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The Dark Knight (2008)


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SDG wrote:

I'm just beginning to feel like the Gotham ferry is the new Axiom, as it were, and I'm unhappy that it seems somewhere we must find a sore tooth, or even a tooth that could be sore, to be worried and probed unremittingly.

Hear hear!

I'm starting here in some ways in the so-called "desert of the real," and looking for windows back into the real world of meaning and humanity. I'm starting with the assumption that reductionism and nihilism are by and large realistic philosophies in terms of explanatory power, that it takes a leap of faith to see reality in a higher register of meaning, and then I look for signs -- though not excuses or pretexts -- warranting such a leap. My paradigm isn't disturbed or particularly engaged by venality, self-interest and corruption, and I don't spend my critical time there, not because I don't take it seriously but precisely because I take it for granted as an inexorable norm of human experience, a baseline.

In a word, my question is not "Are human beings rotten?" We are. My question is, "Is the rottenness of humanity the final and decisive truth about it, or is there something more to humanity?" The Joker is convinced that there isn't. I'm interested in signs that there is.

Beautifully said.

Edited by Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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FWIW, Peter, I just read your Canadian Christianity review, and it's very good. Great thesis statement:

The Dark Knight is about order and chaos, and how the gap between those two things is often filled by people who sacrifice themselves and their reputations for the greater good.

I also appreciate how you acknowledge the politically tinged themes but go beyond them to engage the more interesting and important moral and philosophical issues.

In particular, I see you focus on some of the same points under discussion here, and viewed as a whole your take clearly does highlight the inspiring and heroic element. Thus, my impression of you "playing Joker's advocate" would seem to be more an artifact of the back-and-forth of the thread than of the general shape of your response to the film. Taken together with the recent observations of agreement in my last post, this suggests that we have strongly convergent responses to the film.

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Nathaniel wrote:

: In answer to Peter's question, one can pinpoint the exact moment the film seems to end, only to pick up again and continue for another 40 minutes. It's the hospital scene in which the extent of Dent's injury is revealed.

Really? I seem to recall that the Joker storyline was still badly in need of resolution, there. Anyway, if I see this film a second time, I'll be sure to remember to check the time; I left my cell phone in the car when I saw the film the first time. :)

(I don't have a watch, I use my cell phone for telling the time, but don't worry, I always make a point of hiding it under my outer shirt or my jacket so as not to distract my fellow moviegoers. I HATE it when people light their cell phones up in the open during a movie.)

I'm sure you'll put a more accurate time on it than what I can remember, but I know I glanced at my watch somewhere in the midst of this section of the film (due to a feeling that the film was drawing to a close) and saw that it had been about 2 hours from the start time, so probably a little under 2 hours of actual movie time, given trailers, etc. But that's certainly not exact.
SDG wrote:

: Ra's is a psychopath. Are you bothered by the suspicion that Thomas Wayne was weak for failing to attempt to disarm Chill, or that Batman is a fool for trying to save a fallen society rather than destroy it?

I don't see the point of the question. Batman is who he is because of Ra's. Everything Batman knows, he learned from Ra's ... with the exception of his conscience. These are simply the facts, as laid out in the earlier film. Whether I am bothered by Ra's's opinions regarding other characters' actions is neither here nor there.

: As far as "vindication" goes,

I'm not looking to canonize the passengers on the boats as martyr-saints. I'm saying the Joker's nihilism is wrong, that muck and darkness is neither all there is to humanity, nor the bit that necessarily gets the last word "when the chips are down."

I dunno.

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While the Joker was certainly wrong about the ultimate OUTCOME of his little scenario, I don't find all that much to celebrate in the fact that one of the reasons the Joker's nihilism was proved wrong was because the people on at least one of those boats were even weaker than he expected.

If you think the Joker's defining statement is "I am making a prediction that something will happen," and then that something doesn't happen, then I guess you are proved right and he is proved wrong. But then, as the Joker himself says, sometimes things don't always go according to "plan", right?

