*Warning, this review contains no spoilers, no character studies, no plot analysis, no discussion of acting, special effects, or cinematography.
I hate comic books.
I think the only comic book I ever read when I was a kid was “Sgt. Rock” because it was about army guys and I was obsessed with army guys from age 8 to 11. That being said. I loved the film “Watchmen”. First off, the only reason I’m writing a “reveiw” of the film is because of the bad rap I feel this movie is getting from these so-called “critics”. It’s seems about 50% of the critics who reviewed “Watchmen” totally slammed it. I actually find this statistic interesting. People often use the phrase “you’ll love it, or you’ll hate” which is a glib way of saying, that the percieved quality of a film is polarizing. However, it is rare that this polarization runs right down the dead center of the people that “got” or “did not get” the film.
Like I said before, I hate comic books, which is why I loved the “graphic novel” “Watchmen”. I’m not some old school fanboy from the eighties, I’ll admit, I saw the “Watchmen” trailer when I saw “The Dark Knight” and I was intrigued. I bought the graphic novel and read it (twice). It was hard going at first, as I’m not used to the comic style format. Once I found the trick of reading and looking at the same time, I started to flow through the novel like rain. After I read it I came to a conclusion. This work is the basis for all of the New Hollywood superhero treatments that people have been raving about since the new “Spider-man” movie came out almost 10 years ago and seemed to culminate with “The Dark Knight”. Folks waxing poetic about the crazy concept that superhero’s aren’t these 2-D characters. That it’s “genius” to give the dark, brooding, conflicted, morally ambiguous treatment to the classic idea of “superheroes”. The greatest irony of this critical backlash against this film seems to stem from the fact that it’s already been played out a half dozen times before, the superhero has emotions, duh we get it. This feeling that we’ve seen it all before. It’s true we have seen it all before, however, Alan Moore single handedly invented this superhero treatment when he wrote, what I now consider to be one of the most groundbreaking novels ever written. Groundbreaking in the sense that the nerds who “got” Watchmen back in the eighties are guys like Sam Raimi, Zack Snyder, J.J. Abrams, and “The Dark Knight” director and co-writer Christopher Nolan.
So the irony is that the graphic novel that changed superheroes forever, spawning a decade of dark intense superhero films was finally created and released and is received as a played out concept that movie critics no longer find “groundbreaking”. That being said, the film fucking rocked my ass off. See it in IMAX. There is no more humbling experience than seeing a gigantic blue penis floating around on an 3000 square foot screen. (Plus you get to see the new Star Trek trailer).