Saturday, March 07, 2009

I Saw Watchmen...

...And chose not to use the obvious headline.

Top Ten Reasons Why Watchmen Ruled
1. Silk Spectre is smokin' hot.
2. Dr. Manhattan's monster blue horse cock(s).
3. Nite Owl's Owlship, especially when it ejaculates fire.
4. Jackie Earle Haley as Rorschach.
5. Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the Comedian.
6. Multiple "easter eggs" scattered throughout.
7. The overall '80s-noir look.
8. The fun of comparing 'n' contrasting the largely faithful film with its source material.
9. The fact that this movie adaptation ever got made in the first place.
10. Best of all, the opening backstory montage, the quality of which the rest of the film increasingly failed to maintain.

And Ten Reasons Why It Sucked
1. Silk Spectre can't act her way out of a diaper bag.
2. Too much screen time for Dr. Manhattan, whose blueness reminds me of Schwarzenegger's Mr. Freeze in the deplorable Batman & Robin.
3. The Nite Owl is too obvious a Batman ripoff (perhaps that's the point).
4. Ozymandias is too obvious a villain (perhaps even for those unfamiliar with the story).
5. The overwrought tunes, especially Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower" (performed by Hendrix), "The Times They Are A-Changin'" (performed by Dylan himself), and particularly "Desolation Row" (performed/butchered by My Chemical Romance).
6. The complete absence of the novel's cool comic-within-a-comic, Tales of the Black Freighter.
7. All the silly, unconvincing look-alikes: Warhol, Capote, Bowie, Kennedy, Annie Liebowitz, Lee Iaccoca, the McLaughlin Group panel, the Village People, Ted Koppel (I think), and Richard Nixon (and his monster horse schnozz).
8. No hoverbikes.
9. Occasionally subpar CGI, particularly on Bubastis, that dumb tiger dog thing.
10. The bogged-down Antarctic finale, which drags on far too long. Though the ending differs significantly from the novel's underwhelming climax, it's no improvement.

Overall, I dug the movie, and look forward to seeing it again (albeit months from now, on DVD). Granted, any such adaptation could hardly match the novel's complexity, and this ambitious attempt comes across as a mere, tip-of-the-iceberg primer. Still, eight stars.

Hey, check this out:

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