The Watching Of Watchmen


The past couple of days I’ve been encountering the ultra-mania surrounding the release of Watchmen. From the moment I first saw the trailer months ago, I knew this movie would be big. A visually stunning adaptation of a monumental graphic novel directed by the same guy who did 300, it had all the markings of a blockbuster.

Seeing the initial trailer was the first time I had ever heard of Watchmen. My initial reaction was that it looked weird and stupid. After seeing a few more trailers, I came to grips with the reality that I actually thought the movie looked quite cool and that I might actually want to see it. I began to take a closer look into the graphic novel by Alan Moore. I wanted to know what all the hype was about, why the book was so important. Through extensive research on Wikipedia I found out that it was the first real look into the dark side of masked superheroes. It retreated from the honorable, chivalrous heroes of old and marched on with a bleak  realism, highlighting the internal strugglings of its protaganists. It sounded like a very interesting read. The more and more I learned about the book, the more and more I was interested in the movie.

These last two days (the movie came out yesterday) I’ve been reading critical reviews and “family friendly” reviews to see what the reaction was to the movie. Being that it is rated R and directed by Zack Snyder, I figured that it would be pretty violent and that there would be a scene or two that I would need to fast forward. I pretty much banked on the fact that I would not see the movie in theaters but would still see it eventually. After reading what I’ve read, I’ve come to the conclusion that I will never see the movie. It is, to be succinct, overtly violent and grotesquely sexual almost to the point of being pornographic.

Normally, I would not feel the need to talk about a movie like this but this one bothers me. Watchmen (and 300) looks extraordinarily pleasing to my eyes. The cinematography is magnificent. Mr. Snyder has an excellent visual eye. But looks can be deceiving. The aesthetic beauty of the film is like a trap for innocent (albeit ignorant) eyes. I have heard numerous friends express their interest in seeing this movie. I feel like they are willingly walking into a trap. I feel for them especially because I have walked into many bad situations willingly and suffered the consequences.

I don’t really have any sort of conclusion to this post. I just felt like I needed to write it. While I’ll never see the movie, I do wish to read the graphic novel at some point. I do like the ideas and themes that it explores. I realize it’ll for sure have some of the same problems that the movie has so I’ll have to be careful. I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. ‘Till then… whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.


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