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"The Dark Knight" Talkback, Part II (Spoilers)

Discussion in 'DC Live-Action Movies and Television' started by James Harvey, Aug 7, 2008.

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Rate And Comment On "The Dark Knight"

  1. *****

    75.0%
  2. ****1/2

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  3. ****

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  4. ***1/2

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  5. ***

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  6. **1/2

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  7. **

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  8. *1/2

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  9. *

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  10. Why So Terrible?

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  1. James Harvey

    James Harvey The World's Finest
    Staff Member Administrator Moderator Reporter

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    Welcome to Part II of the ongoing discussion on The Dark Knight! Click here to read Part I!

    At 12:01, Welcome To A World Without Rules
    [​IMG]
    "Why so serious?" - The Joker
    Release Date: July 18, 2008 (with July 17th midnight showings)
    Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
    Director: Christopher Nolan
    Screenwriter: Jonathan Nolan, Christopher Nolan
    Starring: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Gary Oldman, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman
    Genre: Action, Crime
    MPAA Rating: PG-13 (for intense sequences of violence and some menace)

    Synopsis: The Dark Knight reunites director Christopher Nolan with star Christian Bale, who returns to continue Batman's war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and District Attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), Batman sets out to destroy organized crime in Gotham for good. The triumvirate proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a rising criminal mastermind known as the Joker (Heath Ledger), who thrusts Gotham into anarchy and forces the Dark Knight ever closer to crossing the fine line between hero and vigilante.

    Comments?

    Related Threads:
    -The Dark Knight Feature Talkback, Part I (Spoilers)
    -The Dark Knight Soundtrack Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman Begins Feature Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman Begins DVD Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman Begins Soundtrack Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: Gotham Knight Feature Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: Gotham Knight DVD Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: Gotham Knight Soundtrack Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: Arkham Asylum Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: The Killing Joke Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: The Long Halloween Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: The Man Who Laughs Talkback (Spoilers)
    -Batman: Favorite Live-Action, Animation, and Comic Book "Batman" Moments
    -Batman: Favorite Live-Action, Animation, and Comic Book "The Joker" Moments
    -Batman: Favorite Animation and Comic Book "Two-Face" Moments

    Note: We appreciate and encourage discussion, so please keep your posts as civil, thoughtful, relevant and insightful as possible. Please do not post any improper or inflammatory material and make sure to keep the discussion ON-TOPIC! We will issue warnings if we believe it necessary.

    Welcome to Part II of the ongoing discussion on The Dark Knight! Click here to read Part I!
     
  2. Batman

    Batman The Dark Knight

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    And Here We GO !!!!!

    1. Aaron Eckhart - THE DARK KNIGHT

    2. Richard Moll - BATMAN : The Animated Series

    3. Tommy Lee Jones - Batman Forever

    Finally Harvey Dent/Two-Face get's an accurate in-depth portrayal in a live action film . Aaron was beyond good. He is spectacular in the role. I'm so glad Nolan didn't introduce him in Batman Begins (like him & Goyer originally planed). Because we really wouldn't have work as well as it turned out . Both The Viral Marketing & The film really explored The Rise & Tragic Fall of Harvey Dent in many layers . You Actually felt sadden by Dent fall from Grace in this film . And Nolan doesn't stop their , Instead of just making him the typical Bad guy . Nolan makes Two-Face a Vigilante . (Who goes after all the Criminals & The Corrupted that have caused Injustice ) .
     
  3. Young Justice

    Young Justice Silent Master Apprentice

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    I'm not quoting the message where the comments are from, because that talkback was closed, but here we go:

    Two Face: Face to Face arc in comics vs. TDK

    1. I don't complain why Harvey Dent went to Two-Face in TDK. I just think it happened too quickly. A straightforward hero turns himself into a child murderer in a few minutes of screen time, and in a time span of a day counting the time of the story. If this transformation had more time to be worked with I think it would be more interesting.

    2. I think the split personality disorder prior from the bad happenings would help to explain how quickly Dent went from hero to murderer.

    3. When I read Face to Face story arc, I had a different interpretation from the OP.

    Face to Face comics arc spoilers:

     
  4. Cortez2301

    Cortez2301 Active Member

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    I'll use my post from the previous thread of this topic:

    You know the thing about Burying Harvey Dent and naming him a hero? Is this similar to what they did to Captain Dudley in L.A. Confidential? And if so how are they usually allowed to get away with this? I mean if they died criminals (even though Harvey didn't really become a criminal by choice).
     
