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*** Official WATCHMEN Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Pete York, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    "Yeah, that element played as a joke to me."

    Yea a few of the reviews picked on that - but I thought it was done very tongue in cheek as well.
     
  2. Mr. Film

    Mr. Film Stunt Coordinator

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    I thought the choices were horrible. They tried to fit the music with the era but it turned out horribly. There was happy go lucky songs during dark times in the movie and vica vera. The music was just a mess. The film itself however, was gold.
     
  3. Derek Miner

    Derek Miner Screenwriter

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    Am I the only one who didn't mind suffering through "Son-In-Law" because of Carla Gugino and Tiffani-Amber Thiessen?
     
  4. Pete-D

    Pete-D Screenwriter

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    Synder is a TV commercial director though and TV commercials tend to use the most obvious music choice possible, so I'm not really surprised by that in hindsight.

    It's still a good film and it's not he chose bad music anyway ... he just made some unoriginal choices.

    I think they were joking about it on G4 Tech TV by saying the soundtrack "was right out of your dad's i-Pod", lol.
     
  5. Kirk Tsai

    Kirk Tsai Screenwriter

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    Obviously, Wagner was used because of Apocalypse Now. But what is the commentary or point here? In Jarhead, Mendes and Murch used the Coppola film to both contrast the mundane daily soldiering life with their lust for action, as well as a mirror to show audience expectations of war films. Here, Snyder and co stick the music in there...to...remind us of Apocalypse Now. When it's so obvious, so on the nose--choosing the Doors' The End might have been both a reference and a point--merely a reference is not enough.

    If I sound too negative, I speak as someone who enjoyed Watchmen more than Jarhead. I thought the Koyaanisqatsi music for Dr. Manhattan, for example, worked both for the mood of the segment, and succeeded thematically as well. Koyaanisqatsi is "life out of balance." That was a film in which the glory of nature was celebrated, the existence of mankind destruction of earth questioned, and the music starts right when Dr. Manhattan arrives on Mars.

    To be clear, I don't need the existing music reference to be thematic at all. The soundtracks to American Graffiti or Casino don't have to be running commentaries to work, because the music fits with the picture. The choices are too obvious, yet don't fit the mood of the picture, and don't make much of a thematic point, that's why I think many of us are unimpressed with some music choices in Watchmen.
     
  6. rich_d

    rich_d Cinematographer

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    Yeah? What are these "happy go lucky songs" used during dark times in the film?

    To the point that others have mentioned that they found the choices of songs far too obvious, I think that's a fair point.
     
  7. RichP

    RichP Second Unit

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    All this talk about the music cues and no one's mentioned the best one of all..

    Tears For Fears "Everybody Wants to Rule The World" playing softly muzak style under Ozy's talking. Loved that!

    Overall (as a fan of the book for 20 years) I loved the film. I thought it was the best it could have been given the limitations of the medium. I didn't care too much for Goode or Ackerman but the rest of the cast was good, and Haley was outstanding.

    Thought the new ending worked well and wasn't as jarring as a giant psychic squid would have been. Even though it's in the book, I think it would have taken the movie into "LOL" territory. It wasn't necessary.

    Looking forward to the Director's Cut on BD very much.
     
  8. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    The target audience for this movie was very young or not even born yet during the Vietnam era. Most of the images this generation has of the war is filtered through popular culture. For a lot of people, the Ride of the Valkyries sequence from Apocalypse Now is one of the first images that comes to mind when they think of the Vietnam War. The action on screen in Watchmen mirrors the scene in Apocalypse Now - an American attack on a Vietnamese village, and yet it is as completely different from the actual or cinematic reality as you can get. The use of the music puts the audience into a very specific state of mind for that moment.

    So much of the movie's power comes from manipulating our cultural recollection of the twentieth century, I thought it was completely appropriate.
     
  9. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    See Post #99.
     
  10. Josh Pounds

    Josh Pounds Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm still not sure if I actually enjoyed this movie. It may boil down to simply how "sleek" it looked. I think Danny Boyle's latest film suffers from this too. It's depicting dark, dirty things but they just looked so damn good, as though they were the manufactured artifice that suggested what we were looking at was unsavory.

