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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 7:54 am 
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DCR wrote:
Godziller66 wrote:
DCR wrote:
And yep, he cries at the end, when he takes off his mask to be killed as Kovacs. Not as Rorschach.

I don't know if you know this but they're the same person.

No shit!
But Rorschach/Kovacs doesn't think so. That's what makes the difference.

And so the disagreeing continues. :mrgreen:

Yeah...

I don't really have much else to say but a third party will come along and start it back up soon enough.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 8:04 am 
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Godziller66 wrote:
I don't really have much else to say but a third party will come along and start it back up soon enough.
My feelings exactly. We do agree about some things after all. :)


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 10:24 am 
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DCR wrote:
Perhaps we should define "badassery".
(Hard for me to do it in English.) Perhaps — something like acting specially fearsome, cool and swashbuckling.

I don't see GN Rorschach as badass. I see him cold (not 'cool'), deadpan, rigid.

The guy in the movie is emotional all the way through. GN Rorschach doesn't 'break down and kills [...] in a fit of rage'. That's the point of being Rorschach. He does what he thinks is necessary, and is totally unemotional about it.
That's a whole different kind of insanity than movie-Rorschach losing it.


madvillain wrote:
DCR wrote:
But whatever. I apparently don't get it. Nevermind.


Clearly.

Couldn't resist, eh?


But here's the problem. Many people who read the book, came out of it, thinking Rorschach was a badass. Many people who just saw the movie, came out of it, thinking Rorschach was a badass. Rorschach is freaking insane, but that still doesn't stop people from liking him. They see Rorschach as cool. They see his death as noble, you know? Dying for what he believes in. Never mind the fact that he's a fucking hypocrite.

Point is, to some people, in both the book and the movie, Rorschach comes off to them as 'cool'. So this isn't a problem that is only inherent to the movie.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 12:14 pm 
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I see what you mean, but somehow... it's not what I meant.

I must admit, I find cold, deadpan, insane, hypocritical GN-Rorschach still quite, erm, cool. He has redeeming qualities in the novel, too.

In the end people will project what they like on the story's characters, that's true for the novel as well as for the movie.

But the movie-Rorschach isn't true to the novel, he's already an interpretation, and I feel that limits his facets.
(I am really lacking the vocabulary here, I'm sorry.)

It boils down to (sorry for quoting myself)
"GN Rorschach doesn't 'break down and kills [...] in a fit of rage'. That's the point of being Rorschach."


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 2:14 pm 
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This seems to have been the guiding philosophy behind the adaptation: "In 1986, the graphic novel took apart all the assumptions the reader made about superheroes. It made readers view them in a different way. It made their behavior seem less heroic, and more disturbing, which is probably what it would seem like in real life. ... Lets have the movie do the same thing to superhero movies today that the GN did to comic books in 1986."

DCR wrote:
Wow, Moore has misinterpreted Watchmen a lot then.


What Moore quote are you referring to?

DCR wrote:
Perhaps they work without the GN in mind. I can see they work for the most of you; good for Snyder, and for you, coz you have a movie you enjoy.


It has nothing to do with enjoyment or being "cool." It has everything to do with making a point about how superhero movies trivialize violence.


DCR wrote:
1. You mean, that just wouldn't be Watchmen-the-Movie.
There are no such scenes in Watchmen.
The movie is an interpretation of Watchmen.
If this interpretation works or not is our debate here.
Or at least mine.


Here's where I think you're off track. The goal is not to directly transfer the scenes in the comic to the screen. The goal is to say the same thing as the comic. Make the same points. Have the same message. The GN is a commentary on superhero comic books. The movie is a commentary on superhero movies. This is the reason the fight scenes so absurd. The GN's fight scenes look very similar to the kinds of fights we see in comic books, except that we see the consequences of their actions. The movie's fight scenes are similar to fight scenes we see in movies, except that we see the consequences of their actions. It's commenting on the ridiculous fight scenes in superhero movies. The movie makes a lot of the same points about superhero movies that the GN makes about superhero comic books. If the fight scenes were not so over-the-top, they would not be able to make the point about trivializing violence nearly as powerfully.

