Read and Seen: Watchmen

The second simultaneous book and film review by LiteraryMinded’s Angela Meyer and Celluloid Tongue’s Gerard Elson.

watchmenWatchmen, Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons
(1986, DC Comics, 9781401222666 – Aus, US)
Angela says…

Reading a graphic novel is an experience already half-way between literature and film. The opening ‘frames’ of Watchmen are like a series of shots from moving cameras, with the ‘voiceover’ of a character we will soon come to know, Rorschach. Immediately, the picture of this world is grim, skeptical and bleak – ‘…now the whole world stands on the brink, staring down into bloody hell, all those liberals and intellectuals and smooth-talkers’. His words here and throughout remind me somewhat of Taxi Driver’s malcontented, morally and politically ambiguous Travis Bickle.

Rorschach (whose guise is indeed a transforming inkblot image) is one of the few remaining active masked vigilantes in a city that outlawed their activity via the ‘Keene Act’ in 1977. The vigilantes are introduced soon into the story, after the Comedian is murdered at the beginning. Rorschach suspects a conspiracy against masked vigilantes, and that someone is picking them off, one by one. Each chapter gives the reader a detailed background of one character, while keeping the present action rolling – exiles to other planets, love and deception, more deaths, secrets revealed from checkered pasts; and what the washed-up superheroes do with their outfits, their ships, their basements, their spare time, money and their minds. The story is rich and full at the time of writing I predict the cinema version will have nowhere near the amount of detail contained within the pages.

The format of the book is also interesting – along with each chapter is an informative/interesting fragment from the world of the story – such as an extract from the original ‘Night Owl’ Hollis Mason’s biography Under the Hood; sections from a right-wing newspaper running stories on the vigilantes being the only hope against ‘Red Armageddon’; extracts from the new Nite Owl’s ornithological articles, and so on. The book is set in 1980s New York, an alternate Cold War era, and the characters are all uncomfortably ambiguous in terms of what they stand for, and how they stand for it. Most are far, far darker than the dark knight, Batman. Skewed notions of justice, righteousness, peace and anarchy are all brought to the fore, but not so much engaged with or ‘solved’ – merely presented to the reader. It makes for compelling, but uncomfortable reading. I’m not sure I was rooting for anyone – what drew me on was the compulsion to know more about their motivations, to see if my fears would be confirmed, to find out if there was any hope.

And I was completely gutted by the ending.

I must mention some other points of interest. The character of Jon, or Dr Manhattan, recreates his own molecular structure after a radioactive accident (his father was a watchmaker, it all makes suspended-imagination-sense). What I enjoyed about his chapter (Chaper IV) was the way he introduced his awareness of non-linear time. This is always something that has fascinated me. And as his story is recounted, the panels change between past, present, and even future – ‘Perhaps the world is not made. Perhaps nothing is made. Perhaps it simply is, has been, will always be there.’ And everything that is revealed about the characters, and the different (and distant) ways they view life, time, the world, and humanity will have relevance in the final pages.

One last point of interest, and I seriously wonder if this can be translated to film, is the scenes which have a newspaper vendor waxing lyrical about the state of the world to customers, to the air, to the unseen reader. While he talks (and talks) and doesn’t get through to anyone (it’s oh so bleak), a young man reads a comic book beside him. As he reads, parts of this seafaring story are relayed simultaneously, with the vendor’s rants. In some ways, the two characters are beside each other, and attempting to find out the same things on different levels, through different mediums. Then in their one chance for connection, the vendor is misunderstood, and it is missed. The streets become filled with fighting – people turning against each other – people misunderstanding each other’s personal struggles and personal values – and soon the streets are filled with much worse.

One thing that irked me was a definite lack in developed female characters. The females are all clichéd caricatures – sexually and emotionally vulnerable (or else lesbian) – which is a real shame. But, it’s not as though any of the male characters are truly rounded anyway. Their detailed backgrounds conveniently explain every tic, but by the end, it’s an outcome of competing concepts. The only character who felt three-dimensional to me was Rorschach, but I’m not sure if this is a subjective, comparative, recognition of aspects of the drawn character, or that he was written with more depth by Alan Moore. Much of the writing and dialogue is also bordering on corny – the laments about the scum of the earth and a dying world etc. – a little clunky, but nonetheless relevant to the overall themes.

