13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest comic book movie of all time?
The greatest comic book movie of all time? Yeah, I do think so. I've seen a lot of them. There's quite a few I haven't seen as well, but from Watchmen to Spider-Man to Ghost World to even spoofy things like Comic Book: The Movie, nothing has satisfied me like the Ultimate Cut of Watchmen.
I won't get too much into the movie itself -- check out reviews of the...
Published on Nov 21 2009 by LeBrain
3.0 out of 5 stars Good movie
If you like superheros from comic books, you are in for a treat. The special effects are very well made.
Published 9 months ago by sp
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A faithful and phenomenal execution of a graphic novel adaptation.,
This review is from: Watchmen: Director's Cut / Les Gardiens: Montage du réalisateur (Bilingual) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)[...]
I find it very difficult to explain to someone just exactly what Watchmen is about. From its various trailers, it appears to by a stylistic action piece of untold levels of cinematography. Unfortunately this is the work of many marketing machines churning a mass media product out of what is in fact the perfect unison of fine art and literature I have seen in a long time.
The story of Watchmen is, at it's a core, a richly layered character piece driven by the narrative of one vigilante known as Rorschach. Set in an alternate 1985, through the story we encounter a world on the brink of nuclear war. The struggle for infinite power between America and USSR has caused the proliferation of a nuclear Armageddon an imminent and inevitable reality. We follow the paths of a group of masked vigilantes known as the Watchmen trying to salvage a world lost in fear, as they begin to question their own existence in light of murderous and psychological attacks coordinated against them. I am not going to bother to try and explain the precedents each character faces, it took Alan Moore four hundred hand drawn pages, and so two hours and thirty minutes of film is hardly an even match.
This film was visually a masterpiece deserving of the highest praises, it was translated from mere paper to film with extraordinary style and depth. Any complaints regarding the Watchmen film to be overly loyal to the point that the movie exhibits zero creativity is completely absurd and ridiculous. Zack Snyder was tasked with bringing still images soundless sentences to life, the execution of such a fitting soundtrack accompanying marvellously detailed set pieces and props was the work of exceptional direction. I must nod my head and fist-bump Zack Snyder in this regard. This film is almost frighteningly creepy in its evocation of the graphic novel, almost as if Snyder was walking around the set with the graphic novel in his hand rather than the script. The style to which it was exhibited was a stroke of pure genius; the voices, the debonair of the characters and the cinematography were an implementation of mere perfection. Every scene is brimming to life with surreal sense of colour and grit.
The soundtrack is mellow with an almost Bob Dylan-esque suave to it. Consider the fact that the action of the film was perhaps more suited to something sounding more robust with bass and coloured with guitar riffs, then you will see the brilliant oxymoron in the feel of this film. I was slightly taken aback, at the silence in the opening fight scene only for it to develop in to one of the most solemn and effectively photographed scenes I have ever witnessed. The following stop-motion captured flashbacks of the Minutemen was just an astounding sounding and looking five minutes that showed a lot of interesting moments from the book. The Kennedy assassination deserves a special mention, beautiful. What proceeded for the next two hours plus, was easily the most powerful and architecturally captured fight scenes filmed this side of Snyder's very own '300'. Rorschach was visceral and decisive in his blows (keep away from boiling fat, and the Men's Room when this dude is around); Silk Spectre was graceful and powerful while Nite Owl was a clinical combatant. However none were any match for the outstanding Ozymandias, I have no idea how this man's absolute strength and agility was so effectively captured as he literally annihilated every single opponent with sadistic ease. Fantastic, it makes the fight scenes in Christopher Nolan's 'The Dark Knight' look like a collection of claustrophobic seniors feeling each other up in dark corridors.
