4 out of 5

Director: Zack Snyder

Watchmen – first and foremost – is an amazingly meticulous tribute to the comic. The changes that are made are mostly for the benefit of a screen translation, but the nature of the story is also questionably complex for anyone just jumping on after a trailer. The opening credits, for this reason, are a beautiful example of a silent narrative, with excellent music and wisely chosen images trying to paint as elaborate a picture of the movie as possible. But this is sort of the catch of the whole thing: Watchmen was always meant to be a comic book. Its glorious to see it on the big screen, but the confines on the comic keep it grounded, whereas near three hours of glowing figures and grand ideas may be a large pill to swallow in film form. But enough with the vagueness… the movie is tons of fun. The slow moments are populated with such interesting visuals that its easy to sit through, and if you decide to read into the dialogue as well you wont be disappointed. I was very happy with each characters representation (even Silk Spectre) and I hope that Alan Moore can at least admit that Mr. Crudups vocalization and facial expressions for Dr. Manhattan were CAPTIVATING. Whats so questionable in all the bluster is the added violence and unbelievably, laughably pornagraphic sex scene. For such a dedicated representation of the graphic novel and its themes its strange that director Snyder wanted to throw this stuff in there. Sadly, it degrades the film as a whole. The extra action is acceptable as entertainment, but visible bone breakings and sexual thrusting from every position seems like over-kill. And then with these extremities, the ending is incredibly down-played, and much more shocking in the novel. Oh well. Overall, for such a long wait, this was a surprisingly solid adaptation.

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