Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Pow! Biff! (part 9)

Hello again! It's another of my intermittent posts on stuff I find interesting in the strange world of comic books. A world I visit every now and again for a holiday, and sometimes I work there, too. Kinda like a MeatLoaf tribute singer in Tenerife.

Anyway, the reason I'm posting is to show you some interesting pics I've seen on the internet. At the top, there, is one of the first pics of Heath Ledger as the Joker from the upcoming The Dark Knight. Apparently, there is going to be an unveiling of the first 'proper' picture of him on the Empire Online site soon. It looks like they're going for something rather different from what's gone before, which is a good thing, as Cesar Romero with thick white greasepaint over his moustache wouldn't work these days!

The most interesting comics-related film stuff I've seen this week comes from the dreaded (by me, anyway!) Watchmen adaptation, directed by Zack Snyder, who directed the film of Frank Miller's 300. ( an interesting film, although it's politically a bit suspect, in my book, especially in its portrayal of women, and its portrayal of Persians, {persia is now Iraq; Do you see the clever, subtle allegory with the modern-day situation? Not that subtle, is it? Or that clever, really.} as either subhuman freaks, grotesques and/or bloodthirsty immoral devils leaves a bad taste in the mouth. But hey, it's Frank Miller! That kinda thing's expected!)

Anyway, these pictures are from the set of Watchmen. The first one is of the newsstand. You know, the one where that young kid (usually smoking) sits and reads Tales From The Black Freighter without actually paying for it? (Also, in the book, these bits are really cool as you can see an unmasked Rorschach with his sandwich board, something I didn't realise until the second time I read it.)You can click on these pictures to make them bigger.

And speaking of Rorschach:

Again, if you touch it , it will get bigger. (I keep telling myself, and others, that, but I'm kidding myself. Boo hoo!) He doesn't seem to have any of the inkblots on his mask that give him his name, but maybe they're CGI'd on afterwards. It was interesting on the recent Comics Britannia listening to Alan Moore read this book out loud, as he did a very stop-start strange whispering voice when he was doing Rorschach. I wonder if this has been taken on board by the actor playing him?
Anyway, it looks like the movie looks right, I'm just hoping the plot and script are up to snuff, which it probably won't be, as, in my opinion, you'd need to do it in a lot more time than a movie'll give you. Maybe they should've done it like Heroes, only not so slow moving or wanky.


DanProject76 said...

This all seems strangely familiar.


jamie said...

the end is fuckin' nigh,i tell you.
i don't dig this film at all... i was there in the summer of,er,'86 or '87,or whenever it was... i queued up for five hours or so outside cafe munchen(?!)to meet moore,gibbons and higgins...
that was a fucking magical day,a feeling i doubt this film will be able to replicate.
i'm not a fan of this film prospect.

Madeley said...

I've never seen the point of making a Watchmen film, in that it's such a specific kind of work based in a very specific media and format. Isn't the point of the work that it's a super-hero comic commenting on and informed by super-hero comics? Does that mean that the film will be commenting on super-hero films? And if so, how are the New York/1985/Nixon references at all relevent?

If you really understood and enjoyed Watchmen to the degree that you want to spend time and money making a film of it, how have you not realised how pointless that is? It's like the people who moan about Moore not letting DC bring out Watchmen action figures. How can you adore something that much, yet fundamentally misunderstand the point of it?

Plus, I don't believe even heavy-handed allegory was intended in a film so thouroughly dumb as 300.

Madeley said...

Though not so thoroughly dumb as to misspell "thoroughly".

Mick said...

Jamie: I met Dave Gibbons once, and bought him a pint, but I was pissed and just slurred at him. He put up with me quite well, I thought. A nice bloke, all in all. I too am hating the prospect of this movie, as the previous films of Moore's works have been absolutely dire, in my opinion.

Madeley: I'm just wondering who they're aiming this film at; If it is for comics fans, then they've already read the book a few times, and either not see it as they know the story inside out and don't want to waste money on something they've already experienced, or those that go to see if it matches up (it won't) and will hate it. If it's for the general punters who just love comic book movies, they'll hate it as it's not the same as Spider-Man or Blade. That's assuming the plot stays roughly the same as the book, though I'm guessing they'll jettison all the good stuff and stick in some superfluous fight scenes, like that totally gratuitous knife fight at the end of V For Vendetta, one of the shit Moore adaptations I mentioned earlier.
Anyway, the film won't ruin the book, as it'll still be there on my bookshelf, being as brilliant as it always was. It might, if it's a shit film, ruin its reputation as the 'Citizen Kane of Comics' and put of any future generations reading it, as they hated the movie.

jamie said...

hi mick,
i recently spoke to dave gibbons,as you say a lovely,lovely man...kind of like your favourite uncle. we spoke about the watchmen film,and he is pretty upbeat about it... he's been involved with pre-production and i said it will be great to see some new watchmen art from him. he really is a nice man.
i also saw the back of your head,at the same event... i must have missed you at andy winters table by about 30 seconds.
you had a lucky escape,i reckon.

Mick said...

I've sort of met Dave a few times, I say sort of, as we never actualy spoke! Him and his wife had breakfast at the next table to us at the Bristol Ramada at the Comics Expo last year (behind us was Colin Baker filling his fat face with dead pig), nothing that strange about that, as the room was full of famous comic artists, and me, obviously. The proper reasonably famous comics artists I do know quite well also know Dave, and he came and spoke to them as I was speaking to them at Bristol, but again,he didn't actually speak to me! I didn't actually slur at him until last year's BICS, when I bought him a pint and he humoured me admirably.
Sorry I missed you at this year's BICS, but I probably buggered off for a ciggie.