Monday, July 21, 2008

The Long Dark Good Knight

66+ Million take in just one day domestic. That's to be expected since The Dark Knight's marketing machine was one of the most well planned in recent movie history. I was lucky enough to actually see it this weekend, although my friend and I had to settle for a 11:45am showing on Sunday morning. I prefer to see movies at night however with a high profile film like this, you won't be having a good time sitting 2 inches from your neighbor the whole time. So what I'll write about The Dark Knight is some impressions and general observations on the film. This won't be a full review since this film is so deep and requires a second viewing before I can fully absorb it. But the bottom line, and I'll give it to you now, is that it is a great Batman story. This is truly dark, gloomy, hope in a desolate place, come to life on the big screen. So if you are remotely interested in the Character of Batman (not just his gadgets and cars) or if you are curious about psychological dramas, this is your film. The premise of the film takes place shortly after the first one. The origins of Batman has been established, the character of Bruce Wayne has been explored, and now, the writer and director are looking at how the bridge from Bruce Wayne to Batman is constructed. We know that the Batman from the first film was a little green, not so sure of himself, and was just lacking that something dark we have all been used to. He was spot on for Batman Begins and he was also great for audiences, but he wasn't quite there yet. I believe the director did this intentionally, not because of the hopes of a sequel but because it was necessary for that type of a Batman to be portrayed in a movie titled "Batman Begins". In The Dark Knight, we see with all the heartbreak, sorrow, and hope in how Bruce Wayne fully accepts his chosen path and all the repercussions that comes with it. The hard choices he has to make, the total abandonment of his life for the sole pursuit of justice, this is what it is to be Batman. Producer Bruce Timm of the animated series of Batman and the Justice League understood this and really tried to convey that message in his animated Batman, and in Batman Beyond. Christopher Nolan did a fantastic job and making the audience sympathize with the heartbreak of Bruce Wayne and what it takes to be Batman in a modern day world. This movie is not Iron Man. You don't feel good walking out of it. You don't look to the sky and pretend you can fly. The Dark Knight is the necessary evil and leaves you feeling unsure of society and the choices of mankind. However, this is simply the best representation of a tortured hero that I have ever seen on screen. This isn't teen angst or whining of a superhero with great responsibility. This is a grown man, that chose to not turn a blind eye, motivated by revenge, but realizes that he must become more than a man in order to save the people he values. If you have reservations about movies that makes you think, you should still see this as there's enough explosions and violence to satisfy your testosterone filled man-brain. But if you want to think, be challenged, and be thoughtful about a movie that isn't made by Disney, then go see this. You will not be disappointed.

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