Initial Review of “The Dark Knight”

Categories: Culture

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So thanks to Robbie’s generosity, I was able to attend an IMAX preview screening of The Dark Knight on Tuesday night. My impressions?

It was absolutely spectacular. It is immediately a pantheon movie up there with The Godfather Part II, The Empire Strikes Back, and The Bourne Identity. It is probably the most intense (and maybe the most violent) PG-13 movie I’ve ever seen. Just when you think it’s winding down, it’s just getting started. It is shocking and startling at every turn — there are a lot of “OH SNAP!!!” moments and unexpected plot turns.

If Heath Ledger doesn’t get a posthumous Oscar for this performance, something is wrong. He absolutely reset the bar for on-screen villains. His Joker is absolutely terrifying — deranged, totally out of control (and yet controlling everything), and completely unpredictable. The last movie villain of this caliber (at least that I know of) was Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy.

But it’s not just Ledger’s performance, it’s the screenwriting and direction that makes this character so amazing — the tight shots, the careful cuts, the shocking lines and turns of plot — everything is right.

Aaron Eckhart’s performance was also amazing — were it not for Ledger resetting the bar for movie villains, everyone would be talking about Eckhart’s gem.

In addition, they actually managed to get some real traction out of the Rachel Dawes character, which is quite an achievement (especially with the discontinuity of switching actresses) since I thought there was no reason to even have that character. Nice work here.

The “pencil scene” (you’ll know it when you see it) is an instant Hollywood classic. It’s one of the most shocking scenes I’ve ever seen.

There are also tons of classic lines: *****(MILD SPOILER ALERT FOLLOWING!!!)*****

“No, I’m supposed to kill the bus driver.”

“I’m going to make this pencil disappear.”

“You … complete me”

“… and you think you’re going to blackmail this person?”

“He missed!”

“Make it fast.”


Just an amazing movie. It’s well worth watching (probably twice). If you can see it in an IMAX, definitely do it.


Tags: Christian Bale, Christopher Nolan, movie

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