Film Review:

Since 1984, a question has been asked. Many searched for an answer.

They searched page after page of graphic novel to find it. And last week, we got an answer. The question: Who watches The Watchmen? The answer? I did. At the 7:30 showing.

First, a cautionary warning: THIS IS DEFINITELY NOT FOR CHILDREN. Please find a sitter. It's rated R for a reason, folks. Already, this reporter has heard of, and seen first-hand, parents taking their kids to the next big super hero movie. This is not Spider Man. Those familiar with the 1984 graphic novel can attest that Rorschach (brilliantly played by Jackie Earle Haley) is much less kind to his foes than is Spider Man.

This film centers around Rorschach investigating the murder of a fellow costumed crime fighter, the Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and unveiling a possible plot to hunt down other heroes forced into retirement by a government act. Among them are Adrian Veidt, formerly the hero Ozymandius (Matthew Goode), Laurie Jupiter, formerly scantily clad hero Silk Spectre (Malin Akerman) and Rorschach's former partner-in-crime busting, Dan Dreiberg, also known as the Nite Owl (Patrick Wilson). As the plot unfolds, we see how the heroes have affected the world in that we won in Vietnam, the Cold War is worse than ever and Nixon is elected for a third term and running for a fourth. And we see how the world has affected the heroes, leaving almost all of them with deep emotional scars and personality problems.

This film is spectacular. Other critics have not been very kind to this movie, and that is too bad. It is full of meaning, very political, has a great message and is even more poignant now that we have lived through this time in our own world and come out alive. But it is also a fun action movie with latex-(barely)covered women, cool gadgets and fighting. And to those who say fighting bad guys in heels is illogical, fans everywhere say it is not. It's the image and overall appeal of the whole that counts. And this film is the same way.

All the parts are great, some a bit less than others, sometimes almost bordering on hokey. But as a whole, as an experience, this movie is not to be missed, unless you're underage. Rated R for a good reason. Very violent, very sexual, and very dark. Directed by Zack Snyder, I give this film 5 out of 5 stars.


CHARLY SHELTON can be e-mailed at lcnews@valleysun.net.

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