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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I don't think that in my quarter century of living I've ever felt more
disconnected from the pop-culture at large than after seeing this
movie. With all the hype and uniform praise I thought beforehand that
this is at least a solid piece of cinematic craft, maybe embellished
slightly by Heath Ledger's unexpected death.
Unfortunately, this movie is rock solid proof that sometimes mass delusion can strike an entire society at one time. There is absolutely no way that this film can be regarded not just as a masterpiece, but even as half-way decent.
Let's get to the point. First - the plot. It's just unconvincing as a whole. Batman is basically a side character with little to do as he takes backseat on the Joker train. He whines incessantly about how no one needs him and how he needs to hang up his cape. Do it already! His troubled relationship with Rachel Dawes has zero chemistry and it's hard to care about the outcome. The idea of Joker being an anarchist, goalless and malevolent force sounds good on paper, but it translates to aimlessness on the screen. Joker shows up out of nowhere seemingly with no one backing him and then... snap! It seems like the whole world is at his service. Not only he has no trouble hijacking a school bus (and then blending into a line of school buses after driving out of a half collapsed bank), hacking into the public TV feed or rigging an entire hospital with explosives; he apparently does it with such ease that the creators didn't feel the need to reveal a shred of information about how he did it. Many events in the movie make absolutely no sense whatsoever. For example - what was the purpose of Lt. Gordon faking his death? And why did they make a point of showing the scene where his family is informed of the death - was that just to get the audience to buy into it as well? That's just dumb and a waste of time. Why did Harvey Dent become evil all of a sudden? Sure he was badly burned, but he had to know the risks going into this business and he had a steely resolve just minutes prior. There are many other plot issues, but it's pointless listing them all. They are there and easy to spot.
The acting in the movie is a-OK, but most of the actors just don't have any good lines as their characters are irrelevant puppets. Heath Ledger is good for sure, but his take on the character gets tedious after a while - mostly from overexposure. Maggie Gyllenhaal is a good actress, but she's just so wrong for the role. She's a nice-girl-next-door type and as superficial as it sounds, it's hard to believe that she would have two hotshots like Harvey Dent and Bruce Wayne chasing after her. Christian Bale has zero material to work with and they've turned Morgan Freeman into a moralizing nerd. Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart and especially Michael Caine do a decent job considering the script they were given to work with.
The screenplay is atrocious, incongruent and messy. It's like the movie was cut-up into a thousand pieces of varying length, reshuffled and then strung together. There is no natural progression of events and subsequent scenes frequently befuddle. It takes a couple of minutes to figure out what the hell is going on or why should we care. It's just poorly done.
For all the car chases, fight scenes, and giant explosions, the movie is just unforgivably boring. It's a combination stemming from a poor script, naive (or barely existent) plot, flat characters (that can't be remotely identified with much less loved or hated), and a general lack of good sense. There is also an annoying feeling that the creators had a rather low opinion of the viewers intelligence or maybe they just rushed the movie and had to come up with a lot of material in a little time, hence the low quality.
Before I end this overlong diatribe, let me just mention three scenes that I absolutely cannot get over with in terms of their pointlessness and stupidity. 1. Batman is riding his wicked-cool motorcycle approaching an aftermath of a multi vehicle crash and accelerates aiming it straight at the Joker. What he is trying to accomplish is never explained. One thing certain is that at the last moment he veers right, barely avoiding the villain, and drives his bike without touching the brakes, straight into a wall. I mean he drives it into a wall (or overturned truck, can't remember) full speed like a blind man. Had he even chosen to hit the Joker, how the hell did he expect to stop? 2. This one actually occurs a couple of times at least. Batman leaps out of a 20th story window and falls onto the ground unharmed. Unharmed! He didn't have a parachute, a bungee cord, and he didn't even spread his cape on the way down. He just hit full blast and walked away. And on one occasion his squeeze Ms Dawes fell with him and experienced a similarly puzzling lack of after-effects. Filmmakers, needless to say, didn't find it prudent to even try to provide some explanation.