For me, the more telling statement is when he says, "People are only as good as the world lets them be." And it would certainly seem arguable that the opposite is true, too: that people are only as bad as the world (including their upbringings, their instincts, etc.) lets them be. The people on at least one of these boats actually take a vote and choose in FAVOUR of the evil course of action; they're all just too weak to actually go and do it themselves. Something isn't "letting" them do what they have all expressed a desire to do.

I guess one man's "weak" is another man's "strong." I'm not sure I would agree that a failure to act on the desire exhibited by the vote is a weakness. I'd like to think that I could want to do something that I know deep down inside is wrong, and then not do it because I found the strength not to, not because I was too weak to. Though I suppose either is possible.

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Brett McCracken asks: Is Batman becoming a villain at the end of this film?

So The Dark Knight has set a new record for opening weekend. I can remember how, back in 1989, people marvelled at the fact that Tim Burton's film grossed $100 million in only ten days -- a feat unprecedented at the time. Now The Dark Knight has become the third film to do it in two.

popechild wrote:

: I guess one man's "weak" is another man's "strong." I'm not sure I would agree that a failure to act on the desire exhibited by the vote is a weakness. I'd like to think that I could want to do something that I know deep down inside is wrong, and then not do it because I found the strength not to, not because I was too weak to. Though I suppose either is possible.

Well, a part of me finds myself wanting to argue that these people were "weaker" than their consciences, or some such thing -- but that just begs the question of whether the conscience is an active part of a person or something else entirely, something slightly more removed. Some would argue that the conscience is just social programming, others would argue that it reflects the fact that we all bear the image of God in some way, and then there are people like me who would say it's a bit of both. But to venture any further down THIS road -- to speculate as to what actions were motivated by social programming and what actions were motivated by image-bearing -- would definitely be nit-picking, so I'll just drop that.

For now, I simply note that

the vast majority expressed a preference for the evil course of action, even if none of them could bring themselves to actually commit the evil themselves -- for whatever reason

.

SDG wrote:

: Not at all. I'm simply zeroing in on the criterion that happens to

confound the Joker's calculations

. That doesn't mean other criteria aren't relevant for an overall evaluation of human beings. I don't at all discount the rest of the picture -- quite the opposite, as I think my review indicates. I take that for granted as the baseline. And precisely because that is the baseline, what I'm interested in is the blips that rise above the baseline, the indications that the baseline is not the entire picture.

I like those blips, definitely. But I can't read too much into them.

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We have already seen, earlier in the film, how people WILL actively do the evil thing if they think it is morally justifiable ("Kill this man or I blow up a hospital," says the Joker, and lo and behold, at least one person actually tries to shoot that man, even though he is being escorted by the police!). It is pleasing and satisfying, of course, that the ferry incident happens to come at the end of the movie, thus sending us out of the theatre on a relatively uplifting note. But if the ferry incident had come somewhere in the middle of the movie, and the man-or-hospital moment had followed it, thus ending the movie on a sourer note, would the film's portrait of humanity be affected in any significant way? I suspect not.

If anything, I think the Joker may have been aiming too high. I think he may have overestimated the degree to which anyone would be willing to slaughter dozens, if not hundreds, of people -- including possible friends and family -- all in one fell swoop. On the other hand, I don't think he overestimated anything at ALL when he offered the people of Gotham a choice between one single man and an entire hospital -- a hospital, of all things! It would presumably be a lot easier for someone to justify shooting a single squealer if it would mean saving friends and family who happen to be staffers or patients in that building.

: Condescension isn't quite right. I'm just beginning to feel like the Gotham ferry is the new Axiom, as it were, and I'm unhappy that it seems somewhere we must find a sore tooth, or even a tooth that could be sore, to be worried and probed unremittingly.

Well, I'm sorry if my musings seem like a sore tooth to you. I enjoy these movies for their many complexities, so when I think I've spotted one, it's kind of exciting. Nothing sore about it at all.

