I’ve just been to see the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight. My verdict is to quote the old Ogden Nash poem:
Here is a good rule of thumb
Too clever is dumb.
It was way too talky. They had to tell me all their deep philosophical thoughts about anarchy and chaos etc. They had to be blatant with all their cute symbolism and meaningful moments.
The plot was too diffuse, there wasn’t enough focus on main characters. We didn’t know with whom to identify. The subplots were too complex and the action sequences often difficult to follow.
There were three highlights for me however–one the Joker in the nurse uniform primping as he walks away from the exploding hospital and two lines from the Joker: “Why so serious?” and his throw away line to Batman, “You complete me.” Which is a pretty corny line from the otherwise excellent Jerry Maguire.
Hmmmm…I see your points, especially about the characters talking as if straight out of a philosophy class. One other thing that struck me was how characters suddenly arrived at new locations.I liked the movie though for its immersive quality as a whole, though scene to scene, yeah, uhm jumbly. I liked the scene at the end where Joker is hanging from Batman’s wire. I liked how Batman literally flies with his cape as a kind of hang-glider from skyscraper to skyscraper with the nice touch of hearing the flapping of the cape in the wind. I liked how the movie got across the violence without showing it explicitly – especially when it was the Joker inflicting it. I liked Joker’s wierd puffy overbite, if ‘liked’ is the right word.In other words, I guess I liked the things that didn’t have much to do with plot or charcaters, but the things which built up the world of gotham city very well.Not a big fan of Caine. Two-face wasn’t convincing to me, regarding his anger. But for a soft spoken character, Gordon seemed pretty solid.
As long as they don’t let Joel Schumacher near another sequel I’ll be happy. besides Kudos to batman,take it for what it’s worth, Frank Miller has stated Batman is a Catholic.
To me, the Joker was center stage for this film…everyone else was window dressing. At the moment when you know he would not be returning (with some 30 minutes or so left to go in the film) I was ready to leave.Gordon was great. I liked Katie Holmes as the love interest better than Maggie. (Also, why does her character seem to always fall in love with her boss?)Fr. Deacon Daniel
I would have to disagree with you Father.There is really just one plot in this movie, any “subplot” is simply a manifestation of this main plot. This plot is about the true nature of humanity. Is man really this Nietzschean manifestation of chaos, or is he a man who desires virtue, but struggles to live that life of virtue.I think the ferry scene is emblematic of this plot. The Joker, who, through the whole movie, is attempting to push chaos, trying to push the point that everyone is deranged, that there is no such thing as “plans” because plans don’t really accomplish anything as, according to the Joker, chaos usually has a role in runing plans.Midnight, however, comes, and there is a look of shock for a brief moment. The Joker realizes, in that brief moment (and the beauty is that he doesn’t have to say anything) that things have not gone according to plan, that, for a brief moment, he sees his own inner contradiction.The beauty of the movie is that it shows humanity is flawed, but is completely redeemable, and that we desire redemption, though sometimes we are tempted to go the wrong route in order to attain. In my opinion, it is one of the greatest movies ever made.Also, in regards to knowing about the characters, Chris Nolan has said numerous times that this movie is not about knowing things like origins and so forth. These characters are meant to be “already established”. The importance of the characters, rather, is the inner struggles they go through, the reality that decisions are tough and pursuing a virtuous life is the most difficult thing a person can do.
Haven’t seen it; don’t plan to. Wall-e set the gold standard for me. No guy in a silly costume can top that. 😉
Not going to speak to your points, Father. I was just happy to see that Canadian Commie, Maggie Gyllenhaul, get blown to smitherines!
I think Batman should have run over the Joker with his motorbike when he had the change. It would have cut the movie off prematurely, but He had a moral obligation to protect the common good and could have saved many lives.