Thursday, February 11, 2010

Who's Watching Raptor

With so many super hero movies out at the moment it’s rare to see one with breadth and depth that Watchmen brings. Director Zack Snyder of 300 fame has taken the true spirit of the Allen Moore penned comic book and brought it to screen with his own kinetic and stylised er…style.

It starts off with the death of the Comedian, who is one of my favourite characters I’ve decided. This starts a search for the killer by a vigilante called Rorschach (My other favourite character) which cascades into a wide spread plot to bring about world peace but in a very immoral way which begs the question. Do the ends justify the means? I truly was torn at the end of the film with this exact question.  Is killing a million people to save several billion ok? I could see the point and I could see they why but even I had a hard time justifying it and I guess that’s the crux of it. It’s not an easy decision and most people of moral values would say no it doesn’t but then isn’t it just as morale to save so many…well kind of.

Thuck it in girls! Let the thpandex do its thing.

Now as mentioned before the Comedian, played by  Jeffrey Dean Morgan who you may have seen in the series Supernatural, was the epitome of the Anti-Hero. He performs acts which may be considered heroic or deplorable but all in the name of his country and time after time he is forgiven because of it.  He drips sarcasm and to paraphrase he is a parody of mankind. We see his actions and relationships with the other characters in flashbacks which are used a lot to fill in the plot and background of each of the characters. Laughing while firing a flame thrower at the Vietnamese we finally see him guilt ridden and confessing to one of his old enemies.  Rorschach is another stellar performance by Jackie Early Haley . He plays a gruff, hardnosed mask wearing detective type who sees everything in black and white. There is no grey. The good are there to be protected and the bad to be condemned to hell.  Even at the bitter conclusion he stands firm on his beliefs even to his detriment. He is almost the purist Hero, a violent crazy hero but still a hero. Dr. Manhattan, portrayed by Billy Crudup, is the most powerful naked blue man on the planet. He is so far removed from humans that he is loosing what little humanity he has left and his part shows a lot of his struggle with it. Other notables are Nite Owl (Patrick Wilson) who is practically your Clark Kent crossed with batman superhero who along with Silk Spectre (A very cute Malin Akerman) are swept up in the plot. Finally Ozymandias (Matthew Goode) the smartest man in the world, is a very cool Super hero/villain.

I can’t fault the performances of any of the main characters. They were all quite strong and each had there hearts in their roles and brought their A games to characters that could have come out quite plastic and cliché instead became mutli-faceted which in part was also due to the strong script.

Because the movie spand several generations of superheroes the soundtrack fit this perfectly with song by Bob Dylan to David Bowie and other similar musicians form the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Did I mention that the story unfolds in the 80s? Oh yes, there is spandex galore as well as naked blue penis….you’ll see.

Lights, camera and superhero porn
Lights, Camera, Superhero porn!

Now special FX and CGI wise I loved what Zack Snyder has done. The cinematography was beautiful and he did have a number of his signature slow-mo scenes alla 300 but not to the same degree I’d have to say. It also doesn’t hold back on the violence. Believe me this is not a kids movie. With arms breaking, bodies exploding, hands cut off and multiple shootings this a graphic novel brought to a movie and I do mean graphic.

The movie does drag in parts and the back and forth flashbacks can be confusing to some but these were all minor details. To me this was what a super hero movie should be, fleshed out characters, a solid thought out and complex plot along with lots of kerpow and bang in the eye. Oh yeah spandex too. I give this a 9/10.

Gratuitous booby shot from Harold And Kumar go to White Castle

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