Watchman: the review

I could take myself to the movies by myself a lot more than I have, but I don’t seem to. With Blacktown movies now just up the road, it might be a good idea, especially on cheap Tuesdays. Finally I made the move, and finally saw Watchmen, the long-awaited adaptation of the legendary graphic novel.

And I was impressed. I always thought it could be done well if done with class and reverance for the source material, and damn, Zack Snyder and co certainly showed that. Well cast, acted and presented, Watchmen is packed with amazing detail and design, and is so far down as my only must-by DVD this year. You’ll want to rewatch it 20 times just to catch all the little touches and flourishes.

Everyone knows the story now, and it’s well done on the big screen. Let me note that the opening credit sequence is one of the most amazing I have ever seen, with amazing design, full of cameos, and it serves and excellent intro to the story — basically telling 40 years of alternate history in a few minutes. The detail in it is amazing, and really gets things off to a good start.

I worried during the mid point of the movie if the nature of the story, with the constant flashes back and forward in time might drag things a little, but I felt it worked. It actually conveyed the depth and detail of the story. I can’t say if someone with no knowledge of the book (unlike msyelf) will really get into it, but it worked for me. There were definite changes from the book as well (though all the key points certainly remain intact), and we’re apparently getting the Black Freighter pirate tale on the DVD (they just couldn’t fit it into the feature), but I think it worked well enough. Sure, it’s not the book, but it’s not supposed to be.

The cast looked good, and did well in their roles, despite the fact they’re mostly relative unknowns. Let me just say that Malin Ackerman and Carla Gugino (at least in her younger guise) are seriously hot, and they even managed the subplot of superhero sexual disfunction with success!

I give high marks to Watchmen, but I am in the target market, with plenty of knowledge of the source material. Outside of that you may things slightly different, but it worked for me.

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