Friday, July 18, 2008

The Dark Knight odds and ends

There will be plenty of things to talk about in the coming days regarding The Dark Knight. Here's the first things - some odds and ends that I couldn't fit into the review. SPOILERS are contained, as marked, in items number three and four.

1) The title The Dark Knight strikes me as possibly a pun. "The Dark Night" is certianly a fair description of the mood, as well as possessing a very old-style noir ring to it.

2) Everybody is talking about Heath Ledger, but not enouigh is being said about Aaron Eckhart, who does a wonderful job with the Harvey Dent/Two-Face arc.

3) Maggie Gyllenhaal is about as much of an improvement over Katie Holmes as you would expect Maggie Gyllenhaal to be an improvement over Katie Holmes. SPOILER, SPOILER, MAJOR SPOILER. IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE FILM, PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS. YOU WILL REGRET IT: If they had killed off Katie Holmes, no one would have cared.

4) SPOILER, SPOILER, MAJOR SPOILER. IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE FILM, PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS. YOU WILL REGRET IT: The biggest misfire is the fund-raising scene. When Wayne comes to drag Dent off to safety, why does he leave Rachel out there? This is supposedly his best friend and love of his life. Yet he takes the guy he barely knows to safety and leaves her out there for The Joker. Those looking for homoerotic subtexts will probably have a field day with this one. Certainly there are other suggestions. Still, even if you accept that, Rachel is still his best and only close friend. It makes no sense. And it sets up her death. It seems like very bad character motivation. Ane the error is compounded by the fact that the scene ends without the dangerous situation being resolved. The Joker is still upstairs threatening the guests.

8 comments: said...

I'm with you on #4, especially with regards to the latter part, about The Joker still being upstairs at the party. When that scene casually ended, I was like, "Um, wha?" It seemed like a missed beat in there somewhere, like a deleted scene, possibly.

The Wayne-Dent-Dawes thing makes some sense just because Wayne was so singularly focused on saving Dent after the DNA thing points to Dent, along with the judge and the commish.

I'm in complete agreement about Aaron Eckhart. I figured he'd nail his role and he did. He was the frailed humanity in the face of the unstoppable force and inmovable object to his right and left.

Alexander Coleman said...

Whoops, that was me.

K. Bowen said...

AC, I'm betting on some deleted footage. Maybe something that they didn't think quite worked or dthat got nixed for length.

Wayne-Dent-Dawes .... good point, but I still can't resolve it. Especially given that Rachel is Dent's assistant (not to mention girlfriend) and therefore potentially in the line of fire.

Sam Juliano said...

I suspect that I have offended someone here at this site with my ongoing banter at Awards Daily about the expectations and ultimate critical worth of THE DARK KNIGHT. I subsequently sent in my lengthy response to Miranda Wilding's "Cinematic Passions"(where reference was made to me) this morning, but the comment is still up for moderation.
To be more specific (even though my name was not mentioned) it was clear that in view of frantic activity on one thread yesterday, that I am the person being referred to. It was suggested that I never explained what my own issues with the film were, when indeed I stated on a number of occasions on various threads that the film suffered mainly as a result of it being a juvenile superhero movie in concept and form, and was devoid of emotional, spiritual, philosophical, sociological and psychological subtect that ultimately defines the greatest works in cinema. The execution was exemplary and within the framework of this genre it works quite well. However, in view of the disclaimer above I went with 4/5, which is still tremendous for a superhero film, higher than I have ever given one of these. Yet, there are about 7 or 8 movies this years I rate higher.
As far as my attacking people's favorite movies, I suggest you go back to the posts--I used an analogy with one respondant who said THE DARK KNIGHT was the most gruesomely overated film in movie history, but then in the same breath asserted that THE DARK KNIGHT was one of the two best movies he has seen this year. When I called him out on it, he backed off and openly admitted he went over the top!!!
As far as the "ugh---this has gone too far" I don't get it. People are making judgements on films WITHOUT HAVING SEEN THEM and I am supposed to take such views seriously? And isn't this a discouse that is validated by this ultra high-profile release. I am simply expressing my own views and observations much like everyone else.
Anyway, thanks for hearing me out, love this site, and will continue to contribute.

Sam Juliano said...

I think I may have come on too strong in the previous post.

I respect "K" and I have seen a number of posts by her in the past that have been insightful and penetrating. She is also a fabulous and I mean fabulous analytical writer. This tiny little ruffling will all disappear in no time. I love this site.

Sam Juliano said...

And then on top of everything else I get the gender wrong........oh boy, my apologies.

Sam Juliano said...

Finally, I find out that all the previous posting here (from me) is a MAJOR MISTAKE. Our good friend and eloquent writer K. BOWDEN is NOT the person who I has this miscommunication with!!! The person is "k" but she is at Dorothy Poker's site INSIDE THE GOLD. We have settled our differences and we are now friends. I am embarrassed and ashamed that I mistook K. BOWDEN for "k" and that I even got the gender wrong. Please accept my sincerest apologies.

movie buff said...

i still wish Katie Holmes had stayed on board as Rachel Dawes for the Dark Knight; it was like the time spent getting familiar with her character in Batman Begins was wasted...