3. Joker enters the hospital in a nurse uniform. That should present a logistical problem by itself, but OK. However, not only he seems to move around the hospital freely, he also does it still wearing his face paint. I mean the lower half his face is covered by a protective mask, but the rest is clearly visible. What's even funnier is that Harvey Dent looks at Joker straight in the eyes and the face paint doesn't give him away until he takes of the mask. Is this a cartoon?
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I know this review will get a bunch of unhelpful votes but somebody has
to tell the truth here! The Dark Knight is wildly overrated and is the
most overrated movie of all time. Forget Titanic, Boondock Saints and
King Kong(2005). This movie surpasses them when it comes to sheer hype.
For the record I love Batman Begins. I thought it was a fresh beginning
on a series that was rendered ineffective by that lunatic Joel
Schumacher. Christian Bale fared well as both Batman and Bruce Wayne
and the rest of the cast did a great job also. But this movie....
Everything that made Batman Begins so great is absent from this
pretentious slop. Most of the cast look like they'd rather be somewhere
else. Let me break it down this way with what stinks about this movie.
The plot: Idiotic beyond belief. Joker(Heath Ledger) plans to kill city officials while playing childish games with Batman. Most of the time he's killing the people he's aligned with making him the most moronic villain in superhero movie history. Batman joins forces with Commissioner Gordon to stop him.
The acting: Christian Bale is wooden in both roles(Batman and Bruce Wayne). He spends most of the movie looking like he's stoned out of his mind. And what is up with that voice? In Batman Begins he sounded cool like one of the gangsters from those old 1940s flicks. Here he sounds like Dirty Harry with strep throat. Aaron Eckhart is flat as both Harvey Dent and Two-Face. While his Two-Face was better than Tommy Lee's Two-Face looking good by default is never good. Michael Caine, Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman sleepwalk through this whole movie. Maggie Gyllenhaal is quite awful as Rachel Dawes. Katie Holme's Rachel Dawes was a strong willed lawyer that fought for what's right. Maggie's Rachel Dawes needs to grow up and find some better priorities. I agree that she is a step up from Katie Holmes but she plays Rachel Dawes like some silly high school girl with a pathetic crush on Bruce Wayne. The fact that we are asked to feel sympathy for her when The Joker captures her is a bit of a stretch. Her getting roasted made my day though lol!
Now for the talk of the town: Heath Ledger as Joker. Heath Ledger's performance was okay but to say that he was better than Jack Nicholson's Joker is hilarious to say the least. Jack Nicholson's Joker had style, a plan and was pretty funny as well as unpredictable. Of course he was silly but he was fun. Heath Ledger's Joker is predictable with no back story and had no real plan. Just random acts of chaos. Ra's Al Ghul had a plan, The Joker of Batman 1989 had a plan, The Penguin of Batman Returns had a plan. This weirdo had nothing but bluff. Plus he's has no fun with what he does and spends most of the time ridiculously philosophizing like those corny emo-goth kids that smoke copious amounts of cigarettes while yapping about the misery of their lives. You complete me? That's about as cheesy as the Tumbler turning into a crappy motorcycle. Speaking of Emo-Goth kids that exactly what this Joker is. Only people actually find him cool instead of pathetic.
Action sequences: predictable to a fault. Car chase and fights scenes plus they are quite unrealistic. People get punched, kicked, shot, bitten by dogs and knocked around by explosions and walk away without bumps, bruises, cuts or blood. Now, Im not a gore hound but if you get shot or bitten by a dog, I would expect to see some blood. Not in the Dark Knight though.
Pacing: The movie builds up a pace to slow it down after wards and with all the action on the screen the movie still finds time to be boring. Plus at 2 hours and 32 minutes this movie feels longer than it needs to be. Various subplots that never connect best describe most of this movie.
