Seeing the greatest movie ever twice in one weekend still isn’t enough


Posted by Eric on Monday, July 21st, 2008 in Movies / Reviews
The Dark Knight poster

The Dark Knight is easily the one of the best movies I’ve ever even thought about seeing, and seeing it the second time was just as pants-wetting. However, when the previews were over and I was still only looking at normal movie screen, I realized that my second experience with the film would hardly do justice against the previous viewing with the eight-storey tall IMAX version. The beginning of the movie wowed every soul in the theater as a collective gasp came over the audience during the opening shot of Gotham city covering the entire screen. The first six or so minutes consisted of straight IMAX-filmed movie that made everyone realize how absurdly large the screen actually is, only to be followed by the best 146 minutes anyone will probably ever experience in a movie theater.

If you’ve not seen the movie yet, I’ll do the honor in telling you to stop reading this and order your tickets now (then come back of course...). It lives up to everything you could ever want from a Batman movie and completely obliterates and puts to shame everything Batman up to this moment. At no point whatsoever during the film did I feel as though something could have been done differently. Every shot, camera angle, or word spoken was gracefully executed by some of the best film crew and actors Hollywood could possibly throw at a script with such high expectations.

Ledger’s performance as the Joker is absolutely golden, and unfortunately can never be looked forward to in a future title. When I originally heard of Ledger’s selection as the character, I was somewhat disappointed that other prospects were not chosen. As anticipation of the movie increased, and footage and understanding of the character slowly seeped from the set, I’ve grown to admire the staff’s choice of Ledger as the infamous Joker. In some ways I’d wished his laugh was a bit more maniacal and/or breathy, but in seeing his performance for the second time I caught on to, and admired much more, the sarcastic outlook on life and philosophy Ledger managed to pull off so effortlessly.

All of the movie’s effects were considered for actual shooting as opposed to post production. And a majority of them, even ones no one expected to ever be pulled off, were. The recent Wired article explained the director’s intentions and reason behind doing this as a desire to keep the audience feeling like they were part of the action and not just watching a movie. I can tell you right now: Nolan puts the digital effects industry to shame. Nothing in post production effects comes close to what you’ll see in this movie. Not even the most real photo-real effects you’ve ever seen. It’s quite simply amazing.

I have no idea what Nolan plans to do with the series from this point on. I’ve heard rumors that he doesn’t plan to make another movie yet, but I’m almost tempted to say he should call it finished right now before any other entertainment business influence could poison the masterpiece this man has turned the Batman movie franchise into. And then at the same time I’m so extremely excited to see what else could possibly come from such a great visionary. This man is what all other comic book movies are missing.

All fanboy unworthiness aside, this film does require what any viewer would never expect of a comic book movie; thought. What many people will never get, pointing fingers at the common viewer, is the fact that everything about the film, even the title, has more meaning than they can imagine. Every sequence of The Dark Knight catches you off guard, especially right when you think you’ve got a grasp on what’s going on. It makes you think, not only on the surface, but deep inside every aspect of each character. The sense of emotion, anger, confusion, and any other sense of feeling becomes palpable with every turn of the script. David Goyer and Nolan should be commended for writing such a meaningful, and sometimes esoteric, screenplay.

The Bottom Line: 5 (out of 5)

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