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empathy-with-bea...
post Jul 18 2008, 10:20 PM
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QUOTE (Jessopjessopjessop @ Jul 18 2008, 10:33 AM)
No, no, no. Snyder has made Watchmen looks like every other Superhero movie, at least with this trailer. It's so generic it has annoyed me; soft rock soundtrack, slow-mo fights, pseudo-meaningful titles, rubbery costumes, CG fly-throughs, etc.
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I think, with the possible exception of the Vietnam footage, this is how I feel too. Watchmen isn't set in a world that's mood lit, it's just a world that Rorscharch thinks is mood lit. Silk Spectre, Night Owl, they both look so wrong.

In all honesty this is going to turn out another servicable but ultimately dumb super hero film. (Super hero film, that glib expression used by reviewers as short hand for "light weight action movie".) It's not even going to be properly crap, it's just going to boil away into space in a few weeks. In a way its worse when a great book is remade as medicore rather than awful film. If you make a bad film of a great book then in some way the book has defeated the film. If you make a mediocre film of a great book you've effectively just let the film rub itself off on the book's leg.
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Hobbes
post Jul 18 2008, 11:20 PM
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QUOTE (Jessopjessopjessop @ Jul 18 2008, 09:33 AM)
No, no, no. Snyder has made Watchmen looks like every other Superhero movie, at least with this trailer. It's so generic it has annoyed me; soft rock soundtrack, slow-mo fights, pseudo-meaningful titles, rubbery costumes, CG fly-throughs, etc.
*


Yeah but I agree with Mel, I think they're just using these techniques to get it to the attention of the masses more than to purposefully alienate fans. So what if the first trailer makes it look generic? It'll get people there and no matter how much the fans hate the trailer or any gossip, they'll still go. Even if they handed McG the directorial reins every Watchmen fan would go just so they could harp on to everyone about what a travesty it was/is, me included. Snyder et al don't have to worry about trailers pleasing the fans because regardless they will be there and they need to make money short of getting blacklisted by studios as profit vacuums. Look at Serenity for example, where we all (fans of Firefly) loved it but it didn't make hardly any money so Whedon has not (yet?) gotten a sequel.

I agree completely that the artwork is one of the most important bits of the book but I completely sympathise with Snyder's plight because there is absolutely no way to recreate the book's art on film and inevitably some people will hate it. They could well have gone for something incredibly stylised but the books don't have the same instant recognisability as Sin City, and coming up with a completely original piece of art like Linklater did for A Scanner Darkly is near-impossible now, everything else would be 'stealing from ...'

All that being said, it's the first trailer for pete's sake! I think people are looking into it too much. A trailer can be made to show anything, look at Shining on YouTube for that evidence. I am no more or less excited or depressed by any trailers because I want to go into the film without any preconceived bias. If you go into a film thinking 'this is going to be the biggest pile of shit ever, the trailers were terrible', it'll suck, and the same vice versa: if you think 'this will be the best film ever' you will be disappointed 99.9% of the time. When Harry Met Sally would get written off as a chick-flick with a few good lines ("all of the good lines are obviously in the trailer!") based on the trailer by most, but how wrong they would be to miss out on a classic.
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maian
post Jul 18 2008, 11:30 PM
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QUOTE (Hobbes @ Jul 19 2008, 12:20 AM)
If you go into a film thinking 'this is going to be the biggest pile of shit ever, the trailers were terrible', it'll suck
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I've actually found the opposite to be true; if I go into a film thinking it'll be terrible, I'll enjoy it a lot more. The Happening was a good example of that, for me, at least. I knew in advance that people had been absolutely laying into it and was expecting an utter train wreck, so when I actually got an alright but bad in places bit of fluff, I was pleasantly surprised. The Darjeeling Limited was a slightly similar example as well, in that I went in with some trepidation but found it to be rather good.

Though I personally think that the trailer is alright and that it seems to have a distinct look that I find appealing, even if it doesn't match the comic exactly, I'm not sure the ''they're making it look generic to attract the masses'' argument holds water. I've watched it a few times now and every time I just keep thinking, ''well, that's all well and good, but someone who hasn't read the comic probably won't get anything out of it.'' It doesn't really say much about what the film is about (and nor should it, trailers ruining 80% of films as they do these days) but neither is it intriguing enough to be interesting to someone coming to the film with no prior knowledge of the source material. It's just a series of images that explain next to nothing and, without providing some sort of hook, it's not going to get a lot of people who aren't already fans excited, whilst at the same time dividing the fanbase over whether or not it looks any good.

