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The 2009 movie directed by Zack Snyder and based upon the book by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.

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"Who Watches the Watchmen?"

  • Mar 6, 2009

WARNING: This review may contain spoilers!


For the past decade Hollywood has been scrambling over the rights to adapt comic book characters to the big screen. This year one of the most celebrated graphic novels is being brought to theatres in a cinematic adaptation that may very well be the most highly anticipated film of 2009. But can director Zack Snyder's film adaptation of Alan Moore's masterpiece Watchmen satisfy legions of rabid comic book fans and still succeed commercially and critically? The real question may not simply be, "Who watches the Watchmen?" but rather, "How many will watch the Watchmen?"
The Comedian's bloodied smiley face badge...


Watchmen was created by legendary comic book writer Alan Moore and master graphic illustrator Dave Gibbons. Together they invented a horrific alternate 1985, where Richard Nixon is still president, where we won the Vietnam War, and where the streets are filled with psychotic criminals and violent masked vigilantes. Watchmen was revolutionary, as it presented "superheroes" in a grittier, more violent, and more psychologically complex manner. Though it was very far-fetched and highly stylized, the book helped to usher in an era of more adult, thought-provoking comics and graphic novels. The graphic novel, which was originally published as a 12-issue limited comic book series between 1986 and 1987 by DC Comics, has become the best-selling graphic novel to date, won a Hugo Award, and was named, "One of the 100 Best English-Language Novels since 1923" by Time Magazine.


To adapt this landmark literary achievement into a major motion picture is a no-brainer. As early as the late ‘80s, filmmakers and screenwriters have struggled with the challenges of adapting the Watchmen into a film. Some of Hollywood's top directors, writers, and producers have had their hands in various failed attempts to adapt the story. Terry Gilliam (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Brazil, and 12 Monkeys), who was once attached to the film as a potential director, became frustrated with the unsuccessful efforts of writers to create a worthy screenplay from the vast, intricate plot of the book and he ultimately gave up, saying, "It's simply un-filmable."

Since then, numerous other writers and directors have been involved with attempted adaptations, but all of them came to the same conclusion. "It's simply un-filmable."

That was until recently the case. With new maverick directors and brilliant writers emerging every year, and with computer-generated effects reaching a new level of realism, it was decided that it might finally be time to bring Watchmen to the multiplex. During the first few years of the new millennium, a couple of filmmakers (Darren Aronofsky and Paul Greengrass) were given the difficult task, but after DC Comics found them to be lacking the right approach, the project was once again shelved.

 In 2007, DC Comics and Warner Bros. came to the conclusion that Zack Snyder (the director of the remake of Dawn of the Dead and the graphic novel to film adaptation of 300) was the right person for the challenge. Snyder, a relatively young and inexperienced filmmaker, had just had a huge success with 300, which gave DC and Warner the confidence that he could faithfully adapt a graphic story into a hit movie.

The film's screenplay, which was written by David Hayter and Alex Tse, valiantly tries to include as much of Alan Moore's original story and maintain the essence of the story's characters, and for the most part it succeeds. Typically when a film is being made based on a popular source material such as a comic book of graphic novel, the end result is a film that embraces the nature of the characters and the spirit of the story, but takes liberties with the events within that story. With the Watchmen, just the opposite could be said. While the story is, for the most part, very faithful to the graphic novel (there are of course, some departures and omissions), what the film lacks are the thematic intentions of Alan Moore's original story. This isn't entirely the fault of the writers, who have clearly approached the story's subject matter with a great deal of reverence.

Silk Spectre II and Nite Owl II 

No, if the weaknesses of the film were to be attributed to any individual, it would have to be the film's director. Zack Snyder, whose immediate talent is directing action scenes, is not necessarily capable of directing scenes of real emotional power or psychological complexity. In other words, he's not an intellectual, at least not when compared to Alan Moore. Watchmen is about much, much more than action or spectacle. It's about the human condition and how we stray from the path of righteousness when we come into the realization that we are not completely powerless, though we may not be able to save the world. It's about corruption and redemption, deception and revelation, ego and humility, impotence and ambition.

Snyder has yet to prove that he is capable of psychoanalysis or of working with a large cast and this results in the simplification of the complex characters. Snyder also mistakenly glamorizes the characters by showing them in long, drawn-out sequences of action and graphic violence, all of which is done in slow motion. This is in direct contrast to Alan Moore's concept of the flawed superhero. The book does not portray its characters as being glamorous or even heroic. Instead Moore gave us a vilification of the superhero. After all, when Alan Moore conceived Watchmen, his initial idea was to deconstruct the superhero genre. Moore's characters are egocentric, wrathful, murderous, sadistic, sexually violent, and racially and politically bigoted. Not only that, but they are also mortal. They can and do die. Before Watchmen comic book heroes never aged and rarely ever died.



