Saturday, July 26, 2008

Movies: The Dark Knight

"The Dark Knight" is a film directed by Christopher Nolan, sequel to 2005's "Batman Begins":

In the movie, Batman battles the Joker over the fate of Gotham City. The story takes many of its cues from classic Batman comics; most notably, it borrows heavily from Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke." Plotwise, Nolan returns to the scheming and counterscheming that fans saw in some of his earlier movies, like "Memento" and "Following." It's a refreshing change of pace from the too-straightfoward structure of "Batman Begins" (which was admittedly an origin story).

I'd heard the hyperbole surrounding the late Heath Ledger's portrayal of the Joker, and I have to say, it's a great performance (easily worthy of a posthumous Oscar nomination, in fact). Whereas Jack Nicholson's Joker was more about bottling Nicholson's already-famous personality into the comic book makeup, Ledger constructs a character so unlike his real-life persona it's often astounding. This Joker is an anarchic, ruthless killer who uses dynamite and gasoline rather than acid-spitting flowers or electric joy buzzers. It's a real shame this is Ledger's last role, but his interpretation of the Joker will be remembered for a long, long time.

If the movie has a flaw, it would be that the first 45 minutes are rather slow - after the fabulous first reveal of the Joker in the opening, you have to sit through a bit of an uninteresting set-up phase that left me cold. When the mob finally decides to hire the Joker to get rid of the Caped Crusader, though, the movie really takes off. Ledger steals every scene he is in, although Bale tries his best and at least effectively conveys Batman's frustration and inner turmoil.

All in all, a very good movie, and probably the best Batman movie ever made (in terms of staying true to the essential themes of the comics).

Rating: 9/10


At 10:29 PM, Blogger Tam said...

I was truly blown away. Ledger stole that movie, and I'm a fairly big fan of Bale.


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