Who Rewatches Watchmen? (I Do.)
March 24, 2016

watchmen

In “anticipation” of Zack Snyder’s latest dour ‘n desaturated super hero action orgy, Bats v. Supes: More Titles Plz, I decided to rewatch Watchmen, because I kinda liked it before, I was curious how it’d hold up, and I wasn’t yet in the mood to rewatch Man v. Steel: More Fur Pecs Plz. Some cries for help can wait until the weekend.

As such, here are some scant thoughts I had upon revisiting Zack Snyder’s first foray in superhero cinema:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Carla Gugino in Watchmen
July 30, 2010

When you consider how I feel about Carla Gugino in Watchmen, and then you throw in how I feel about fabulous ladies in fabulous glasses, Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema of Carla Gugino as the original Silk Spectre, replete with latex jowls and rhinestone-studded granny glasses, is a no-brainer.  Seriously, where’s the boozy old-lady Silk Spectre spin-off we all (and by “we all,” I mean me) have been demanding?  Hollywood, I smell a sequel, and it smells like cheap liquor and Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds!

Oh, and do be sure to click to enlarge and appreciate the faux-geriatic fabulousness of it all.

Set Your Anticipation to Campalicious: Carla Gugino’s Joined Zack Snyder’s SuckerPunch
August 4, 2009

Watchmen, the 168-minutes of moving images that was less a coherent film narrative so much as a cinematic summary of the events of Alan Moore’s acclaimed graphic novel, was one of the few movies that has effectively stayed with me since I saw it in theaters.  That’s less an endorsement of excellence so much as an admission that I find the movie to be an unsolvable puzzle.  I’ve rewatched it nearly half-a-dozen times since it came out on DVD, and though it is terribly faithful as an adaptation, I still feel like it never quite comes together in the way it should.

That said, Carla Gugino stole the show with her boozy Sally Jupiter.  It was camp, to be sure, but not the sort of camp rooted in being terrible.  No no, it’s the sort of camp that comes from being ferociously unrestrained.  Think Sister Ruth from Black Narcissus, but less Technicolor red lipstick and a much higher BAC.  Seriously, Ms. Gugino, should you ever find this blog on account of a Google alert, please know:

carla gugino fabulous

ANYWAYS, my major frustration with Watchmen was the lack of giving her little else to do in that movie beyond getting almost raped.  Blech.  Thankfully, though, I was looking over the headlines at ComingSoon.net this morning and read that she’ll be joining the cast of Zack Snyder’s upcoming SuckerPunch.  But what exactly is SuckerPunch about?  Well, here’s ComingSoon.net article’s plot summary:

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Since It’s Quite Popular, Let’s Talk Some More About the Dr. Manhattan’s Blue Weiner
March 23, 2009

Over the weekend, despite not being particularly active with my blogging duties, I noticed a relatively unusual spike in views:

bludity-dashboard

I recognize that, in the infinite traffic of the interwebs, this level of activity is hardly astounding.  At the same time, though, it’s barely not yet noon, and the numbers on on the rise.  All because I had to go on a rant a few week’s ago about the full frontal bludity in Watchmen.  

Having seen Watchmen, I can safely attest that it’s there.  Frequently.  Unlike the graphic novel, which largely obscures Dr. Manhattan’s kibbles and bits through selective panel compositions, the movie parades that thing loud and proud.  Much to the chagrin of the groaning fanboy sitting next to me, it has a tendency to flop about when Dr. Manhattan walks around, which makes sense.  Because he’s not wearing pants.  And that’s what happens to your business when you’re not wearing pants.  

I must say that I do applaud Zack Snyder for so determinedly keeping the johnson in the picture. I like to imagine long meetings with the animators in which they propose to him various looks for the penis before deciding on the right one; he has to battle with producers who keep wonder why Dr. Manhattan can’t have a Ken-doll crotch or be an ardent supporter of Hanes boxer briefs, and the MPAA is positively having a conniption fit trying to figure out how to rate the movie.  I say this not because the thought arouses me, but because I have the sense of humor of grade-school student.  I’m terribly mature.

But anywhosie.

