Lauren (swirly_girl) wrote,
Lauren
swirly_girl

The Dark Knight

Yesterday I went to see The Dark Knight at the cinema.  I really wanted to see the new Miyazaki film, Ponyo on the Cliff, but it would not have been subtitled.  Ironically, I will have to wait until I move back to an English speaking country (or speak Japanese better) before I can watch it.

I admit that I didn't like Batman Begins at all.  Memento seemed a little gimmicky to me, and The Prestige had so many plot twists in it that it got a bit silly towards the end.  Nevertheless, I was willing to give Christopher Nolan another chance, mainly because my other option was The Happening or some such rubbish.

Still, once again I was less than impressed with Nolan's attempt to bring psychological realism to the Batman story.  I mean, the concept of Batman is inherently ridiculous, a grown man who runs around fighting crime dressed like a bat.  The versions of Batman that work the best, for instance the Tim Burton films and the TV show with Adam West, are able to harness this campiness.  Plus, who is Batman without an ambiguous relationship to his teenage ward Robin?

Batman Begins
was simply far too serious.  If we are going to be realistic about it, even with his batsuit and voice distortion device, wouldn't someone recognise Bruce Wayne?  At one point in the film, Batman has a conversation with Harvey Dent while standing only a few feet away from him, and Dent knows Wayne.  Besides, Christian Bale is easily recognisable by his goofy veneers alone.

Moreover, the film had a really obvious and heavy handed order versus choas leitmotif that made me roll my eyes alot.  For example, at the beginning of the film Dent has a double faced coin that he uses to 'make his own luck', but when Rachel dies half of the coin becomes blackened and he starts to rely on chance to make decisions.  Also, Alfred tells a parable about hunting a bandit in the forests of Burma, who just wants 'to see the world burn'.  Finally, The Joker is just as fond of giving long, boring speeches about the relative merits of chance and chaos as Wayne is of giving ones about the merits of law and order.

To top it all off, the film is over two and a half hours long, and much of this consists of excessive action sequences that don't further the plot very much at all.  In the last half hour of the film I was on the verge of walking out, and I certainly would have done so if I had been alone.  The verdict: unless you are a masochist, don't go see this movie.

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