March 09, 2009

Because you're dying to know what I thought of Watchmen

WatchmenSmiley.pngOne one hand, I'm such a nerd for the comic that I got one of the blood-splattered-smiley-face buttons when it first came out and actually wore it in public. On the other, I'm not such a nerd that I can't call it a comic instead of a "graphic novel." So I think I was able to take the movie on its own merits, instead of mewling about how they left out this or that, or the midget gangster doesn't look like the one in the comic, or any of that crap. Who cares? It's a movie.

That said: Zack Snyder is a crazy person to think he could pull this off. And he really didn't. But I admire him for trying. It's a noble failure.

Matthew Goode was really good in a movie called The Lookout, playing a very friendly guy who's maybe not so friendly after all. When I heard he was going to play Ozymandias, he seemed like a good fit. And yet he was so bland and lifeless. I mean, the one scene where he got to show any sort of emotion, he was squaring off against Lee Iacocca. WTF? Not to mention that in a movie with a butt-naked blue dude and Carla Gugino in old-age makeup, he managed to look ridiculous. He looked like David Bowie in a leftover Batman costume.

Malin Ackerman has the jawline of a Dave Gibbons character, but little of the acting ability.

Jackie Earle Haley was amazing. He really was born for this role. And he got the benefit of the few added scenes that actually improved on the comic. Like Rorschach's post-defenestration fight with the cops, and pulling on his "face" in front of the shrink: "Your turn, doc. WHAT DO YOU SEE?" Chills, man, chills. Thanks, Jackie. Don't stay away so long this time, huh?

Vaguely dissatisfying overall, but about as good as any movie version of the comic could have been without running at least 8 hours. Although it did make me realize there's less actual plot in the comic than I remembered. They managed to get most of it in. It's just too bad that so much character stuff had to go out the window to squeeze it into less than 3 hours.

I'll probably buy the DVD like a sucker anyway. Assuming I have any money left by then. (Remember, kids: Reagan was the bad guy!)

Posted by Jim Treacher at March 9, 2009 12:55 AM