Watchmen: Midnight

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(Updated: August 31, 2012)
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9.0
August 1, 2012 @ 1:27 pm

The original Watchmen movie didn’t really wow me. It was a movie that made many things wrong but then again it did so much different than mainstream superhero movies – how could I be so antagonistic to a movie that at least tried something different?

To me Snyder’s direction was the problem. He felt like a kid who really loved the comic but didn’t really understand that movies are a different medium. His focus on the over the top gore looked like a child shouting “LOOK! That’s totally gory, totally not like a standard comic book!” instead of focusing on the story which is very mature the over the top nature of some scenes plus some bad musical choices really pulled me out of the movie.

Gekko has already done a pretty dang good restructuring of Watchmen and I doubt that I will ever find a version that completely suits me – ultimately this movie is really not possible to adapt.

Structurally the original movie just goes along, starts strongly and then descends into awkward muddled something. with the episodic nature flixcapacitor has restored some focus but I hink this is due to the fact that I can watch this at home and not in the cinema. I bet that this version would have resonated even worse with movie audiences due to the fragmented nature

but the under the hood parts are just fantastic for exlaining the world. You get a much better sense of the watchmen world. In snyder’s original version the vigilantes moved with an overstylized speed, leaving some people who had never read the comic with the question if those people were super human.

now with all the antics gone and the under the hood parts as backstory there is no question about who those people are. Even better much like the comic you are feeling lost in the story in a positive way. There is so much going on that the mask-killer is just one of the things happening.
Much like in the comics the backstories offer other possible candidates for the mask-killer. Could Hooded justice have returned? Or maybe it is Hollis Mason! At least now there are more faces in this world and not just the skinny guy dressed in dark clothes.

Most of the intertitles worked pretty cool except for some that were a tad too abrupt. the doomsday clock at the end of the chapters was also a nice touch.
only thing I missed was dylan’s “the times are a-changing” song. The new version is pretty moody and nice, but it feels abit redundant because of the length of the credit scenes.

overall the editing choices are all well made, the quality is very good

9/10
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(Updated: August 31, 2012)
Overall rating
 
8.8
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
9.0
Enjoyment
 
8.0
December 31, 2011 @ 10:12 pm

Just finished watching this last night, and I wanted to put in a few words about what I liked and didn’t like. Please don’t expect a review per se, I can only speak to my response to the fanedited movie.

First off, I did watch the original movie first, then the fanedit, so I think I got a good before and after look. I thought the original movie, while the most interesting and different superhero story I’ve ever seen, was about a B+ as a movie. Maybe a straight B. After watching the fanedit, I wobbled a bit, but eventually settled on B+ as well. It’s different, and much is improved, but some things don’t play as well too, so in the end, it kind of evened out.

Here’s the things I really liked about the fanedit:
1. The recut of the opening and further exposition during the movie. Brilliantly done, it was much better than the original.
2. The cuts to the sex scene and some of the violence. I couldn’t watch the original with my friend, as he has teenage kids who are too young for that kind of graphic sex scene, so removing that put the movie right back into their range. The exclusion of the extremely graphic arm scene in the prison was a great choice too, and the way you did it was perfect.
3. The added non-backstory footage about the original Night Owl. Why did they cut that? It was amazingly well done and one of the most powerful scenes in the entire movie. Kudos for putting that back in!
4. The additional dialogue and footage throughout the movie. I didn’t see anything that didn’t work perfectly well. I’m assuming it was all cut for reasons of viewing time and theater scheduling.

Now, here’s the things I didn’t like so much:
1. Not sure what you call them, but the black screen and white-letter messages that were shown fairly often seemed to me like “editorial comments”. They broke up the flow of the movie and (no offense) seemed very heavy handed, like planting a sign saying “BTW THIS IS WHAT THINGS MEAN RIGHT NOW, JUST IN CASE YOU DIDN”T CATCH IT”, when in reality, I think most people would have the sense of what was happening. Those dropped the movie one full grade for me :(
2. Not your fault on this, but the additional backstory provided by the TV set, while a great addition to the movie, had no means of connection to the movie. I didn’t realize it at first, but I found myself wishing those were in the context of a scene where a character were watching them, so the flow of the movie wouldn’t be interrupted. No points off though, it was a wash.
3. The removal of some of the action, in particular the all-out SS+NO vs everyone in their way scene in the prison, really stood out to me as a loss. Except for that, we never really see SS or NO as “real” superheroes, costume and all, going all out kicking bad guy butt, and I think that was an important scene. It just seemed to clinch the deal for those two as partners, as well as setting the bar for the future fight with the big O and being pretty exciting in its own right. Also, it seemed like some of the Big O fight was missing. Maybe just me since I only watched the first movie once, but I didn’t really get the same tension and suspense from the fight as I did the first time.
4. Back to the sex scene, while much improved as I said above, I did think that it came off as very rushed. The beginning of the scene, where the characters meet eyes and connect through the charge of the experience they just had, was a good moment and a defining one for their relationship. A more paced beginning would have been good, before the cutaway that brought the show into PG territory.

