Saturday, March 14, 2009


I haven't read the graphic novel that Watchmen was adapted from, but I am told that the film is utterly faithful to its source. So faithful, in fact, that director Zack Snyder is said to have used the comic as his storyboard.

Maybe that wasn't such a good idea.

Watchmen is a grand visual spectacle, filled with action, style, and deep philosophical observations on the moral implications of power. The concept is incredibly original, but that originality stems entirely from graphic novel. Unfortunately, in making such a meticulous transition from page to screen, the filmmakers have added absolutely nothing.

The result is a curiously flat, emotionally uninvolving film. It's a little like having someone read a book to you - an effect exacerbated by some pretty mediocre performances, with the exception of Rorschach and perhaps The Comedian.

Watchmen is still a pretty good movie, worthy of three stars and the price of admission. It's just a shame that it wasn't great.

(shockingly, Murray liked it more that I did!)

(and the Champion TOTALLY butchered my review! grrrr!!!)


  1. You should really look at the graphic novel. If you end up checking it out, you will notice how different the movie feels from the book. Some really strange decisions that made the movie worse than it could have been.

  2. Murray's review was interesting as well... "The fun stopped when two dogs fought over the leg of a slain little girl. That was too graphic for me — the same with shooting a pregnant woman."

    Both are straight out of the novel. Dark stuff...

    However, the former is an instance where Snyder made a weird decision... Why not just use the more subtle, and therefore more powerful scene straight out of the book

    SPOILER - (Rorschach handcuffs the kidnapper and sets the house on fire, standing outside, just watching it burn)

    He didn't need to change it. The scene was already gut wrenching as it stood in the novel.

  3. Also, if you don't want to read the book, check out the motion comic:

    Aaaaaaand I'm done spamming your blog ;)

  4. The felt episodic, while great for a graphic novel, not so good for a movie...

  5. Well, maybe not ENTIRELY done spamming your blog...

    Episodic film can work... If done properly... Look at Sin City. The problem comes when you go in unfamiliar with the content expecting a traditional movie.

    While I enjoyed the movie, it definitely had some major flaws (totally cliche music for starters). 7/10 from me. Barely.

  6. I kept thinking that the guy who played the Comedian was Javier Bardem (I found out later that it's actually Jeffrey Dean Morgan), but the two actors definitely look alike

  7. The first time I saw the trailer I thought it was Robert Downey Jr. doing another superhero.

  8. No, it is not faithful. There are some change and reduction. Some innovation work (like the opening credit) and some innovation didn't work (I hate the chopping head scene.. I prefer the original scene in the comic, chain the pedophilia murder and leave him burned off screen).

    When I read the book, I saw the action was in the real world, like when I watch The Dark Knight. The slow motion in the movie distract the story. It only worked in opening credit.