    By the way, the beeping in Das Boot was doing my head in.

  6. Oh bugger! Films only get anywhere near here two months after general release, then we have to get the ferry (one-and-half-hours) to watch them in a sports centre.

    Still worth it?

  7. I'd see it, but it lacks both funny AND happy (or bizarro surrealist scifi, ala Dark City, the Cell and Existenz), so... no. I'll take your word for it though! I will wait for Coraline to come out. And then go see that new kid's movie with the blob and big tall lady.
    blue wang, I done saw it on teh intarwub already. it was mighty blue.

  8. Ok, call me a wimp too, but I tried not once, but twice to see Das Boot in the theatre. Nope. I even had a translater of the Deuche but it did not help. Exhausting is not the word.

  9. Oh yes, My RO and I went to see it a couple of weeks ago, along with a couple hundred other genre fans. There were however a few couples and couple of much older people sprinkled around too (most of the former left before the end but the latter stayed till the credits ran out!)

    There were 2 specific parts in the film which made everyone grimace and most people actually turned away if only briefly (including me) but I agree that it was all necessary and completely in keeping with the style and message.

    My only criticism was that I didn't think that Adrain Veidt was the best casting because I found his character too cold in the movie which gave a lot away. I was a little disappointed because the point was that it wasn't a good vs evil case but his character was cooold. In the novel I found him to be a bit easier to like which made the ending all that more shocking and poignant.

    But I really am nitpicking because I loved it and I'm not eve a geek.


    p.s. The Comedian has ruined my enjoyment of Denny in Greys Anatomy but that is a small price to pay :-)

  10. cyber: no, its more like 'being the FNG during the Vietnam War' dark.

    malc: I'd say yes. It has 'V' beat all to hell, so if you liked 'V' then this is worth a ferry ride to a sports center, I'd say.

    bitchy: you make me ask myself 'where did i go wrong' a lot, you know.

    joy: this is a better time for a shorter time than 'Das Boot' but it isn't exactly a date movie, either.

    VP: yeah, I wondered about that too. and what was with the 'donna karan' shoulderpads? smartest man in the world my ASS; talk about a fashion faux pas.

  11. if you call an over-saturation of Silly Walks / Dead Parrot and Munchkinland in childhood "going wrong", then I would say... from ages 3 up? And benny hill. I mean really, Mother. How can I appreciate gore and sad stuff when I am busy saying "Ma-noooo-nah" in my head?

  12. So, you have a big Smerf fantasy huh? I always figured you would go for a dozen of the little guys.

  13. bingo! smack on review. I was frankly to mildly disturbed over the following two days. and i have forbad my mom to see it - i don't think i could olerate the freudian psychoanalysis.

    but the blue weinie was hawt!

  14. Anonymous5:52 PM

    Das Boot? *gluck gluck gluck* drown that stinky can ... L.-G. Buchheim wrote the book. Later he founded a museum.

  15. I loved it too.
    Parts of it were disturbing, but they really made it true to the original...and very real. Dark...made the point of the book...altho I was hoping for the giants quid. On well, guess you can't ahve everything.
    And call me crazy, but I was happy that they didn't put pants on Dr. Manhatten. You know...for accuracy.
    Yeah. that's it.