That is the main reason behind the apparent difference between the GN fights and movie fights. The comic book is commenting on comic books. The movie is commenting on movies.

DCR wrote:
It is not! No gun in the book. Much bleeding noses and Laurie going for the crotch. A twisted arm.


This is good adaptation. In 1985, it was pretty shocking to have superheroes beat up thugs in such a violent and bloody way (there is definitly blood in the book). Today.... not that shocking. People are used to it. It would not have the same power today.

That, by the way, is the reason they changed the way Rorschach kills Grice. Today, we have seen superheroes indirectly kill villains (Batman does it at the end of Batman Begins). So having Rorschach just burn the house down and walk out would not have the same power.

Snyder wanted Watchmen to have the same impact today that it did 25 years ago. Only now, it's commenting on movies, not comic books.

DCR wrote:
2. Funny, re the two smilies, I have similar feelings re the action and the violence. To me it doesn't look realistic, to me it looks as a silly attempt to cater to certain tastes.


It's not supposed to look realistic. It's supposed to look absurd and over-the-top. If they looked realistic, I would criticize the fight scenes. It's all about satire/commentary through contrast: Absurd, silly fight scenes contrasting brutal violence. Superhero movies do that, but do it in such a way that the audience doesn't think about it. Watchmen confronts that issue head on. Why are you so convinced the fight scenes should look realistic?

DCR wrote:
Whatever he had in mind, I judge what I see on the screen. It does look 'cool', and it doesn't look realistic.


It's GOOD that it looks unrealistic. I would criticize it if it looked realistic. That's the point. It's satire. Satire that makes a point: "Look at how movies show horrible violence and we think it's cool." The movie is established as satire from the very beginning, so everything must be viewed from that perspective.

DCR wrote:
No. Really, no. It was stylish.


Very stylish. Absurdly stylish. That part is over-the-top, as it should be. The realistic part of the movie are the consequences those actions would have on the world. It's so easy to watch fight scenes like this in superhero movies and forget that people are getting HURT. We just sit back and enjoy it.

Here's a specific example:

ABSURD: Doctor Manhattan. A naked blue guy who reassambled himself, and now experiencs time all at once, and has the power to destroy whole countries if he so desired.
REALISTIC: The United States using him as a way to bully other countries around.

The character is absurd and over-the-top. But the implications of such a being existing are realistic.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 2:30 pm 
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 8:04 pm 
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ROR-SHACK wrote:
Here's a specific example:

ABSURD: Doctor Manhattan. A naked blue guy who reassambled himself, and now experiencs time all at once, and has the power to destroy whole countries if he so desired.
REALISTIC: The United States using him as a way to bully other countries around.

The character is absurd and over-the-top. But the implications of such a being existing are realistic.

Yeah, that's what I meant when I said this. I think ROR-SHACK explained it better.