Conclusion: The Dark Knight is the most overrated, most hypocritical, most pretentious piece of garbage in the history of cinema. The only people that would like this are the fanboys and I cant believe that people are trouncing Tim Burton's Batman movies to foam at the mouth like rabid dog groupies over this overcooked sequel. You pseudo-intellectual snobs don't seem to realize that those movies were great for the time they were made in and they were fun. Tim Burton made the type of Batman movie he wanted to make without trying to please these shills. I must have seen the Tim Burton Batman movies more times than I can count and still have a ball watching them till this day. I saw this dreck three times and still couldn't get into it. Its not even fun. Its a plodding mess that gets more hype than it deserves. Matter of fact, I'll tell how much I didn't like it. For months I had The Dark Knight on my computer for free via z-share and when my computer suffered from a virus that force me to erase the whole thing, this was the only movie through z-share that I never tried to get back. That should tell you everything you need to know about my feelings on this movie. Two Thumbs down.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There were just too many subplots, too much violence, and it was at
least a half hour too long. They should have taken some of the time
they spent planning CGI effects and used it to seal some of the plot
1. A witness pulls a gun out while he's on the witness stand? Excuse me?? This is some mythic land where the courthouses don't have metal detectors?
2. There's a terrorist threat against a hospital, so they evacuate every patient--*except* the one who's been in all the papers.
3. The police are transporting a high-profile prisoner, with dozens of vehicles escorting him and SWAT teams all over the place--but one trailer truck starts chasing them and they're all helpless.
4. The silliest thing of all--Batman's constant whispering. It's supposed to make him sound menacing, but he just sounds like he has laryngitis. It's like the old Superman TV show where people magically have no idea who he is as long as he keeps his glasses on.
I know I'm way in the minority on this one, but I have to say this was the ugliest, stupidest movie I've ever seen. I would have walked out if I weren't trapped at the end of an aisle. You couldn't pay me enough to sit through it again.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There is nothing special about this movie. Period. Nothiing special. It tries on so many levels to be this big mega movie, and in financial terms, it was, but you know what? It's still not good, no matter how many fans it has, no matter how much money it pulls in. Those are just figures and numbers, and they're quite boring in the long run. Let's go over a few reasons why it was not good. First off, the story bites off way more than is necessary. We have Bruce Wayne in this ridiculous attempt to win back a woman he'll never have the chance to be with. The woman he is in love with prances around like a little school girl, and really has no business being in the story to begin with. She is just there to make both Batman and Harvey Dent rival each other. I'm so sure that the writers could have come up with a better plan to pit the two against each other than that. Then, there's the Joker...the most ridiculous part of the story. Ridiculous because of the lengths and the means that the filmmakers took to bring a new kind of villain. It's not entertaining, it's not disturbing, it's just sick. This movie was not fun. It was not entertaining. It was a product for the mindless audiences who were going to buy into it anyway, and especially because of the death of Heath edger. Let's talk a little about that. This film had success that rode the curtail of Ledgers death. The studio deliberately used the poor suffering of a human being to push a film into exhibition. That's really sad, and you know what else? It's all this film will ever be...the last film of Heath Ledger, and America went to see it because he died before it's release. sad. Really sad. I didn't like it, and I bet others will not like me for that very reason. Even more sad still.
I just rented this from Netflix and forced myself to watch it till the
end. What a dreadful, boring yet expensive movie. It was so dimly lit,
they could have had any of the thousands of out-of-work actors in
Southern California in it with no perceptible difference. I guess a
couple more explosions would have helped (not really). I only watched
it cause of Heath Ledger's excellent performance in Brokeback Mountain.
Boy, was I disappointed. I didn't care about anyone while watching
except for myself who was waiting for it to end. At times the dialog
was difficult to understand with the volume way up but the loud
soundtrack made every sound effect rattle the furniture.
I just don't get what passes for great entertainment nowadays. I had to watch some old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons afterward as an intelligent antidote to this cartoonish movie that tries for so much significance, an odd combination. It's like looking for significance and the meaning of life in an infomercial. Don't bother.
Many commenters said they were "blown away," so it probably has
succeeded in blowing away the box office. I waited until the second
week, and had high expectations from the 9 and 10 ratings it was
receiving. But, fellow movie/film viewers (and especially great film
lovers) ... really!? There's no doubt about the action and action and
action in this one, and thus, the special effects. That's the main
reason I enjoy such fantasy flicks -- the comic book genre. So, this
one does more of it and perhaps better than the last Batman and the
last Spiderman and the last super heroes (but I would not rank it up
with Iron Man). So, special effects and makeup may earn it awards.