: Really? Perhaps you could say more about that, since until now you've seemed to me bent on playing the Joker's advocate, as it were.

I can't imagine why. I don't think I had the Joker in mind at all when I first started going down this road. I was re-reading my review of Batman Begins from three years ago when I came across the Ra's al Ghul quote, and it immediately brought to mind Harvey Dent's line about people "appointing" Batman through their inaction, and this in turn got me thinking about the ferry sequence, and away I went from there. There is a larger theme here that merits exploring, I think.

I was not entirely surprised when you responded as you did to my exploration of that theme, but I was a bit surprised by the forcefulness, if that's the word, of your response.

: Dunno about "absolutely has to be." In principle, at least, one psychotic misanthropic philosophy per film is enough for me, but if you want to rack 'em up as you go that's certainly your privilege. I don't deny that it could be a helpful interpretive matrix. I don't see the need for it in this particular case.

You don't think that a recurring theme offers a helpful interpretive matrix into what the filmmakers are getting at? And do you really think that Harvey Dent is speaking as a "psychotic misanthrope" when he and Rachel and Bruce and Ballerina Girl sit down for dinner and discuss who "appointed" Batman and how?

: SOME of them voted in favor. Remember, there was a non-negligible number of votes on the other side too.

The numbers were heavily skewed to one side, though.

: I remember resisting the idea that the original The Matrix film presents Morpheus and his comrades as "terrorists" (though I agreed that they were in fact morally equivalent to terrorists). I don't remember the thesis that "the machines had won and humanity needed to accommodate them somehow" as such being raised or debated.

Hmmm, if I can't find that discussion in my archives after 10 minutes or so of scanning, I guess I might as well just drop it, eh? :)

: FWIW, Peter, I just read your Canadian Christianity review, and it's very good.

Thanks.

: In particular, I see you focus on some of the same points under discussion here, and viewed as a whole your take clearly does highlight the inspiring and heroic element.

Yeah, and I would be lying if I said our exchange hadn't influenced me somewhat there -- though perhaps more in terms of emphasis than analysis. Given how people keep talking about the "darkness" of this film, it is really striking to see how often characters make decisions that speak to their sense of principle -- going all the way back to Bruce Wayne's refusal to behead that guy in Asia, and continuing right up to the final moments of the newest film.

It is especially interesting to see how Bruce Wayne recognizes that he is an imperfect solution to a major, major problem, and how he wants to be a TEMPORARY solution as well.

Shifting topics slightly, I am also struck by the contrast between Harvey Dent and Batman, in that Harvey keeps saying "I make my own luck", and he basically snaps when his luck runs out on him and he realizes he isn't in control any more ... whereas Bruce Wayne, having witnessed the murder of his parents when he was a child, has NEVER been under the illusion that he can "make his own luck", instead he has been looking for ways to consciously make a positive difference in a seemingly cruel and uncaring world. So when tragedy hits in THIS film, Bruce has a precedent to fall back on; he has no illusions to shatter. Whereas Harvey ... well, that's another matter.

I am also struck by how Harvey's injuries come to him precisely BECAUSE he tried to actively save himself -- to "make his own luck".

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If he had done nothing, Batman would have gotten him out of there, plain and simple. But because he did something, he covered one side of his body in oil (or gasoline, or whatever), and thus made himself vulnerable to the flames.

Maybe I'm reading too much into that detail -- maybe the filmmakers weren't thinking that deeply about it -- but, y'know, even if they were just working with their instincts, instincts themselves can be somewhat revealing sometimes.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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This movie didn't seem long. It covered a ton of ground, but it never really got stale. If we based our estimations of movies on length, I'd be fully justified in my hatred of the LotR trilogy.

Agree about

the "death" of Jim Gordon.

It wasn't sold well and the trailer ruined it anyway.

Agree about the penthouse party after Batman's "exit". It was a sad thing to leave unresolved.

