Watching the Watchmen

A few weekends ago I went to see the Watchmen movie. I heard lots of buzz about it in previous years, which made me curious. Curious enough to start reading the comic when the first rumors started, but I didn’t get far for some dark reason.

That doesn’t matter, just let me tell you how I experienced the movie. First I decided I needed to see it in IMAX format. I never experienced IMAX, so this movie seemed like a good one to start with. When I finally sat down the movie screen didn’t look that big. Maybe I sat too far away and have some depth perception issues, but it didn’t look that big…

So there I sat, waiting for the movie to start. First a bunch a trailers and announcements, then a small introduction about the “IMAX experience” and why you should try to sit in the center rows as much as possible. Which makes you wonder why the last few rows are there in the first place, since you’re not supposed to sit there if you want the experience.

Of course all of the annoyances common with public theaters was there, the big head in front of you. People keeping just one chair between their little movie going tribes. This is especially annoying because these are the same people that would complain that late comers need to pass to actually sit somewhere. So what I did was just plunge down to some people that where standing in front of me in the row for tickets. I don’t care. We would be breathing the same air for a little while, so might as well sit next to them.

Right, the movie, it was not bad. I imagine everybody can emphasize with Rorschach at some point. The story is easy to follow, although I can’t really compare it to the comic. Things are certainly a bit more… graphic in movies.

There is a clear reason that is was rated as 16 and above, not the highest level just one below I think. Some nudity, some violence, foul language. Sometimes I had to look away from the screen. Not because of the violence, not because of the nudity. There are some things you don’t want to experience in IMAX quality and there are some things that boring when repeated.

Near the end I kind of felt that there was a little rush, but the ending was done well. Would I like to see it again? Not in IMAX, but yes. Because there were lots of references I only understood half, not at all or didn’t notice at all.

The plot is somewhat plausible and when put in context everything makes sense. Too bad most people that would actually go and see it now or in the future will find it hard to grasp because of the lack of proper context. Nevertheless, I can see this movie being used in a history class to sort of illustrate, in my opinion, how the cold war was experienced without making it too serious.

In conclusion, when put in the right context everything makes sense. Even the whole alternate reality in which the story is told isn’t that far fetched, except for the Dr. Manhattan part. The movie is kind of long, so a break would have been nice. On the other hand, with a break the story might have lost some power in capturing the viewers. I liked it, didn’t love it, will watch it again in maybe five years to see if my opinion has changed.