Maybe I'm beginning to burn out on all the action and special effects of movies, though. Or perhaps I need more from a movie. With 45 minutes to go, I was ready for it to end. It was way too long. Some reviewers thought the acting was superb. What acting -- do they mean the one- or two-minute interludes between the fast and furious segments of action and destruction? I'm not down on any of the actors for their roles or parts -- but where were there any parts of substance in acting? True, Heath Ledger does a very good Joker. But, then, who hasn't (Nicholson, et al) who have ever played those roles in Batman, Superman, etc? As for plot -- well, anyone who knows the genre and a story that combines Batman with the Joker, knows to expect the unexpected with the Joker. So, the plot goes from one unexpected to another -- as though the variety and mixture and change in "unexpecteds" is trying to outdo the action mayhem.
When I saw that this stands as #1 in the top 250 right now, I clicked on the list. But how this movie for acting and plot (and yes, even action in many cases) could rank up there with the likes of the Lord of the Rings, the Star Wars films, and many great classics with real suspense (I have to mention Casablanca, Vertigo, North by Northwest), is beyond me. I'm not that far off with the overall trends in the IMDb reviews, but can't agree with so many who rate this film at the top.
It's good and entertaining -- but too long. It's not great, by any means. I love the youth of today (I have a few grandchildren), and I don't mean to disparage them by this observation -- but I think this high acclaim by many for this film may reflect a very large, very young audience, most members of whom don't have a great deal of quality and varied films in their viewing history. To all of those young people, I urge a look at the top 250 list or other major review ratings -- and then that you rent, borrow or otherwise watch some of the other great films. I promise you won't be disappointed or bored --and you may get an understanding (maybe appreciation for) of some past customs, life styles, dress, behaviors, etc. To be sure, you will have great entertainment.
Okay, so they built a good villain in the Joker, but the plot was just
a bit too unbelievable to hold together. I'm not going to add any
spoilers here, but if you want a big-budget, action- adventure escape
that totally relies on the rendering farms that had to handle all the
special effects... and don't mind plot-holes the Hindenburg could fly
through, this film is for you.
IMHO, this film doesn't deserve all the hype. Look at reviews from people who "hated it" and see why. Once the hype has died down and people get over their brainwash to overrate this over-produced Hollywood crap, we should see ratings more in line with the film's true value. I didn't walk out, but that was because I had such high expectations. I'd hope to see this rated a '4', maybe even as high as a '6' by the average public. I'm rating this a '1' to try to offset the obvious shills and excessive hype. This is, by no means, "the best film of the summer"... but in its favor, it does give better balance to the darkness of Batman. If it weren't for the growing trend in bucking the old "feel-good Hollywood ending" routine... if it weren't becoming cliché to kill off "good guys" and create characters with seeming hearts of gold, who turn half-evil, I'd say this film had something unique; but that whole scenario is now a formula for making a film armchair critics will say has "depth"... pffff...
Save your time and money and rent an old classic favorite that you somehow never managed to see. Or go have a picnic with your loved ones. The alternative is two-and-a-half hours you won't get back; don't waste it to further enrich Warner Bros.
Is this what now passes for entertainment? Can this really be compared
for depth and breadth with other generally highly-rated movies such as
the Godfather, Casablanca or even Star Wars? Many of the IMDb top
movies deal with the good old battle between good and evil and the
world-weariness of the hero or anti-hero, but this film lands far short
of the mark in both character and plot development, not to mention
script, acting, screenplay or any of the other attributes of a movie
that might be worthy of commendation.
The purity of the comic book origins of this piece are thoroughly distorted and turned into an incoherent muddle - almost any James Bond movie has a great deal more tension, humour, conviction and morality than this mess of a movie. On the other hand, if there's a serious message in The Dark Knight, I missed it, as I suspect will thousands of others. As a Batman flick, it simply doesn't deliver anything like the expectations; at yet another level as a post-9/11, human-condition, search-for-identity movie it also fails - however you want to see it, it fails on a grandiose scale.
For some of who do not live in the in the US, The Dark Knight has the potential to appear as little more than an appalling piece of hyped-up propaganda for a moribund social policy that permits and legitimises evil, mayhem and general wrongdoing and unpleasantness on a colossal scale in the pursuit of defeating the threats against society.
