The Watchmen, reviewed | Bleader

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Watchmen, reviewed

Posted By on 03.04.09 at 05:18 PM

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Since it's a hot topic today, I thought I'd go ahead and post our review of The Watchmen:

In Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons's 1986 superhero comic Watchmen, Laurie Jupiter--as the Silk Specter--is a profane, impatient, smart, and funny woman with conflicted feelings toward her past and her own altruism. As played by Malin Ackerman in this screen adaptation, she's a body in a slick latex suit, with no discernible personality. Director Zack Snyder (300) races through the story, faithfully reproducing this bit of dialogue from Moore and that bit of imagery from Gibbons but never pausing to develop a vision of his own. The result is oddly hollow and disjointed; the actors moving stiffly from one overdetermined tableau to another. With Billy Crudup, Patrick Wilson, Jackie Earle Haley, and Carla Gugino. R, 163 min. --Noah Berlatsky

Berlatsky's not alone. Michael Phillips gives it one and half stars, describing Ackerman as "possibly the worst actress in Hollywood at the moment." The top critics at Rotten Tomatoes are 70/30 against right now, and a couple of the "positive" reviews are damning with faint praise. The always readable Anthony Lane: "Amid these pompous grabs at horror, neither author nor director has much grasp of what genuine, unhyped suffering might be like, or what pity should attend it; they are too busy fussing over the fate of the human race—a sure sign of metaphysical vulgarity—to be bothered with lesser plights."

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