The above points are not at all to say I didn’t enjoy the book – it was compelling and darkly entertaining all the way through. The story is rich, and most definitely resonant. The drawings by Dave Gibbons are really spectacular and remind me to read more graphic fiction. I would also recommend Alan Moore’s V For Vendetta (which you may also have seen the film of).

rorschach21Watchmen
(directed by Zack Snyder, screenplay by David Hayter & Alex Tse, 2009 – now on DVD/blu-ray)
Gerard says…

USA, 1985: With the nation on the precipice of nuclear war with the Soviets (the protracted Cold War about to turn hot), and Richard Nixon still in office, nervy finger on the button, America’s in the direst of straits. The costumed avengers who once marshalled the streets are long outlawed and now out of action, returned, for the most, to lives of anonymity, left to watch impotently on as society devours itself. And the world’s sole honest-to-godliness super-powered miracle-man – at once both national security policy and walking WMD – is growing increasingly apathetic to the plights of humanity; the existence of life is a highly overrated phenomenon to the indestructible inhabitant of a quantum universe, after all.

Welcome to the darkly imagined world of Watchmen, arguably comicdom’s most analogous offering – in both esteem and complexity – to the meticulously weaved intricacies of The Lord of the Rings. Much like Tolkien’s sturdy tome pre-Kiwi can-do, writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons’ ambitious fusion of superhero subversion and societal treatise had long borne the branding ‘unfilmable,’ with an enviable inventory of Hollywood hit-men left vexed and perplexed in its wake. Enter Zack Snyder, geek auteur du jour, who proved keenly attuned to the idiom of the medium with his operatically absurd/deliriously enjoyable big-screen mounting of Frank Miller’s 300. Now, credit first where credit’s due: that Snyder’s Watchmen even made it to cinemas is alone nothing short of a coup, the relative novice succeeding where many more seasoned (and venerated) reputations had failed, having joined the grumbling Moore, slighted by cinema’s high-profile muck-ups of his works in the past, in his unswerving belief that his serpentine opus is a tale tailor-made for exclusive existence on the panelled page. Yet film the unfilmable Snyder has, and cause for greater celebration is the simple truth that Watchmen is far from the unintelligible mess it so easily could have been. In fact, the filmmaker has shown a fanatic’s reverence for his source, shepherding Moore’s blockbuster-unfriendly ideas into multiplexes relatively intact, and Watchmen stands cowled head and caped shoulders above expectations.

When thoroughly distilled, at Watchmen‘s heart beats the jigsawed intrigue of a noir-ish whodunit. A mask’s been murdered – the cigar-chomping misogynist, The Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), one of the few vigilantes left active by engaging in government-sanctioned political subterfuge. Pitilessly pummelled to within an inch of his life before being dealt a spectacular death by defenestration, it’s not long before the city’s lone still-illegally-practicing disguised gumshoe, Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley), arrives at the scene to investigate and the murky shadows of conspiracy start to rise all around.

Though as with Watchmen in print, this isn’t that simple, with Snyder and scripters David Hayter and Alex Tse boldly shunning the acute narrative streamlining of the more-or-less successfully Moore-sourced V for Vendetta and making an admirable effort to allow ample exploration of their colourful cast’s spider-webbed geneses and individual backstories. So there’s Dan Dreiberg, AKA Nite Owl II (Patrick Wilson), mild-mannered Clarke Kent-alike, with his inability to get it up unless garbed in his now-closeted costume; Laurie Jupiter, alias Silk Spectre II (Malin Akerman), former torch-carrying stiletto-filler for mother, Sally, the original Silk Spectre (Carla Gugino), herself a crimefighter cum pinup babe back in the roarin’ ’40s; Adrian Veidt, or Ozymandias (Matthew Goode), pinnacle of Aryan perfection and self-styled ‘Smartest Man in the World’; and cerulean super-being, Dr Mahattan (Billy Crudup), atomic age danger made manifest and boyfriend of Laurie – not to mention particle-manipulating straddler of his own concurrent personal timelines. 

