Watchmen

Metascore
56

Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 39
  2. Negative: 6 out of 39

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Critic Reviews

  1. Although the film's visuals are a cut above, say, "Sin City," another serioso graphic novel-turned-movie, it has the same mood: a film-noir-ish soddenness punctuated by megaviolence. Watchmen is the anti-"Incredibles."
  2. Snyder stands revealed here as more of a beginner than a visionary in his uncertain approach to making an on-screen world come alive.
  3. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    50
    In the canon of comic-book movies, it's not as campy bad as the "Batman" starring George Clooney, but nowhere near the caliber of the Spider-Man movies or "The Dark Knight." It may have more style, but it's only a jot more entertaining than "Catwoman."
  4. 50
    Watchmen is worth seeing, fan or no, for Haley's squirmy presence alone, and all the other characters are also well-served.
  5. 40
    As it is, the film is more curiosity than provocation, an artifact of a faded world brought to zombie half-life by the cinematic technology of the present.
  6. The most pleasant surprise in the movie adaptation of "Watchmen" is the pop-art fusion set off by placing superheroes in a "real" world. The film's biggest challenge – and accomplishment – was making that plausible.
  7. 50
    Watchmen is neither desecratory disaster nor total triumph. In filming David Hayter and Alex Tse's adaptation of the most ambitious superhero comic book ever written, director Zack Snyder has managed to address the cult while pandering to the masses.
  8. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    50
    The movie is ultimately undone by its own reverence; there's simply no room for these characters and stories to breathe of their own accord, and even the most fastidiously replicated scenes can feel glib and truncated.
  9. 50
    Watchmen is indeed gorgeous, with Gibbons' original work reproduced and – in some cases – improved upon by detailed F/X, but even at a healthy two hours and 41 minutes the story feels truncated. Even abrupt.
  10. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    40
    The director recycles some of the better effects from his gladiator epic "300"...and he's being so faithful to the work of comics artist Dave Gibbons that he might as well have used the graphic novel's illustrations as a storyboard.
  11. Watchmen is a bore. Sad to say, after a wait of more than two decades, the much-anticipated adaptation of the world's most celebrated graphic novel is long, dull and subject to what might be called the "Lord of the Rings" problem: It sinks under the weight of its reverence for the original.
  12. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    50
    Watchmen fans wondering whether their graphic novel has been ruined will be thrilled to see its key scenes reproduced with storyboardlike fidelity, but those who've never read it will be unlikely to understand what the big deal was in the first place.
  13. Reviewed by: Devin Gordon
    40
    Speaking as an admirer, but not an apostle, of the graphic novel, I thought the Watchmen movie was confusing, maddeningly inconsistent and fighting a long, losing battle to establish an identity of its own.
  14. 40
    Director Zack Snyder races through the story, faithfully reproducing this bit of dialogue from Moore and that bit of imagery from Gibbons but never pausing to develop a vision of his own. The result is oddly hollow and disjointed; the actors moving stiffly from one overdetermined tableau to another.
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 1487 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Mar 17, 2011
    10
    A fantastic film. The story, the setting, the characters, everything works perfectly to create this dark alternate reality. Zach Snyder hasA fantastic film. The story, the setting, the characters, everything works perfectly to create this dark alternate reality. Zach Snyder has done it again, creating another beautiful world for another great film. Full Review »
  2. Sep 21, 2011
    8
    Zack Snyder's "Watchmen" has it all; the dark tone/environment, insanely deep characters, powerful action, and profround ideas. It's veryZack Snyder's "Watchmen" has it all; the dark tone/environment, insanely deep characters, powerful action, and profround ideas. It's very obedient to the comic and serves its purpose as a translator of modern heroes and what they represent to the society. Full Review »
  3. CollinP.
    Mar 8, 2009
    8
    I have to respectfully disagree with someone's assessment below regarding the movies "gratuitous sexual scenes and nudity". The Dr. I have to respectfully disagree with someone's assessment below regarding the movies "gratuitous sexual scenes and nudity". The Dr. Manhattan "penis" shots were not gratuitous by any means, they were simply shots of him walking around. Hardly sexual, merely biologically natural. Secondly, the sex scenes involving Silk Spectre were far from gratuitous, they were side shot intercourse scenes with limited nudity, and nothing more than stylized sexual thrusting. Finally, I'm much more disturbed by the fact that this bothered you more than the excessive gory violence that occurred throughout this movie. I mean, limbs getting cut off, heads getting impaled. I would much rather that my child saw a little nudity and some sex scenes (which are natural human qualities and biological functions), than disgusting nihilistic violence (which is not a natural human function, and only breads hate and desensitization to the movie-watching crowd). The American public has it all wrong. While we should make sure that our children are indeed protected from adult sexual material, we should be much more concerned with the graphic violence that has permeated our culture and allowed people to grow sadly tolerant of it. That being said, the movie was indeed a faithful, wonderful adaptation of the novel, with only a few points lacking (i.e., the depth of some of the characters was never realized). I thoroughly enjoyed the beginning montage as well, it was quite a spectacle to behold! Full Review »