He’s obviously a man that’s comfortable with his own sexuality, and the ample peen screen time ends up being politically charged in that it demands audiences to be comfortable in their own sexuality.  The groans and award shifts-in-their-seats elicited from male audience members goes to show that quite a few heterosexual males still have issues with accepting that seeing another man’s penis doesn’t actually turn them gay (although you can easily make the argument that it’s a little bit gay to be searching for pictures of said penis on the internet).  I’m certainly appreciative that interest in a blue wang is providing my crazy talk an audience, but, seriously, internet:

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Looks Like David Hayter Will Not Be Invited to Take Back the Night
March 11, 2009

david-hayter-gross

As Videogum noted, one of Watchmen‘s scribes, David Hayter, has posted an open letter on the internet imploring fans to see the movie again this weekend to keep box office up and therefore make studio heads feel confident in green lighting future Watchmen-esque projects.  Much of Hayter’s argument requires him to indulge in a little self-congratulatory ego masturbation, because that’s how you make a convincing argument.  For example:

I’ve seen it twice now, and despite having run the movie in my head thousands of times, my two viewings still don’t’ allow me to view the film with the proper distance or objectivity. Is it Apocalypse Now? Is it Blade Runner? Is it Kubrick, or Starship Troopers? I don’t know yet.

I’m gonna go for d) none of the above.  And also, Mr. Hayter: Kubrick is a filmmaker, so he probably shouldn’t be in a list that consists of movie titles.  But maybe that’s a stylistic choice irksome only to me, so I won’t dwell.

I certainly agree with his sentiment that, particularly when it comes to the film industry, you cast a vote every time you purchase a ticket.  It’s rather tacky that he has to be the one to make this plea for audiences to see Watchmen again; the movie’s as much his (ridicu)baby as it is Snyder’s, so Hayter’s essentially one of those parents with those awful bumper stickers on their vans about how their child’s on honor roll or Mensa.  Except whenever he has you come over and babysit, he makes you pay him.  He’s wrapped the ugliest sales-pitch sweater in a box with lovely pity-party ribbons and glossy sophisticated-taste paper as if that makes what he’s giving you any better.  Thanks, but no thanks.

But when Hayter gets to his climax, in which he uses a particular scene from Watchmen to articulate how the movie’s supposed to be dark and challenging yet ultimately rewarding as entertainment, he completely shits his (crazy) pants:

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Having Now Seen Watchmen I Can Attest That I’ve No Idea What I’ve Seen
March 10, 2009

Well, Watchmen came out this weekend, and so we can now safely say that Billy Crudup’s CGI-enhanced blue full monty and Malin Akerman’s inimitable understanding of “acting” (apparently a mixture of reciting lines like English is your second language and posing like a crime-fighting tranny robot) have safely entered the pop-culture vernacular.  I’m not entirely certain either, particularly the latter, opens any useful conversations in our cultural discourse, but at least we’ve expanded our vocabulary, y’all!  And to paraphrase the great beacon of 20th century philosophical genius, Nomi Malone, Watchmen doesn’t suck, so I’ll freely admit it:

watchmen-review

Let’s clarify, though, in that I said “not too bad.”  I neglected to use words like “exceptional” or “awesome” or even (most disappointingly to me) “campalicious.”  I’ve also neglected to utilize phrases like “tonally consistent” or “narratively coherent in any way that resembles a movie” because Watchmen is completely lacking in any of those qualities.  Hell, Watchmen doesn’t even qualify as a movie so much as an explosion of adolescent id and existential angst moving on screen at 24-frames-per-second.

Yes, there are scenes, and when taken in the order presented in the film, these scenes seem to resemble a plot.  The problem, though, is that each scene is so hyperbolically extreme in style and, when compared to scenes before and afterward, contradictory in terms of emotion and feel, that the resulting product feels schizophrenic and unhinged.  Snyder dials the violence up to 11 (arms are graphically sawn off with hacksaws and punches are capable of causing compound fractures) and the sex up to ridiculous (the howlingly bad sex scene between Ackerman and Patrick Wilson is Cinemax-grade soft-core porn with a Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” providing the soundtrack and a firing of the flame-thrower on Night Owl’s jet to signal their climax; all parties involved should be thoroughly shamed for that one), yet there are also unexpected moments of beauty in this behemoth.    

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Let’s Let Train Wreck Carla Gugino Ease Us Into The Work Week
March 8, 2009

While I’d love to be an intrepidly productive fellow and drop a full Watchmen review right now, another week of work is quickly encroaching upon us, which mean this lil’ lady needs some rest.  Also, there really is simply so much to say about that movie.  It’s quite possibly even more ridiculous than I’d imagined.  In the mean time, though, I’ll let the saucy, sauced words of Carla Gugino take  us into the next week.  Take it away, Ms. Crazy Pants:

Delicious.

