I caught the Watchmen in IMAX which was great.
I felt like the combination of high definition digital projector, overpowering sound system (used judiciously) and good seating all came together with a very visual movie to push my experience over the top. Now a lot of people disliked the movie and liked the movie. It’s one of those polarizing events when people come down on one side or another.
I’m in the “enjoyed the movie” camp. I thought the pacing was fine for a three hour movie, and it never felt long. I did not have the same experience as I did when I watched the King Kong remake, where I felt like I was waiting for something to happen.
As far as being faithful to the source material or not, I never judge a movie based on its book. Two forms of media use different methods to get the story across. Watchmen the movie is not Watchmen the book. To judge the merits of a movie by a book’s standards feels like an unsound method of reviewing something. Having read the book several years ago, I felt that while I was familiar with the overall plot of the book, I was far enough away temporally to be surprised with how the movie would develop the characters and storyline.
That said, I felt that the movie stands on its own as an enjoyable experience. I’m going to let my thoughts settle for a bit, then get around to rereading the book to refamiliarize myself with how the plot developed in that format.