So yeah, I'm pretty happy with how the movie turned out. I'm seeing a lot of mixed reviews, and I think the gist of it is this: the movie was basically a distillation of the graphic novel, retaining the most important parts in lifted-straight-from-the-page accuracy, although forced to shorten and compress some of the scenes and remove a lot of the stuff that strengthens the themes and adds to the development of they mystery.
Well, when isn't that the case?
This is a problem for many people who are not fans of the novel, or are even aware that the novel exists (hint: critics generally agree that Alan Moore's Watchmen is one of, if not the best, graphic novel of all time, and in fact one of the best novels of the past few decades- you should read it, it's good for you), although Lisa loved it... and I think Lauren enjoyed it as well? I'm not quite sure. I gather many people were confused as to what-all was going on.
For me, as a fan, while I'm sad that our friends at the newspaper stand got only a brief cameo, and many of the peculiarities of the Watchmen world were not visible to the audience's eye, and we didn't get near enough of Kovacs standing innocently in the background to facepalm when Rorshach was unmasked, in the end it was pretty much exactly what I was looking for. I got to watch all my favorite scenes in shiny live-action, and go in to flurries of fangirly adoration when Rorshach did something especially badass (or crazy, or funny, or terrifying), or when Silk Spectre and Nite Owl did something especially badass (or cute, I love those two... mostly because Dan is so goddam adorable), or when Archie did anything at all (cutest crime-fighting vehicle EVER)... or when Rorschach did something especially badass. Have I mentioned Rorshach is badass? And that I love him?
I approve heartily of the casting, especially the Comedian (although lol, Papa Winchester), and most especially Rorshach... where the fuck did they find that guy? With red hair and freckles he looks so much like Kovacs it's effing creepy. Also Little Kovacs was great. I am stating for the record that I approve of the ending change. I approve of the soundtrack, which captured a very important element of the novel- music is an essential part of how Moore delivers his message. And, finally, I approve of the fight choreography... this is related to my above mention of Rorschach/Silk Spectre/Nite Owl/OMG RORSHACH fangirling.
I don't think the use of slow-motion everywhere all the time worked as well here as it did in 300, but as it gave me more time to savor the sensation of my heart fluttering lovingly in my chest, I'm not going to complain too much.
...And then there was Dr. Manhattan's dong. His giant, swaying-back-and-forth, electric-blue distracting dong. I am not mature enough that I did not snicker every time it made its swaying appearance. But at least I'm not the only one in the audience that did.
The theater was an experience in itself. I dressed up for the occasion- in my white sleeveless collared form-hugging top with the plunging neckline, my black tie, black pants, black studded belt, black high-heeled boots, black pea-coat, and my slate-gray pinstriped fedora with my hair in a ponytail. I looked damn sexy if I do say so myself. We showed up an hour ahead of time, and I'm glad we did, because that meant we got to stand in line inside, out of the cold. The theater staff had gone nuts; they were all wearing Watchmen t-shirts and pins, and they were stringing up banners. Watchmen graffiti was plastered everywhere, although they were kind of adorably fail at it. "WHO WATCHES THE WATCHMEN?" ran off the edge of the poster, so it read "WHO WATCHE THE WATCHMEN?", and the staff didn't seem to understand what was wrong with "THE END IS NEIGH".
So anyway. I had fun. (≠ ...Watchmen smiley? Yes? No? ^_^;;