The story, which is set in an alternate 1985, begins with the murder of a man named Edward Blake. Unknown to most of the world by his true name, Blake is best known for his morally reprehensible and psychotic alter ego, The Comedian. When a fellow masked vigilante, who calls himself Rorschach, begins his own investigation into Blake's killing, he uncovers a lethal conspiracy that may not only affect all "masked adventurers" but the entire world.

Also targeted for assassination was Adrian Veidt, a multibillionaire capitalist and former hero known as Ozymandias, but he managed to survive the failed assassination. Unfortunately, the assassin is killed before anyone get answers out of him.

Meanwhile, the U.S. and the Soviet Union are on the brink of an all-out nuclear war and political and social tensions are increasingly volatile. In the midst of all this Dr. Manhattan, the only superhuman "superhero", begins to experience a dissociative fugue that causes him to lose touch with his own humanity and thus he and his girlfriend, former fellow crime fighter, Silk Spectre begin to drift apart. Silk Spectre, whose real name is Laurie Juspeczyk, finds herself becoming attracted to another former hero, Dan Dreiberg, best known as Nite Owl. But Dan has been suffering from sexual and emotional impotence since he retired from the life of a hero.

During all of this, Dr. Manhattan is told that his very presence may cause cancer and he retreats to Mars out of frustration and there he begins constructing great machines made from nothing but matter, which he has the power to manipulate. Little does he know that he's being manipulated by the same man behind the killing of other heroes and no one knows what the cause of all the insanity is.

It comes as a great shock when Rorschach and Nite Owl realize that one of their own is behind it all, that some self-righteous, egotistical so-called hero plans to destroy millions in an effort to save the world from nuclear war. But is there any guarantee that this insidious plan will work and if it does, what then? Will the world become one great dictatorship with the costumed "heroes" controlling everyone and eliminating free will? Can such power even exist and should it be allowed?


"Who watches the Watchmen?"



The film features an impressively large ensemble cast including Billy Crudup as Jon Osterman / Dr. Manhattan, Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Edward Blake / The Comedian, Jackie Earle Haley as Walter Kovacs / Rorschach, Matthew Goode as Adrian Veidt / Ozymandias, Patrick Wilson as Dan Dreiberg / Nite Owl, Malin Akerman as Laurie Juspeczyk / Silk Spectre, Carla Gugino as Sally Jupiter / Silk Spectre,
Stephen McHattie as Hollis Mason / Nite Owl, and Robert Wisden as Richard Nixon. The cast varies in acting quality and some of the cast just feels wrong in their roles. Malin Akerman, despite her beauty and natural resemblance to the comic book character, can barely convey any sign of genuine expression or deep thought. She's simply eye-candy. Also, Patrick Wilson, who has done some good work in the past, turns the Dan Dreiberg / Nite Owl character into a total pushover. In the graphic novel, he's insecure and fearful of his own inadequacy, but he's not completely wishy-washy and without conviction. It was also very hard not to laugh at Robert Wisden, who portrays an aged Richard Nixon, as his entire demeanor and his facial prosthetics seem to change from one scene to the next. How much can one man's nose grow throughout a movie, unless he's Pinocchio. I mean we all know he's a liar, but this is a bit ridiculous.

However, some members of the cast were excellent. Billy Crudup was absolutely perfect as Jon Osterman / Dr. Manhattan, endowing him with a sense of great intelligence, but also giving us subtle insight into his confused emotional state. Jeffrey Dean Morgan was surprisingly effective as the villainous hero, The Comedian and he gives the kind of performance that makes the character someone who audiences will love to hate. Carla Gugino gives a fascinating supporting performance as Sally Jupiter, and makes the character more relatable than she is in the book, which is really astonishing. But the most amazing performance is that of Jackie Earle Haley as the weirdly likeable Rorschach, who does terrible things unapologetically and refuses to compromise his twisted sense of honor and justice.

The Watchmen...