I imagine that future trailers will make it more tantalising to the average moviegoer, but if I hadn't read Watchmen and if I was someone who was only vaguely interested in films based on comics, I wouldn't be terribly impressed by the trailer.

Edit: So many typos...

This post has been edited by maian: Jul 18 2008, 11:35 PM
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logger
post Jul 18 2008, 11:43 PM
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Maybe Snyder is using the language of the modern superhero movie in the same way that Moore and Gibbons used the language of comic books. I doubt whether he would be able to go to the same extents as the book but it could still be a worthwhile attempt.

My main worry over the trailer is it looks a bit cheap. At no point could I believe I was looking at a real mob on the streets of New York rather than twenty or thirty extras on a sound stage.

I do agree with Hobbes about it being the first trailer and people are looking into it too much.
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Hobbes
post Jul 18 2008, 11:45 PM
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QUOTE (maian @ Jul 18 2008, 11:30 PM)
I've actually found the opposite to be true; if I go into a film thinking it'll be terrible, I'll enjoy it a lot more.

I imagine that future trailers will make it more tantalising to the average moviegoer, but if I hadn't read Watchmen and if I was someone who was only vaguely interested in films based on comics, I wouldn't be terribly impressed by the trailer.
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Hm I understand what you mean. I go into every film expecting nothing, not good or bad, try to view absolutely everything with an open mind, and am often rewarded. For instance, went into Kung Fu Panda expecting nothing and enjoyed it a lot.

Yeah that's kind of wha I meant, because most people who go to the cinema not caring too much about what they're gonna watch will go to a 'superhero movie' over anything else. Hopefully Watchmen will be far from generic and average but even if it isn't people will go on the 'superhero' premise alone, hence pitching it like any other one before it.
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maian
post Jul 18 2008, 11:46 PM
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QUOTE (logger @ Jul 19 2008, 12:43 AM)
Maybe Snyder is using the language of the modern superhero movie in the same way that Moore and Gibbons used the language of comic books. I doubt whether he would be able to go to the same extents as the book but it could still be a worthwhile attempt.
*


Hmm, an interesting idea, but I'm not sure that Synder is quite clever enough to have done that. I just think it's a trailer that doesn't quite manage to get the balance right between enigmatic and tantalising.

And Luke, again, I don't think that the idea of a casual filmgoer choosing a superhero movie over anything else is enough to carry the marketing of a film. If we look at something like Hellboy, which I think is a reasonably fair comparison in terms of how well the material is known outside of comic book circles, though Watchmen is obviously much more influential and successful, not a lot of people went to see it, even though it was very much marketed as a superhero movie (Lewis, you're right, that's a horrible phrase), and an origin one at that, so it wasn't like people would be walking into the theatre and becoming completely lost. Now, that was in 2004, when comic book adaptations were relatively sparse and tended to only focus on the big ones that everyone knows, so the fact that we're now in a situation where every (super)man and his dog has had their comic turned into a film could lead to a feeling of fatigue regarding the genre. Watchmen is a really hard sell, the fact it's spent 20 years in development hell is testament to that, and it's a property that the average moviegoer would not be familiar with. You can't just make a comic book adaptation and expect people to go and see it by saying it's got super heroes in it; you need to do something to make it stand out and make everyone go ''woah, that's something special.''

Now, although I get goosebumps watching the trailer (possibly it's more the use of Smashing Pumpkins than the images themselves) I don't think it is enough to get the word out beyond the fan community. Or it wouldn't, if it wasn't being played before The Dark Knight, a film which is being shown in more cinemas than any other film ever, so perhaps that knowledge helped shaped the trailer in that they might have known that they wouldn't have to show all that much since millions upon millions of people will definitely see it.

This post has been edited by maian: Jul 18 2008, 11:59 PM
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Hobbes
post Jul 19 2008, 12:10 AM
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Annoyingly Ed that was a perfect argument that I can't fault really. Hellboy is an excellent comparison and one well versed. However, as you said these days every Caped Chris or Super Steve has a movie.

