Dear Mr. Snyder


I watched your Watchmen last night.

It's a move that I was - quite literally - waiting 20 years to see. And not see. You see, as I grew older and re-read the book over and over again (I was one of those die-hard comic geeks that made a point of reading the book every year since I was 18. Some folks read a yearly Shakespeare, some re-read Heart of Darkness or watch Citizen Kane ... me? I did Watchmen. Every year.), I became increasingly convinced that it would never translate to film very well, in spite of my first teenage impressions of how bitchin' a movie would be. Several key elements could only be captured through the unique pacing of comics - it's camera was not the theater's camera.

Jon slow internal monologue on Mars. The Laurie / Comedian reveal. The ending, by God! - that would never work on film! Veidt as smarter-than-everyone (personally, I think you missed that one). Rorschach (which Haley absolutely NAILED). The costume sex (Zack? Please. That was unnecessary. You know what I'm talking about). The alternate time period and style. The massive character development. All of the background material that fleshed out the world with a subtlety I couldn't imagine working in film.

Part of me was relieved each time a planned film version was scrapped. It made the possibility of me having another "No, really.. the comic is soooo much better than that god-awful movie!" conversation with my non-comic friends that much further away.

So, understand that I went into this thing with (I think) realistic expectations. If not completely on the bottom of the low side. I went to honor a promise I made to my 18-year old self. I was in a large group of people - a nice mix of people who were familiar with the book / extremely familiar with the book / just finished it before the movie (including the Roller Girl) / didn't know anything about it going in.

And even though I know that no film version of Watchmen would ever be a perfect match for what I thought of in my head 20 years ago when I first was reading it (and my version would certainly disappoint scores of other fans), and even though I know (indeed, expected) elements of the book would have to be changed to better fit the vehicle of film, I have to say - that as a movie taken on it's own ... with all you had to work with to give it a proper adaption... based on all of the after-movie discussions..


Thanks. Really.

And this is coming from a guy with Rorschach tattoos. Right above his Jack Kirby ones.

But, man.. you gotta fix that soundtrack! UGG!


Dom said...

I thought is was pretty good for what it was. I Think it'll end up occupying a space on my shelf when the DVD comes out. As far as the soundtrack is concerned, I was digging the Leonard Cohan track during the Latex/rubber costume sex scene. Good post :)


Sea_of_Green said...

Oh, Soup! I'm glad the movie worked for you! :-) I haven't seen it yet, but I'll get there!