I've had more fun at the cinema studying the architecture.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is the biggest ridicule after George W. not being able to spell
the word 'nuclear' right. It is simply beyond my understanding how
hundreds of thousands of people could have rated this film even worthy
of attention. Batman, The Dark Knight is a piece of cake. With capital
OK, a huge fat turkey of a movie is not a new kid on the block. But no piece of trash has ever been so over-rated as this one is. I know that Heath Ledger's death came unexpected, and the guy was a solid actor, but you cannot praise something to the skies out of commiseration and loyalty. 'Cause however hard I am trying I am not able to find any other substantial reason why you would give Christopher Nolan's new embarrassment of an action flick six, seven, eight or nine points, let alone ten.
This movie is lacking a consequent plot, a cohesion of the myriad of action scenes it has been broken down into and a common sense to know when enough is enough. Besides, I really don't know which film those who said the acting was brilliant had watched, but what I see is that Christian Bale, Maggie Gyllenhal and Gary Oldman all lack conviction and had the end of the day - and probably the collection of money - in mind when they stood in position in front of the blue screen. Oh, and quite often I really got confused; from time to time I needed to be reminded I was not watching the new James Bond movie or Terminator CXXXVIII (the gadget scene, the plane escape scene are truly pathetic, as is the concept of (re)introducing the character of Two-Face, the guy who did not read the instructions manual of the microwave oven).
Since we are talking about a comic book adaptation I don't bother to mention how unrealistic action sequences are (try wiring a town hospital with all that security and CCTV cameras they got installed, or try buying - unnoticed - the oil reserves of a medium sized country to blow half of the city into the sky), but let me ask why nobody out of the immense crew that put this film together could pay attention to small details. Like when police forces storm the Hong Kong building to catch the bat-suit guy: 'Arigato, arigato!'- they wave each other up the stairs. Does this mean China needs to hire law enforcement personnel from Japan? OK, I am stopping there. I know I might already have made some enemies among comic book and action film lovers. This forgettable encounter with Batman however, reminds me again I am not one of them.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
OK I waited a really long time to actually see this movie.. mostly
because of the hype.. I wanted to see if after all the long drawn out
hype of Heath Ledger's death... its #1 spot on the IMDb boards.. and
all the back and forth conversations on whether it or not it was the
greatest film of all time... it could actually live up to that
The simple answer is no.
1. Writing 6/10
There are a lot of points in this film where the dialogue feels really rushed and just awkward. I don't understand why batman begins (which in my opinion far exceeds this film) could do everything right with the screenplay and this one fail so badly. The standard plot devices are there good/evil good as evil.. downfall of the hero.. redemption .. blah blah blah... its all been done before.. and I might add done much better. One quick film which comes to mind.. "There will be blood" used a very similar thesis of the antihero but did in a much more intelligent and beautiful way.
2. Visuals 7/10
Yes there are a lot of very impressive effects in this movie.. the tractor flipping being one.. and the whole opening sequence.. but again where have we not seen any of this before in a michael bay project or hell even the die hard movies? There is no signature to the cinematography and nothing which sets it apart from any other big budget Hollywood movie. Id say the most stand out moment of the entire thing was seeing harvey dent's face after the accident.
3. Characters 2/10
OK if hear a Batman talk like that again I swear im going to walk out of the theatre, What a horrible horrible disaster . Christian Bale sounded like he had one of his batarangs stuck in his throat. I don't know who decided on this plot device but it was a mistake. I don't remember any of this in Batman Begins and imo it really brought the project as a whole down. Heath Ledger was OK. Whenever an actor passes away prior to the release of his film of course there will be a strong tendency to have a biased opinion to how great he was. It really felt like he was overdoing it. If he took his acting down a notch I think his vision of the joker would have been much more believable. And possibly shooed him in for an Oscar nod. About the only really believable character in the film was Gary Oldman's "Jim Gordon" But than again anything he does his great.
4. Overall 5/10
A good action movie... But seriously overrated. 007 in a Bat Costume.
#4 currently on the IMDb top100? Someone's getting paid.
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