The predicament of this film arises from a number of flaws; if you have not read the book then I beg your mercy for the praise I wish to heap upon this is of the highest order. There was an impossibly fine line that the Snyder had to meander across. Firstly there are the dastardly compulsive aficionados of the Alan Moore novel, who will (and rightly so) complain that critical pieces of character development were abandoned or the ending was ludicrously changed from the original. However both were a necessary sacrifice to keep this movie with in a decent time range, which honestly was still extremely long. So let us follow on to the general populous, the demographic of any Hollywood product. In the eyes of these people 'Watchmen' was long, it was boring, Nite Owl had a bigger booty than Silk Spectre, big naked blue man and Richard Nixon' All valid complaints, I did at a point admittedly think to myself that a lot of people must be getting really bored right about now, especially if you did not realise the ultimate direction of the narrative. Such was a similar problem with Lord of the Rings, but Peter Jackson had about ten hours of film and three years to flesh it out over and sprinkle healthy doses of adventure and action to keep the casuals engaged. 'Watchmen' was flooded with pretentious commentary and political stances that many would have perceived as drivel rather than meaningful moral speech. A second viewing of this film is highly recommended, if not only to see Rorschach drive a cleaver through pedophiles head, but to notice the exceptional dimension and commentary of the characters.
Speaking of which, characters were pieces of literary genius, and it was absolutely amazing seeing them come to life and be delivered with such fervour and excellence. Rorschach, portrayed by Jackie Early Haley was simply a scene stealer and there is no arguing that no matter what you thought of the movie. Much of his complex background and development was abandoned in the running time of the film, so therefore he simply appeared to be psychopath with a ****** up a childhood. However he is so much more than that' the story of his black and white perception of the world, the mask and his early school years are just fascinating pieces of literature which unfortunately most people will never get to experience. Ozymandias was also an exceptionally delivered character played by Matthew Goode, however again due to lack of dedicated screen time the general audience could not delve in to this man's extraordinary past as a child who rejected the fortunes of his family and instead chose to educate himself with the life of Alexander the Great. He followed the journey of Alexander across the Mesopotamia, Africa and Asia in order to mould himself in to the most powerful human being on the planet. His aspirations and successes were poignantly delivered and his martial arts were a sight to behold.
So, should you be watching the 'Watchmen'? The answer is a resounding yes, if only to experience a grandioso cinematic event. 'Watchmen' contains some of finest choreography in combat as well as an unusually mellow soundtrack, the culmination of which is a very unique film. Forgive the complex narrative structure for the source material is so rich and complete in its portrayal of this universe that two and a half hours are almost an injustice to it. Or if you have read the book, then forgive it for being only that long.
At the end of the movie, the majority of the audience stood up in applause' A young man sitting behind me remarked 'What kind of a person claps at the end of a movie!?' to which a colleague of mine promptly replied 'A loser!' This is the kind of person claps at the end of a movie' the kind of person who realises that bringing this piece of art to life took almost sixteen years of debate and three years of dedication to construct, fabricate and enact. Countless hours of work of hundreds of individuals, for which the end result was the most faithful adaptation of any source material, ever. I can, I swear to you, sit down and watch this movie with the graphic novel in my hand, minute by minute and page by page to see mere images and words painted twenty four years ago come to life before my eyes. What an experience.
5.0 out of 5 stars one word - fantastic!,
This review is from: Watchmen / Les Gardiens (Bilingual) (Widescreen) (DVD)From the moment you put this DVD on to the really neat ending!! You'll love this Blockbuster!! The first 20 minutes spikes up the adrenaline . It is so arcane - its almost too bad that the media 'Had' to deflate the negative tension. GREAT PLOT! Wonderful effects. Does it leave you wanting more??i think not!
5.0 out of 5 stars The graphic novel brought to life to its fullest potential,
This review is from: Watchmen (DVD)what can I say I read the graphic novel in my English class and it was the best novel I have ever read and I doubts that the movie would have the same impact on me as the graphic novel but by the end all my doubts were gone.
For anyone who has not read the graphic novel I would sujest reading it first that way you will enjoy the movie alot more but for those of you who dont want to heres the main plot. The year is 1985 and Richard Nixon is president of the united states? The world is different from ours though because vigilantes are real and have been around since the 1930's but Watchmen does something different and the men/woman that are in the costumes are a tad different than the ones we are used to seeing.
Batman, Superman and spiderman are well known heros and are all have great morals and always do the right thing but in Watchmen we see what it would be like if rapists and murderers dressed up and roamed the streets. Also Watchmen explains what it would be like if Superman were real and in the Novel/film the character Dr. Manhattan has every power you can think of and dosent seem to really care for humanity. In this world being a vigilante is illegal so many work for the government including dr Manhattan and he is responcible for Nixons third preident run.