Godziller66 wrote:
So even though everything's pretty ridiculous, it's treated as it would in real life.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:31 pm 
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ROR-SHACK wrote:
This seems to have been the guiding philosophy behind the adaptation: "In 1986, the graphic novel took apart all the assumptions the reader made about superheroes. It made readers view them in a different way. It made their behavior seem less heroic, and more disturbing, which is probably what it would seem like in real life. ... Lets have the movie do the same thing to superhero movies today that the GN did to comic books in 1986."
Yea, you people told me so before, I don't think it's a dumb idea, Snyder's try just doesn't work for me.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
DCR wrote:
Wow, Moore has misinterpreted Watchmen a lot then.
What Moore quote are you referring to?
No quote, just my impression. Unless I find a fitting quote please excuse my assumption and let me correct myself (and add what you wrote, too):
As far as I understand Watchmen Moore has made a story about realistic superheroes AND, yea, realistic implications of superheroes in the world. Both actually. And I think the realistic superheroes are very important, and I miss them in the movie.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
It has nothing to do with enjoyment or being "cool." It has everything to do with making a point about how superhero movies trivialize violence.
And that doesn't work for me, and if it works for other people: good for them and Snyder. That remark does look a bit snarky, but I honestly don't mean it that way. I wish I liked the movie more than I actually do.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
DCR wrote:
You mean, that just wouldn't be Watchmen-the-Movie.
There are no such scenes in Watchmen.
The movie is an interpretation of Watchmen.
If this interpretation works or not is our debate here.
Or at least mine.
Here's where I think you're off track. The goal is not to directly transfer the scenes in the comic to the screen.
I totally agree about that being the goal. I just think that this goal wasn't reached.
I wish there were less shots that look like panels from the book and more translation of the GN's theme into another medium — as eg. V for Vendetta delivered (imo).
Or even, like Trufaut did with Fahrenheit, something that's not the novel but something else and new that works on its own.
As it is I got many GN visuals, and much stuff that feels superficial and unfitting to me, and not new at all.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
The GN's fight scenes look very similar to the kinds of fights we see in comic books, except that we see the consequences of their actions. The movie's fight scenes are similar to fight scenes we see in movies, except that we see the consequences of their actions.
I saw fight scenes that weren't much different from many other fight scenes from many other movies. And the consequences? Actually I found the moaning masses in Kill Bill 1, maimed by the bride (you know, the scene with the Yojimbo-nod), more chilling and even more realistic for the consequences than anything I saw in Watchmen.
In Ran you have a man holding his own sliced off arm, staring at it in horror and disbelief. That's showing consequences.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
This is good adaptation. In 1985, it was pretty shocking to have superheroes beat up thugs in such a violent and bloody way (there is definitly blood in the book). Today.... not that shocking. People are used to it. It would not have the same power today.
That's what I thought when I wrote
DCR wrote:
One thing I am unsure about though: if Snyder had done things as they are in the book, would that have worked on the screen?
Perhaps he had to take things farther, so that modern audiences, who are saturated with extreme action and violence, could accept the movie.


ROR-SHACK wrote:
That, by the way, is the reason they changed the way Rorschach kills Grice. Today, we have seen superheroes indirectly kill villains (Batman does it at the end of Batman Begins). So having Rorschach just burn the house down and walk out would not have the same power.
Um, no. There is more to that scene than just burning a man in a house.
I can accept it when I accept that the movie is a new thing with new characters. (Which I am willing to do.)
When I want to see Rorschach from the GN the scene fails.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
It's not supposed to look realistic. It's supposed to look absurd and over-the-top. If they looked realistic, I would criticize the fight scenes. It's all about satire/commentary through contrast: Absurd, silly fight scenes contrasting brutal violence. Superhero movies do that, but do it in such a way that the audience doesn't think about it. Watchmen confronts that issue head on. Why are you so convinced the fight scenes should look realistic?
Because in the GN they are fought by mere human beings in funny costumes.
As I said before, there are many movies that contain absurd fight scenes combined with brutal violence. Kill Bill comes to mind again. I can believe that Snyder had a different agenda when he did those scenes, but the result is nothing new.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
ABSURD: Doctor Manhattan. A naked blue guy who reassambled himself, and now experiencs time all at once, and has the power to destroy whole countries if he so desired.
REALISTIC: The United States using him as a way to bully other countries around.
The character is absurd and over-the-top. But the implications of such a being existing are realistic.
Yep. I agree, and that certain point comes across in both the book and the movie.

And I still don't like the masked vigilantes having superhuman powers in the movie, and I never will.
As long as I try to see the GN as movie.

And I still don't got the DC to check if the movie works on its own FOR ME.

I do understand what you're saying, ROR-SHACK, did so before, it does make perfect sense, I just don't think Synder achieved it.