  5. Batman

    Batman Guest

    I am going to see this movie again this weekend and I am looking forward to filling in any gaps and making sure I haven't missed anything. I know a few people are critical about how Nolan has portrayed Batman but to me I have no real big deals with this movie. The costume isn't perfect or exactly how I'd want it and there are a couple other things but as a life-long Batman fan I am finally glad to see the best live-action interpretation of the character on the big screen again. Batman Begins was good but this is way better. It's a great super hero movie and a brilliant crime drama. People may not like the movie and that's their own business and there will probably be a big backlash against it soon but that doesn't matter to me. I love this movie and I'm glad to see it turn into a big cultural event. The Dark Knight is a big hit and it deserves it. I am looking forward to the movie hitting $500 million! I hope it can do it! Go see The Dark Knight again!
     
  6. Batboy

    Batboy Member

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    I'll see TDK for the third and final time at the movies tomorrow!
    Can't wait for a directors extended cut 2-disc special gift edition box set, can't wait!! :D:D:D
     
  7. ShadowStar

    ShadowStar Member

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    Director's extended cut?! Are you serious?! :eek:

    This movie was absolutely phenomenal. I've only seen it once, but I fully intend to see it again in a matter of days. While not perfect, the film was incredibly captivating. I don't often make the effort to see a movie on its opening weekend, but I'm glad I did this time. Simply a stellar movie!
     
  8. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    Here's that article I spoke of in the previus thread comparing [Batman's plight in this film] to [President George W. Bush's in the war on terror]. :)
     
    #8 KYO'NYUU IMOUTO, Aug 7, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 7, 2008
  9. Hanshotfirst1138

    Hanshotfirst1138 Singing drunken lullabies

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    The Joker is referred to as a "terrorist" twice in the film.

    This review was so weird that I had to post it. I've read this kooky fella a couple of times,

     
  10. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    What the cheese? This guy is taking The Joker over Batman? If the Joker had his way you'd be dead right now (who does that sound like again, Al Queda?)
     
  11. DisneyBoy

    DisneyBoy Searchin' My Soul

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    Yeah, no matter how much anyone might dislike Rachel, her character, or the actresses who played her, it's hard to deny that she has been an integral part of the stories of both films.

    She didn’t have to be. They chose to write her into the movies to serve this purpose, and overall, it came off feeling that way. She could have worked – after all Harley started off in the same kind of gig, as an inserted character – but it didn’t, and I resent her presence, because even when they put a great actress in the role, she’s still given stupid dialogue.

    Young Justice, I liked your alternate take on how the movie could have gone. I would have also preferred the scarring to take place but not the full transformation. This was kind of a Venom ending in a way, for me. Almost worse really, because Two-Face is an awesome character, and he really wasn’t in this movie.

    I think the key to grokking why Nolan's particular Two-Face is the way he is lies in realizing that he was frankly ultimately less a character in his own right than subservient to the larger theme of the Joker story that Nolan was telling. I won't dispute you about that perhaps being an injustice to the second greatest member of Batman's Rogues Gallery; but I do think it's worthwhile to realize what Nolan was doing.

    I get what he was doing, and I respect it. It worked within the movie. Millions of people agree. But it bothers me still. Two-Face isn’t some obscure, poorly crafted comic book characters who can easily be re-interpreted on the big screen without anyone noticing. People should notice. People should say “This isn’t entirely who the character is, but in this movie I liked it”, much as they do when a historical one is rewritten for the sake of a period film. True, it’s not like this movie did damage to Harvey, it treated him well. But I just want folks to walk out of the theatre knowing that the character is actually better and more interesting in the comics/B:TAS. Joker gets that kind of respect, and Two-Face should too, I feel, in these times when folks are general more aware of fantasy/fiction characters.

    But that’s really more about me wanting people to be aware of things than it is about this film. He was interesting in this movie, but he wasn’t the perfect/nearly perfect Two-Face film version I feel I’ll be waiting my life to see.

