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The Dark Knight Review

Rikke and I finally got around to seeing The Dark Knight today, and I thought, as the last man in the world to do so, I’d share my opinion on it, now that all the hype is (finally) dying out again.

Yeah, it’s pretty good. Rikke was less enthusiastic, but then she hated the first one, where I was only mildly entertained. But, almost as expected, we were both less than mind-blown by it. Going in, I was expecting a 7 (of 10), and that’s pretty much what I got.

Solid performances all around, a nice sleek look, and some daring scenes, not only in terms of stunts and action pieces, but also in the core idea, the turning of Harvey Dent by the Joker, which was most definitely the pièce de résistance of the whole film. And hey, you’ve gotta give it to a film which has the bad guy basically win. Sure, Batman soaks up the damage, by taking the fall, and the boat-people were all very sympathetic to each other, but basically, the Joker kicked everybody’s ass.

But, you know, it ain’t exactly perfect. Though I don’t really mind, since I really didn’t like Gotham in Batman Begins, it felt as if they changed their minds about Gotham this time around. For me, on the one hand, it worked better, but I still lean towards Burton’s Gotham (but, to be fair, that goes for just about the entire film).

There were as I said, some nice action set pieces. I love the tumbler going head to head with the garbage truck; good stuff! I loved the speed of the pod, but hated, hated, hated the design. But I already knew that (good comments discussion).

They gross seems to contradict what I have to say about it, but I really don’t like most of their bat-design aesthetics in this franchise. But that’s all covered in the above link, and I’ll refrain from going over it again, except to say that this time around it’s paradoxically both better and worse.

Now, I don’t remember how well they did the hand-to-hand fights in the first film, but I’m guessing it was the same blur-blur-somebody-goes-down-jump-blur and so on, as in this one.

It has no effect on me, at all. At all. All I see is a dark blur apparently fighting another blur, and then the sound of somebody slapping pork-chops in a foley room.

That’s choreography. That ain’t fighting.

Fighting is when Batman’s fist, from aaaall the way back there, connects with somebody’s face; CRACK! and you see and hear and feel them take the hit, the back of their head knocking dust out of the brickwall behind them, and blood spraying from their nose as they drop like a sack of potatoes to the floor.

You want to see a fight? See the aptly named Fight Club. There’s your fight. Not this pantsy swoosh-swoosh crap.

But I don’t want you to get the impression that I didn’t like it, because I did. It was pretty well paced, really understood its own premise and lived up to it and carried it through to the very end. And it was a great premise, as mentioned before. In fact, while it was kind of long, I for once didn’t find it to be too long for its own good (Rikke did though, so the war isn’t won quite yet); in fact, I wouldn’t have minded if there had been just 5-8 minutes more character scenes.

And most of the sequences were really, really well put together.

I know it sounds both slightly moronic, and not a little grumpy, but it’s almost as if this, along with most modern comic-films, are simply too tight. Too well-paced and balanced.

I need some breathing room. Some quirkiness. Pieces that don’t fit.

Not to be an asshole, but you know, Katie Holmes wasn’t in it, and for that alone it was better than its predecessor.

So yeah. Entertaining, good, but there’s some people that needs to take a serious chill-pill, cuz this ain’t the be all, end all.

Regardless, I wish Morgan Freeman a speedy recovery.