Who watches the Watchmen? Unfortunately, I did.
The first words out of my mouth after seeing the Watchmen were, “this film is awful.”
During the course of the movie, I sighed in disgust, I prayed for the movie’s end, I laughed in disdained at some ridiculous line utter by someone clad in latex and Zack Snyder just directed himself out of a career.
After further rumination, I hesitate to call Watchmen awful, but it’s still close. The movie has a few superior qualities but at the end of the credits, Watchmen is plague by one huge, audience-repelling problem.
That problem is you like none of the characters. You don’t care what happens to them. In a movie just shy of three hours that’s an insurmountable obstacle to overcome and still enjoy the experience.
The only character you remotely have any feelings for is the masked avenger named Rorschach. After him, your favorite characters are the pimpled-face teen that took your ticket and the goth-girl that slathered a butter-like substance on your popcorn.
Snyder’s work is supposed to be stylized and while Watchmen has tons of style (and very little substance) it’s not all that stylized. In fact, most of the movie is rather bland.
The action sequences are few and far between and so similar to one another you can hardly tell them apart. There’s plenty of carnage and most of it is completely unnecessary, it feels like Snyder was pandering to blood-thirsty youths.
The visuals and the rare action sequences are sadly the films’ highlights. Because when the actors start talking, Watchmen takes a definite turn for the worse. Snyder has mastered the visual effects but he struggles mightily to get believable performances from those pesky humans he has to employ as actors.
Half the film is centered on the mystery of who is killing masked heroes? The other 90% of the movie is flashbacks. However, the mystery wasn’t much of a mystery and the flashbacks weren’t all that interesting.
Beyond the film’s structural problems, I had serious issues with the amount of violence perpetrated against women and the gratuitous sex and nudity. I also felt the film was Anti-American.
Watchmen brings up some timeless questions about humanity but those would probably be better served in a comic book and not in a three hour movie.