As for the movie it lives up to the graphic novel very well and really gets you invovled with each character and their stories. One drawback I found was the film tried to be epic at some points over un nescissary stuff such as lighting a cigarette. Bottom line for what it is its great and is a must see for any Comic book fan.
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Be careful...,
This review is from: Watchmen (Director's Cut, 2-Disc Special Edition + Digital Copy) (DVD)I just loved the movie. However, be careful as the DVD that was shipped to me (twice) does not match the description. The description indicates that a digital copy is included, but the product shipped did not.
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Director's Cut or upcoming Ultimate Cut ?,
This review is from: Watchmen (Director's Cut, 2-Disc Special Edition + Digital Copy) (DVD)Update on September 26: There's a Watchmen Ultimate Cut that will be released on November 3rd. It's 5 discs on DVD and 4 discs on Blu-ray. There's supposedly a limited quantity of 70,000 units that will be made but I take that kind of information with a grain of salt. At the time I write this, you can pre-order it on amazon.com but not on amazon.ca (do a current search when you read this). So basically, the ultimate cut will have the director's cut with the Tales of the Black Freighter animated footage woven in (approximately 25 minutes and sold separately before). I don't know if it's possible to watch it without the animation but I don't think so. However, there's a digital copy of the theatrical release (not the director's cut) in the package. What's new in the ultimate cut compared to the director's cut is a commentary by Zack Snyder (director) and Dave Gibbons (penciller of the Watchmen comics) as well as new special features entitled:
- Real super-heroes, real vigilantes (27:28 minutes)
- Mechanics : technologies of a fantastic world (16:46 minutes)
- Story within a story : the books of Watchmen (26 minutes)
You also have a live action interview/documentary about the Minutemen called Under the hood (previously available in Tales of the Black Freighter DVD) and the special features of the director's cut. Finally, you have the Complete Motion comics on 2 discs (also available separately before this release). Seems to me that if you already have the director's cut of Watchmen, the Tales of the Black Freighter DVD and the Complete Motion Comics DVD, you have to decide whether or not you want to pay again for the commentary (contradictory information about whether it's one or two) and roughly an hour of new special features. If you only have the director's cut dvd, then the ultimate cut is quite a deal.
If you're interested in reading my review of the Watchmen movie (seen in theaters) and whether or not it's for you, then please read on (there are no spoilers to my knowledge).
I'm wondering whether I should restrain my enthusiasm for fear of raising expectations too much for potential viewers. Keep in mind that Watchmen got mixed reviews and that it's not for everyone. I'm a huge fan of the original graphic novel, I had my doubts but this movie really impressed me. The director probably did the best adaptation that could have been done and I still wonder how he got away with it, how it did not get more "hollywoodized" in a negative sense. Throughout the projection, I was in awe at the world that was created and any negative aspect I could find here (because no it isn't perfect) would be nitpicking (one of them being the choice of music during the owl ship scene in a soundtrack which I otherwise found quite good). Watchmen is great in so many ways: rich in plot, visually stunning, smart, original, philosophical food for thought, shocking unpredictable twists (for those who didn't read the book), exciting action scenes, very good performances and memorable anti-hero characters (especially Rorschach and Dr. Manhattan) to name a few highlights.
It's far from your typical super-hero movie; it's a bold, dark, complex and magnificent of work that will certainly become a cult film if not the masterpiece of the director Zak Snyder whether or not it's a financial success (kudos to Andrew Salmon for his great review here on Amazon comparing Watchmen to Blade Runner). The opening montage showing the history of this alternate world where costumed heroes appeared is not only useful but bloody brilliant and deserves special recognition if not an award of some sort. The storyline itself is fascinating and very well told through layers of flashbacks and a personal journal (heard as the narrator) while also being a murder mystery. More interesting though are the characters themselves, portraits of what multi-faceted costumed "heroes" might be like in the "real" world. You might not like them but you'll likely find them interesting. Some might find the film meandering and too long but to me it's because there's so much good material and there's no way you can catch everything with just one viewing (another incentive to get the DVD). From a cinematography point of view, it's a wonder with amazing camera work, brutal yet graceful action choregraphy and atmospheric set designs. It's peppered with beautiful visual signatures (the first being the iconic smiley face in the puddle) that often are hommages to comic book panels.