    I enjoyed the story and most of the characters, but I do wish Alan Moore would've focused more on the obvious parallels (and contrasts of course) between Ozymandias and Dr. Manhattan. I felt both men clearly had a God complex, and their predilictions forced them to fall on opposite sides of the "tremendously sad and distant" and the "manipulative and cocksure" fence.

    I've never read the original comic, so I don't know if these things were intentional or if they're addressed better in the book.

    Also I felt that Jackie Earle Haley's acting was downright silly at times. Was this character like that in the book? Obviously a sociopath, but seemed like it was his character acting out a role (if that makes sense) rather than acting how the character actually acts.

    Actually thinking about that, it pretty much makes perfect sense that that's how it appeared, with the mask and the persona he's created to deal with...himself. So never mind about that! Maybe Jackie Earle Haley did a fantastic job and I just need to see the movie again.
     
  11. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    What sold the performance for me was what happened after he got caught and imprisoned. Here's this short wirey little loser that looks like an even more beaten down Danny Bonaduce, and yet you never once lose the sense that this is the same guy that was running around in the trenchcoat and mask. The cell scene with Danny Woodburn and his henchmen captured this perfectly. The guy's in a wife-beater locked in a room with cinderblocks and a toilet. Two big goons with a circular saw are after him. And yet he never for a moment loses control of the situation. All of the other heroes have a sense of duality about them; they are one thing in the costume and another thing out of the costume. But Rorschach wasn't kidding when he said that the last of Walter Kovacs was extinguished years ago.
     
  12. RichP

    RichP Second Unit

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    Damn! [​IMG]
     
  13. Sam Favate

    Sam Favate Lead Actor

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    Finally saw this last night and thought it was very good. I read the book 20+ years ago and liked it very much and I guess I can accept the changes made to the story, especially the end. I thought it captured the story well, the characters well, and the visuals well.

    I thought the violence was over the top, and much too graphic. Did we need to see saws cutting through arms, etc.? That and the few slow motion shots seemed a bit juvenile. I also thought the music used was too obvious in most places. I understand that well-known songs were essential for the epic quality they were going for, but I thought some of it could have been more subtle.

    Those are minor complaints overall; I thought the movie was very well made, and I am pleased that the project finally got off the ground and resulted in such a good movie, after so many false starts and with the huge task of filming such a story. Thumbs up.
     
  14. Holer

    Holer Stunt Coordinator

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    Exactly - I think the squid was intended to be absurd - a comic book response to a potentially real human threat, but without all the back story and tie in to The Black Freighter, etc., it would have seemed absurd alright, but not in a good way.

    Plus the squid works dramatically because the reader has invested so much time in learning about the denizens of the newsstand and so the stage is set for maximum dramatic impact. Within the confines of 'Movie Logic', it made sense for the devastation to be more generic and larger in scale.
     
  15. David Forbes

    David Forbes Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, that one. [​IMG]
     
  16. Pete-D

    Pete-D Screenwriter

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    I always though the alien squid thing was a reference to Ronald Reagan saying that if the earth was ever attacked by some kind of alien threat, then things like the Cold War (countries that were enemies like the USA and USSR) would very quickly unite together or something to that effect. Although this is common theme in sci-fi stories for a long time now.

    EDIT:

     
  17. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I appreciate where people are coming from, but any movie that uses Koyaanisqatsi for its soundtrack is alright in my book. [​IMG]
     
  18. Henry Gale

    Henry Gale Producer

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    I second that emotion.
     
  19. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    Don't forget, the U.S.S.R. was an Allied power in World War II. The West didn't worry about the socialist threat until the fascist threat had been dispatched with.
     
  20. Pete-D

    Pete-D Screenwriter

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    I don't think I'd forget that, considering odds are if they weren't we'd likely all be speaking German right now, heh.

    I guess they can't retire "Times They Are A Changing" or "Turn! Turn! Turn!" (not used in the Watchmen, but I was half expecting it) because any 60s flashback has to have that, lol. I think "The Wonder Years" used both like a hundred times.

    Add "The Sound of Silence" to the list of songs that should not be used in any other movies.
     

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