Now, I know that some fans will be infuriated by every omitted subplot or any deviation from the graphic novel, but the screenplay really does a good job of taking the impossibly interwoven story threads and removing any excesses or unnecessary details that might isolate viewers unfamiliar with the book.
However, there are certain changes that will undoubtedly upset the die-hard fans. So, prepare yourselves. The film has completely removed many of the "minor" characters and subplots, including the beloved Tales of the Black Freighter and Under the Hood sequences. These sequences will however be included in a separate DVD and Zack Snyder will be reincorporating them into the Watchmen 5-disc Ultimate Cut DVD due out November 3, 2009.
The filmmaker also chooses not to use the original ending of the graphic novel and wisely, he replaces the giant, radioactive, mutant squid with an atomic bomb. This is an acceptable change as there's no way that a giant squid-like monster could be put upon the screen without being reminiscent of an Ed Wood film.
There are some surprises in store though. For one, Dr. Manhattan is entirely naked for the majority of the film, just as he is in the book (so if you object to the sight of neon blue glowing private parts, this isn't something you'll want to see). This continual graphic nudity and violence may or may not be a good thing depending on individual tastes and it certainly limits the accessibility of the film to non-fans. Also, the film adds a wonderful opening credit sequence that depicts the alternate history of this world and the way that that history diverges from our own real history.

One very minor complaint I had is in regards to the film's excessive use of popular contemporary music. Though, I appreciate much of the music it was often overwhelming the emotional context of the story.

Dr. Manhattan

Ultimately, Watchmen is a daring piece of entertainment that may or may not find acclaim. Though the film is admirable for its scope, its ambition, and for its stunning visuals, it is flawed in its execution. Will it satisfy fans? I think so, though I doubt that anyone will prefer the film to Alan Moore's original creation. Will it entertain those who know nothing of Watchmen? This I really cannot say. Some will find the gratuitous violence, nudity, sex, and the general premises to be off-putting, while others will find it an intriguingly different take on the "superhero" genre. As for critics, unless they are familiar with the book or fans of the genre it seems doubtful that they will embrace the film on a solely artistic level. Still, Watchmen will provoke viewers and hopefully, it will inspire some to read the book and expose them to a medium (comic books and graphic novels) that has gone unrecognized for its true artistry and intrinsic value. After all, we need heroes… don't we?

The Watchmen

Logo- Smiley Face Button with Blood Explosive Dream Dr. Manhattan's Outburst Ozymandias The Comedian's Perversion Silk Spectre II and Nite Owl II Osterman's Death The Minutemen Silk Spectre Multiple Manhattans The Watchmen Assembled

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February 01, 2011
Excellent and very detailed review. I can't believe I missed rating this. I don't remember how I felt about this when I saw it...but your review did cause me to increase my original rating of a +1 to a +2. I'll have to watch it again and write my own review someday. Loved this piece, Sean!
February 01, 2011
Thanks. I think that most people misinterpreted the message of the story largely due to director Zack Snyder's own ideas and perspectives which kind of undermined Alan Moore's intentions when he wrote the comics.
February 10, 2011
Yes, you're probably right. That's too bad too.
May 04, 2010
Excellent review as I have come to learn you only write, great job.
May 04, 2010
Thanks. Did you like the movie and have you read the book yet?
March 04, 2010
Hey, Sean, I featured this in the 'hype' community woo-hoo!
March 04, 2010
I saw that. Thanks, man. And I added about 13 more reviews to the community too. Do you know if a film can belong to multiple enhanced communities?
March 04, 2010
not really sure. I'll see if I can find out...
March 04, 2010
I asked Devora, but she hasn't replied yet.
December 14, 2010
you have any other comic book movie reviews or anything else you want featured? I seem to always lean towards this among your reviews... ;)
December 14, 2010
My "V for Vendetta" review maybe. I liked the way that way came out with the quotes.
February 01, 2011
by the way, check out this review on this topic:
May 16, 2009
I really do want to see this. Sadly, I have yet to get off my lazy ass & run to the multiplex. I think it's still playing in my area so maybe I can see what all the hype is about before it disappears.
July 31, 2009
Now that you're getting it for free, I think you'll have to shoot us a review. Also, check out the argument with Scotman on his review for it, where we're trying to get him to understand that this isn't a "super hero" film, but a "super anti-hero" film. A lot of inaccurate preconceived notions on this one.
September 08, 2011
I recall I was supposed to get back to you on this but never did. I do like the film but probably wouldn't go so far as to write a review on it. My reviews are usually geared towards fans of the films that don't ever see the light of day in theatres these days. Overall, I enjoyed Watchmen (especially the first two thirds) but I felt it was a bit long-winded just Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds. I would undoubtedly give it a four star rating but this is one I would probably  not watch everyday. I had also read Scotman's review. Anything highly sexualized will not appeal to James. Although it offends me not, I immediately saw why he rated it what he did.
September 08, 2011
Then there's the matter of irony. Some people are just oblivious to it.
September 08, 2011
He seems to think the graphic novel is much better which I can't argue. I've never read the graphic novel. LOL I might feel the same way but who knows?
September 08, 2011
The graphic novel is vastly superior, however, he had not read it when he saw the film nor did he understand that the violence in both the book and the film is ironic and that the characters are meant to be anti-heroic. You aren't meant to like them or aspire to be them. They aren't idealized, unrealistic Superman or Spider-Man type characters. That's the whole point!
March 11, 2009
A giant, radio-active, mutant squid and they cut it out of the movie?! Just for that I'm not going to see it.
seriously, its sad to see all of you guys so disappointed with this film since you were looking forward to it so much. But knowing now who the director was there's a big "coulda told ya so" coming from me. There certainly isn't anything in either of those two previous films that indicates he could have handled something like this.
March 13, 2009
Actually, I really liked the film as my 4 point rating will testify, but I was let down by the direction and the acting. Still, it's definitely worth a see on the big screen, so don't let the minor quibbles of us hardcore comics fans dissuade you from seeing it.
March 16, 2009
The trailer did look magnificent. I'm definitely going to try and catch it, but leave the 8 year olds at home. I suspect from what I saw that its one of those film that's going to be far more impressive on the big screen.
March 16, 2009
Hey Scottie. If I could find some legal precedence, I might have to sue you for liking "Kingdom of the Crystal Skull", which was criminally awful by the way. :) As for "Watchmen", I can't wait to hear what you think. It blows Indy 4 out of the water!

