Batman raises the stakes in his war on crime. With the help of Lt. Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising criminal mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as the Joker.
Dark, yes, complex, ambitious. Christopher Nolan and his co-writer Jonathan Nolan deserve a standing ovation. I don't usually go for loud movies filled with mindless gore and violence. "The Dark Knight" is certainly loud and violent but it's not mindless. It has depth and soul. Even the Joker, in an extraordinary creation by Heath Ledger, is deeply human. The natural petulance of Christian Bale makes his ego and alter ego the most fascinating and complex of all film superheroes. Part of the genius of this movie is that Batman himself, in screen time, is not really the lead. My attention was captivated by Heath Ledger and he determines and inspires the breathtaking atmosphere that envelopes Gotham as well as us. The aplomb of Christopher Nolan as a director is mind blowing and his secret, I believe, is his obvious respect for his audience. What he's done is to elevate a popular genre into Shakesperean proportions. Bravo!
Reviewed by melwinbauer10 / 10
Best superhero movie of all time
I think that I could wax lyrical but this movie all day. It is absolutely incredible from start to finish.
This is the Batman trilogy's second outing. It's filled with hard-hitting action and almost every scene is absolutely enthralling to watch. The story is really good. The twists and turns keep the viewer constantly on their toes, especially in the third act of the movie. There are so many memorable scenes packed throughout this movie, so many quotes and ideas sprinkled throughout that you probably could analyze it for hours.
Because while the action and story is incredible, it is the dynamic between the Batman and the Joker that really makes this movie what it is. It is all in the contrast between the two. Right against wrong. Chaos and anarchy versus order. The Joker is the perfect villain for Batman. Batman is literally, as said in the movie, a symbol. The very essence of the idea of the Batman is centered around order, rules and moral codes. He is the embodyment of what is right. The Joker challenges the very core and foundation of who Batman is and what he stands for. He is someone who doesn't follow any rules. He is pure chaos and anarchy personified. As he so perfectly states in the third act of the movie, while hanging upside down off of a building: "this is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object". The Joker wants the Batman to go against his morals and to break his rules. The powerful thing is also that you can see why the Joker does what he does. In some ways he has a point and that also adds another layer to the character and to the dynamic between the two. It is truly an amazing battle. The brilliant acting from Heath Ledger is a major part of it too. He is absolutely incredible as the Joker. Rest in peace.
I could probably go on further about how great I think this movie is but I'll just say this. Just watch the movie. You should watch the first movie of the trilogy first but if that is something you absolutely don't wan't to do I still think you should see this movie. It is just great.
Reviewed by MartinHafer9 / 10
Amazing non-stop action and eye-popping skyscraper scenes!
I first need to point out that I generally hate action films--they just aren't a genre I generally would go to see. However, my teenage daughter saw the film and DEMANDED that we immediately go to an IMAX-equipped theater and see it as soon as possible. Had I not agreed, I think she would have threatened force or threaten to leave home, so I reluctantly agreed. I'm pointing all this out up front so you'll understand that if I didn't give this movie a 10 and found a few minor problems with the plot, it's probably because of my bias. However, for me to give an action film a 9 is very, very unusual--it was a terrific film and almost earns a 10.
As far as action goes, it was nearly non-stop and there were more eye-popping stunts in it than nearly any film you could see. Plus, I truly recommend that if you do have an IMAX theater nearby that is showing it you go there and not to a regular theater. The sounds, the sights and the action are just amazing on this huge screen--and in hindsight I probably should have taken my hearing aids out before the film began--I DIDN'T need them! For many, this will make the film a must-see, though I admit that it was was a bit tiring after a while--for an old fogy like myself, maybe there was a bit too much action--though teens and action fans will adore it.
The characters were excellent--with the possible exception of Batman. He was fine, but I wish he'd have stopped mumbling in his deep voice. This made him a lot less interesting and perhaps less likable than the villains!! As for the villains, the Joker was great and very, very sadistic and I liked Harvey Dent as well (especially after his cool makeup job late in the film). Oddly, perhaps my favorite character was a guy who was only a bit character--Tommy 'Tiny' Lister who played one of the scariest prisoners I have ever seen in film. His bit part on the ferry boat was really exceptional.
Overall, this film is better than any superhero film I have ever seen and much better than the earlier Batman films. My only serious problem was the ending--what Gordon and Batman agree to do made no sense at all and wasn't necessary. Still, with such amazing eye-candy, who am I to complain? A wonderful ride and a must-see movie for action and superhero fans. HOWEVER, it is a very violent film intended for adults--I would not take kids or even some teens to the film--it's THAT dark and intense.
As of today (7/26/08), this is by far the highest rated film on IMDb. If these numbers can be believed, this film is better than THE GODFATHER, CASABLANCA, GONE WITH THE WIND and 12 ANGRY MEN! Let's have a bit of perspective here--it's a very, very good film but the cult members out there need to get a grip.