I went in with low expectations of The Watchmen after reading reviews and speaking with my sister, who saw a midnight showing in LA. Her review was “Eh”. Typically I am really anal about showing up on time to movies. I forced my girlfriend to show up about an hour and a half early expecting a line for the 7:00 Saturday showing. No line was to be found. We began to realize that not even half of the theater was going to be filled. At around the end of the pre show countdown (approx 6:45) a mother and her brood of toddlers not only showed up to this rated R film but decided to sit next to us. Not exactly next to us, but I could see the whites of their eyes as they peered at me during violent parts of the film.
If you have read the comic you already know what is going to happen within the first ten minutes of the film. I did enjoy the alternate reality flashbacks accompanied by Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin'”. This point marks when my viewing experienced was ruined, as the kiddos began to scream and tell each other to shut up. I will save you the details of their other antics but after about half way through the movie security came in to escort the toddlers out and deny the mother a refund.
As for the film, I say less romance, less slo-mo, less action. Alan More is clearly a genius when it comes to comics (excluding Promethia) but in the film something was lost in the dialogue even though much of it was lifted directly from the book.
I left the theater (approx 9:45) feeling similar to my sister, but wondering what the meetings were like when they decided what size Doctor Manhattan’s penis would be and how much it would sway as he walked.