I was in no way saying that they were basing the entire marketing of the movie on this idea, but that perhaps that this was an initial gambit into enticing non-Watchmen fans to go, and if it gets a few thousand extra people to go because they think 'ooh that's interesting'.

If anything, this movie almost certainly will help the book. If it's a great movie, everyone will read it, if it's average people will say "well if that's what the film is like, the book must be great" and if it's shit people may just read it out of curiosity: "why did they make this piece of shit into a movie? *reads graphic novel* Oh wait. It's motherfucking amazing."
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maian
post Jul 19 2008, 07:55 AM
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QUOTE (Hobbes @ Jul 19 2008, 01:10 AM)
If anything, this movie almost certainly will help the book. If it's a great movie, everyone will read it, if it's average people will say "well if that's what the film is like, the book must be great" and if it's shit people may just read it out of curiosity: "why did they make this piece of shit into a movie? *reads graphic novel* Oh wait. It's motherfucking amazing."
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I suppose it all depends on how much you support the argument that a bad film in some way cheapens the source material. I can always keep the two separate, I love the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen books even knowing how very badly the film got them wrong, but I know a lot of people tend to feel that a bad adaptation takes something away from the original. I'd like to think that the trailer itself will get people to read it since, as I've already said, it doesn't really tell the uninitiated anything and they may be driven to find out what's going on.

Not that it needs any help, being one of the most successful trade paperbacks of all time.
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Hobbes
post Jul 19 2008, 11:52 AM
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To be honest I'm with you on that Ed, insofar as I don't think the film could ever cheapen the original graphic novel because it's so good. There have been bad adaptations of The Merchant of Venice, but it's still a fantastic play to read. Watchmen will always be terrific regardless of any adaptation.
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maian
post Jul 19 2008, 12:04 PM
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Just watched the trailer again. Is it me, or does Billy Crudup look like a Netto Joaquin Phoenix?
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Raven
post Jul 19 2008, 01:21 PM
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Sounds like MacFarlane and Groening are reading from the same script:

MacFarlane discusses 'Family Guy' movie and Groening confirms 'Simpsons' sequel.

And Dudley Moore's '10' to be remade - on God's Earth, why?!
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Atara
post Jul 19 2008, 06:47 PM
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I think the Watchmen trailer looks rather cool and I am pretty sure it will get a decent audience beyond just the fanboys/girls whose expectations, if the reaction to the initial trailer is anything to go by, will never be met. Which happens with many adaptions.

I think it looks better than most comic book movies that have come along in recent years and I look forward to seeing how it turns out,
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maian
post Jul 19 2008, 07:38 PM
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QUOTE (Atara @ Jul 19 2008, 07:47 PM)
I think the Watchmen trailer looks rather cool and I am pretty sure it will get a decent audience beyond just the fanboys/girls whose expectations, if the reaction to the initial trailer is anything to go by, will never be met. Which happens with many adaptions.

I think it looks better than most comic book movies that have come along in recent years and I look forward to seeing how it turns out,
*


You know, right after my most recent bit of criticism about the trailer and it not appealing to non-fans, someone at work looked over my shoulder as I was watching the trailer again and they said ''that looks fucking amazing'', so clearly I know fuck all.
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Ade
post Jul 19 2008, 08:02 PM
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Jeepers Creepers. The straight-down aerial shots turn my stomach like you wouldn't believe, but I still really want to see this film:

Man On Wire

Encroyable!
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post Jul 19 2008, 11:37 PM
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QUOTE (maian @ Jul 19 2008, 08:38 PM)
You know, right after my most recent bit of criticism about the trailer and it not appealing to non-fans, someone at work looked over my shoulder as I was watching the trailer again and they said ''that looks fucking amazing'', so clearly I know fuck all.
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Indeed. I think I'm right in thinking that everyone who's commented on the trailer so far on here has read the graphic novel, and therefore can only guess what someone who hasn't would think.

I showed it to my sister (who'd never even heard of Watchmen until I asked her earlier) and she thought it looked like a good watch and will be going to see it. We could do with a few opinions from people on here who've not read it, really.
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