Friday, August 06, 2010

The Watchmen: 3/5


The Watchmen, is Zack Snyder's (at least) third try to take a property with a cult fan base and make it into a movie.  You've read all the reviews about how he was damned because he did and damned because he didn't.  I won't bore you with that.  Instead: three up, three down.

Three Up

1.  Jackie Earle Haley as Rorschach.  Rorschach was my favorite character in the graphic novel, and he is most definitely my favorite character in the movie.  He is so true to his morals---even if he is a bit absolutist.  He is a black-and-white person lost in a world of greys; I love that his name is Rorschach.  And Jackie Earle Haley plays him almost exactly as I imagined him.  Finally: "You don't get it.  I'm not locked in here with you.  You're locked in here with me."

2.  Jeffrey Dean Morgan as The Comedian.  All I can really say is that, in the book, I found The Comedian a bothersome character.  I didn't understand why anybody cared about why he was murdered.  Jeffrey Dean Morgan made me care why he was murdered.  (Though I still don't really get the plot.)

3.  The Opening Credits.  A great use of Bob Dylan.  A lot of people thought this was the best part of the movie.  I don't know that I'd go that far, but it's the first opening credits I've paid attention to in a long time.  (Now closing credits . . . )

Three Down

1.  Rorschach's Death.  I know Snyder was true to Moore's conception, but I didn't like Rorschach's death in the novel either.  My two cents: Dr. Manhattan should have let him walk off into the Antarctic wilderness.  There's no way all-too-human Rorschach is making it anywhere in his trench coat and purple pin stripe pants, but he'll go down fighting.

2.  Running time.  At two hours and forty-five minutes (give or take) this movie is w a y t o o l o n g.  Snyder should have broken it in two (or twelve?).  He is damned because he did . . . too much.

3.  The Ending.  I felt no catharsis.  The only guy I had been rooting for (Rorschach) gets obliterated like the human water balloon that he is, and then it's over.  All I felt like was that I had spent two hours and forty-five minutes (give or take) watching this w a y t o o l o n g movie drag its feet and shuffle and then my man Rorschach dies.  That's a big eff you.

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