While the kids were in school today, Debbie and I went out for breakfast and a movie. Since the babysitting is free (thanks to our local public school), we tend to have an early day date on Fridays. Since the kids got out early today at noon, we ended up seeing Watchmen at 9:30a.m..
I wouldn’t necessarily recommend Watchmen for viewing so early in the morning, and I definitely would not recommend it for the squeamish. According to Debbie, it isn’t really a good choice for a date movie either. The movie is quite intense. In other words, it definitely deserves its “R” rating.
All that to say, I am fascinated by the origins of superheroes, and this one has several with which I was unfamiliar. In addition, I am always intrigued by alternate histories. In this one superheroes fight and help the U.S. in the Vietnam war, and Richard Nixon serves multiple terms as President of the United States.
Without commenting too much on the plot of the movie, let me just say Rorschach is a fascinating and troubled character played by Jackie Earle Haley. (He looks like a smaller and angrier version of Danny Bonaduce, and if you look hard enough you may recognize him as the smart-mouthed rebellious Kelly from The Bad News Bears). Rorschach is one of those “good guys” for which it is difficult to cheer, and for whom you cannot feel sympathy for the tragic person he’s become.
All that to say, watching this movie actually helped me feel better about life, as strange as it may sound in the context of such a dark film. Here are a few quick reasons:
1. Our economy may be bad now, but it was also really bad in the early 80s. We survived then, and we can survive now.
2. I had somewhat forgotten those days in elementary school when we feared nuclear annihilation from the Soviet Union. We survived that, and we can survive the threats we now face as well.
3. God in Watchmen, if He exists, remains distant, uncaring, and may be blue. In my experience, God can be known personally and can take even the worst moments and bring good from them.
For a interesting debate on the ending of the film (graphic novel vs. movie version), go here.