Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Double Dip Time - Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut

Well, well, the day has come. I knew when I purchased the Director's Cut DVD of my favorite film of 2009--Watchmen--that I would most likely be double dipping when they eventually released an even longer version jam-packed with even more supplemental goodies. And sure enough, that day has arrived:

I hate doing it, but I just had to double dip this time. I mean, come on! Just look at it. How could I resist? To make it a more justifiable purchase, I decided to splurge on the Blu-ray version this time. In that sense it will be like watching the movie new, this time on my HD-TV.

This four-disc box set includes both the original Theatrical Release (in standard format) as well as the Director's Cut (blu-ray), with what seems to be an additional 40 minutes tacked on to the latter. The reason? This time, in addition to a few minor extensions, we're finally getting the graphic novel within a graphic novel--Tales of the Black Freighter--which will be woven into the story line the way it was always intended.

The metacomic "Tales of the Black Freighter" was released as a standalone DVD a few months back, gorgeously drawn and narrated by Gerard Butler. But I've never seen the product, so it's going to be nice to have it included within the actual movie for the sake of purists like myself.

The other 3 discs include the aforementioned bonus features, a copy of the "motion" comic--which is basically a moving version of still frames taken from the original graphic novel and set to a narrator and basic sound effects/music--and the now ubiquitous digital copy of the film. You'll also be able to connect to Facebook through BD-Live, though I don't see much use for that particular function. Maybe I'll change my mind.

*Note:* The standard DVD version of this same box set includes 5 discs instead of 4, only because they could not fit the entirety of the motion comic on 1 DVD-ROM disc the way they can with the more spacious BD-ROM disc. Yeah, it's that HUGE. Run time for the motion comic is a whopping 5 and a half hours (325 mins) long! Holy Christ, folks! Again, like "Tales of the Black Freighter," the motion comic has been previously released on DVD. It's just nice for me to have it in one place with this box set since I never did get around to purchasing the standalone version.

If you're a huge fan of Watchmen (the movie or the comics, or both) you owe it to yourself to have this in your collection. Especially if, unlike me, you were more patient and refrained from purchasing the Director's Cut a few months back. If I had known that an even bigger release was destined to hit shelves so soon, I would have waited, too. Oopsie on my part!

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