There are a few warnings to go with my praise though. If you're allergic to graphical violence (there's a few quick gory scenes), expect something similar to Spider-Man or Batman, want something family-friendly, want typical "super-heroes" (notice the quotation marks) or can't get beyond seeing a blue penis (which by the way is faithful to the graphic novel), then you won't like Watchmen. If you want to see an original intelligent dramatic superhero action film and excellent adaptation of a seminal work in the comic book medium (originally published in 1986-87) that was extremely influential and changed the perception of what super-hero stories could achieve, then you might like it. You don't need to read the book to appreciate the movie but you'll appreciate and understand it more if you do read it either before or after (I would suggest after so the movie is more visceral and surprising to you). The movie is self-contained and will not have sequels. It's definitely worth getting but choose your edition carefully so you don't end up buying it twice and encouraging the publisher's money grab.
Rating: 4 1/2 stars out of 5
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Too much naked blue man.,
This review is from: Watchmen (DVD)I had two friends in separate parts of the country beat me to watching the Watchmen in the theatre, and humorously enough, when asked, both told me the same first impression of the film:
Too much naked blue man.
Poor Billy Crudup, he may never live down the screentime of his luminous blue bits. Maybe if the quality of his cgi had been better and he didn't look so weirdly superimposed into the movie, like the Jolly Blue Giant equivalent of Roger Rabbit.
Naked blue man aside, adaptations are no easy task, and imho there has to date been only one fantastic screen adaptation of a fantastic novel that addresses such dark, complicated and deeply personal mental struggles (that would be Fight Club). After all, when you're writing for the eyeballs, how do get into the visual of the workings of the brain without using VO as a crutch to the point of B-movie cheese?
So I have to give some kudos to Snyder for making the unmakable film and staying as true to the original graphic novel as he did, which is a hard sell usually because a psychological action hero story tends to be, well, rather slow on the action hero-y bit. And naturally and unsurprisingly it is a bit slow which comes off completely at odds with the premise of masked vigilantes and nuclear war.
Nevertheless, as a reader (though not rabid fan) of the graphic novel and viewer of said film, I give it a stamp of approval for job decently done on both adaptation and general film principles, as long as one bears in mind that this is not the average blockbuster popcorn action flick.
4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Just read the graphic novel,
This review is from: Watchmen: Director's Cut / Les Gardiens: Montage du réalisateur (Bilingual) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)Many of the nuances that make the graphic novel so interesting, fresh and amazing, are absent from the movie. As long as the essence of the original work is translated well to the film, I have no problems with the director taking liberties--I rather like being surprised. But the movie felt like a selective taping of the pages of the graphic novel, and what works for one medium doesn't for another; we got a campy looking film, with a modified ending not quite as powerful as the novel's. Gee, I wonder why Alan Moore didn't endorse this long, looong mtv music video? One interesting character, Rorschach (no credit goes to the director for this, as it'd be rather hard to screw it up), does not make for a good movie.
Now sit back and watch the helpfulness counter for this review go 0-100 courtesy of offended fanboys. Read the graphic novel, there's no comparison, as the movie adds nothing worthy, and fails to match the power of the original work.
Add on: I'm disappointed that a couple of people rated this review as helpful and spoiled my plans; and to those that review this movie ***** for being deep, intense, what do you rate The Dark Knight (Two-Disc Special Edition + Digital Copy) [Blu-ray]? *************?
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Last one!,
This review is from: Watchmen [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)Amazing! It was on sale at Amazon US and i just missed out. So I checked CA and ordered it immediatly. Now it seems I have the last one that was in stock. This set is no longer in production and the prices from private sellers are ridiculous. I'm extremely happy i was in time for this one. It's an awesome set and the quality is supurb.
1 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect but....,
This review is from: Watchmen (Three-Disc English/French-Language Version + Owl Ship) (Amazon Exclusive) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)Va falloir traduire les gars...
Cet article est génial et pas très cher mais le soucis c'est l'importation avec ses 20 ' de douanes quelque soit la formule d'expédition choisie...
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Watchmen (Director's Cut + BD-Live) [Blu-ray] [Import] by Zack Snyder (Blu-ray - 2009)
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