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FILM: Watchmen: The Directors Cut


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#41 Stefancos

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 10:00 PM

I find the critisism here on watchmen to be very puzzling.

First I am reading that the film is far to reverential of the comic and therefore is not able to be it's own thing, and cannot be a masterpiece.

Then all I am reading is that Snyder did not copy the look of the comic closely enough and that is a bad thing?

really guys?

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#42 Chaac

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 11:32 PM

Depends if you're talking about the plot or about the themes. My point on the film is that it could have been a bit more free on the story in order to reflect some ideas more closely.

In my opinion the film actually looks a lot like the book except some specific stuff.

#43 Alexcremers

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 07:55 AM

I've seen some comparisons between the comic book and the film (photo stills) and while both contain the same information, the latter always looks better to me.

On the one hand, David Gibbons says he loved the American comics while growing up and that he even tried to work for DC and Marvel. Looking at the comic book of Watchmen, this makes completely sense to me. On the other hand, Gibbons says he wanted Watchmen to be completely different from anything else. Now, I'm not saying it's precisely the same as the American comic books, but god damned, it's pretty close.

The work of Moebius, yes, that's something completely different.
I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#44 Stefancos

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 12:30 PM

Maybe the real comic book experts can see the radical differences between Watchmen and other comics of the era.

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#45 Chaac

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 02:19 PM

I'm definitely not an expert and definitely not an expert on Usamerican comic books so I won't go there much more. Even thougb Gibbons and Moore and British.

Back to the film, I find it interesting some cuts and jumps through the film. For example the way Jon goes to Mars directly, or, later after he says life is miraculous, and the camera goes up so we see the crater where they are and the sound jumps suddenly into a song, almost a bit to soon of what could be expected... even if we expected a song right there at all. At first I didn't know what to think but after I while I realized I enjoyed it.

The work of Moebius, yes, that's something completely different.

You might like Le Garage hermétique (Airtight Garage).

#46 Stefancos

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 03:54 PM

I like Underzo........

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#47 Chaac

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 04:06 PM

There's a lot to like in Asterix.

I'm seeing this film tomorrow morning, all this talk made me want to see it again.

#48 Red

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 06:45 PM

I find the critisism here on watchmen to be very puzzling.

First I am reading that the film is far to reverential of the comic and therefore is not able to be it's own thing, and cannot be a masterpiece.

Then all I am reading is that Snyder did not copy the look of the comic closely enough and that is a bad thing?

really guys?


I wasn't advocating for the literal translation of the comic panel by panel, because I think that's stifling to cinematic storytelling (comics and films are very different mediums). I was simply calling for Snyder to capture what Moore and Gibbons were saying with their visuals along with their prose.
Do you like John Williams? His early work was a little too jazzy for my taste, but when Jaws came out in '75 I really think he came into his own, commercially and artistically. The whole album has a clear, crisp sound, and an air of consummate professionalism that really gives the pieces a big boost. He's been compared to Jerry Goldsmith but I think John has a far more leitmotif-driven style of composing. In '82 John composed this, E.T., his most accomplished album to date. I think his undisputed masterpiece is "The Magic of Halloween", a theme so catchy most people don't listen to what it means. But they should, because it's not just about the pleasures of childhood and the importance of friendship, it's also a personal statement about the man himself. Hey Paul!
- Patrick Bateman on the Maestro

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#49 Stefancos

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 08:17 PM

As far as I'm concerned he exceeded that.

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#50 Chaac

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 03:35 AM

I disagree, and when I fix my computer so I have sound through HDMI I'll finally be able to see the film again and explain where some of the problems are.

Signed - Chaac, the nitpicking jerk.

#51 Alexcremers

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 07:08 AM

The film isn't for everyone. After all, it's Zack Snyder. I'm already surprised that I'm not the only one around here who likes it.

(comics and films are very different mediums).


Actually, they are not that different at all. Both tell stories by using images. Most movies start out as comics (storyboards). The only thing comics don't have is sound.
I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#52 crocodile

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 09:53 AM

FIlms images run at certain speed so you can't appreciate detail. You can't slow it down are go back a few seconds or minutes (not while watching them as intended anyway). Fims support you with emotional guidance (by sound, music, acting), whereas in comics you do some of these things on your own. Basically, while reading anything you're also a co-creator of the world. In comics to lesser extent than in books, but still. If you think about it, that's a huge difference.

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#53 Stefancos

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 11:52 AM

That's why the look of the Watchmen comic would not work on film. To crammed for of stuff. With a comic you can choose how much time to spend on each panel.

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#54 Alexcremers

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:03 PM

Well, there have to be differences, of course, but I can't think of two other media more closely related than film and comic books. The visual side (the drawings) of a comic book is all about "emotional guidance". Yes, there's no sound but there's no sound in silent movies either, remember? If one should wish, film can be as basic as a comic book simply by not using other tools (film can benefit from combining different art forms together). And I believe that the best movies allow the opportunity for the viewer to be co-creators as well, for they tempt us to bring our own contributions to the table or to see things that are not captured within the frame.