It sounds like a lot to swallow, but Snyder brings neophytes swiftly up to speed with an ingenious opening credits montage set to Bob Dylan’s ‘The Times They Are a-Changin’, presenting a crash course in Watchmen‘s alternate history in which costumed heroes have had a hand in momentous modern American – and indeed, world – events; iconography re-dressed in spandex. But from here, Snyder ditches the neighbourly concern for the unconverted and launches into a no-punches-pulled, near blow-for-blow rendering of the meat and potatoes of most heavily lauded graphic novel of all time, which, despite its estimable exertion to realign the kapow-to-character ratio in support of the latter, still feels perversely snipped short at 162 minutes. In this theatrical cut (we’re promised two lengthier iterations further down the line), it should be clear to aficionado and virgin alike where the pruning’s occurred, for, after the leisurely measure at which Watchmen develops its first two acts, the dash it makes for the finish feels all the swifter by compare. But even the most ardent of purists should find no cause for lament in the film’s skilfully reworked finale, which – fans will note – plays out sans calamari but to equally conflicting effect, managing both organic thematic and narrative culmination whilst providing the period setting a welcome jolt of immediacy by tapping into the contemporary fears of the zeitgeist. 

If you’re starting to feel Snyder’s proved himself up to the task, you’re certainly not far off the mark, though the director’s stylistic tics might have been better left checked at the door, as the self-conscious showiness of his ‘mid-shot ramping-then-decelerating frame rate’ routine is here both intrusive and counterintuitive; to sex up the violence of Watchmen is to negate its purpose – it’s hard to feel appalled whilst thinking ‘Gee, whiz!’. Thankfully, it’s a gimmick the filmmaker keeps on a fairly tight chain, trotting it out only so often enough as to re-rouse those attentions attendant in hopes of a high-octane serving of superheroics from the man who made a limb-lopping ballet of the Battle of Thermopylae, using his God-given aptitude for ocular opulence to sugar the pill of Moore’s cynicism for the folk in the cheap seats. 

Of equally varying success are the tunes Snyder lays down on the soundtrack, which careen wildly from the dubious (witness a behemoth Dr Manhattan stride the Vietnam warfields to ‘Ride of the Valkyries’ and think only of Apocalyspe Now; watch two Watchpersons’ nigh-on gratuitous induction to the mile high club advance on the cringe-worthy as they tenderly boff to the strains of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’), to the flat-out inspired (Philip Glass’ suitably sci-fi sounding ‘Pruit Igoe & Prophecies’ is the pitch-perfect accompaniment to Manhattan’s origin-exposing Martian sojourn; a violent riot’s lent irony by KC & The Sunshine Band as The Comedian struts his stuff to the funk of ‘I’m Your Boogie Man’), with the more triumphant inclusions going some length to atone for Tyler Bates’ wearily perfunctory score. Crucially, Snyder’s knack for filling a role is much more reliable, Watchmen‘s casting perhaps its strongest suit. Best of the bunch are an emotionally aloof mo-capped Billy Crudup, letting it all hang out as the faultlessly-sculpted blue demigod, a va-va-vooming Gugino as the sexy Silk Spectre (a vision in girdle and garters), and, second to none, Earle Haley as Rorschach, the film’s hardnosed and stiff-tongued morally unflinching epicentre. His masked face an oscillating inkblot symbolic of the tumult inside, the actor’s guttural growlings the aural equivalent of Gibbons’ squigglingly-scrawled comicbook word balloons, if the character doesn’t come off as alarmingly bigoted as he is on the page, blame the script: Earle Haley is Rorschach.

