The Watchmen, as the story goes, used to be a band of superheroes in an alternate Earth until their activities were outlawed and they were forced into retirement. One of the old team has been killed, and another suspects that it is the beginning of a plan to kill all of them, so he begins his own investigation into the murder and eventually comes into contact with all of his former colleagues.

It's 1985, Nixon is in his 5th term because the superheroes helped him win the war in Vietnam, and made him popular enough that the term limits had to be eliminated. Unfortunately, The Soviet Union is not quite falling into line so easily. International tensions are strained tighter than during the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the world is on the very brink of nuclear annihilation. It seems that the only thing preventing the world from beginning the atomic shoot-out is the presence of a God-like superhero named Dr. Manhattan, who is so powerful that he exists outside of time and space, but is gradually becoming more detached from earthly life, and therefore less involved with the fate of the race he once belonged to.

What does the murder of a superhero have to do with international politics? Good question, but the two plots described in the paragraphs above do eventually merge into one, albeit uneasily.

You should not try to apply any logic to the film. There is none. If logic prevailed, you might ask yourself these questions:

1. Granted that Dr. Manhattan could not stop every single missile launched in a nuclear war, why does he not take pre-emptive action by either removing all of the Russian nuclear capabilities or, for that matter, removing everyone's weapons before they have a chance to deploy them.

2. Why the hell did Dr. Manhattan belong to a superhero team? Given his nearly infinite powers, what exactly did the others, all basically human, contribute?

The presence of Dr. Manhattan in the Watchmen world is problematic in the same way that Superman's powers make it so hard to create any challenges or partnerships for him in the DC world. He's just so powerful that he makes all plotting clumsy and unrealistic. The actual story line of Watchmen's "present" time does manage to get Dr. Manhattan out of the way quite deftly, at least temporarily, but there is simply no way to deal with the questions posed above. You just have to accept everything posited about the past of this counter-Earth, even if it seems to make no sense, and just deal with the story's present time.

Unfortunately, there's only about ten minutes worth of plot in the present, and the film is two and a half hours long. (There is a rumor that a special DVD version will add yet another hour to the running time.) The rest of the time is padded out with flashbacks and more flashbacks inside those flashbacks, all of which are needed because there are many characters to develop. If the many characters were familiar ones whose origins were already familiar to us, like Superman, the screenwriters would not need to bog the film down in back-story, but that's not the case here, so the film has to present the whys and wherefores.

In attempting to present the necessary exposition, the screenwriters' choices were not always wise.


For example, there is a lot of running time devoted to the fact that Silk Spectre turns out to be the daughter of the original Silk Spectre and The Comedian, two people who supposedly hated one another. Yet when the Silkstress finally learns the secret of her paternity, our reaction is "so what?" It has absolutely nothing to do with either of the two main plots described above. All of Silk Spectre's back-story could have been eliminated without losing anything vital from the film, thus serving the double purpose of making the film both better paced and less confusing. The character of Silk Spectre's mother could have and should have been eliminated from the film entirely.

(end SPOILERS) I marked that as a spoiler, which it is, but it will not actually spoil anything for you. The secret of Spectre's paternity is of no interest before it is revealed and of no significance after it is revealed. In other words, it is an answer you don't care about to a question you never would have asked in the first place.

The film has its share of additional problems. Here are some major examples:

1. Some of the special effects are so poor as to be laughable. Night Owl's plane/boat contraption looks fine in repose, but in motion it looks like it was animated by either Ed Wood or those supermarionation dudes who created Supercar in the early 60s.

2. One of the central performances is just awful. The guy who plays Ozymandias, the "word's smartest man," is so weak that it's difficult to believe he's even a professional actor, and it's shocking that the director couldn't see that immediately. He comes off as a cross between Owen Wilson as Hansel in Zoolander and Mike Myers in "Sprockets." I kept expecting him to say, "Und now, vee tance."

3. The script quotes a lot of comic book dialogue and narration. Lines that look fine on the written page can often sound pretentious when real actors have to deliver them. (I'm dreading the Mighty Thor movie.)

4. The fight scenes are often clumsy.

On the other hand, the film has elements and moments of sheer genius:

Jackie Earle Haley is brilliant and just downright terrifying as Rorschach, the sociopathic super "hero" whose view of humanity fills him with bitterness for a race in which nobody else can ever live up to his uncompromising standards. I never felt a real chill when Heath Ledger was on the screen as the evil Joker, but Jackie Earle managed to make me shiver while playing a good guy! His character is defined by this bit of narration: "The streets are extended gutters and the gutters are full of blood and when the drains finally scab over, all the vermin will drown. The accumulated filth of all their sex and murder will foam up about their waists and all the whores and politicians will look up and shout 'Save us!' And I'll whisper 'no'."

Billy Crudup, with the most difficult role as a God unable to shake off his human origins, manages to create a Dr. Manhattan who is both detached from humanity and yet in tune with its core values. He manages to engage both our curiosity and our sympathy.

