Watchmen (2009). Directed by Zack Snyder.

Last week I didn’t know what to expect from Watchmen. I read a few of the favourable reviews this week and became really interested in this film. This afternoon I was completely blown away from the first scene to the last. Watchmen is The Dark Knight of 2009.

The opening credits are amazing and left me wanting to watch them again to see what I might have missed (I noticed younger versions of David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Truman Capote and Andy Warhol). This film is packed with pop culture references to the 1980s and easter eggs — 3.5” floppy disks, Apple’s famous 1984 commercial, 80s colours, typography and music.

Any film that prominently features The McLaughlin Group is a winner in my book. This political roundtable show was a staple in my parent’s house on Saturday nights. Early in the film, this show helps to set the tone and transport you back to the the mid-80s.

The violence in this film is incredible. If you thought 300 was gory then this film will make you wince with its bone-crushing slow motion and blood spattering scenes. Just when I thought I was numb to Hollywood’s violence, Zack Snyder comes along and slaps me in the face with some scenes that had me gasping out loud.

Watchmen is a film that is rich in detail and heavy on style. There are beautiful camera moves that pass through walls, creative slow motion, incredible lighting and amazing artistic direction.

My favourite scene is where Rorschach kills a prison inmate in a bathroom. The murder takes place off-screen but a swinging door reveals the terror on the face of inmate with each pass as the camera pushes in. I probably sound like a bloodthirsty neanderthal for singling out that scene but trust me, this film is a visual masterpiece on so many levels.

What about the plot? Why haven’t I mentioned it? Too many spoilers. Just go an see the movie or read one of the many reviews on Metacritic if you must.

Jackie Earl Haley as Rorschach is by far my favourite Watchmen character. His performance is outstanding and validates his comeback which began with Little Children (2006).

The less you know about this film the better. I’m going to read the graphic novel before I watch it again in IMAX. When this film arrives on Blu-ray it is going to be a fanboy favourite and movie lover’s dream - amazing visuals, fantastic audio, desperately in need of audio commentaries and special features.


Films are rated from 1 to 4 stars.

Posted in Movie Reviews at 7:30 PM