Definitive judgement’s reserved for the Ultimate Extended Collector’s Edition, in which Snyder will presumably reinsert as many of the experience-enhancing and here-jettisoned subplots as he was able get away with arranging before cameras, but, taken as is, this is a graphically spectacular and staggeringly faithful translation from celebrated page to screen. Akerman’s acting chops may falter, critical plotlines might feel shortchanged, and we’re never quite given enough of Dean Morgan’s brilliant embodiment of The Comedian, but the sheer conceptual density and the filmmaker’s tightly-packed frames will ensure return viewers are richly rewarded. This is blockbuster moviemaking with a capital ‘Ballsy’ – and Synder’s to be commended for erring on the side of fidelity to the book.

And of Moore’s sour promise to never sit down for a viewing of the most loyal take on his work yet put to screen? Ask Snyder and he’ll likely borrow a line from Watchmen‘s most despicable realist: ‘Bitter? Fuck no – I think it’s hilarious!’

Angela’s post-film notes… 

Watchmen worked as a film. Two highlights for me were the casting and the soundtrack. Music is one of the only things literature can’t do, and in most parts the choice of classic songs (it was almost the soundtrack for Easy Rider) had mega impact, and often humour. Only a few times were the choices slightly off, and the score for the film itself was unremarkable – nothing like the moody, memorable soundtrack of The Dark Knight. Rorschach, The Nite Owl, Dr Manhattan and most other characters were perfectly cast – giving suitable voice and expression to their individual tics. I still haven’t gotten over the fact that I find Nite Owl so incredibly attractive (sensitivity/awkwardness with whiff of danger/toughness? – but then I hate his weakness also!). Silk Spectre was a little young, and her character just as one-dimensional as in the book. I have more to say on one other character but it could give away the ending, so I won’t. It was an entertaining ride – the opening and credit sequence gave me chills (I’m sure Gerard has described in detail). All fans of the book will agree that it is a shame a few things/characters were shunted, but you can understand why for narrative’s sake. The extended cut on DVD will be much richer for those who have read the novel. Ultra-violence and nudie scenes bordered on schlocky. The moral dilemma is in tact in the ending, but feels quicker (even though some parts are played out longer) and not as bleak somehow. Rorschach seems more heroic than he should, and less disturbingly complex. Overall, enjoyed, and would definitely watch it again.

Watchmen

See also Read and Seen: Revolutionary Road.

26 thoughts on “Read and Seen: Watchmen

  1. I found this – not to beat around the bush – a pretentious load of overblown bunkum.

    One issue, amongst a good few, i had with it was the idiotic pandering to the salivating male geek market with the genteel rubber clad hottie character, slash, chick you’d take home to momma. What was that all about? I saw a rehash of the 1950’s servile housewife in her character. Sure she satisfied a few modern feminist ideals, as in the ability to execute a roundhouse kick to the chops of a loser baddy, but otherwise she did nothing but agonize over the conceited or flaccid exploits of her two suitors. Inter-splice this with episodes of fat, bald dullards having their hands chopped of with an angle grinder, painful espousing of philosophical mantra by a blue superman with a predilection to nudity – except for the odd time when he feels the need to don a suit, and a bizarrely hideous scene, clumsily aping the excellent ‘Sin City’, of dogs chewing on the human remains of a child. I think this was meant to depict something about Roschrch’s motivations and cast him as an avenging angel.

    It’s interesting how this film has polarised opinion like no other. Why is that i wonder?

  2. Hi glazedham,

    thanks for your comment. I didn’t write much in my post-film notes but I did have a bit of a problem with the violence, as did Gerard, which he says here: ‘to sex up the violence of Watchmen is to negate its purpose – it’s hard to feel appalled whilst thinking ‘Gee, whiz!’’

    I also have a major problem with the objectification of Silk Spectre II, so I’ll agree with you there. And both Gerard and I mentioned the problem with not rounding out Rorscach enough on screen, and thus he comes across as more apeealing, or ‘avenging angel’ as you put it, than complexly messed-up (and a right-wing misogynist prick)!

    But overall, Gerard and I, having both found a lot to like in the comic, did get a lot out of the viewing experience, as you can tell.

    Thanks so much for your input!