Seriously, that is one fierce bitch, and her terrible old-lady make-up and ridicu-hairdo can only be fully appreciated on the big screen.  I’m also not sure that anybody told her, but Watchmen is a comic book movie, not Dynasty: The Movie.

Don’t  think I’m complaining, though.  If Hollywood expanded that one scene into the basis for a sitcom, I’d be their number one fan.  So get to it, Hollywood!  I demand more boozy Carla Gugino in fright-lady make-up.  MORE!!!

Whatever the Way, Watchmen Will Be Amazing
March 8, 2009

Later today, after months of anticipation, I’ll be seeing this nonsense:

poster-theatricaljpg
The poster alone is positively ridiculous, and judging by the reviews, so is the movie.  I keep on hearing talk that the acting is essentially tone-deaf and that the movie is life-less and fetishistic of its source material, but that merely gives me hope.

Given that I’ve never read Watchmen and therefore have no basis for criticism as an adaptation, I merely get to watch it as a movie.  And, as I see it, Watchmen will either be completely enthralling as an intelligent deconstruction of super-hero mythologies (as the graphic novel apparently is), or Watchmen will be absolutely terrible.  We’re talking Batman & Robin terrible.  As far as I’m concerned, that’s excellent.

I’ll certainly give Zack Snyder slack seeing as he’s tackling an incredibly ambitious text with multiple narratives within narratives that doesn’t particularly lend itself to film.  Added to that, there’s been much talk about how DVD releases of the film will only increase the nearly-three-hour running time so that even more of the comic can find its way onto our screens.  Watchmen, or at least the incarnation that’s been released into theaters this weekend, is obviously little more than a cinematic working draft for Snyder, and that’s fine.  We’ll all have to wait months more to witness his true vision, and that’s perfectly acceptable.

Particularly if Watchmen is terrible.

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Why Should Anybody Be Watching Watchmen This Weekend When There’s Technicolor Gene Tierney Goodness to Be Had?
March 4, 2009

So last night I ran into my friend Brynn at Film Forum on my way to see Lola Montès–the crazy-brilliant cinematic extravaganza by Max Ophüls (more on that later)–and, while I was standing in line, she asked me, “So you know what comes out on Friday, right?”

My instantaneous reaction, given the inescapable barrage subway ads, movie trailers, and blue-johnson internet chatter, was obvious: Watchmen.

Oh, silly me!  She was speaking in particular to Film Forum’s release schedule, and trust me when I say that the movie she had in mind doesn’t need any blue genitals to be twice the cinematic doozy that Watchmen will be.  

Ladies and gentleman, all me to present to you the Technicolor fabulosity that is Leave Her to Heaven, back on the big screen for one week only (!):

Oh, snap, y’all!  Having seen Leave Her to Heaven on a mere television, I can absolutely  testify to how incredible it is as a movie, and I can guarantee that, on the big screen, it will positively MELT.  YOUR.  FACE.  (Academically speaking.)

I think we all know what this means…

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Watchmen is About to Make Our (Non-Existing) Wildest Blue-Wiener Dreams Come True
February 20, 2009

Last summer, the teaser trailer for Watchmen was attached to The Dark Knight and nerds the world over collectively rejoiced (orgasmed).  Here, in case you forgot:

I’ll freely admit that it got me excited, but not in that way.  I’ve never read Watchmen, so I’ve no profound attachment to the source material or deeply preconceived set of expectations.  Instead, I just think it’s pretty.  Added to that, I’m waiting for “visionary” (HA!  such lies!) director Zack Snyder to make penance for 300; Dawn of the Dead showed promise, so I thoroughly believe that Watchmen may be his redemption due to its distinct lack of being associated with Frank Miller.  At least we know that Watchmen won’t be ridiculously misogynistic and homophobic (maybe?).  Oh, and let’s not forget that Frank Miller is absolutely the worst.  That’s a tangential thought, but one worth repeating until we all remember.

More than anything else about the teaser worth noting, though, was the fact that there was this:

watchmen-bludity

Wait.  What?  Are we looking at full-frontal CGI blue-dity?  Is this some sort of PFLAG-mandated  penance for the 7-foot-tall Xerxes tranny?  Did the CGI Billy Crudup lost his Kibbles ‘n Bits in the explosion and now is the walking equivalent of a blue-energy Ken doll?  I’m not worried about who is watching the Watchmen, people; clearly the real important questions involve these above-mentioned shenanigans, and they demand the important answers!   

Thankfully, Defamer now has the answers.  Well, the first and third, at least.

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