Bruce Wayne's pretentious brooding is annoying, and I seem to recall the same thing from the first film. I'm glad that Christian Bale can deal with intense internal struggle while remaining monotonous and expressionless, but that I'd rather see him doing something cool like jumping off buildings or playing with gadgets. Even dinner with Russian ballerinas is more interesting. I think this is more a failing of the direction than of Christian Bale. And perhaps it's less a failing than just a choice that doesn't appeal to me.

Ledger's Joker was amazing, as I knew it would be from seeing the very first trailer. I'm sad he didn't have more screen time, and I expect this film will some day choke me up as much as Limelight does because of the focus the two films put on the deaths of great artists.

I disagree with one of the primary voices of the film world on editing fight scenes*, but the people behind The Dark Knight don't. This makes the fight scenes a bit disappointing, but again more of the same from Batman Begins.

Aaron Eckhart seemed a little out of place. I don't think he'll ever live down Thank you for Smoking, which was a brilliant character brilliantly portrayed. The decision to

kill off Two-Face

was necessary for the movie's conclusion (and title), but seems like a bit of a waste. By the way, Peter, did you realize that The Dark Knight has been a pseudonym for Batman long before this movie was around? It sounded like you didn't from one of your earlier posts.

And for a minor character that didn't require any particularly amazing acting, I'd rather look at Katie Holmes. :( Which raises another question... did Rachel Dawes know Batman's identity at the end of the first movie? Because I don't remember that at all, but it's pretty much just assumed here.

All those quibbles out of the way... I really liked it. I'm not sure there's any value in trying to name 'the best comic book movie', but this was in the top two of the ones I've seen, I think.

What else... oh yeah, the trailer for The Watchmen looked amazing, even though I didn't understand a single thing that happened on the screen. Oh, and I just noticed that Damiel could be Batman from the way he's standing in my avatar.

* Walter Murch in In the Blink of an Eye argues that fight scenes should use a series of quick cuts to leave the viewer with some of the same disorientation as the fight participants.

Edited by theoddone33
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And for a minor character that didn't require any particularly amazing acting, I'd rather look at Katie Holmes. :( Which raises another question... did Rachel Dawes know Batman's identity at the end of the first movie? Because I don't remember that at all, but it's pretty much just assumed here.

Yes. Batman repeats a line to Rachel in the first film that she had earlier said to Bruce Wayne. "It's not who you are underneath, it's what you do that defines you." - That is from memory so I'm not sure if that is exact. After Batman says that line, he jumps of the building and she calls out to him, "Bruce?".

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Aaron Eckhart seemed a little out of place. I don't think he'll ever live down Thank you for Smoking, which was a brilliant character brilliantly portrayed. The decision to

kill off Two-Face

was necessary for the movie's conclusion (and title), but seems like a bit of a waste. By the way, Peter, did you realize that The Dark Knight has been a pseudonym for Batman long before this movie was around? It sounded like you didn't from one of your earlier posts.

I am pretty sure Peter is aware of that. He's quite familiar with the comics as I recall. :)

"You know...not EVERY story has to be interesting." -Gibby

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And for a minor character that didn't require any particularly amazing acting, I'd rather look at Katie Holmes. :( Which raises another question... did Rachel Dawes know Batman's identity at the end of the first movie? Because I don't remember that at all, but it's pretty much just assumed here.

Yes. Batman repeats a line to Rachel in the first film that she had earlier said to Bruce Wayne. "It's not who you are underneath, it's what you do that defines you." - That is from memory so I'm not sure if that is exact. After Batman says that line, he jumps of the building and she calls out to him, "Bruce?".

Plus the whole final dialogue scene in Batman Begins between Rachel and Bruce (at the burned out ruins of Wayne manor) has them talking about how even without his Batman costume, Bruce is "still wearing a mask," etc.