  3. Who’s watching the Watchmen is one of its themes. Apparently lots of people are, if early box office is any indication.

    Others can buy into the disputes between the filmmakers and purists of DC Comics about this story of comic book heroes. The graphic novel hasn’t been my preferred genre since the 1950s but I have enjoyed some of the film adaptations of the less well known super heroes and villains such as Sin City, V for Vendatta and Iron Man. Perhaps the best of the recent ones was Hell Boy.

    There’s a full review at Not Everybody Wants To Rule The World

    • Thanks for sharing Kevin. Enjoyed your take on it. Like this:

      ‘The themes are probably of little interest to many action fans. This is a meta-hero film that explores the ethics of intervention in human affairs and of appropriate means to an end. It’s the kind of philosophical discussion that the Greek gods might have had on Mount Olympus. The ancient world permeates the whole production. As well as the Greeks we have Egyptians and Persians. Very much the stuff of modern sci-fi.’

      The ethical challenges of the overall storyline and within the charcaters themselves are what really drew me in.

      Note to commenters: I work full time and can only moderate/edit comments at lunch and after work (just in case this gets going today). Please continue and I’ll get back to you!

  4. @glazedham: Personally, I’ve always found Laurie to be intentionally sketched as an infuriating character – Sally Jupiter is the interesting Silk Spectre, a woman who wilfully capitalised on her obvious charms, who took out crims and inked sponsorhip contracts at a time when the star-powered commercial tie-in was still a fledgling concept, and, most interestingly of all [big ol’ SPOILER WARNING for those who’ve not yet been acquainted with Watchmen] mothering a child to the very man who attempted to rape her – many years after the fact. I’m not purporting the women in Watchmen to be exemplary role models, but that’s the entire conceit of the whole affair: none of the characters are. They’re heroes who aren’t to be emulated, deeply troubled and dreadfully human. Exaggeratedly so? Of course, but that’s really the currency of the realm. You mentioned Sin City (which I’m also a big fan of) – what in that worked more for you than Watchmen? Sin City has always been about the roleplaying for me, a highly aestheicised world peopled by spot-on genre cutouts. Great entertainment, but much less nuanced and conflicting than Watchmen.

    Did have the same qualms as you with the geek pandering though, but way I figure it, Snyder had to give the studio something for all the money they’ve thrown at the thing, and Malin Akerman’s sashaying, latex-clad arse is about as widely marketable a concept as can be wringed from Watchmen….

  5. “They’re heroes who aren’t to be emulated, deeply troubled and dreadfully human. Exaggeratedly so?”

    Are you talking about the film’s morality, or your own. Just interested.

    The question I ask is why not? If you are deeply troubled and dreadfully human maybe the only way forward is a holy cause, which will be pursued in a dysfunctional way. Isn’t that what noir is all about anyhow?

    I’ll keep an eye out. Movie gets lost in the business, magic when I get to it though. Maybe a good one to watch on video at home.

    Thanks for the heads up.

    • ‘The question I ask is why not? If you are deeply troubled and dreadfully human maybe the only way forward is a holy cause, which will be pursued in a dysfunctional way. Isn’t that what noir is all about anyhow?’

      When you see it you’ll know what we mean. And I don’t know what you mean by a holy cause. It’s hard to explain the monster of a moral issue that is plonked on you at the end of the book/film without, of course, giving it all away. Just trust us, it’s a dilemma – philosophical, spiritual, political, emotional, whatever.

    • Travis Bickle is a disturbed and lonely charcater. There are parts of him many of us relate to, as I explored in the post you mention. One can’t help smiling at the kind of ‘flip’ that has occured in the ‘you talkin’ to me?’ scene, but it does disturb me when people really like this scene. Guns are bad. You’re supposed to be challenged by the end of the film Taxi Driver. I don’t think you’re supposed to believe wholeheartedly that he is heroic.

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  7. I agree with everything you said….. I think the political cycle in the film is the key.

    Bickel reminds me of that Great Presbyterian Stonewall Jackson.

