Waiting to see the longer, definitive 'Director's Cut', but I think this will go down as the "Citizen Kane" of comic book movies. And I mean that in several senses. One, that I think it is an incredible picture. Also, Kane was under-appreciated by most in its time, didn't really get a fair viewing by the general public until the long dead hand of WR Herst's PR machine finally let go. Now it usually occupies the top five greatest American films lists most anywhere.
It is not a "happy" movie. This is set in a dark alternate reality inhabited by damaged and broken people who experience and perpetrate some horrific things with mixed motivations, wondering if they are doing "good" or "evil" in their world. This is not a McDonald's Happy Meal promotion-worthy film. You don't come out of a viewing of this film skipping and dancing and humming the theme music. You come out brooding and pensive, like the characters. I think the last time I felt this way about a picture was after my first viewing of "Apocalypse Now".
I am somewhat hopeful that we still have chances to see fiction movies made that are not prepackaged with the cookie-cutter singing-and-dancing happy ending. Though the continued decline of taste and lack of risk-taking in Hollywood may mean that risk-taking films like this are going to be harder to come by in the future.
I think this movie is going to continue to grow a following over the long haul and eventually will get its due for the remarkable product it is. Frankly, you get your money's worth in the opening credits scenes alone. Don't take the kids; it has gory violence, it has full-on nudity of both genders.
Most dangerous of all: it contains IDEAS.
I am looking forward to seeing Watchmen. With my schedule lately I have not even had time to watch tv, let alone go to the cinema. Oddly I have time to read the COW at 1am. Hmm.
Your post made me think about the really crappy superhero movies of late.
There was so much hype for Superman Returns in 2006 that it was doomed to failure.
The film reportedly cost $270 million to produce, and only made $391 million worldwide. Sure they made their money back, but just barely. For a look at what could have been check this out:
My dad and I lined up to see this on opening day, hoping for some nostalgia to the days when the original Superman was playing on 1 screen downtown and the line was literally around the block.
Bryan Singer had success with The Usual Suspects and the first X-Men movies, but he should have stopped there. A recent analysis has proven that the only good parts of Superman Returns were the parts that were reminiscent of the original 1978 Superman - the opening credits and the parts where Superman is saving people from peril. The rest (plot, acting, Kevin Spacey, the chick playing Lois Lane, the physical impossibility of Superman having a kid with a human) were all pretty forgettable.
On the other hand, this same analysis determined that the Dark Knight could be the best superhero film ever created. Really it was a Super-villian film, in which a superhero happened to appear. Is Batman a superhero, since he has no super powers? I am not qualified to answer this - however Bruce Wayne, and Christian Bale's depiction of him, is a super human - using his vast inheritance for the good of mankind. While this motif has been portrayed in every incarnation from Adam West to George Clooney in the nipple suit, I don't think anyone made it so convincing better than Chistopher Nolan. Download the podcast interview with the writer of Dark Knight from Creative Screenwriting magazine's website - it is quite interesting. They have one for Watchmen as well which I need to listen to again and then see the flick.
Ok, some readers are probably saying to themselves, "This Cohen guy only seems to talk about Superman I, Star Wars and Kubrick movies. Doesn't he see new movies?"
Yes, I watch movies new and old. It just so happens that my favorite movies seem to come into play no matter what I am talking about.
Keep it going..
[Mike Cohen] "The film reportedly cost $270 million to produce, and only made $391 million worldwide. Sure they made their money back, but just barely."
Wish I could barely net $121 million.
I don't were that number came from, but usually half of the ticket price goes to the theater, another part to the distribution company, of course there are some taxes and advertising costs. Hard to know exactly how much money is just for the production company.
But the movie will generate more money on DVD and TV. And I also could be happy with just $21,000,000 of profit.
[Fernando Mol] "I also could be happy with just $21,000,000 of profit."
Fox is going to get 40-million for doing nothing on Watchmen. Producer Larry Gordon had been developing the project for fifteen or twenty years, and at some point, presumably when he was President of Fox, the project was in development at the studio. It seems Fox waited until Gordon and Warner Bros. were actually in production, before claiming ownership of the story rights.
After going at it in the courts for quite some time, Fox and Warners reached a settlement that gives Fox 40-million off the top of the gross. That should cut into Warner's profits just a bit. The case is far from over however, as it remains to be seen who was at ultimately at fault. The legal battle may ultimately wind up being more interesting than movie itself.
David Roth Weiss
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™
A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.
Even Mr. Manhattan wasn't able to find out he was being cheated until the bomb explode.
Um, just as general policy, may I suggest we not drop plot spoilers in posts without first posting a warning, at least for new films still showing...then people can stop reading or continue by their own decision.
For the consideration of those who have not yet gone to see a film, it's considered a courtesy not to reveal plot information, though of course we can talk around the subject and general themes.
You´re right, Mark. The movie is not playing in my town anymore but this is a world community. Good thing I didn't said anything about Mr. Manhattan attending Spock's birthday party (just kidding).
Too much visual FX for my taste, but Rorschach will definitely stay in my head for some time.
I saw Watchmen a couple weeks ago, I too thought it was extremely well crafted, but that was about it. Now I'm trying to get my hands around getting my girlfriend to agree to go see Wolverine, which got semi good reviews today. Stay tuned...
Have a wonderful day.
Finally saw Watchmen last night on DVD.
Awesome visuals, great action and effects, weak plot, way too much exposition, too many characters. We could not wait for it to end.