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A short LA Times article on the overwhelming response to David Edelstein's negative review, which sent Batman fans into a rage. Beware the rabid nerd hordes! Edited by Nathaniel

"A great film is one that to some degree frees the viewer from this passive stupor and engages him or her in a creative process of viewing. The dynamic must be two-way. The great film not only comes at the viewer, it draws the viewer toward it." -Paul Schrader

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I just had a reader ask if this film is appropriate for a 14-year-old. How would you respond, or how have you already responded to similar questions? We all know what the rating is, and what that means, technically, in terms of parental guidance. But as parents, what's your take on age-appropriateness?

Should this movie have been rated "R"?

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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theoddone33 wrote:

: By the way, Peter, did you realize that The Dark Knight has been a pseudonym for Batman long before this movie was around?

Oh, yeah, of course. I've got Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and the first few dozen issues of the Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight series. I just found it unusual that the movie studio, pitching their film to a "mass" audience and not just to comic-book fans, would have removed the easily recognizable word "Batman" from the title. (Kind of like how, if I'm not mistaken, the TV shows Star Trek: Enterprise and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles were at one point going to forego the words before the colons, but they included those words anyway for brand-recognition reasons.)

: What else... oh yeah, the trailer for The Watchmen looked amazing, even though I didn't understand a single thing that happened on the screen.

Heh, have you read the comic?

It's kind of funny, BTW, that they'd be running that trailer before the newest Batman movie, given that it uses a Smashing Pumpkins song which was originally written/recorded in some form for Batman & Robin (1997), and given that Watchmen is based on a graphic novel by Alan Moore while the Batman comic which The Dark Knight seems to have been most inspired by is The Killing Joke, also written by Alan Moore.

Christian wrote:

: I just had a reader ask if this film is appropriate for a 14-year-old. How would you respond, or how have you already responded to similar questions? We all know what the rating is, and what that means, technically, in terms of parental guidance. But as parents, what's your take on age-appropriateness?

FWIW, the movie is rated 14A in B.C. and Ontario, and that rating is enforced, unlike the American PG-13, so if you're under 14, you need to see it with an adult. (We also have an 18A rating, which is analogous to the American R.)

I also just read an article about the film getting a 16+ designation in the Netherlands, which is apparently the highest rating possible over there.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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A short LA Times article on the overwhelming response to David Edelstein's negative review, which sent Batman fans into a rage. Beware the rabid nerd hordes!

I'm not questioning the credibility of Edelstein or anyone else who has given this film a negative review--it's certainly possible to find fault with The Dark Knight (although I loved it). However, I think when a movie reaches this level of popular and critical acclaim (and I can think of very few in the past few years that have), the detractors will raise their voices higher just to be heard above the din. There was a negative review earlier in this thread... I think from Salon... that I found to be downright hilarious. The reviewer elevated minor imperfections in the movie to major flaws and applied lofty aesthetic and artistic standards to The Dark Knight that he would not require of any other film. As I read the review all I could think was, "Every party needs a pooper, that's why we invited YOU!" :)

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PG-13 is a strange rating over here, Peter. It's not supposed to be restrictive, but many parents have always perceived it to mean "no children under 13 allowed," and some movie theaters were permitted to enforce it as such in the early days of the rating (and maybe that's still an option). I remember holding my breath every time I bought a ticket to a PG-13 movie at Roth's Tyson's Corner 8 Theaters, because that was a popular theater for kids under 17 to buy tickets to R-rated films. Parents discovered that, and the theater began cracking down on underage ticket purchases. When PG-13 came along, I think the theater didn't want any parental wrath, so it simply refused to sell tickets to anyone under the age of 13.

This struck me as a grave injustice, although I don't think I ever personally was a victim of this practice. Must've looked like I was at least 13 years old. However, angry 12-year-olds were, for once in their lives, on the right side of the argument.

More painful was being rejected by the upstairs theater at Tysons Corner -- that'd be Tysons 1-4, where I eventually worked during college summers and holiday breaks -- when, as a 16-year-old out with friends, I tried to buy a ticket to "Black Widow" and got carded. I was denied, so I turned to a friend who looked younger than me, but who was actually older, and asked him to buy me a ticket. Did it right in front of the teller, daring her to refuse the ticket purchase. He bought my ticket, but he laughed at me as he did it.

