The driver of tomorrow is not thinking Green...

The driver of tomorrow is not thinking Green...
He's thinking Classic. (click on photo)


Blog Archive

Mar 7, 2009

The Watchmen Movie Review

We had free movie tickets. We've had them for awhile. I suggested to Matt that we go see Clint Eastwood's Gran Torino. I am not only a long time Eastwood fan, but a fast car fan as well and what couldn't be good about this movie on the big screen?

Matt found out that The Watchmen was out & suggested that movie. Said the reviews were good. I said "it's not scary is it?". I am NOT a scary movie fan. He said no.

After 2 hours of being emotionally and mentally assaulted, I was the only one in the audience of a packed theatre - to leave. When I went to the bathroom and didn't return, my kind partner joined me in the lobby - apologizing. He had not read the reviews in full.

I was shaking. Felt like crying, sick to my stomach. And I turned my eyes, at one point covered my ears, at every sickening thing coming, except for the scenes that blasted the viewers unexpectedly. I sat through the attempted rape scene (2 of the "good guys" beating the crap out of each other, until the woman was beaten), the murderer of a small child being beaten with a meat cleaver, the dogs being beaten & then skull cut open. But when the guys arms were being held through jail bars by another guy and then his buddies cut his arms off with some sort of machine grinder - I couldn't take any more. This is where I covered my ears - then I left.

I understand there have been slasher movies for years. However, movie technology has improved if you haven't noticed, bringing the ability to make horror very very lifelike. This wasn't a slasher movie. But there have been a few movies over the years that have left me soulfully scarred because I felt like such evil was emanating from the screen. I sat there last night, looking around at the audience, thinking of the thousands of people that will be- or have - filing into this rated R movie, enraptured by the filth and mutilation on the big screen. I wonder about the sanity of our minds as we are bombarded by image after image after image.

I wonder about the kids that sneak into a rated R movie. Do you remember doing that as a teen? This particular rated R movie could scar a child for life. Seriously. It should be rated 35. IMDB asks you, as user, to be careful about your parental rating reviews you give and that parents have different standards for their children. I understand all of this tolerance & openness to different viewpoints but at some level, wrong is wrong and such vile material - I am disheartened that we are becoming so numb that a movie like this would be mainstream. Good graphics or not - content is important and we are feeding the generations with it.

Did I mention the porn? The time of married couples sleeping in twin beds onscreen is definitely gone. Er, sorry - wrong generation. The time of "sex" being portrayed under the covers - gone. Ooops, wrong generation. The time of sex happening on screen, under partially clothed people, as in "you get the idea" - GONE. I told Matt it's one thing to be in the privacy of our bedroom watching sexual scenes as they are portrayed today - it's completely different to be in the middle of a full theatre. Where is our privacy in these issues? Is nothing sacred? (a rhetorical question).

I also commented to Matt that it bothers me that you have all the characters, even the ones that are suppose to be the "heros" committing these evil acts but the good guys, are doing it for the good. So it makes it okay somehow. What does that reflect in the young impressionable psychies that are drinking this stuff in? If we are older and don't think this stuff still effects us, we shouldn't fool ourselves. We may have more self control but it is like a slow release time capsul that over time, eats at the foundation of our mental & emotional consciousness.

And for those of you that are religious and have end time beliefs who may shake your head and say it's par for the course of the end times. I understand that however, it still pains me to watch the human spirit being turned, slowly, into such a deranged state to where nothing is sacred and all things, no matter how vile (the word that keeps popping into my mind), are acceptable. I had that thought in The Dark Knight, (which I did like), the latest Batman movie. Harvey Dents face at the end, making him Two Face, was horrific. A site that only those in war or Hell should probably see and probably, never recover from. That was the first time I thought about looking around during the movie and watching other people's reactions. I think I was the only one NOT looking on the mangle. Very sad indeed.


RebeccaFM said...

From a reader:

Hi Rebecca,

EXCELLENT blog and review of The Watchmen! Thank you so much for your insight and thoughtfulness to share your information with us before we wasted our emotions and money on a movie that does not build us up or even bring us reasonable entertainment. Your passion and heartfelt words are evident throughout your blog. I am sure we will be reading it frequently.

RebeccaFM said...

From my cousin Michael: Two posts, the second re:Titus are in response to my brothers comment as well:

But what about the other 97% of the movie? :)

As someone generally untroubled by sex and violence on screen, I will say that in this case, the sex and violence *was* gratuitous. Way way way more graphic than the book (which is one of my favorite books of all time). In the book, the guy in the prison has his throat cut, which is bad, OK, but not as bad as having arms sawed off. Also, the sex is in the book, but it's not depicted graphically at all. Fight scenes here are all Way more violent and gorier than in the book. I mean ... bursting limbs were Not a part of the street fight scene in the book. I hate to compare book and movie too closely, as they are different products, but the book proves that the sensationalist violence and sex just aren't necessary. They're a distraction. It was a real disappointment to me that the director didn't have enough faith in the material to let it stand unembellished by cheap shock tactics."

The play is "Titus Andronicus" - the (amazing) movie version is "Titus". And the "tongue-cutting-out" and "feeding kids to their father" thing is ancient. In fact, in "Titus A.", the now-mute rape victim gestures to the story of Philomela in Ovid's Metamorphoses (even though her hands have been cut off) to explain what's happened to her. Still, there are ways of conveying the horror of all this without being pornographic (i.e. wallowing in the physical details)."

RebeccaFM said...

My brothers comment.

Nice review...However, violent acts have been a part of plays for hundreds of years. Albeit, the graphics and sound effects are much improved. The content is very much the same. Themes of rape, murder, incest, abuse of power, and the like have defined the boundaries of our culture since the beginning of its existance. Very often plays would depict such themes as a way to express artistically what they could not otherwise express politically without the risk of assasination.

William Shakespeares' play "Titus" circa 1590, has nearly all of the negative elements that have been reported by caring mothers in the review of the Watchmen. In Titus, ..." (comment edited due to graphic scenes).... "Very chilling. However, a genius way to depict and make memorable the themes of revenge, honor, deception, and fall from grace."

RebeccaFM said...

My own comment to both:

This isn't a "caring mothers", too sensitive female, women's sensibilities against men's aggression kind of thing. Many reviewers of this movie, male and female, have warned against it's intense graphic nature - which is not for everyone. And probably shouldn't be for any child.

This movie is not of historical relevence that I can see. I received the Entertainment magazine last night, which had a spread on the movie. It has quite a following. Yet, it took 20 years for it to be to be made, for various reasons. One of which I get the impression was due to whether something so graphic should actually be put on the big screen. When director Snyder (300) took it on, he said "It probably can't be done. It probably shouldn't be done". Yet he did it and he claimed to follow the story line down the line. Several men involved in the production talk about being drawn to the graphic sexual & violence of the story. It was difficult for the actors themselves to be part of the grueling mentallity of playing the scenes out.

Yes, life, the bible, history, war, humanity, have always been full of violence, which is portrayed in the retelling of the story. Then there is "art", named so in order to just pore forth pure vile and draw humanity in. There is a difference. I loved Gladiator and liked 300 to a point. I am not averse to this stuff.

I mentioned to Matt that it really shouldn't be mainstream theatre viewing. Yet it cost them 160million to produce so I'm sure tucking it in to some art house theatre wouldn't reap them the money they need to make on it. I can't even fathom the thought of any of our children seeing this movie at any point until they would be much older to be able to process it. 17 is too young and too impressionable. My IMDB review is titled "Should be rated 45" or something like that.


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