Peace.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 3:52 pm 
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DCR wrote:
As far as I understand Watchmen Moore has made a story about realistic superheroes AND, yea, realistic implications of superheroes in the world. Both actually. And I think the realistic superheroes are very important, and I miss them in the movie.


You really find characters like Doctor Manhattan and Adrian Veidt to be realistic in the GN? Even when the characters in the book aren't being unrealistic, they are still being absurd. The costumes are laughable on contrast with the serious subject matter. Blake is the character who really understands that, and can see what a joke it is.

The superheroes in the book are ridiculous. Intentionally so.

DCR wrote:
I wish there were less shots that look like panels from the book and more translation of the GN's theme into another medium — as eg. V for Vendetta delivered (imo).


No offense, but I find it very ironic that you tried to play the Alan Moore card earlier, and yet you liked the VfV movie. Moore despised the V movie, and rightfully said did not honor the important themes of the book at all.

DCR wrote:
And the consequences? Actually I found the moaning masses in Kill Bill 1, maimed by the bride (you know, the scene with the Yojimbo-nod), more chilling and even more realistic for the consequences than anything I saw in Watchmen.


Watchmen is primarily concerned with superhero stories first of all. But even so, Kill Bill is a great example of violence being trivialized. Much of that scene has super-stylized choreography, and fun (and sometimes cheesy) music playing in the background.

I don't know how to respond to the idea of Kill Bill being realistic. Nothing in that movie is remotely plausible, especially the fight scenes. Excellent film, and the violence is completely over-the-top. (Blood squirts out 10 feet like a sprinkler whenever people get sliced)

DCR wrote:
Um, no. There is more to that scene than just burning a man in a house.


The most important idea in this scene in the GN is that Rorschach has finally crossed that line that superheroes aren't supposed to cross. Back in 1986, a superhero killing someone, even indirectly, was not a line superheroes crossed. Today, in movies at least, it sometimes is.


DCR wrote:
Because in the GN they are fought by mere human beings in funny costumes.


You can't just compare the fight scenes directly and call it bad adaptation. You have to compare the messages of the GN and the movie. The GN's fight scenes resemble fights in superhero comic books. The movie's fight scenes resemble fights in superhero movies.

DCR wrote:
And I still don't like the masked vigilantes having superhuman powers in the movie, and I never will.
As long as I try to see the GN as movie.


I certainly don't just look at the movie as the GN come to life. They have many fundamental parallels, but they're talking about different (but closely related) things. It accomplishes the same thing with movies that the GN did with comic books.

This is one of those areas where the fact that Snyder changed it proves that he gets it. It would have been easy to just translate the comic more literally and tone down the fighting. But he could see the points the GN made so powerfully on the page would not come across if he did that. So he made changes in the interest of being faithful to the book. That's good adaptation.

DCR wrote:
I do understand what you're saying, ROR-SHACK, did so before, it does make perfect sense, I just don't think Synder achieved it.


Fair enough. Do you just think Snyder did not achieve it in terms of adaptation? Or do you think he fails at getting the point across (as a stand-alone film)?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:32 pm 
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ROR-SHACK wrote:
DCR wrote:
As far as I understand Watchmen Moore has made a story about realistic superheroes AND, yea, realistic implications of superheroes in the world. Both actually. And I think the realistic superheroes are very important, and I miss them in the movie.
You really find characters like Doctor Manhattan and Adrian Veidt to be realistic in the GN?
Of course not. But the rest are, much more so than in the movie. And those 'realistic' humans in costumes ARE an important aspect of the story.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
Even when the characters in the book aren't being unrealistic, they are still being absurd. The costumes are laughable on contrast with the serious subject matter. Blake is the character who really understands that, and can see what a joke it is.
Hm. We see different things in this Rorschach blot that the GN is. I think the joke that the Comedian sees is human behaviour. I think he has decided that there are only two kinds of people: Fuckers, and those who get fucked. He has decided to be one of the fuckers, and he treats it as a joke.
That's what I see. Doesn't make what you see untrue. Just sayin'.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
The superheroes in the book are ridiculous. Intentionally so.
Um. No shit!