Twenty-one years later, you'd think I'd be over it, but ... painful.

And the movie wasn't all that good.

Edited by Christian

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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A short LA Times article on the overwhelming response to David Edelstein's negative review, which sent Batman fans into a rage. Beware the rabid nerd hordes!

Edelstein is way off base on this one. The action scenes in particular are easily the best ever for a Batman film. I loved actually seeing Batman throw and land punches without cutting away. When he goes to Hong Kong there is one unbroken shot of Batman crashing through the window, rolling, standing up, punching a bad guy, pushing him through another window, and then taking on more bad guys.

I see Edelstein also noticed Ledger's changing voice but he obviously felt it was inconsistent where I feel it was appropriately all over the place.

How is Heath Ledger? My heart went out to him. He
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Currently, it's ranked #1 at IMDb.

Edited by Nathaniel

"A great film is one that to some degree frees the viewer from this passive stupor and engages him or her in a creative process of viewing. The dynamic must be two-way. The great film not only comes at the viewer, it draws the viewer toward it." -Paul Schrader

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I was a little disappointed that...

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...they dispatched Two Face so quickly. If this series is going to continue, doing away with a major, grotesque villain so easily was a strange move. I'm assuming they're not going to invoke the more ridiculous Batman villains such as Mr. Freeze, Riddler, or Penguin--and probably not Catwoman, either--so that was strange to me, although I understand the whole symbolism angle.

Hmmm. Can someone who has seen the film more than once clarify something with me?

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There is a possibility that Harvey isn't dead, is there not? We never see the body after he falls. Is it not possible that when Gordon and Batman talk about how the people of the city can never know what happened to Harvey, and that he is actually locked away in Arkham or something? I doubt that the filmmakers had the original intention to do so, as I think movie sets up a future confrontation between Joker and Batman ("We're destined to keep doing this forever!"), but with the unexpected death of Heath Ledger, they could definitely bring back Two-Face if the wished, since the film is not explicit one way or the other.

Also, why would they not use Catwoman in a future film? She's pretty grounded in reality, what with her being merely a gifted ex-prostitute/cat-burglar (At least, this is how she is portrayed in Batman: Year One and The Long Halloween - which Nolan's films take many of their cues from - as opposed to someone's "cat-powered" secretary as she unfortunately is in Batman Returns (regardless of how mesmerizing Michelle Pfieffer is).

"A director must live with the fact that his work will be called to judgment by someone who has never seen a film of Murnau's." - François Truffaut

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I definitely saw a body.

A body

on the ground when Gordon and Batman are talking? Or a body at the end in a casket at the funeral? All I remember is the big posters and people talking about Harvey as a hero.

"A director must live with the fact that his work will be called to judgment by someone who has never seen a film of Murnau's." - François Truffaut

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I was a little disappointed that...

Show hidden text
...they dispatched Two Face so quickly. If this series is going to continue, doing away with a major, grotesque villain so easily was a strange move. I'm assuming they're not going to invoke the more ridiculous Batman villains such as Mr. Freeze, Riddler, or Penguin--and probably not Catwoman, either--so that was strange to me, although I understand the whole symbolism angle.

Hmmm. Can someone who has seen the film more than once clarify something with me?

Show hidden text
There is a possibility that Harvey isn't dead, is there not? We never see the body after he falls. Is it not possible that when Gordon and Batman talk about how the people of the city can never know what happened to Harvey, and that he is actually locked away in Arkham or something? I doubt that the filmmakers had the original intention to do so, as I think movie sets up a future confrontation between Joker and Batman ("We're destined to keep doing this forever!"), but with the unexpected death of Heath Ledger, they could definitely bring back Two-Face if the wished, since the film is not explicit one way or the other.

