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Monday, March 16, 2009

Watchmen review



So, yeah, I watched it several weeks ago now, but I thought I'd follow up with a little mini-review. I think that the movie accomplished what it set out to do. Many of the scenes are such a tremendous homage to the actual work. But I think what had to be omitted as being unfilmable will remain the parts of the story that made the graphic novel such a stirring tale. I know leaving out the newspaper man and his 'Tales of the Black Freighter' reading companion make sense from a film making standpoint. But the lack of that human side of the story is what will keep the movie from coming anywhere near to the impact the original had.

Although that's my main complaint, there is another. In the graphic novel, violence is implied. You know horrible things are happening, but you are not always witness to it. The movie throws this subtlety out the window, allowing us such wonderful moments as watching a man get his arms sawed off. Yes, this was in the comic, it happened in the story, but you weren't forced to watch.

2 comments:

Celeste said...

I'm not sure I get your point--the violence in the comic is graphic--literally--it's drawn out in every panel. And you can either skip that panel or look at it--or you can turn away from the movie or not. Do you feel like you felt the violence more viscerally when it was on the big screen instead of in the comic? I found the comic to be very very violent...so I'm not sure I understand your comparison.

Scott Ledet said...

I'm certainly not arguing that the comic wasn't violent. But, no matter how well drawn, it was comic-book violence. The story delivered on the horror more than the art, for me.

When translated to the big screen, we see what to all appearances is someone getting their arms sawed off. The movie had a much bigger visual impact when it came to the violence than the comic. For me anyway.

And I do think that the arm-sawing scene in the graphic novel was still more implied than explicitly shown. Unfortunately, I've loaned out y copy, so I can't check.

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