Watchmen, directed by Zack Snyder, is a sci-fi comic book come to the big screen. This is not your typical super hero film and if you lean more toward Spider-Man than say, The Avengers, then you may just want to step away from the ticket booth right now. Not saying this isn’t a good super hero movie, it’s just different.
Its an alternate reality of 1985 and there are super heroes. They are anything but super; they are in fact very human. No invisibility, no accidental radiation, well, I take that back because there is some accidental radiation… More on that in a moment. The main point here is that these every day citizens have decided to take action against wrong. Some have died doing this, others have retired and are now living a normal life while others have decided to take up the cause and follow the heros from the glory days. A well-known hero named, The Comedian has been murdered and a group of heroes try to track down the murderer. While they are investigating the murder they begin to uncover a plan that threatens the very world they live in.
First off this is a quirky kind of movie. As you watch the story unfold you can’t help but feel as if something just isn’t right. It’s like watching a movie where the film constantly jumps frame and stutters. There is nothing physically wrong with this film but it’s just the over-all feel you get while watching. Each character has been written so that their flaws are very evident. They function in there world as best they can but for some that existence is almost too unbearable. It may be best to just describe it a being gritty. For example, the story picks up with the hero named The Comedian being murdered. How can The Comedian be called a hero when everything he does is self serving? But yet, he IS a hero in the alternate 1985 as well as in it’s past. This is just one example, but there are numerous others we could point out and discuss that convey the same type of contradictions.
Speaking of the characters in the film, they are quite colorful and varied. Of them all, I find that I was particularly fond of Rorschach. He sees things in absolutes. It’s always black and white with him. The Owl is the Bruce Wayne of this universe, but lacks the billions of dollars and social status. Deep down, he is insecure with how things are. Then of course, we have the surviver of the radiation accident mentioned earlier. Dr. Manhattan, is the only hero with special abilities. He is almost limitless in his abilities however he has slowly been losing interest in human life and does nothing to help those in need. His love interest or dis-interest is The Silk Spectre II. She is and accomplished fighter and is amoung the worlds best.
I give this movie 3 stars. The plot is decent. I liked the fact that it was not your normal super hero movie. The problem is the fact that because it isn’t the cookie cutter idea of what makes a hero, most people will dismiss it. Another drawback to this film is that it is just shy of 3 hours long so the average viewer will not want to sit through the movie. And yet one other draw back is the, by now famous, blue penis. If you are planning on taking your children to see this film, be warned there is quite alot of frontal nudity of Dr. Manhattan. While it is all CG, it is non the less full frontal male nudity and parents should be advised. All in all I enjoyed the film because it was original, had likable characters and pushed the envelope of what we have come to expect from our crime fighting heroes.