the dark night

Great movie.

I was skeptical that the popular raving over Ledger’s Joker had more to do with his untimely subsequent death than with his actual acting.  Having this as my expectation – and with the awareness that editing, music, make-up, camera-angle, etc. can help an average actor/actress look far-more-than-average – I must say: Ledger has pulled off a Joker that will be long remembered.  It’s intense.

Also, I particularly love the themes in the movie.  Good v. Evil.  Chaos (personified in the Joker).  Chance (personified in Two-Face).  Choices.  Need v. Want.

This is not a movie you’ll want to wait for the DVD…

:)

I’ve seen in twice and counting…  :)

14 thoughts on “the dark night”

  1. My wife and I went on Sunday night. We both thought it was pretty good.

    I guess what ruins a lot of films of this ilk for me is that I’m starting to see how they pander to an American public’s feelings-of-the-moment. They seem to be moralising wrapped up in action and sometimes I’m not sure I agree 100% with the simplistic morals they try to push. The dilemmas were complex but the solutions were too simple IMO.

    But I do agree that the Joker was one of the better evil characters I’ve seen in a movie.

    Two-Face was meh.

    I can totally see how youth pastors will see plenty of material in this for around-the-campfire koom by ya talks. ;)

  2. Great movie – saw it at IMAX. The Joker was a blast, Two-Face was a little overdone and not given enough character time… but I guess he’ll get his chance in the next movie.

  3. Damian,
    I’d be interested to hear you un-pack how you see the film panders to american feelings. It’s an interesting comment to make. I’m curious what elements you picked up on and how you make the connections you do. If you can be bothered, explain…
    And yeah, I’ve already purchased my logs and gasoline for those campfire chats! ;)

    Jonathan,
    Yeah, it will be interesting to see how Two-Face goes in the next one! Cheers…

  4. Sorry Dale, I misspoke when I said “American”. I actually mean a kind of bubble-gum morality that I observe a lot in American culture. The kind that takes a firm and unflinching stand on ethical issues such as the scenario of the ferries and the fair treatment of even the most criminal person. (I’m being careful not to give anything away here!)

    It’s the morality we teach our kids because it works 99% of the time but I think they got so close to testing our limits with this film and they could have pushed us further but instead they backed down at the last minute. I don’t know how much more I can describe the specifics of the situation/s I’m talking about without spoiling it.

    Don’t get me wrong though – for a pop culture film I loved where they went with it! And I’d recommend it.

  5. I liked the film. Thought the Joker’s performance was better than the film itself (for mine it could have streamlined the plot some) Don’t want to ruin the plot for anyone so SPOILER ALERT…….

    But doesn’t Dent die? Do what do you mean about him coming back in the next film?

  6. Good question Rhett…

    I’ll also give a SPOILER ALERT before responding!!!

    1) They don’t show him ‘dying’, per se. He only takes the same fall that Batman lives through. 2) He’s a major character in the Batman world – he’ll be back. 3) You could be right? Any Batman experts out there with an opinion? :)

  7. Oh yes, and Damian,
    I think I’m beginning to see what you mean… Feel free to expand or get more specific – using the ‘SPOILER ALERT’ trick Rhett/I have used… :) (again, if you can be bothered)
    -d-

  8. OK.
    [SPOILER ALTER!!]

    There is the situation that the Joker puts two ferries in where they are told that they each hold a detonator for explosives on the other ferry. One ferry is full of civilians and the other full of criminals. They are told that at 12 o’clock if one ferry has not been blown up then both will be blown up.

    First, in fine American tradition they show the ferry of civilians calmly and democratically taking a ballot as to whether they should blow up the boat of crims. Riiiiiiight.

    And then on the ferry full of crims it’s the biggest, baddest crim who finally does “what the rest should have done ten minutes ago” and throws the detonator away. How noble. How of-the-land-of-the-free.

    And finally, when they both choose inaction (because our 99%-of-the-time morality has to prevail) both ferries are rewarded by a chance happening that the Joker didn’t get to manually blow both of them up.

    The thing that disappoints me with this scenario was that they were willing to throw us, the viewers, into the ethical predicament of having to choose between a boatload of civilians and a boatload of criminals. But then they don’t have the guts to show what our (and the character’s) decision for inaction would have actually led to which is everyone being killed. It was kind of like “here’s a tough challenge… nah, just kidding – have some more popcorn”.

    There were more issues of a similar nature that bugged me (i.e. Batman is not allowed to actually kill the Joker because, don’t-you-know, killing is wrong m’kay?) and I almost vomited bits of my triple chocolate icecream all over the homie in front of me when sergeant whatshisname is giving that big speech about how Batman has to “be the evil” for us (with the camera looking up into his dramatically sunset-tinted glasses). Ah, the noble scapegoat!

    OK, that’s my rant over. I was happy to let it be as a passing comment but you wanted me to unpack what I meant. Sorry if my cynicism has spoilt it for anyone – I still think it’s a pretty good movie so don’t let anything I’ve said here stop you from seeing it (just take a barf bag for some of the bits).

    I’d say that it was more “The Just-Short-Of-Dark Knight”.

  9. HA!!! I’m not sure which one I like more; ‘alter’ or ‘rief’…. :)

    Anyway, about the movie, I see what you mean, I think. In a sense, all movies do their fair share of moralising. Heck, sometimes the so-called ‘objective’ documentaries can have quite strong moral themes in them.

    But yeah, sometimes the unrealistic scenarios and/or outcomes are a bit too much to bear…

    But then again, if movies were truly ‘just like real life’ we’d be quite depressed watching them (if we watched them at all!)… :)

    -d-

  10. But wasn’t the ferry scene there just to show us that the Joker was wrong and that humanity did hold a glimmer of light. If the Joker had pressed the button so to speak, the movie would have ended up being a little too dark?

    And now for the cryptic part: Dale: The Bucket List, The Miracle of Bern.

    Next movie I’m watching: Wanted :o)

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