Friday, March 06, 2009

I Watched The Watchmen

Earl and I just saw Watchmen.

All I can say is that I think this might be a near perfect adaptation of the original source material.

In short, the movie was OUTSTANDING!

In case you've been living under a rock for the last few weeks during the media blitz for this film, you already know that Watchmen was adapted from a comic book.

What you might NOT know, is just how important a literary work within the world of comics the Watchmen was when it premiered in 1985, and how important it still is today.

The Watchmen has been attempted to be made into a film about a dozen times now in the last 20 years. Every time, the option to make it into a movie would inevitably run out, and a year or two later word would spread that there was another film company attempting to get it made.

The failures to get the comic made into a movie are legendary within the geeky world of comic fandom. From the exorbitant costs, to licensing issues, to not having the technical ability to pull off all of the special effects, each time someone tried to get this made, it ended in dismal failure.

Until now.

This movie was good. Very good. And if you have been living with these characters in your mind for the past 2 decades like I have, then upgrade that analysis to "near perfect'.

For anyone who doesn't know the story, Watchmen tells the tale of the world, set in 1985, but a very different 1985 than we all knew.

This world, since the 1920's, had lived with superhero's... men and women with amazing powers and abilities that banded together to fight injustice in an increasingly unjust world. As the years went by, some hero's retired, some were killed, and some eventually passed on their title to the next generation.

Then, in the 70's, the government basically attempted to reign in all costumed heroes. Some hung up their capes and quit. Some went public. Some started to work as operatives in the military.

And some continued the fight, but did so from the shadows, branded as fugitives from the law.

As the story opens, this warped version of America is poised on the brink of nuclear Armageddon with the Soviet Union. There are public protests, riots, and a general state of panic is sweeping the country.

It is during this upheaval that someone murders The Comedian, a masked hero that has been on both sides of the law. His death, and the reasons behind it, begin to unravel a series of events that change the world, and the way it looks at these costumed gods that walk among them.


I won't go into any more detail than that. Believe me, i could prattle on about this movie all day.

Suffice to say that Zack Snyder, who I already considered to be the best young director working today, hit this one SO out of the park that I believe all future superhero movies will use this as the benchmark for years to come. Snyder is obviously a fan of this genre. He is one of us, and it shows with every beautiful frame.

Be warned: For those of you thinking this is another Hulk or Fantastic 4.... it's not. The themes and story here are all R-Rated, and not for the younger set. This is an ADULT story, with ADULT situations, language, and violence.

It's a very mature story, that just HAPPENS to be about superheroes.

This is the movie I dared hope Watchmen could one day be, 20 years ago when a young Slyde read it in his college dorm for the first time, enraptured with every page.

20 years in the making, this movie was absolutely worth the wait.

p.s. I got my review up on my blog before you did Earl..... bite me!

24 comments:

Dr Zibbs said...

I can't wait to see this!

Slyde said...

zibbs: RUN to the theatre...

B.E. Earl said...

Fucker! And my post was gonna be title the same thing. Double Fucker!

Just a couple of corrections though. Until Dr. Manhattan, none of the costumed heroes were "super" heroes. Even Ozymandias' supreme intellect and conditioning were within human limits. And I believe the Minutemen were formed in 1940, not the 1920s. Hooded Justice was the first costumed hero and he arrived on the scene in 1938.

Dick.

bobgirrl said...

"but a very different 1985 than we all knew." So are you saying there are no stirrup pants??

Slyde said...

earl: i stand corrected. dick

bobgirrl: regrettably, stirrup pants survived..

Michelle said...

I have goosebumps and need to see this!!

I won't run though. But i will take your and B.E advice and see it in IMAX!!!

HAPPY SATURDAY!

James said...

Earl I thought the Minutemen were formed in 1775......

teeni said...

The Watchmen was awesome! TGH and I saw it yesterday - he took the day off work and we went. Really close to the original novel! I really enjoyed it! Especially the blue cgi penis. LOL. No, I will NOT grow up. ;)

Being Brazen said...

cant wait to see this film

mo.stoneskin said...

I'm gonna have to watch it. And having spent the last, gosh who knows quite how long?, age under a rock it was nice to hear such eloquent prattle...

Anyhow, I've got a rock to get back under so that's all for now.

Holly Hall said...

ok I have a longer comment about comic books and blue grass music. but, no time or energy to put it here right now.

i can say I am glad you like my blog and am a regular reader and glad you are suggested the lesbian action post.

that will go in the Hall Hall of Fame.

:)

Mrs. Hall

Chris H said...

I havn't seen it yet... so didn't read you post IN CASE you spoilt it for me! ONWARD...

Raechelle said...

It's funny-the only time I hear about this movie is when I read american blogs (I'm a yank too!)...-so far the hype has not hit Aus that I'm aware of....of course I do live under a rock...well in the rainforest-almost the same-right?!...looking forward to it when it comes on dvd anyway! ;-)

2abes said...

great review...move over siskil & ebert (yeah i know one died but have no idea which one)...ever think maybe "Slyde and Earl". You two can fight for top billing. I am looking forward to seeing this movie.

Bruce said...

Some day in the future, when I can hijack this film off the internet and download it, I will have to give it a look, just to see what all the hype is about.

Jennifer and Sandi said...

Boyz stop fighting!!! Sounds like a good flick. Congrats on the review before BEE

Happy Monday!

- Jennifer

Ookami Snow said...

I was wondering about how everyone else got superpowers, that makes more sense now.

Bina said...

I tried several times to comment on here and the fucker wouldn't let me!

And I know I remembered I said how much I love Earl's "Double Fucker!" remark and I'll use it in the future!

latindog said...

One problem I have always had with Watchmen is the instance on the "adult" nature of the book. It seems to me that when the book came out in 1985, the comics industry had a bit of a chip on its shoulder and saw this book as a premier example of comic as literature. Nearly 25 years later though most people who haven;t had their heads in the sand accept comics as a medium that's capable of telling a range of stories and don't necessarily discount them as children's books. I think the director of this movie with its hyperbolic violence and (to my eyes) over-the-top costumed hero sex was a bit obsessed with the whole idea of ensuring that no one confused the movie with a kiddie superhero flick. I felt that kind of self-conscious straining to be taken seriously in both the book (which I only read a few years ago)and the film. I think a lot of Sci Fi (e.g. the recent Battlestar Gallactica which I enjoy) and Fantasy (GRR Martin's Song of Ice and Fire which I also like) fall into this same trap of making their situations extraordinarily gritty to avoid the cliches of the genre. Ultimately though, the grimness of the new wave of "serious/adult" comics, SciFi, etc. becomes cliched in itself. That said, I liked the movie.

Amorous Rocker said...

I started to read this post and then stopped after "OUTSTANDING" because I haven't seen this yet. I was so tempted to read on and see what all you would say but I had to stop. I'm going tomorrow or Wednesday to see it hopefully. I'm excited. =D

Tamara said...

You know my feeling son graphic novels and graphic-novels-turned-into-movies. I won't see it, but glad it was all you hoped it could be. It's awesome (and rare) when movies actually meet expectations ;-)

honeywine said...

Dang it! Now I'm sorry that I read this. Paladin, being the huge comic geek that he is, is dying to take me to see it and now I know the plot. Oh well, I'll just try to lose myself in the special effects. :)

Heff said...

I've heard only good things about the movie, but must admit that before it went in to production, I had never heard of the comicbook. Oh, excuse me - graphic novel.

Tequila Mockingbird said...

not nearly enough boobs in that movie. i was hoping for some oilt up boobs, sigh