Watchmen: Midnight

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Overall rating 
 
8.5
Audio/Video Quality 
 
9.0
Visual Editing 
 
10.0
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10.0
Narrative 
 
8.0
Enjoyment 
 
8.0

This edit has been my first encounter with the Watchmen movie. (Before this raises suspicions let's remind that we're required to *own* the original DVD, not to *watch* it!) I'm a big fan of the graphic novel, but my extreme dislike of Zack Snyder's style more than anything made me avoid the movie until now. Won't waste much space in my opinions on the non-edit aspects on it other than saying that I found it just as ugly and mediocre as I expected from its director, liked some bits, disliked others, but the worst thing was not what was left out or the changed ending, but Snyder's approach with the music video/commercial aesthetic and all that goddamn slow motion.

Still, reading about this edit's changes, I seem to agree with all of what was cut, and that this is probably much improved over any theatrical cut. I agree that Black Freighter has no real purpose without the squid, I agree that without Under the Hood Hollis Mason seems to be pretty much superfluous. And all what was cut looks like disposable filler, resulting in a well paced and reasonably entertaining edit (I say reasonably because every time I started enjoying the narrative, along came a damn slo-mo shot that ruined everything and annoyed me to no end). Given the circumstances, and as a fan of the graphic novel, I enjoyed it a lot as an edit, if not as a movie.

But, I think more could, and should, have been cut or modified. For starters, I'd like to see the opening credits sequence gone. I understand it has a lot of fans, but to me is an interminably long exercise in Snyderness that not only is unneeded for the narrative but contains a pair of howlers. Silhouette kissing a woman in the middle of a crowded street, in plain sight for everyone, in front of a photographer, in 1945? The Comedian murdering Kennedy, without any ambiguity whatsoever, shown to us even before we know who the Comedian is? Please. The movie would be better served by starting directly with the Comedian's button on the street, just like the source. Also, the Snydermotion should have been fixed or minimized whenever possible, particularly the changes of speed within the same shot. I feel this is possible in most cases. I'd also suggest minimizing distractingly obvious CGI such as Rorschach's grappling hook, and as much of Nixon as possible given that his makeup is a complete joke. And in this case, many scenes that are lifted verbatim from the graphic novel but didn't work as cinema, should go (all through the movie, but I'm thinking particularly of much of the climax in Ozy's lair).

Am I being too harsh? Maybe, in the sense that it's a matter of personal taste about a style I don't like. If you like Snyder, you'll probably love this cut. If you don't like Snyder, I still think it's worth watching, but know how to expect. As for me, I'd love to see a version 2 that at least fixes the slo-mo.

Video and audio quality was good enough, though the video showed a bit too much artifact and obvious compression, even for a 3 hour movie it could look a bit better since it's a DVD9 and bare bones. The editing itself was masterfully done and indetectable.

So I insist, anything bad I can say about this is the fault of Snyder, not Flixcapacitor. Overall, a strong firstling and a recommended edit.

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Overall rating 
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality 
 
10.0
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10.0
Audio Editing 
 
10.0
Narrative 
 
10.0
Enjoyment 
 
10.0

When I saw the theatrical trailer for Watchmen I thought to myself, “oh no not another superhero movie, doesn’t people ever get tired of these.” Needles to say I had no idea what Watchmen was all about, never read the graphic novel.
But people raved about this movie like it was the second coming of Christ so I took a chance and watched it (the director’s cut) and it turned out to be a masterpiece. It definitely in my top 100…or maybe even top 50…

I never bothered with the ultimate cut. It looked like they only added the Black Freighter footage, so it didn’t look intruding to me. Better leave that version to the hardcore ner...fans.

IMO the director’s cut was perfect. At least I thought so…
I stumbled over the thread for Watchmen: Midnight and I don’t know why but I started reading what changes Flixcapacitor had done to perfection...and strangely enough it sounded really awesome. He sounded like a huge fan of the original material and sometimes these kind of people can do things that the filmmakers can’t, they don’t have to worry about what anyone might think, what will be attached to their “reel” etc.

Turned out the story was pretty much intact, just a couple of things that were over the top (yes I admit) were cut. And no Black Freighter. Instead he added Under the Hood, the “documentary” about Hollis Mason’s glory days. This footage first felt off when it cut back to the “movie” but it really fleshed out the story and the attack on Mason later on now has more depth to it and I cared on a whole other level than before.

I love the original soundtrack but the changes made are really for the better. Less is more and I’m now more involved in what happens on screen, this worked especially well for the opening.

I guess I owe it to myself to one day check out the original work that everyone praise so much. But for the movie version, this one is the best version so far. And I was a HUGE fan of the director’s cut.

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Overall rating 
 
9.8
Audio/Video Quality 
 
8.0
Visual Editing 
 
10.0
Audio Editing 
 
10.0
Narrative 
 
10.0
Enjoyment 
 
10.0

Absolutely spectacular stuff. The 215 minute running time is perfect for the Watchmen story, the tone and structure are captured flawlessly, and you've managed to pull off the definitive film version of the brilliant graphic novel with flying colors. Jaw-droppingly good.

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
MP4/AVI/etc. (SD)
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Overall rating 
 
9.3
Audio/Video Quality 
 
8.0
Visual Editing 
 
10.0
Audio Editing 
 
10.0
Narrative 
 
10.0
Enjoyment 
 
9.0

Watchmen: Midnight is masterfully done. The A/V quality isn't perfect, but this edit has breathed new life into this movie for me. Everything that needs to be said has been said already. If you love Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons's masterpiece, this is the version for you.

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Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
DVD
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(Updated: December 30, 2014)
Overall rating 
 
9.3
Audio/Video Quality 
 
10.0
Visual Editing 
 
10.0
Audio Editing 
 
10.0
Narrative 
 
9.0
Enjoyment 
 
9.0

This one is really brilliant and convinced me that there's something to like about superhero movies other than goofball parodies like Kick Ass.

Living in a country (Germany) where US-style comic books were never ubiquitous, the genre was hit for six when the first over-hyped Nicholson Batman movie was released back in the 90s. In comparison to European comics like "Lucky Luke" and "Asterix" the prejudice was confirmed to many that superhero+movie equals superdumb. Alas, subsequent batman incarnations didn't manage to counter this perception - until Nolen's Dark Knight, that is.

However, having access to this re-graded and re-edited Watchmen I keep watching it again and again. The pacing might be too slow and the runtime too long for the big screen, but the documentary and comic interlacing hits the spot. Maybe it's because I'm getting older, but the mood of the costume heroes looking back on their origins with the embedding in the Nixon era gives this movie depth beyond a pure action flick.

I cannot recommend Watchmen:Midnight 2014 highly enough, just a small points deduction for the lack of an audio commentary which I've come to love from editors like Hal 9000 or Last Survivor.

And one point less enjoyment because "life" seems to consist solely of humans, personally I'd find more than enough reasons to save the planet just for the sake of all the wildlife which doesn't have any part in building hopping malls or oil pipelines as Dr. Manhatten criticises. But then again, this isn't the fault of this edit and the stance is probably true to the comic book source.

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Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
MP4/AVI/etc. (HD)
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