Those are my thoughts. I’d like to thank you for making this fanedit, it must have been an incredible amount of work, and I did enjoy it very much. Re the rest of the review ratings, here they are:

VIDEO PRESENTATION: Beautiful, couldn’t tell it from the original. (5/5)

AUDIO PRESENTATION: Perfect to me. I know music was replaced, but I noticed no distracting cuts and the music worked fine for me. (5/5)

EDITING: Technical perfection. Couldn’t tell a bit where things were added/removed. (5/5)

STORY PRESENTATION: Plus six of one, minus a half dozen of the other, plus .5 bonus points for the additional footage of the (major) story point about the original Night Owl. (4.5/5)

OVERALL RATING: WATCHMEN: Better than the original for storytelling and character development, but lack of context for the backstory footage and some directorial editing choices that didn’t work for me take it down two notches. (8/10)

Keep on editing and I’ll keep on watching!

W
W
1 reviews
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(Updated: August 31, 2012)
Overall rating
 
8.8
Audio/Video Quality
 
8.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
8.0
Enjoyment
 
9.0
November 19, 2011 @ 10:07 pm

WATCHMEN: MIDNIGHT is an interesting take on Snyder’s Watchmen. It improves in many ways by trimming down extraneous scenes (that I, while watching the film in theaters, found awkwardly lengthy), adding in extra material, and segmenting the film into chapters.

Below, I will focus on each of the major changes that set Flixcapacitor’s interpretation apart from other fanedits. If you don’t want some of the changes and cuts ruined for you, please scroll down to the Final Verdict.

THE UNDER THE HOOD SEQUENCES —————————————————————–

While I understand that Flixcapacitor was emulating the supplementary material of the Watchmen graphic novels, I found the Under The Hood sequences to be interrupting the flow of the film rather than adding to it.

Admittedly, some portions of Under the Hood nicely parallel what the viewer should be focusing on (Rorschach and the other Watchmen in 1985), such as Hollis’s attraction to the first Silk Spectre. Unfortunately, Flixcapacitor shows more than what I felt was necessary to contribute to the atmosphere of the movie during the Under the Hood segments, and prolongs the progression of the plot.

Their inclusion can be forgiven on the grounds that they give the viewer an experience more like the graphic novel. Personally I feel as though the interludes would be a more welcome addition if they had taken place during the lulls in the pacing of the film instead of after every chapter pre-intermission.

THE CHAPTER SEGMENTS AND EPIGRAMS ————————————————————

The faneditor shows a perfect sense of timing on this one, displaying the chapter titles and concluding scenes at exactly the right time. The inclusion of the midnight clock and epigrams helped set the scene for each preceding chapter, just as intended in the graphic novel. Putting them into the movie was a smart, logical addition that the faneditor implements seamlessly, and for that I really do applaud Flixcapacitor’s genius.

My only reservation over the segmentation is that the scene immediately following the intermission begins suddenly and abruptly, jumping directly into Big Figure’s introduction without giving the viewer time to recuperate from the film’s hiatus. Because of this, I found the intermission to be unnecessary as it only serves as a stopping point for the Under The Hood material, and doesn’t bridge a time cut or separate two radically different moods of the film.

Ultimately, segmenting the film into chapters and including the post-chapter epigrams are what I’ll remember WATCHMEN: MIDNIGHT for. It really contributes to the film and adds an extra dimension that is more like what Alan Moore intended in the original graphic novel. Excellent fanediting.

CHANGING/REMOVING MUSIC IN CERTAIN SCENES —————————————————-

The music of Watchmen was a large part of the movie’s appeal to me, and their removal seemed unneeded. The scenes are filmed to be structured around the music playing; replacing them without re-editing the scene to fit the added score is like taking a music video and changing the music, hoping no one will notice.

While Flixcapacitor excises “Ride of the Valkyries” for reasons I can get behind, the quiet music he replaces it with fails to capture the impact of the scene. This, I believe, is due to Glass’s score’s quiet, subdued nature. If I were able to hear a little bit of what was going on in the scene (explosions, helicopter rattle, screams), even muffled, I would gladly welcome the switch. However, the scene plays almost like a silent movie and distances the viewer from fully engaging themselves into the scene.

Adding score where songs were meant to be causes a dissonance in the film and leaves the viewer feeling very far away from what is happening. While most songs he replaces have good reasons behind them (removing “Times They Are a-Changin’” because the opening credits now begin the movie, removing “The Sound of Silence” because it’s too much like The Graduate), it’s important to remember that the scenes were designed to be set to those songs for a purpose.

OVERALL EDITING ——————————————————————————

All-in-all, the faneditor exhibits absolutely flawless editing skills. All scenes removed I didn’t miss or even notice they had been removed. Flixcapacitor’s changes are well-made and undetectable– the mark of a good editor. Cutting Rorschach’s run-in with the police? Shortening the awkward Nite Owl/Silk Spectre love scene? Reducing the prison riot sequence? Removing all mention of the Watchmen by name? All great calls.