    Anyhows…. yr on the right track. The exploration of context I think answers the dilemas and show that the dillemma are existential…. you know Daesin and all that thrown into a world of situations not of ones choosing. Having do hard lines as best one can. Chinatown does this as well, explores the perversion at the heart of the city.

    I practice non violence at strategic and tactical levels, not at the ultimate philisophical levels….. sadly (for me) I do celebrate Bickels crazy morality because at least it is a morality that is lived and not merely postulated. (Ref Mt Moriah, the trees of Marme)

    Anyhow not ready for the great leap forward into LiteraryMinded fandom. On Facebook I am pretty random with friendship.

    I didn’t read that post, just saw Travis mentioned.

    Anyhow I wasn’t meaning to annoy.

  8. “a holy cause”

    a cause(action) that comes to you from God and of which you are convinced wholeheartedly –

    “Guns are bad.” is this the films morality or yours? I cant remember the ending at the moment anyway…. just remember it is tragic.

    If I annoy you let me know and ill go quiet for a while and then try again.

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  10. Not a literacy minded person myself (can you tell 😉 )

    Just thought I say that I’m really surprised at how much I enjoyed reading this blog (first time)

    Most of what you people say is way over my head, but they way you say it, wow

    Wish I’d paid more attention in school, great stuff

  11. Errr Angela this blog is ammmazzinnng. Seriously. This fiction/poetry thing just woke up for me after 7 years of academic reading and writing. Crikey subs worth the admission here alone.

    The links are cool too. Its like luna park.

    Hope i haven’t freaked you. I’m a nice guy and super excitable at the moment.

  12. @celluiloidtongue..yeah i hear what you say. The characters are deliberately flawed in order to imbue them with a sense of being human. Women are doomed to be contradictory. With great power comes great arrogance. Good guys always lose.

    What’s missing is subtlety. The great auteurs are able to deftly convey these themes using language that resonates knowingly in our consciousness. The bad ones, clumsily and impatiently, cram odd shaped blocks into the wrong holes.

  13. “But even the most ardent of purists should find no cause for lament in the film’s skilfully reworked finale…”

    Oh, lord…

    The ending in the film is both illogical and repulsive. If an American superweapon malfunctioned, how would any other country find cause to unite with America? How does uncovering Rorschach’s journal change a thing? Instead of being afraid of Dr Manhattan they’re afraid of Veidt? Listening to the Nixon-muppet ramble on about peace in the last few moments was some of the most nauseating cinema I’ve seen in the last few years.

    Ever since Watchmen came out, there have been comics fans AND writers who complain about how the original ending didn’t work and almost ruined the book. That was the point. Having deconstructed the superhero, Moore then deconstructed Watchmen in a sadly failed attempt to stop people mistaking what his angry death threat to a genre as a future blueprint for superhero comics. “What, you like realistic grim and gritty heroes with trauma? Well, here’s a supervillain with a secret lair and a ridiculous scheme with a giant psychic squid. Who wins. Who had won from the start. And was very likely RIGHT.”

  14. Sorry people – just saw this pile of dogs crap and it is only the third film that I have walked out on in my life. The first was Body of Evidence, after about the seventeenth Mandonna bonkintg of Danial Defoe (also why couldn’t we see once just once someone doing hot oil and baby wax on the queen) and the second was in Sex andd Zen just after the two Jap chicks had both fucked a flute (we were only there cause someone suggested the film as a way of inducing labour).

    This Watchman film is nothing but the emperors new clothes in my opinion. Pretentious stupid film. Thanks for the hot tip babies – I’d had rather be watching porn.

    Two pretty sharp observers told me it was good as I walked in and agreed with me that it was utterly nonsensical nihalistic bullshit as we discussed it walking out. One of these is a guy with a pretty heavy duty visual arts rep. Hype it seems, undermines even the best observers these days. One iof thiose films that is marketed in a way that no one dares criticise it cause its just so deep and conected to the whats hot scene.