Also, why would they not use Catwoman in a future film? She's pretty grounded in reality, what with her being merely a gifted ex-prostitute/cat-burglar (At least, this is how she is portrayed in Batman: Year One and The Long Halloween - which Nolan's films take many of their cues from - as opposed to someone's "cat-powered" secretary as she unfortunately is in Batman Returns (regardless of how mesmerizing Michelle Pfieffer is).

I don't think we can rule out the possibility that Dent is still alive but ...

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We do see his body after he falls. He's laying on the ground with the burned/ Two Face side facing up. Batman says that people need the White Knight or words to that effect and then turns Dent's face over to the unharmed/ Harvey Dent side. Batman tells Gordon that he will take the blame for what Two Face did so that Dent's reputation will remain untarnished. I thought that really works for the story since Dent had stepped up to turn himself in as Batman.

But that brings me my questions about Gordon's closing speech. The two comments that stuck out to me were "Sometimes the truth isn't good enough." and "Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded.". Is the film saying that sometimes the truth is too awful for people to know? Doesn't the public in Gotham have a right to know what Dent became and who really killed those people? Don't get me wrong, I still think this was a brilliant film but these were the questions haven't been able to resolve.

And fwiw, I'd love to see Paul Giamatti as the penguin.

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I'm pretty sure that, given the circumstances, it would have been

a closed casket

--plus they would have left SOME kind of teaser if that weren't the case. (Not to mention that Nolan & co. have been very clear that they haven't made plans for another film at this point.)

I think you're right Alan, as I think the film sets up

Joker to return, not Two-Face

. But we know that's not possible now, so what I'm saying isn't that the filmmakers have planned this or that the film explicitly supports this possibility, but that the film leaves it open just enough that if they chose to do so, they could. It's kind of an

Obi-Wan moment - "When he became Two-Face, the good man who was Harvey Dent died. So what I told you was true, from a certain point of view

. That's all. I'm just thinking that even though no sequel is now planned, after the box office this film has done there is going to be pressure to do another one. Let's hope they don't screw it up. Let's leave the more silly villain's alone. I for one would love to see Catwoman done right.

"A director must live with the fact that his work will be called to judgment by someone who has never seen a film of Murnau's." - François Truffaut

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You just hate to read things like this. Batman nabbed by British Police...

Batman star Christian Bale was arrested Tuesday on allegations of assault, police said.

British media had reported that Bale's mother and sister complained they were assaulted by the 34-year-old actor at the Dorchester Hotel in London on Sunday night, a day before the European premiere of "The Dark Knight."

The women made the allegation at a local police station in Southern England on Monday, Britain's Press Association news agency said. It said the allegation was then passed on to the Metropolitan Police in London.

Story here.

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

"Everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You just can't let the world judge you too much." - Maude 
Harold and Maude
 

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Two-Face

seems good and dead, and a return seems highly unlikely. However, if they wanted to do it, it is not impossible.

It would involve a complete reinterpretation of the last scenes of the film, comparable to what The Bourne Supremacy did to the last scene of The Bourne Identity. It would have to turn out that there was a lot of subterfuge that we weren't in on.

Given the

apparent death of Jim Gordon

in this film, that might not be entirely out of the question.

As regards the Joker: It would be very dangerous to try to recast him... for a third Batman film. However, with a third, successful Batman film under the filmmakers' belts, I think it would be thinkable to consider recasting the Joker for a fourth film.

P.S. Re. the Bale thing... good grief.

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

Writing at the new Decent Films | Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

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Craig Detweiler: "Movie of the decade?"

Come on now... let's not get carried away. I don't even think it's the movie of the year.

You can respond to Detweiler on Facebook here, regarding whether this is the best movie of the last eight years. (My head hurts.)

Edited by Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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P.S. Re. the Bale thing... good grief.
Now I have visions of George Clooney getting a casting call from his agent, and Clooney screaming, "FINALLY! A chance to redeem myself!!!"

I mean, it won't happen. But imagine if it did?

Nick Alexander

Keynote, Worship Leader, Comedian, Parodyist

Host of the Prayer Meeting Podcast - your virtual worship oasis. (Subscribe)

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