Flixcapacitor’s good editing decisions in WATCHMEN: MIDNIGHT are numerous… and you’ll never even notice he made them. An excellent example for future faneditors.

THE FINAL VERDICT ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

VIDEO PRESENTATION: Exactly like the DVD, no fuzzy conversion. Perfect. (5/5)

AUDIO PRESENTATION: Overall quality clean. The replacement of score where songs were purposed distracts greatly. (3/5)

EDITING: Flixcapacitor demonstrates high editing competence, his changes are unnoticeable and improve the film. (5/5)

STORY PRESENTATION: The Under The Hood material detracted from the flow of the film, but the addition of chapter segmentation and epigrams really contribute. (4/5)

OVERALL RATING: WATCHMEN: MIDNIGHT is more like the graphic novels and though I have some issues with the Under The Hood material and the replacement of songs, it’s chaptered layout and seamless editing make this one well worth your download.

(9/10)
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(Updated: March 08, 2013)
Overall rating
 
8.2
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
9.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
9.0
Enjoyment
 
7.0
October 23, 2011 @ 9:29 pm

Firstly I want to say say how disappointed I was with Snyder’s Watchmen. He completely missed the point of the comic and tried to make an ultra-super-look-how-bad-ass-I-am-movie. My brother-in-law loved the movie though and bought me the Ultimate Cut to try and prove how awesome it is. I never watched it.

Now, onto the real review:

Video/Audio quality: Perfect. Nothing looked or sounded off at all. 10/10

Editing: Nearly flawless. Seemed pretty damn seamless. The only noticeable error was a quote title card fading away too fast. I believe it was the quote at the end of “Watchmaker”. On a personal note, I would have enjoyed fading in out between the title cards instead of cutting to/from black, but it didn’t detract from it at all. 9.5/10

Entertainment: Without going into too much of what scenes I liked and didn’t like, I’ll say that there were still a lot of scenes that made me shake my head. I was VERY happy to see the deletion of the opening scene with Nixon and the fight scene in the Comedian’s apartment. As well cutting the overlong prison riot/fight scene was excellent. IMO you could have cut Night Owl swooping out of Archie as well, but that’s my opinion.

I really enjoyed the Under the Hood segments intercut between the chapters. And you stopped that style at the correct point in the edit, letting the second half play out naturally.

I still feel that Watchmen is pretty terrible, but at least I was able to get through the whole movie and after two hours found myself just watching it without my inner commentary.

7/10 (original theatrical cut was 1/10)

Presentation: I loved the scene selections. Makes complete sense to break it up by chapters. 10/10

Summary: Technical quality was superb. Even though I still hate the movie, I hate this one way less.

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
DVD
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(Updated: August 31, 2012)
Enjoyment
 
8.0
July 29, 2012 @ 3:10 am

Not sure why it took me so long to get around to watching this,
but I am glad I finally did!

The original WATCHMEN comic mini-series is considered by many as a seminal piece of work, forever influencing how comic tales are woven and presented. I read the Watchmen series when it was first released, and while I acknowledge it is an amazing piece of graphic literature, it never held a fond a fond place in my comic book library… its superhero world a bit too grim and gritty, too fatalistic and cynical for my personal tastes.

That said, the idea of translating it into a motion picture I found to be a fascinating one, and over the years I followed its many starts and stops in movie development with great interest. When Zac Snyder’s opus finally arrived on screen in 2009, I was there on opening night filled with curious anticipation. When the movie ended two plus hours later, and the lights came up and my buddies asked what I thought, I just sort of shrugged “meh”.

I did not hate it. I did not love it.

It had some great moments. It had some very dull moments. And some very “nuking the fridge” moments.

But mostly, it felt lacking in characters development. I never truly felt connected or invested in the characters’ journey.

So when reading Flixcapacitor’s intention was to try to improve the overall depth of the characters, I was very intrigued. And now after watching this epic edit, I think for the most part, he was very successful.

I very much enjoyed the new structure of the story with it’s chapter breaks and “Under the Hood” segments. For me, it gave the narration a more “episodic” feel, almost as though each chapter was an issue of the comic book. It also a lent a greater dramatic quality to many scenes, that for me, were lacking in the original.

I know much has been made of the music replacement in this edit. For me, 90% of the new music worked. But as some other reviewers pointed out, some of the music scenes could have played better if the editor had recut them tighter to time with the replacement tracks. Though the new version of the Archie love scene is a vast and superior improvement. For as much as I love Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, when that song played during the love scene, the movie officially “nuked the fridge” for me!

The editor shows a great talent for storytelling, as the restructured and added/deleted scenes all work very well and improve the over all viewing experience considerably.

The technical work is excellent. Picture quality is equal to the original source material. The audio work is very well done. All the cuts are clean. The only thing I noticed was one ghost frame of the Intermission title card.

So all in all, I found this edit to a significant improvement over the original version. It is still a flawed and shallow movie for me, but this is no fault of the editor, as he can only work with the material available. And while still not a “must see” movie experience for me, it is definitely my now preferred version of the story.

Thumbs Up.
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