Wednesday, 18 March 2009

#26 Review For ‘Watchmen’

* * * *

Zack Snyder
Jackie Earle Harley
Billy Crudup
Jeffery Dean Morgan
David Hayter
Running Time

This blog may contain some spoilers from the graphic novel and film.

I saw it. I’ve seen the 'Watchmen' movie, who wants to touch me? I said who wants to touch me? I only know two (and a man on the train I once talked to) who have read the original graphic novel. Yet the majority of people I talk to about films still want to see it. I don’t know why though after watching the film I kinda thought that to fully appreciate the film, the book must be read. Its only subtle little things that fans would pick up on that add to the film. It was the small things that made me give it the * * * * so I am curious as to what a person who hasn’t read the book thinks of the film. The intro or opening credits for the films are one of the best I have ever seen. Bob Dylan ‘The times are a-changing’ over the history of the Watchmen and Minuet Men, it would make a true fan weep.

First let’s compare two, first thing that I found wired was the amount of violence they threw in the film over the book. In the comic they had fight scenes but very short ones, whilst in the film they seem to have taken a years course in Kung Fu. They just keep running into battle and cracking some arms. Even though the fighting was out of context it wasn’t the only thing. The sex scenes I found are really quite pornographic, if someone smuggled there kids in then they would be asking about the birds and the bees by the time they came out. Then comes the gore. And it was gory. At one point on a finger Dc Manhattan can make people explode and it happens a lot. At one point the popping on two thugs was so over gory every had a nervous laugh, whilst on screen a woman looked up and saw the skeleton of a mans arm swings dripping blood. Even though you might think I am saying these as negatives, I’m actually not. Which is surprising because I would have thought that I would have thought that it was killing the film, but I thought it added to the experience. Since I expect that Snyder knew it would get and adult rating he thought why not? They don’t tip toe round Night Owl II and Silk Spectre II getting friendly together in Archie (Night Owl II’s flying ship). And for the fighting and gore threw fighting you can tell that they wore actually once crime fighters.

Even though the ending has changed from the super alien squid it is still interesting. A bit confusing because things didn’t add up but only a reader of the book would understand. The ending still gets the same message across and most of the ending was still true. I expected the ending to be proper gander or fuel for the war in Iraq by using nukes and stuff but it really wasn’t. As I said in a previous blog (#3 2009, What To Expect?) the script for ‘Watchman’ has been hailed as one of the most accurate book to film adaptations. And I really think it shows because for some parts it was like reading/looking at the book/film… you know what I mean.

To prove what I wasn’t patronising the read with the hole, if you haven’t read you won’t like statement. I asked someone who had seen the film but hadn’t read the book. They said that the film was hard to follow and weird. This wasn’t just said by him alone, that seems to be a lot of reactions from audiences. What I am getting at it that the film is an adaptation. So a lot of people with complain and say they didn’t get it. But lets face it, it was made for fans. I’m not saying fans of the book shouldn’t go see it but be warned you might not get it all.

If you fell like seeing a super hero film, ‘Watchman’ isn’t for you. ‘Watchmen’ is not a super hero film, it is an action sci-fi. It angers me when people are referring to Night Owl II as Batman. He’s not. He’s a pathetic ex vigilante who sulks in his basement. Well that’s what I got from the book, in the film it seems like a different matter, but it doesn’t matter. Jackie Earle Harley plays a fantastic Rorschach. I was some what hesitant at first but he totally pulled it off. It was even creepy how much he looked like his comic counter part. However I think that comes over with all the characters. Each seemed to have been perfect for there roles. With the exception to two characters (yes I contradicted myself), Matthew Goode was probably the worst picked actor to play this role. A thirty year old, British actor playing a forty something year old, bulky genius. So he tried his best, bless him, but it didn’t go down well with me and others. The second casting that I disliked was Carla Gugino as the first Silk Spectre. Ok she looked fine (and I mean fine) during the flash backs but looks terrible when playing and old woman. The make up is terrible its laughable, I still like her so I can forgive her this once. However apart from that the characters and set are amazing.

So for a verdict, I will say this. I thought the film would be a flop and for some people it was. But the set and characters really bring the film as a hole alive. It is one of the best adaptations ever and it will be remembered for that. Of course if you haven’t read the book your missing out on curant parts but that’s to be expected, isn’t it? Im not going to recommend it to non-readers because I think you could be seeing other films but strongly recommend it to fans of the book, not that they haven’t all ready read it, wrote a blog and already buying those Rorschach costumes to fight those people still in Joker outfits.

Oliver Hunt

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