ROR-SHACK wrote:
DCR wrote:
I wish there were less shots that look like panels from the book and more translation of the GN's theme into another medium — as eg. V for Vendetta delivered (imo).
No offense, but I find it very ironic that you tried to play the Alan Moore card on me, and yet you liked the VfV movie. Moore despised the V movie, and rightfully said did not honor the important themes of the book at all.
Did I try to play the Alan Moore card? Erm, yea, looks like. Pulled it back though, didn't I?

As for Vendetta: don't know if Moore ever saw the movie. I thought he didn't. Anyway, I don't expect him to like it. I did, not all of it, but much.
But if I'd written the novel (gods bless!) I'd be pissed off about the movie, too.
So I gotta correct myself again. I claimed that Vendetta managed to translate the GN's themes into another medium, but that is only true for some aspects of the story.
As an adaptation of the GN I, personally, found Vendetta okayish but lacking.
And as a true adaptation of the GN it fails. They changed too much, lost the anarchy idea, lost the criticism on thatcherism, etc.pp.
But by changing so much and doing it in their own way Vendetta works as a movie by itself. For me. Mostly.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
I don't know how to respond to the idea of Kill Bill being realistic. Nothing in that movie is remotely plausible, especially the fight scenes. Excellent film, and the violence is completely over-the-top. (Blood squirts out 10 feet like a sprinkler whenever people get sliced)
Didn't make myself clear enough. I was only referring to the moaning, suffering maimed survivors of that one scene in Kill Bill 1. I found that very chilling and terrible and sobering when I watched it. But perhaps I'm the only one.
As you write, the whole movie is, of course, utterly over the top.

ROR-SHACK wrote:
The most important idea in this scene in the GN is that Rorschach has finally crossed that line that superheroes aren't supposed to cross. Back in 1986, a superhero killing someone, even indirectly, was not a line superheroes crossed. Today, in movies at least, it sometimes is.
There we just completely disagree, and in this case I think it's not a question of personal opinion but that you're missing half of the GN scene's meaning, and I don't. Apologies. :mrgreen:


ROR-SHACK wrote:
You can't just compare the fight scenes directly and call it bad adaptation. You have to compare the messages of the GN and the movie. The GN's fight scenes resemble fights in superhero comic books. The movie's fight scenes resemble fights in superhero movies.
The fight scenes in the book resemble fights done by human comic book characters with training and great knowledge of material arts (and yes, complete with some comic-book-style exaggeration).
They do not (excluding some of Veidt's, and Doc) resemble fights done by comic superheroes with superpowers.


ROR-SHACK wrote:
Do you just think Snyder did not achieve it in terms of adaptation? Or do you think he fails at getting the point across (as a stand-alone film)?
Adaptation: mostly fail. For me. I got reasons (more than I mentioned here), but I'm not expecting that everyone who loves the GN must feel the same.

Stand-alone film: I'm undecided. I have problems with the movie itself, due to some (too much, imo) bad acting and some corny lines that rub in the obvious. But, as I said, I totally want to watch the DC while trying to forget about the GN and see how that works.
I also plan to show it to a good friend of mine. We have very similar taste in movies, but she doesn't know the GN and is thus unbiased, and I'm curious about her opinion.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 8:56 pm 
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Slightly off-topic question, mainly directed at ROR-SHACK

We can all agree that Watchmen is a satire, right?

In the movie, we realize the movie is a satire, from the get go, with what Blake was watching and the fight scene afterward.

What's the first moment in the book, when we realize it's a satire? Sorry don't have the book on me right now (lent it out to a friend).


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 9:17 pm 
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InfinityQuantum wrote:
What's the first moment in the book, when we realize it's a satire?

I just looked and I think it should be the millisecond that Rorscahch uses a grappling gun.

