“I kept checking my watch on this one.â€
There has been a lot of hype and excitement about the new movie from 300 directorÂ Zack Snyder called The Watchmen. Based on one of the best selling graphic novels of the past century and with a spin on the entire way we look at super hero films I must admit I was pretty intrigued. I have never followed the comics and never read the novels and until about 8 months ago had ever even gave it a second thought. So I was worried going into it that I would be on the outside looking in. Like the first time you spend Christmas with your in-laws. You sort of know the names and faces but not enough of their history to fully interact and fit in.
Set in a fictitious 1984, The Watchmen takes a look at what society and true events would have looked like had super heroes walked among us. Told from the perspective of Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley) a renegade watchman with a grudge against the moral decay of society. When one of their own is killed he tries to invoke the help of other watchmen to find out what is going on. All the while Dr. Manhattan (Billy Crudup) is trying to do all he can to prevent the Russians from attacking us with nuclear missiles. Seriously.
As with most graphic novels to the big screen I loved the look of this film. It is gritty, grimy and gruesomely violent.Â This is certainly not a super hero film for your younger family members. It has a dark theme with very little in the way of redemption. Not being familiar with the characters I am sure I did not enjoy it as much as those who are long time fans. Though they do a great deal of back story and history I felt that I still was watching from the outside. This need to tell the back story also left little time for action and plot. Even at 2 hours and 40 minutes I felt like I didn’t get as much actual story movement as I did set up and development.
What I dug most about the film was the amazing soundtrack and the nostalgic look at past history. The weaving of 70â€™s and 80â€™s music into scenes with prominent cultural and historical figures made this at times more of a fantastic music video instead of a superhreo film. Even subtle background songs that many may not even recognize would go hand in hand with the characters emotions. So I applaud them for that.
Rated R for strong graphic violence, sexuality, nudity and language parents need to be careful with their teens on this one. There are lengthy sex scenes and quite a bit of nudity. Though the sex scenes are beautifully shot they are a certainly too much for younger viewers. Also, Dr. Manhattan never wears any clothes. I am not sure why and it was never talked about. Maybe because he is blue and not really human he can get away with this. But that said, his little Manhattan island is on display quite often. This may make watching with your sons and daughters a little awkward. Again, not being a fan or knowing much about the Watchmen I have to say I found the film a little too long with very little action and story. It almost felt like little bits of events pieced together to try and make a film. I give it 2 out of 5 dangling participles. I suggest you go to our website and read Kathryn’s review as well. She is a fan of the Watchmen and of the novels. This will give you two different insights into the film and may help you make a better decision on spending your movie dollar.Â For additional reviews, interview clips and great DVD giveaways, visit the website www.mungleshow.com”Review copyright 2009 Mungleshow Productions. Used by Permission.