The Big Picture

Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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Harry Knowles to 'Watchmen': I love you, man!

February 25, 2009 |  1:29 pm

Some people review movies. Some people analyze movies. Harry Knowles scoops them up, rocks them in his arms and smothers them with wet kisses--the latest example being his new review of the hotly anticipated "Watchmen," which arrives in theaters March 6 after months of legal wrangling between Warner Bros. (who made the film) and 20th Century Fox (who now gets a piece of the film's profits after a contentious battle over the film's origins). It's hard to accurately describe Harry's writing style--you might say it's a combination of wee-hours Jack Kerouac free association and gushy, wide-eyed Billy Bush-like blather.

HarryknowlesBut to get to the point: Harry is VERY excited about "Watchmen." As he put it (the caps are all his, although I'm leaving out a key expletive that he often relies on for emphasis that my bosses don't allow me to print): "You know what? I WATCHED THE [snip] WATCHMEN AND I [snip] LOVED IT!" His only complaint: "The film feels brief to me. Two hours and 40 minutes and it went by like a blink for me. I easily would have patiently sat for another two hours."

Here's a brief summation of Harry's take on some of the key characters:

Jeffrey Dean Morgan's Comedian: "He reminds me of Mickey Rourke's turn in 'The Wrestler.' There's a sadness, a madness and a genius all at play here."

Billy Crudup's Dr. Manhattan: "He never once felt silly or weird. He was beautiful, otherworldly, human and a god on Earth. [His voice] wasn't the voice I heard in my mind. I always imagined the voice of a God. Or perhaps Orson Welles."

Jackie Earle Haley's Rorschach: "He's a brilliant character. He's Travis Bickle with a mask. He is the hardest version of 'Batman' and less gaudy than 'Judge Dredd.' "

Malin Akerman's Laurie Jupiter: "She's bored and a bit bitter. She isn't constantly whining about her mother nearly as much as she did in the book--and frankly I'm a bit glad."

Harry had a lot of other things to say about the film, but frankly they pretty much went over my head. But it's clear that he's ecstatic about the movie, which Warners isn't showing to peons like me until a couple of days before its opening. So for now, we'll have to take Harry's word for it. As he put it: "It's just so exciting to be this wrapped up in a film that you can get wrapped up in chatting with friends all night into the next morning and into noon--and then dream about--and wake up giddy about--and they say [snip] it. I need to share this with all of you.... This was [snip] awesome!"

This must be how you catch a cold. I'm getting excited myself, just writing about how excited Harry is about, well, about being excited! It's contagious!



Photo of Harry Knowles by Patty Wood / For The Times