    Now you gen “why?” people may be excused for getting sucked into this nonsence on the basis that is a remake of an okay book. Still if this is the nonsence that has “defined a generation” a claim I think this excuse for a film makes, I am genuinely sad disturbed and disgusted. I haven’t read the book and have no intention of wasting any more time on this unnourishing boring tripe.

    As Keikergaard once said the very notion of the crowd is problematic in itself. I just cant believe that this film actually got made. Wow even an all time uber cool star power could not save this mess. Wonder why the big guns just didn’t show up? Three guesses kiddies.

    Trust me, you guys one day will be sitting watching the even more pretentious four hour directers cut of this pile of dogshit and realise that you were had and you are going to look at each other in the pools of each other’s narcisistic eyes and know that you were foolish in your youth.

    I vomit on your read shoes Dorethy. If any of you dares to defend this film in my presence you will get vigerous debate contempt and scorn. You really have to be kidding.

    And in case you think think I am just an old out of touch fogey, my alt media, super XBox hero savvey 15 year old was the one who lead us of of the cinima. Mum and i were staying just for him in case we just didn’t get it.

    You my little cats are the ones who didn’t get it. Ya freaking herd of fools.

    He saw through this nonsence – pity you so called Gen Y didn’t. And if any one calls my beautiful indigo child Gen Z I will defuinately hunt you down and eat your testicals/overys with my fried brains and bacon for breakfast.

    The only redeeming thing about this film is that we finally saw a mans penis in a hollywood film.

    You guys are really worrying me.

    Now does anyone want to give me an eval. on my poems. Thought not.

    Don’t think this is me bullshitting. That this film even got through the studio system is a disgrace in my opinion. That it has been lauded as an art film is laughable. I’m off to read 100 days of Sodem – at least that made a modicom of sence and was roundly condemned in a more discerning age as perverse.

  15. Yeaaahhh team we finally saw through Neitzche and the Cartoons….. so what dont take Noir and the great films of the seventies down with the ship, particularly when both ships got sunk some time ago.

    Pseudo intellectual underground hogwash. Do something for whatever innocence is left in you soul and join the plebs crying at the end of Slumdog Millianaire. Get with the frealking programme funky cats. We’re heading for another summer of love.

  16. ‘I vomit on your read shoes Dorethy. If any of you dares to defend this film in my presence you will get vigerous debate contempt and scorn. You really have to be kidding.’

    Really nice. Personal insults just because you hated a film I didn’t hate. And just drag my whole generation into the muck, why don’t you?

    ‘He saw through this nonsence – pity you so called Gen Y didn’t. And if any one calls my beautiful indigo child Gen Z I will defuinately hunt you down and eat your testicals/overys with my fried brains and bacon for breakfast.’

    Oh I see. Your child is an ‘indigo child’. That is why they didn’t like Watchmen.

    Heading for a summer of love ay? Good luck with that. By the way, you’re entitled to your opinion, but I find the above two posts personally insulting so you’re now going in the spam box. Bye, it’s been fun. Oh, and you can’t spell for shit.

  17. Nicely put Angela, I like the way you didn’t sink to Animal Mother’s level even though you were probably burning to throw back an insult. Very mature of you. We all burn too.

    “If I annoy you let me know and ill go quiet for a while and then try again.” – ok…. I think he has some problems. Anyway, when did age come into it? Indigo child…pfft if this were true at least his spelling would be a bit more up to scratch…

  18. Angela, you make some very interesting points about the film and the novel. How refreshing to see the two compared together! I have read far too many reviews from film critics who have no preconception of what the graphic novel was. As with many film adaptations, some concepts are lost on the average film-goer who don’t have the knowledge of what was an extraordinarily complex graphic novel. I believe a lot of the negativity from the general public towards the film was that it was not an ordinary super hero film, although it was advertised as one. The story of Watchmen is not action based, and so with majority of film-goers seeking these glossy action sequences it is understandable that the film was met with a negative reaction. However Snyder was able to do a reasonable job on an extremely complex novel, which would have been a monumental project to tackle.

    Oh, and congratulations on how you destroyed the fool who decided to let out his abuse above.

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