Although master comic-book writer and my fellow Northamptonian Alan Moore refuses to have his name on any movie adaptation of his work, Zack Snyder’s ambitious film of his most famous piece, the complex, hard-boiled graphic novel Watchmen, is to my mind the best. A Cold War fable about discredited, out-of-work superheroes, the story has only been mildly tinkered with and its look has been affectionately transferred from Dave Gibbons’s precise and disciplined artwork. A fine but far from starry cast (Billy Crudup, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley, Malin Akerman) allows us to climb inside the dark, troubled lives of the retired caped crusaders, who are forced back into work when one of their own meets a sticky end. Frankly, if you’re not drawn in and captivated by the bravura opening credits sequence, you’re watching the wrong film. If you are, prepare for an epic, grown-up, thought-provoking ride from New York to Antarctica via Mars and the end of the world.
Al Pacino and Christopher Walken star in a little-known gem of a film about a couple of doddering wiseguys who couldn’t go straight if they tried, with Alan Arkin adding a little comedy sparkle all of his own.
Death has never been so needlessly, gleefully elaborate as in this jokey supernatural horro about a gang of good-looking teenagers who somehow, unnaturally cheat death. But death isn’t going to take that sort of thing lying down.