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Thoughts on Batman: The Dark Knight

I saw The Dark Knight over the weekend, a film I have been very excited about seeing (along with most of the Western World, apparently), and I have one simple thought that summarizes most of my feelings on the movie: “WOW”.

Without ANY exaggeration at all, this is far and away the best super-hero film I have EVER seen.  Vastly superior to both of the first two Spider-Man movies due to its depth and strong supporting cast.  Better than the first X-Men film due to its stronger story-telling and better character development.  Better than Daredevil for… well, pretty much EVERYTHING.  And it even manages to outperform Batman Begins by taking nearly everything about itself (special effects, plot, believability, fun factor) to the next level.

But never mind this being the best Bat-film or the best Super-Hero film (ever).  This is a tremendous film in and of itself.  Each of the main supporting cast players (Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Gary Oldman) were tremendous.  The two main actors not playing Batman (Heath Ledger and Aaron Eckhart) were incredible.  I’ve previously enjoyed Eckhart’s work in “Thank You For Smoking”, and he did not disappoint here.  He plays the tragic Harvey Dent perfectly, and even creates sympathy for what eventually becomes Two-Face.

I should state off the bat (no pun intended) that I don’t buy all these rumours about Heath Ledger committing suicide because the Joker role took him too far into a bad place.  However, I WILL say that he convincingly played the role as a completely psychotic, inherently evil villain.  And villain doesn’t do him justice; this movie feels like what would actually happen if a man with no limits, mental or financial, decided he wanted to terrorize an entire city for his own amusement.

My only complaint (if you can call it that) is that Christian Bale doesn’t have a chance to shine as Batman.  He is simply overshadowed not only by his co-stars, but by the story itself.  He again plays the part of Batman very well, but there is far less depth to the role available to him than there was in Batman Begins.  However, when this is the sole complaint of a movie, you realize how far you have to go to find something to complain about.

If you haven’t seen this movie, do so ASAP.  And if you have, go see it again.  Never mind all the trailers or critics that hype every movie coming out between May and September.  This truly is the movie of the year; and if there is any justice, Ledger will be up for an Oscar.

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July 23, 2008 Posted by | Comics, Movies | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment