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Watchmen: (Blu Ray) A gang of retired vigilantes squeeze back into their costumes to figure out who’s trying to kill them off. The story itself is a near perfect blend of action and dystopian Noir mystery, although it’s no Sin City rip off. Picture and surround sound are both absolutely stunning and could easily be used as test/demo material. All aspects of the visuals are totally slick, and bone-splitting graphic violence has never looked this good. The run time may put some off, at 2:45, but it’s all about the characters past and present. A few streaks of hardcore physics to melt your mind, and older viewers will remember the constant fear of a potential nuclear holocaust. On a downside the soundtrack’s very dominating, trendy and generic for such an original story, and it’s never good seeing a huge blue wang, ever. Haven’t read the graphic novel so can’t compare them, but as a stand alone film this is certainly a great achievement. Plain awesome viewing.

Score: 8/10

Avatar 3D: marketed as the biggest and best sci-fi adventure of all time – bold claim. From the start it’s totally otherworldly; with the characters, animals, landscapes, textures and backgrounds all meticulously designed. For some reason the planet reminded me of Finding Nemo! The 3D wasn’t flawless as only one object in a frame would show real depth and the rest of the scene appeared out of focus or flat – it’s quite an exercise for the eyes. The sound was uncomfortably loud in parts too, so not an easy film for the senses!! Story-wise it wasn’t the best, or most original, and it took some super-ridiculous & corny twists. The characters are all “stock” clearly falling into the ‘good’ or ‘bad’ camps, and dialogue / acting is generally flat. Cameron’s tried to make it quite humane with the ‘aliens’ clearly echoing our 3rd world; while ‘undertones’ push simple arguments against war on terror and eco-issues. Beyond the impressive looks and epic action scenes all other elements of the film are distinctly average. It’s a great experience, but a victim of its own hype. Don’t expect perfection.

Score: 7/10