The Nixon/Kissinger war room is a nice bit of homage to Dr. Strangelove.

Patrick Wilson has some great moments as Dan, aka Night Owl, and the screenwriters gave him some great material to work with. Seemingly content as a peacefullly retired superhero, his wimpy facade disguises the fact that he is actually unhappy to have been castrated by society. His response to his loss of potency is another type of impotence, much to the disappointment of Silk Spectre. But when he and the Spectre decide to flout the superhero ban and get back in the fray, his manhood returns to him. The more daring their adventures, the happier and sexier he becomes. After they save some people from a burning building and make passionate love, the renascent Night Owl suggests apres-sex that they break their colleague Rorschach out of prison. Spectre tells him that blasting in and out of a maximum security prison will be much more difficult than putting out a fire, to which he responds "and much more fun," with a sense of delight that we had not previously seen from the reserved and professorial "Dan."

Interesting score from song-poets: Dylan, Leonard Cohen, etc.

Sci-Fi/Fantasy, the genre of superhero comics, has always been an arena in which interesting ideas are presented and examined. Watchmen is filled with daring ideas. Some of them are sheer lunacy, to be sure, and none of them are presented with any sense of balance. It may even be true to say that the vast majority of the ideas are just plain wrong. But none of that is as important as the fact that the ideas are both original and interesting. Let's face it, if we wanted sound reasoning, nuance and complexity, we wouldn't be watching a movie where the characters have names like Moloch the Mystic. We watch a sci-fi/fantasy movie to encounter the outré, the fantastical, the speculative, the wildly imaginative. In that respect, Watchmen is a triumph, if a slightly demented one.

Bottom line? I like this movie. It has a film noir grittiness to go with a sci-fi sense of imagination, much like Blade Runner, except it also has a truly nutty Dr. Strangelove overlay. It's one weird-ass and occasionally confusing movie, but one I found consistently fascinating, even though it seems to me like a very good movie that should have been even better.

This is not your father's comic book movie. It is filled with sex and nudity to go with explicit gore. Patrick Wilson shows his butt. Billy Crudup's CGI image is walking around with his dingle out throughout the movie. Malin Ackerman offers up some T&A in a couple of scenes. (Basically cam quality.)


  • * Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe).

  • * White asterisk: expanded format.

  • * Blue asterisk: not mine.

  • No asterisk: it probably sucks.


Catch the deluxe version of Other Crap in real time, with all the bells and whistles, here.








Leaving Las Vegas


1752x1080 clips with Elisabeth Shue. Samples below.







The Sinful Dwarf


This one is left over from yesterday ( my bad ) an unknown actress doing full frontal and getting a whipping in "The Sinful Dwarf". Caps and a clip.


Role Models


Jessica Morris, who is one hot chick shows off the boobies in "Role Models". Caps and a short HD clip.



TV Land


Over in TV Land from way last April we have Marisa Tomei visiting "Conan" and putting on a leg & thigh show. Caps and an HD clip.









It is difficult to classify this 2008 movie as just a comedy/drama, which it certainly is. At the same time, it's also a romance of sorts, and a sensitive look at addiction, aging, dementia in the elderly, and confronting one's own demons. It does all of these things quite well. They also manage to throw in quite a bit of nudity, not surprising considering that the main character is a sex addict.

Victor (Sam Rockwell) is a medical school dropout who keeps his mother, suffering increasingly from dementia, in an expensive private hospital by working days as a historical re-enactor at a theme park. At night, he supplements his income by running a scam at fancy restaurants where he deliberately chokes, then leeches off of whatever wealthy patron happens to save him.

In the meantime, Victor is also a sex addict who attends programs, but usually just to screw one of the other participants of the group. He uses women like some people use chewing gum.

Victor and his mother had been extremely close as Victor grew up, so when she reveals in a lucid moment that Victor's father was not who he thought, Victor turns to his mother's female doctor for help in solving his real identity. But the relationship with the doctor also turns into something different than just concerned caregiver.
This is a very different multi-layered story, one of those that probably deserve multiple viewings to digest all of its parts. I enjoyed it a lot.

Gillian Jacobs Paz de la Huerta various






Notes and collages


Season 6, episodes 1 and 2.

Part 2 of 2.








Aussie supermodel Nicole Trunfio has a rather casual sense of style, which is to say she is basically stark naked in public.

Brazilian supermodel Caroline Trentini

From an imager named Starbase: a look back at Eden

Allison Mackie

Barbara Alyn Woods

Carolyn Lowery

Colleen McDermott

Darcy DeMoss

Dierdre Imershein

Elsa Gabrielli

Elizabeth Lambert

Elizabeth Whitcraft

Jill Pierce

Katie Mitchell

Kristen Fontaine

Michelle Moffett

Mimi Craven

Shannon Whirry

Terry Donohoe

Film Clips