Based on the much-lauded graphic novel, Watchmen is one of those rare page-to-screen translations that actually lives up to all its advance hype.
Visually eye-popping settings, spectacular special effects and just enough squirm-making suspense (yes, there will be blood) to keep it real. Plot twists are frequent and surprising, and the setting – America reeling under Richard Nixon’s fourth (!!) term in office — offers an intriguing mix of political fact and ficton. One of the nicest surprises is the tunefully clever soundtrack featuring, among others, Leonard Cohen and Simon & Garfunkel, whose songs are used to unexpected advantage here.
Director Zack Snyder (300,) an old hand at this, keeps the pot on such a high boil that despite its substantial running time Watchmen holds us entranced from start to finish. And he gets stellar support from his cast. Transplanted Toronto charmer Malin Akerman, who graced the Warner Bros. sneak preview at AMC Dundas Square last night, is a stand-out as Silk Spectre II, and Grey’s Anatomy scene-stealer Jeffrey Dean Morgan probably gets the most screen time as The Comedian.
Because Watchmen also provides back-story bios of its key protagonists, viewers are bound to pick their own favourites. Happily they’ll have lots to choose from, because Billy Crudup, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley and Stephen McHattie also make the most of their complex graphic comic book characters.
(McHattie will be doing double-duty this month. He stars in Bruce MacDonald’s TIFF tongue-wagger Pontypool, also opening this weekend.)
Not for the kiddies, Watchmen is nonetheless great fun, exquisitely executed.
BTW, the website is kinda neat too. You can check it out here.
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Where have I been?
Up until Liz Smith got fired last week, I’d never even heard of wowOwow.com.
So if I can‘t read Liz in the New York Post — their loss, her gain – and can’t always be near a TV set for her showbiz reports on NBC, where else can I find her?
“I will contiuue to blog,” said Liz last week, “on wowOwow.com” – an internet address that looked like a major typo to me.
Au contraire, mes amis!
Yes, Virginia, there really is a wowOwow.com. It stands for Women On the Web, and on it Liz serves up her Daily Dish with her usual style and panache. And she’s in very good company, because her fellow wowOwow.com bloggers include such brainy belles as Candice Bergen, Lily Tomlin and her brilliant partner Jane Wagner, Whoopi Goldberg and Marlo Thomas, just to mention a few.
I know what you’re thinking. Yes, yes, it’s true, they’re all painfully shy girls, far too reticent to share their opinions.
No, wait, that’s wallflower.com.
I always get those two confused.
In the meantime, check out www.wowOwow.com for yourself. Because it’s lots of fun.
And considering who lives there, why wouldn’t it be?
What a difference a dame makes.