Saturday, July 19, 2008
The Dark Knight
Yesterday morning, the family and I went to see The Dark Knight. We have been looking forward to this movie for a very long time, as have many Batman fans. I know everyone is writing and talking about this movie right now, and I will probably not say anything that hasn't already been said. I've heard talk about people being tired of comic book and superhero movies, I can understand that to a certain extent. Despite the fact that this movie is based on a comic book, it's not a superhero or comic book movie. This movie is emotionally tense, I would not recommend it for younger viewers, though there isn't really any blood shed (not on screen anyway).
Christian Bale gives a masterful performance as usual. Michael Caine, as Alfred, is wonderfully understated as the father figure. He provides Batman with support and acts as a foil for his guilt when needed. Morgan Freeman returns as Lucius Fox acting as Batman's conscience and the CEO of Wayne Interprises. Rachel Dawes, now played by Maggie Gyllenhaal (a big improvement), is back. She is working with and dating Harvey Dent, the new D.A. Heath Ledger was beyond phenomenal as the Joker. Traditionally, because of the genre, Ledger would not be nominated for an Oscar in this role. I am hoping that all the buzz in Hollywood is right, sadly it will be posthumous, but greatly deserved.
In many ways, this movie was more of a Joker movie than a Batman movie. This Joker was terrifyingly insane. He was cruel, vindictive, devious. The elaborate schemes he develops while claiming to not be a schemer. He sees himself as an agent of chaos. The mannerisms used by Ledge intensify the lines of the Joker. The body language is far from over the top, in fact they seem restrained. This aids in the feel of a barely controlled madness, which is at the same time not controlled at all.
I have to admit when the credits rolled, I got a little teary. Not just because of the psychological horrifying situations in the movie, but because of the loss of such a talented man as Heath Ledger. I had just watched the last performance, and in my opinion the best, of this young man.
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