Wednesday, 4 March 2009

[154] Watchmen on the Thames

This morning, I saw a press release for a Watchmen promotional event due to take place on the Thames this evening. For the full details, check Catherine Bray's blog, but here's a quick quote:


MANHATTAN ARRIVES IN LONDON

NEWS OF AN EXTREMELY SPECIAL WATCHMEN EVENT TAKING PLACE IN THE RIVER THAMES

To celebrate the Paramount Pictures UK release of the hugely anticipated and revered Watchmen (in cinemas 06.03.09), at exactly 8pm GMT, London’s River Thames will give birth to a Watchmen spectacle that is beyond the thinkable. Dr Manhattan, the blue skinned, super-powered being beloved of all Watchmen fans, will rise above the murky depths of the Thames to a height of over 70 feet and tower over all those who dare to attend.


I was going into London to rewatch Vicky Cristina Barcelona with the Finnish Girl, so we decided to have a walk back along the Thames to see what the fuss was about. I must say, we weren't too enthralled by what we saw.





I wouldn't really call that 'towering'. I don't think that is 70 feet tall, either. Possibly due to the wind, or some techinical issues, the spray onto which the images were projected seemed very small and warped. We waited in the chilly evening weather next to Jubilee Gardens (the view was worse on Hungerford Bridge), with a few people who had read about the stunt online, and some passers-by drawn in by the hubbub.





The projection swapped between Dr. Manhattan and the smiley badge until 20:15, when they started running through a handful of short teaser-y sequences depicting the film's main characters. The warped projection made it hard to tell exactly what you were seeing.








The first pic is from Hungerford Bridge, the second is back from Jubilee Gardens. If you squint, you can make out the Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan). I admit that my camera phone is probably exaggerating the murkiness, but even during the title reveal of each sequence, the cropped image would only show 'ATCHME'. Coupled with the lack of PR representatives, or indeed any posters, flyers or information it seemed, those puzzled bystanders stayed puzzled. The whole affair came across like an expensive, unsuccessful fumbling.





Infinitely more ominous, striking and clarified, however, was this secondary projection, onto the high rise building on the edge of Jubilee Gardens.

It's a shame that this promo stunt was a bit of a gaudy mess, but hopefully it won't put anyone off seeing Watchmen, which is released in the UK on March 6th.

4 comments:

James Hunt said...

I was hoping someone would report on this. I almost went, but decided it wasn't worth the trip from Ealing just to watch an advert that would probably go wrong. Turns out I was right! A pity, really, since I was more excited by the idea of Dr. Manhattan appearing than I was about the actual film coming out.

oleg said...

yep, it was a total waste...

Past Expiry said...

Check out this cartoon about the Watchmen movie!

http://pastexpiry.blogspot.com/2009/04/cartoon-dr-manhattan-watchmen.html
*CARTOON*Feel free to post on your blog or "tweet"

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