Personally, I've never created a score in my head while reading a comic book.


Alex
I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#55 crocodile

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:59 PM

You too my post a little bit too literally, Alex. If I tried to create a score in my head, then I would treat a comic book as a film that doesn't move. Which wasn't my point. Yes, I agree with you that a good film gives audience something to do, but, most often than not, it's not the case. Sound design, music define to a point where you can experience it only in a certain way.

Karol

Shameless self-promotion: The Assembly Cut and Films On Wax (occasionally Film and Other Assorted Buffery)
 
"Modern, serious music has become embroiled in an intellectual discussion that has no place in music. Certainly, the great composer of the past were geniuses and used their intellect, but only to serve their emotions and guide their craft. Not to dictate to them what they should or shouldn't write" - Michael Kamen, 1995


#56 Chaac

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 04:49 PM

That's why the look of the Watchmen comic would not work on film. To crammed for of stuff. With a comic you can choose how much time to spend on each panel.

Actually I think good comic books create a rythm and guide the reader or at least hint at the reader at how the book is supposed to be read, Long panels, short panels, distribution of important stuff through a panel guiding the eye to the next, distribution of panels through a page, even double page compositions. etc. Actually, Watchmen is one of the classic examples of many things you only do in comic books.

I have to admit Snyder picked this up, because it's obvious he loves the book to death, and put stuff in the film you only do in films. The long opening credits to explain the world. He picked up the songs mentioned in the book and put them somewhere. He went Dr Strangelove or Apocalypse Now at one point or another. He uses movement and slow motion to great effect sometimes. Actually I could have done with a few more film specific ideas.

#57 Alexcremers

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 07:44 AM

Neil deGrasse Tyson: "I don’t know if I am alone in thinking that Watchmen is the best-of-genre among all superhero films. I liked it because the characters had fully expressed, complex personality profiles. They experience love, hate, revenge, megalomania, moral anguish and trepidation. Nothing polished about them. For this reason, they were all more real to me. If the world really did have superheroes in it, Watchmen is the world it would be."


Discuss! I want to see 76 pages of discourse, at least!

http://comicbook.com...re-among-all-s/

Alex
I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#58 Stefancos

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 08:00 AM

Agreed! It's one of the few, or possible the only modern comic book/superhero film that doesnt feel sanitized.

 

I love how the only 2 characters who stick to their principles are a mass murderer and an insane facsist.


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#59 crocodile

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 03:49 PM

Well, it's true.

 

But... they're still a simplified for the purpose of this film.

 

That's all I'm going to say.

 

Karol


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"Modern, serious music has become embroiled in an intellectual discussion that has no place in music. Certainly, the great composer of the past were geniuses and used their intellect, but only to serve their emotions and guide their craft. Not to dictate to them what they should or shouldn't write" - Michael Kamen, 1995


#60 BloodBoal

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 03:50 PM

Please tell us more!


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#61 Alexcremers

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 04:13 PM

Crocs being a devoted Nolanite, it probably means that he misses the expository 'thought balloons' of the comic book.  ;)

 

 

 

Alexandre


I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#62 crocodile

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 04:25 PM

I don't really like AICN but this guy perfectly encapsulates my thoughts on this film and its ending:

 

 


The first real problem with the ending comes from making Manhattan the OMINOUS FOE. This just opens a whole can of intellectual worms that will fester and pester and annoy you as you try to wrap your mind around them. Let me get this straight. OUR nuclear deterrent, OUR hero, the very model of American power in the world, goes nuts, kills 15 Million people…and that’s going to bring the world together? Our toy blows up several major cities and the rest of the world won’t hold us accountable? Really? And when he ups and leaves, we assume that everyone will believe he will live forever and remain a constant threat? This leads you down a road of possible futures that seem too farfetched even for a deranged super genius like Veidt to envision. The reason the original extra dimension invasion concept worked so well was the fact that it was entirely unverifiable by science, posed an unending threat and didn’t implicate anyone. In fact, by happening to us (much as we would see a decade and a half later in the real world) a tragedy of this magnitude would earn us the sympathy of the rest of the world, smoothing the peace process. By happening to the other superpower and several other major countries, it runs the risk of the blame game.

 

Next we run into the problem of the big hollow hole that was once New York. After seeing every hit result in a broken bone, every violent scene turned into a ballet of carnage, every small death turned ultraviolent – we are treated to 8 pages of heart wrenching, stomach turning, blood curdling aftermath turned into a flash of light and a smoking crater. When Manhattan and Laurie show up in New York just after the attack, they are literally wading through bodies. These people didn’t dies quickly in an instant. They died horribly. Painfully. With the images of madness telepathically burned into their brains. It is a cornucopia of death and destruction so grotesque that it truly forces us to confront whether or not it was worth it. On September 11th roughly 3000 people died. This event is 1000 9/11’s. And the book asks you very bluntly: Can you live with that? To save the world from itself? The books premise, from Rorschach’s violent antics to Dr. Manhattan’s intervention in human politics to Veidt’s murder of 3,000,000 people, forces you to consider whether or not the ends truly justify the means. And by not forcing the audience to confront those images, by not showing them a devastated New York, by glossing over it with a bright flash and a big hole, you never force the audience to really weigh the price against the product. They simply get a math problem worthy of Dr. Manhattan himself. 15 Million Lives to save 6 Billion now and untold billions later. Would you kill one out of every 400 people to achieve world peace? One person in 400 who (as Laurie says at the end of the book) “…can’t disagree or eat Indian food, or love each other…” anymore?