Either that or when you see the panel where Blake gets thrown through a window.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 9:38 pm 
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Godziller66 wrote:
InfinityQuantum wrote:
What's the first moment in the book, when we realize it's a satire?

I just looked and I think it should be the millisecond that Rorscahch uses a grappling gun.

Either that or when you see the panel where Blake gets thrown through a window.


That could work, but to me, that seems a bit to subtle to be the main thing that tells us, to see though that perspective. Usually, it'll be pretty blunt, if it's the first time the creator wants to tell us, that this is a work of satire.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:49 pm 
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I don't think there was one moment for me where I realized it was satire. I think I slowly got a sense of it, subconsciously. But one moment that does stand out is the Minutemen taking the photograph in Chapter 2 when Blake tells Mothman "Hey, watch the wings!"

DCR wrote:
There we just completely disagree, and in this case I think it's not a question of personal opinion but that you're missing half of the GN scene's meaning, and I don't. Apologies.


What do you think is the other half? Rorschach is making himself a watchman. Judge and jury.

DCR wrote:
The fight scenes in the book resemble fights done by human comic book characters with training and great knowledge of material arts (and yes, complete with some comic-book-style exaggeration).
They do not (excluding some of Veidt's, and Doc) resemble fights done by comic superheroes with superpowers.


Another blot we see differently I guess. While reading it, I always got that sense. The knot-top fight with the solid color backgrounds is a good example. And I love the panel where Dan and Laurie dramatically glance at each other before the fight begins.

Overall, as an adaptation, I don't think a significantly better Watchmen adaptation is possible. By which I basically mean: Of all the ways to totally ruin Watchmen, this is the least painful. The GN is so dense and brilliant, and does things that only a GN can do. Just by making it into a movie at all, you've ruined what makes it such an amazing piece of art. As an adaptation, I really admire the effort, but I can't say I'm satisfied with it. Nor could I possible be. This is about as good of an adaptation as is possible from this source material.

As a stand-alone film... I think of it as a fascinatingly complex science-fiction political satire superhero-genre commentary. I like that it takes risks. It's not some standard Hollywood bullcrap. It's a polarizing film. A lot of people hate it, and a lot of people love it. And that's okay. One of the reasons I like it is that it doesn't make compromises in an attempt to appeal to as many people as possible. It's a piece of artistic expression, and you can take it or leave t.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2010 12:35 pm 
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Am I the only one who doesn't really think that the movie looks like the novel? They obviously tried to emulate it, but ultimately, I think that the movie has its own look and is filled with Snyder's own visual sensibilities.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:02 pm 
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joshsirjoshules wrote:
Am I the only one who doesn't really think that the movie looks like the novel? They obviously tried to emulate it, but ultimately, I think that the movie has its own look and is filled with Snyder's own visual sensibilities.


I do too. Not really in a bad way, though, but I do wish it looked grittier than it does.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2010 5:59 pm 
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It depends on what you mean by "looks like the novel." I think the movie pretty much looks like a real version of the book. But yes, Snyder has clearly done his own thing with it at the same time.

It wouldn't be possible to do it absolutely literally without doing a super stylized Sin City approach. Pick an iconic panel from the book like the Owlship at the Keene Act riot. Look at it. Think about trying to match all those colors. How the heck would you do that and make it seem remotely believable in a movie?

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2010 6:02 pm 
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ROR-SHACK wrote:
It wouldn't be possible to do it absolutely literally without doing a super stylized Sin City approach. Pick an iconic panel from the book like the Owlship at the Keene Act riot. Look at it. Think about trying to match all those colors. How the heck would you do that and make it seem remotely believable in a movie?

It would look like Willy Wonka's Watchmen Spectacular.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:58 am 
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Firstly, I apologise – I am typing this at work, so I have only briefly skimmed these posts and I won’t be able to attribute quotes to the relevant posters.