Hello Queen. Yeah, it's a must-see on the big screen and absolutely not for anyone under the age of 15, at least.
March 07, 2009
Out of curiosity, does anyone think that we'll ever see a Superman or Wonder Woman movie of the same quality as Chris Nolan's Batman series?
March 07, 2009
Superman--no. Too much of a boy scout in character. Wonder Woman--maybe, if the director sticks to the myths of the amazons. You expect much from the new "Wolverine" movie?
March 07, 2009
See, I think if done right Superman could make a great movie IF (and that's a pretty big if) the writer and director stick to the character's origins and really get deep into his psyche. I'd love to see a movie that portrays him as a self-righteous villain.

As for the Wolvie flick, I don't expect anything more than some great action. If the film provides more than that I'll be thrilled. "X-Men: The Last Stand" left such a bad taste in my mouth that I've kind of lowered my expectations on all sequels and spin-offs.
March 08, 2009
T-man, I know what you're talking about "Justice Lords" based on a JLA comic run. True, you can make supes a much more interesting character, but remember he's supposed to represent the good and potential of humanity. I doubt any writer would protray him in a darker tone.
March 16, 2009
Yeah, I've heard good things about it. I hope that it's a success if for no other reason than I want to see more adult animated films based on comics.
March 07, 2009
amazing review, Count. I could not agree with you more--you know more about this series' history more than I possibly can. Your review was full of information, and in-depth analysis. Great work in defending the concept of the bomb based on Manhattan's energies, but it was too overused, hardly worthy of Ozymandias, supposed smartest man on the planet. I could've hatched that scheme myself...true, a giant squid-like monster would've reminiscent to "Ed Wood", but remember that creature represented something else. What really galls me is the final act with the large exclmation point when Dan said "'ll be ok as long as people think Jon is watching over them.." (or something like that), how can people be ok when Jon is watching when wasn't he supposed to have been the one responsible for the bomb according to the news reels?? Snyder's biggest goof much like in "300", when one of the spartan's suppoters said "Godspeed". They never said this back in Spartan times..."Apollo be with you" or "may the power of Zeus guide you" may have fit. (sorry, off-topic) Anyway, excellent write up for a good film--good not amazing. It did satisfy me, but "Tales of the Black Freighter" could've been incorporated in the beginning of the film, middle and before the climax for philosophical impact. Just my opinion, but what do I know about filmmaking? LOL
March 07, 2009
Wow, I'm impressed. Other than myself, you're the only person to point out the inappropriate use of "Godspeed" in 300. Essentially, it should have been "Gods' speed" or "May Hermes winged feet fly thee upon a swift wind", but that would have been too flowery I guess. But yeah, there were some changes in the film that didn't make a whole lot of sense. But the one good thing about the line concerning Dr. Manhattan watching over the world, was that it unintentionally came off as being a quasi-religious statement. The idea that an all-powerful being may choose to destroy humankind and that that's meant to be the reason for us to keep ourselves in check is such an ironic and clearly unintentional rip on most religions, that I couldn't help but laugh at the hypocrisy. Weren't the Watchmen trying to free the world from living in fear, instead they just refocused that fear on a different source (Dr. Manhattan rather than the Soviet/U.S. nuclear showdown). Kind of funny when you think about it. Oh, and I really liked your review. You had insight into the comic and you raised some great points about the film's flaws.
March 07, 2009
Good point. Snyder dropped the ball by contradicting its groundwork. Good adaptation but hardly epic...hey, it could've been worst with Tim Story at the helm LOL
March 07, 2009
Oooohhh, that could've been ugly. In fact brad Bird, who did "The Incredibles" would be better than Story. He at least is trying to make people laugh!
March 07, 2009
Actually, I read his shortly after posting mine. As you say, he clearly knows little about either the graphic novel or about comic books in general. I mean, I like Ebert, but I kind of had the feeling that he was just jumping on the band wagon and trying to seem hip. It wouldn't be the first time that a "professional critic" took a biased approach to reviewing. Jeffrey Lyons wasn't such a big fan, though.
March 07, 2009
I avoided reading any reviews (including yours and Trashie's) before I wrote mine, mainly because it may affect my opinion. Trashie's review was also excellent coming from the viewpoint of someone who never read the book, and yours coming from someone who knows the history of the book--mine was, I dunno--"winging it"? LOL
March 07, 2009
I did that as well. I wanted to come into this with a fresh and untainted perspective. I actually wrote the first couple of paragraphs about the film's background before I saw it and then after the preview screening I wrote the rest. In fact that was probably my favorite part of the whole experience, even if a movie lets you down, which this one did a little, you can still really enjoy the conversations you have with the other fans. In this case I got into an "employee only" preview because I know the manager at our movie theatre. I had a blast discussing the sociological aspects of the book with some of the employees, who were fellow comic geeks.
March 09, 2009
Actually, I disagree. Although, I loved Peter Jackson's films, the books were vastly superior. I missed the appearance of Tom Bombadil and Old Man Willow, and the poems and songs were an important element of the story, as they gave access into the characters and their histories without delving into their psychology. True, a lot of that stuff becomes redundant when you're adapting a book into a film, it's still important to retain as much of the book's spirit as possible. In the case of "LotR", Jackson succeeded brilliantly. Snyder, not so much. Don't get me wrong the film's great... just not when compared to the source material.