 

Then there’s the problem with how it all goes down and who says what to whom. This gets jumbled around in a way that neuters some of the greatness of the ending. Because one of the best parts about the end of WATCHMEN is seeing who it is that has just (possibly) saved the world. A violent radical right wing conservative, an egg-headed liberal megalomaniac idealist, a thoroughly detached scientist, a middle aged burnout who longs for nothing more than reliving his glory days of winning the big game and fucking the cheerleader and a messed up broken girl with daddy issues who just wants to be loved. Ladies and Gentlemen, your WATCHMEN starting lineup. And nothing punctuates these points so profoundly than the reaction of these characters to one of the greatest endgames in comic book history. But not here. Here the end results are much the same, but the meanings are lost. Rorschach, the books one true hero (depending on the way you look at it) still gets his hero’s death in the snow. But it’s no longer alone. In the book Only Manhattan knows he’s really dead. Everyone else really doesn’t care. But here we get the Hollywood “NNNNOOOOOOOO!” from Daniel who needs to protest to punctuate an already incredible death scene (seriously, almost everything with Haley is BETTER than in the book). Why wasn’t Dan there in the book? Because he was off fucking Laurie. She’s so put off by what she’s seen, so messed up by what she is party to, that she has to feel human. She NEEDS to feel loved. So they sneak off to a pool and screw. Dan, rather than being party to witnessing his friend’s death, is instead off getting his happy ending: he’s won the big game and now he gets to fuck the cheerleader. And once Dr. Manhattan is back from wiping Rorschach off of him, he goes to talk to Laurie, who is instead in the arms of another man – so he visits Veidt and gives him the speech that Snyder has him give to Laurie instead. In the book it is an ominous, cold, disconnected approval of what Veidt has done. He’s done the math. But he’s also seen the future. And he’s pretty much sick of our shit, so he leaves. Here, with Crudup’s gentle delivery, it becomes a tacit approval of Laurie’s relationship with Dan, a necessity to maintain the illusion of his menace and he smiles and leaves to go play god somewhere. After regaining some semblance of humanity. And Veidt is simply robbed of Manhattan’s final fuck you – the veiled hint that leaves him entirely unsure of himself for the first time in the entirety of the story. So while Rorschach still dies in the snow, Manhattan still leaves, Veidt still changes the world and Dan and Laurie still run off to live happily ever after, it is all somehow different. Hollow. Less vague, less (as Manhattan puts it) complicated. And MUCH LESS adult. It is, simply, less. When all is said and done, Snyder has created a much more easily digestible, mainstream ending that gets the pieces right but puts them in all the wrong places. On its own, watched as its own film, it is a fine ending. It gives a satisfying end for most everyone. Rorschach has someone who cares. Laurie has someone who needs her. Dan has someone who gets him. Veidt has created a new empire. And Manhattan rides off happily into the sunset with a newfound sense of humanity. That’s a fine ending to a film. But not to an adaptation. Not of WATCHMEN. 

 

Karol


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#63 TheGreyPilgrim

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 04:54 PM

Big fan of this film.

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#64 Stefancos

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Posted 11 June 2015 - 06:36 PM

It's awe inspiring

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#65 Alexcremers

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Posted 12 June 2015 - 07:00 AM

Somehow I can relate to what screenwriter David Hayter once has written in an open letter:
 
I’ve seen it twice now, and despite having run the movie in my head thousands of times, my two viewings still don’t’ allow me to view the film with the proper distance or objectivity. Is it Apocalypse Now? Is it Blade Runner? Is it Kubrick, or Starship Troopers? I don’t know yet.



Alex


I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#66 Stefancos

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Posted 12 June 2015 - 09:16 AM

Three times for me. The DE twice and TE once.

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#67 Alexcremers

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Posted 12 June 2015 - 09:32 AM

Really? Hmm, I relate to the other part of the quote.

 

 

 

 

(psst, the quote isn't about how much he has seen it)


I have this crazy theory about science fiction. I think all science fiction movies are inherently nostalgic. I think Blade Runner is one of the most nostalgic movies you can think of. Gattaca is incredibly nostalgic somehow. So with this nostalgia, they become weirdly personal. And that got me back to where we were starting which was by going as far away from humanity and Earth as we possibly could in this movie. Every moment needed to remind us of who we are or question of who we are or make us an ache for who we left behind. - Hans Zimmer

#68 Stefancos

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Posted 12 June 2015 - 09:46 AM

Well ofcourse. But haven't I stated my opinion several times already?

We really need to know how Chaac feels

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