OK; the main thing everyone is avoiding/forgetting is that Watchmen was primarily a deconstruction of the Superhero comics genre – not a satire. Yes, there are satirical elements to Watchmen, but its main premises were always “What would happen if there really WAS a real superhero/superhuman, and how would it affect the world? What would happen if ordinary people actually started dressing up and fighting crime?”

From Wikipedia: “A superhero (sometimes rendered super-hero or super hero) is a fictional character of "extraordinary or superhuman powers" dedicated to protecting the public.”

This is why the word ‘superhero’ is never used in Watchmen, and ‘masked adventurer’ or ‘vigilante’ is used instead.

It would appear that certain posters are trying to RetCon Watchmen’s intent to apologise for Zack Snyder’s interpretation, and are actively avoiding the word ‘deconstruction’. As in certain areas, the film completely fails as a deconstruction of the superhero genre.

It would seem to me that people are reading things into the film that simply are not there; to my amazement, one poster even tries to excuse Veidt’s superhuman standing jumps (and I paraphrase due to lack of time) by justifying it as satire because “millions of people are dying” while he’s doing it?! That simply does not follow. How is that in any way satirical, by definition?

‘Satire’ and ‘deconstruction’ can be difficult to separate at times, granted; but let me give an example:

The upcoming comic adaptation film “Kick-Ass”, which has taken one of the basic premises of Watchmen (and sadly looks like it will outdo the Watchmen film in this), has perfect examples of satire in its trailers, one of which is:

One of the masked vigilantes (because they aren’t superheroes either) poses heroically on a dumpster then jumps down to the ground, lands a bit awkwardly and exclaims, “OK; that hurt!”; this is played for laughs (and it’s funnier when you see it!) so can be considered satire in the context of the film as a whole. This is obviously similar to Rorschach’s ‘Rumrunner’ leap (in the GN), which works as a deconstruction, showing the real-life consequences, but not played for laughs.

The characters in the Watchmen GN were never portrayed as ‘superheroes’, but ordinary people in costume who had done some training – yes, there are certain elements where disbelief has to be suspended, but in terms of physical ability, they were all bound by basic rules of human physicality – even Veidt (ignoring the bullet-catching – yes, it’s a stretch that he was quick enough; but he still ended up with a damaged hand).

If Zack Snyder wanted to show the ‘realistic results’ of violence in his Watchmen film, then the following examples do not work:

Rorschach being thrown bodily at a wall hard enough to smash a chunk out of it, with no real adverse consequences.

Laurie kicking a Knot-Top like a football into the side of a dumpster – the guy gets al least 12 feet of air time!

Laurie twisting a man’s head around 180 degrees. I would suggest there is not a woman alive who could achieve this with the minimum of effort shown.

And there are more, but the above will do.

Part of the problem is that Snyder is not consistent, which undermines his alleged attempts at realistic consequences; he goes OTT one minute, then realistic another: Nite Owl II repeatedly punching the Knot-Top in the face - the Knot-Top loses front teeth, hot fat in face – horrific burning; Rorschach with the meat cleaver. However, these real-life consequences lose their impact because of instances like the ones shown above.

None of the above examples are ‘satirical’, nor were they (I suspect) any high-brow attempts at juxtaposition like some (Snyder included) would suggest. These are all things designed to pander to the mainstream, like ‘Magic Rorschach’, and the various ‘cool’ poses struck by Dan & Laurie. Having Dan drop out of the Owlship onto the street, or glide down onto the prison roof is not satire, commentary or anything like that; it is purely an emulation of standard superhero genre tropes in order to make mainstream viewers with no knowledge of the GN feel more ‘at home’.

As I said previously, I enjoy the film to a certain extent, and would like to enjoy it more, but I feel that Snyder could not bring himself to commit enough to the original themes of the GN.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 15, 2010 7:51 am 
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Satan's Slut wrote:
“What would happen if there really WAS a real superhero/superhuman, and how would it affect the world? What would happen if ordinary people actually started dressing up and fighting crime?”