March 07, 2009
Good review. Check out Roger Ebert's review: He, obviously, hasn't read the graphic novel but was strongly moved by the film. we'll see how well it does this weekend
March 07, 2009
Don't really care too much about Ebert's opinions...anyone who says "Mummy 3" the best of the series and that Gandalf (LOTHR) should've moved much like an older man is out of his mind.
March 07, 2009
Mummy 3 was a letdown, so I agree there. But I did find that shot of Gandalf running faster than all of the other Gondorian soldiers to be abit laughable. yeah, he's superhuman, but he should still show signs of his age (aches and pains, etc.).
March 08, 2009
Ebert tends to lean towards liking most movies but, most of the time he's spot on. I like that he writes in a non-elitist fashion from the heart and usually expands the review to comment on some grander, contemporary idea
March 09, 2009
"The Dark Knight" was much better. As far as I'm concerned, when it comes to film adaptations of DC comic books or graphic novels, "Batman Begins", "The Dark Knight", and "V for Vendetta" top the list. I'd place "Watchmen" at number four, just behind Vendetta, which was also based on an Alan Moore graphic novel.
More Watchmen (2009 film) reviews
review by . November 17, 2010
All I know about WATCHMEN I learned from the movies. I'd never read the graphic novel…I'd never heard of it, in fact, until buzz about the movie started. So I cannot comment on the faithfulness to the source, or whether it captures the spirit of the original work.      So for this novice, WATCHMEN was a big, often entertaining, sometimes tedious mish-mash of straight-forward action film, a tongue-in-cheek spin on the superhero genre and a sometimes interesting …
review by . July 20, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Careful what you ask for, you just might get it.  I always wanted to see the Watchmen made into a movie.  At the same time I knew it would be a train wreck.  It had to be.  How can you get everything from the graphic novel into one movie?  You can't.  it's just that simple.  Still they tried.  Problem is I don't give credit for effort.  Only for success.      The biggest problem for me is how they changed the ending.  …
Quick Tip by . November 26, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
I'm a firm believer in that you shouldn't review something if you don't know the full story (or at least the background), like a person who doesn't play video games reviewing a video game movie or criticizing a Sci-fi film because you don't understand something or a better example me reviewing the Watchmen Movie.      See i never read the graphic novel so I went into the theater (opening day might I add) expecting a classic Superhero movie, (Spiderman, …
review by . September 25, 2010
If there's one thing that I lament about the film-going experience as I get older, it's that I move further and further away from the boy who used to watch movies with unquestioning wide-eyed amazement.  When I turned thirteen I started looking at film with a slightly more critical and as the years packed on with an increasingly cynical eye.   It's a very rare experience for me to walk into a film without the baggage of 20 odd years of cinema watching experience, comparing …
review by . June 11, 2009
I'll Watch something else, thank you.
I never read the old Watchmen book.  Called by many the greatest graphic novel ever and read by millions,  I was going to consider reading it after I saw the film maybe catching what they changed and get more insight but now, I think I'll pass. The film is about an alternate 1985 where Nixon has remained in office and the world is constantly facing a doomsday clock where Russia could launch it's weapons in a moments notice.  A once proud group of masked crime fighters have …
review by . March 07, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
movie poster
Comic book adaptations are all the rage these days and they are a dime-a-dozen. To prepare for the film and to write this review, I re-read the graphic novel so I can give a more detailed viewpoint. "Watchmen" is adapted from the award-winning 12-issue mini-series in the 80's which in turn became a popular graphic novel. The graphic novel was written by Alan Moore (From Hell, V for Vendetta) and illustrated by Dave Gibbons (Green Lantern) and adapted to the big screen by Zack Snyder (300). …
Quick Tip by . July 19, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
It's really a mixed bag. A lot of what worked for the graphic novel doesn't translate well to the big screen. But it comes alive enough to keep you entertained, even if it doesn't fully satisfy. A few cheesy liners and a few moments where the movie takes itself a little too seriously is nothing to deter anyone from going to see it. And for what it's worth it's a decent movie. The problem isn't so much the movie, but more that what they had to work with was very complicated. I would say they did …
Quick Tip by . July 24, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Zach Snyder does his best to adapt the "unfilmable" graphic novel magnum opus from Alan Moore, and comes up short from either fans who wanted more, or didn't think it stuck close enough to the source, not to mention the general public who the story went over they're heads due to almost requiring the audience to come in knowing whats going on. Uneven performances and loss of narrative hurt what could have been a pretty good adaption.
review by . November 07, 2009
The movie was a little bit dark (the superheroes in this parallel universe literally kill their enemies) but I found it entertaining throughout. The movie starts with the murder of The Comedian, a sometimes hero, most times a nasty bully acting as a hero. He was part of a group of masked adventurers called the Watchmen. Most of the Watchmen were retired but they get together at the funeral and each has their memories of the group that go back to the 1940's.       There is also …
Quick Tip by . July 20, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
I can see where the film was TRYING to go, but it never quite got there. Visually appealing but it dragged on just too long.
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Production Overview

