That’s right, I watched the Watchmen … so that you don’t have to. I read the book only three weeks ago and, coming at it as a 35-year-old who never was really into comic books, I’m going to call a spade a spade. It was an interesting pastiche of adolescent philosophy, misanthropy and half-hearted America-bashing done as only a bitter, shaggy Brit could. I enjoyed the book for what it was. And the movie?
I don’t know what to say. It’s an interesting spectacle for those who read the book. For those who didn’t read it? I can’t imagine them caring enough to get it. Listen, the flashbacks and plotting aren’t nearly as intricate as comic book geeks make it out to be. Lost is about sixteen trillion times more complicated. The movie–like the book–plods alone slowly, complete with the hackneyed writing and teenage deep-thinking you’d expect from the stoners you went to college with.
Oh, and graphic violence. Plenty of that. Indeed, while I don’t mind blowing 11 bucks to sit through three hours of pop culture dross, I found myself getting pissed off during the extremely graphic and gory fight (and torture and rape) scenes not because of the movie itself, but because of the mothers of the year who’d dragged their babies and kids into this movie. I saw one woman walk in with six kids under 12. I’m sure they’ll be having nightmares tonight about arms getting sawed off, people exploding, dogs chewing on a little girl’s leg, giant blue penises and whatever it is Silk Specter and Night Owl were doing when they took their clothes off and wrestled. Even better? When the lights went up, I noticed a stroller in one of the aisles. I’m sure three hours of mega-decibel explosions, screaming and cursing do wonders for an infants hearing and development.
Anyway, if you liked the book, you’ll probably like the movie. If you didn’t read the book, you’d probably be better off seeing Paul Blart: Mall Cop.