I would change the wordng. Watchmen is about "What would happen if a superhero/superhuman was real, and how would it effect the world?" It takes the characters pretty much as they are but puts them in a real world.

Satan's Slut wrote:
It would appear that certain posters are trying to RetCon Watchmen’s intent to apologise for Zack Snyder’s interpretation, and are actively avoiding the word ‘deconstruction’. As in certain areas, the film completely fails as a deconstruction of the superhero genre.


The key here is to remember that the book is a deconstruction of comic books, and the movie is a deconstruction of movies.

Satan's Slut wrote:
It would seem to me that people are reading things into the film that simply are not there; to my amazement, one poster even tries to excuse Veidt’s superhuman standing jumps (and I paraphrase due to lack of time) by justifying it as satire because “millions of people are dying” while he’s doing it?! That simply does not follow. How is that in any way satirical, by definition?


You really didn't find the contrast amusing? Millions of people around the world are being killed and there are guys in Halloween costumes jumping around over it? It shows the absurdity of superheroes trying to solve the world's problems. The satire in Watchmen is subtle, but it is definitly there.

In the Kick-Ass example you give (quoted below), the satire comes through contrast. A heroic pose, and then... "Oh, that hurt!" In Kick-Ass, they are merely making fun of superheroes. In Watchmen, the satire gives insight and makes you look at them in a different way that makes trivializing violence not seem cool. On the contrary, it's sickening.

Satan's Slut wrote:
The upcoming comic adaptation film “Kick-Ass”, which has taken one of the basic premises of Watchmen (and sadly looks like it will outdo the Watchmen film in this), has perfect examples of satire in its trailers, one of which is:

One of the masked vigilantes (because they aren’t superheroes either) poses heroically on a dumpster then jumps down to the ground, lands a bit awkwardly and exclaims, “OK; that hurt!”; this is played for laughs (and it’s funnier when you see it!) so can be considered satire in the context of the film as a whole. This is obviously similar to Rorschach’s ‘Rumrunner’ leap (in the GN), which works as a deconstruction, showing the real-life consequences, but not played for laughs.


I couldn't agree more. Although there are moments in Watchmen that give me a chuckle ("Hey, watch the wings!"), it's not satire where you laugh out loud. On the contrary, it's satire that makes me realize how sick superheroes actually are when you think about. They put on ridiculous costumes and beat people up. There's a contrast there this is disturbingly amusing, and Watchmen points this out.

Satan's Slut wrote:
The characters in the Watchmen GN were never portrayed as ‘superheroes’, but ordinary people in costume who had done some training – yes, there are certain elements where disbelief has to be suspended, but in terms of physical ability, they were all bound by basic rules of human physicality – even Veidt (ignoring the bullet-catching – yes, it’s a stretch that he was quick enough; but he still ended up with a damaged hand).


This point is not being disputed. Snyder clearly exaggerated the fight scenes much more than the book. But I say the reason for this is that it's necessary for commenting on superhero movies, but not necessary for commenting on superhero comic books. The book and the movie are addressing different things.

Satan's Slut wrote:
Part of the problem is that Snyder is not consistent, which undermines his alleged attempts at realistic consequences; he goes OTT one minute, then realistic another: Nite Owl II repeatedly punching the Knot-Top in the face - the Knot-Top loses front teeth, hot fat in face – horrific burning; Rorschach with the meat cleaver. However, these real-life consequences lose their impact because of instances like the ones shown above.


I disagree. I say they become MORE powerful because of the "OTT" instances. That is what superhero movies do. They take very violent events and try to make them look cool, and trivialize them. THAT is what the Watchmen movie is addressing. They are contrasting horrific violence with colorful heroics.

I would suggest that many fans won't see it this way because of Zack Snyder's reputation as an action director. If you kept the film the same, but added a more respected director's name to the opening credits, the film would get a lot more respect.

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