There have been numerous attempts to adapt the superlative graphic novel Watchmen, which was written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Dave Gibbons, into a feature film. The first serious proposal to do so came in the late 1980s and for a long time director Terry Gilliam (director of Brazil and 12 Monkeys) showed interest in making the film. However, after numerous attempts to create a script, Gilliam was quoted as saying that the graphic novel was too complex and too amorphous for even him to adapt. Later acclaimed director Darren Aronofsky (Requiem for a Dream and The Fountain) was reported as a possible director, but this never came into fruition. Initially set to direct the film  was Paul Greengrass (director of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum). However he was sacked during budget disputes at Paramount Studios, who were at the time meant to release the film. Since then Zack Snyder (director of the remake of Dawn of the Dead and of the film adaptation of Frank Miller's graphic novel 300) has been assigned the role of director and the film has been moved from Paramount to Warner Bros. Studios.

The film was released on March 6 of 2009.
On July 21 of 2009 the film was released in both theatrical and director's cut editions on DVD.
On November 10 of 2009 the film was released in an Ultimate Edition containing Tales of the Black Freighter animated sequences and linking scenes.

Cast / Crew and ...
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Director: Zack Snyder
Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Film-Noir, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Release Date: March 6, 2009
MPAA Rating: R
Screen Writer: David Hayter, Alex Tse
DVD Release Date: July 21, 2009
Runtime: 162 minutes
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Legendary Pictures
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