    I did really like that they brought back the Scarecrow. The idea of that was good, but I didn’t much care for the execution. We could have enjoyed seeing Scarecrow a bit more. Again, Nolan doesn’t let these villains be in any way theatrical, which really strips them of their fun elements (note: I said fun, not campy or silly). I mean…Crane still wears a suit? Too bad.

    My problem with Rachel is that her importance to other characters in the story is greater than her importance to the story.

    Ding ding ding! We have a winnah!

    Vicki Vale, and whats her name from Batman Forever were more definitive token characters.

    I actually liked the idea of Chase, although I think having Leslie in these movies would have really been interesting. Put Leslie Thompkins in Rachel’s role and get rid of the sappy romance, replacing it with motherly love in a way. THAT would have really won me over, big time…especially since Lucius has been such a big part of the limited appeal of these films for me.

    Before TDK the general audience only vaguely knew that Harvey Dent is synonymous with Two-Face. There wouldn't be a surprise here.

    Another reason why I’m a little disappointed they didn’t handle him better here. Folks are still learning about T-F, and now, whenever Dent next appears in a major motion picture, the audience will already be in on it.

    It seemed that Nolan tried to wrap up all the story points, so a sequel would be more difficult to be made. I have an impression that Nolan isn't so interested in Batman anymore, and doesn't have anymore worth telling about the character after TDK.

    I also got the sense that Nolan might leave after this movie. Rachel’s death really was my first hint. I mean, he played a role in the creation of her character, and I question if she was really supposed to be a big role in Harvey Dent’s story from the get-go. Was she supposed to be Bruce’s MJ in the franchise, but the backlash after Begins was so intense that he repositioned her to die in this sequel?

    Plus, with Morgan Freeman leaving (makes sense, given the paycheck he’d command) and Heath dead, there was a lot about this movie that said “Don’t worry folks, we might just bow out after this high note.”
     
  12. Mad Mod 49

    Mad Mod 49 Active Member

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    Meh, the political analyzing and junk is stupid, and that goes for both political parties (another reviewer seemed to think Harvey Dent was channeling Obama, never mind the fact that TDK's story was plotted out before Obama began running for president. :sweat: ) TDK is what it is, why can't people just leave it at that?

    I guess it was kind of worse. I mean, for all the fanboy complaining about Venom not having enough screentime, there's not much that can be done with Venom that won't turn lame (which is why I and many fear the upcoming Venom film...) but Two-Face could easily carry his own movie.

    But hey, we're not 100% if Harvey's dead or not. Maybe next time...:evil:

    Agreed. I didn't mind Joker's theatrics being toned down, as we already had a whole movie of Jack Nicholson doing such antics, but other villains such as Scarecrow deserve more of a presence.
     
  13. Temple Fugate

    Temple Fugate Active Member

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    Well of course it's nothing we haven't seen before. This is the seventh theatrical movie based on the popular and long-running comic book series. What's important is not its originality, but how entertaining it is. Apparently some people prefer to entertain themselves by drawing convoluted parallels to the modern political climate instead of just sitting back and enjoying a movie.

    And what the hell is wrong with a "literary" script? Is Nolan supposed to just do whatever Hollywood usually does? How can somebody complain about this movie not following Hollywood's formula in the same paragraph that they condemn it for not being anything we haven't seen before?

    Ugh. I hate IMDB users.

    I agree that TDK corresponds to our political situation to a degree, but the specificity with which these parallels are drawn go too far. TDK is telling a morality story. You can interpret it how you want, but I'd hesitate to apply exact situations and people to the movie's plot and characters. Ultimately the film shows us a scenario and gives us a choice. It makes us think about what justice should actually be; where we should draw the line; who we should associate with.

    The best part about this theme, though, is that the movie NEVER TELLS US which way we should think. We are simply presented the situation and are left to interpret it however we want. If you want to consider the Joker the "hero" of the film, okay, go ahead. It paints you as a nihilist, but that's your prerogative, and I will be free to disagree with you because that's the beauty of being able to form one's own opinion about the message of the movie.

    There is no right or wrong conclusion to draw from TDK.

    Unless that conclusion is "The movie sucked," in which case I will ignore you by sticking my fingers in my ears and humming loudly until you go away.

    Do we know that Freeman won't be asked to be in the next movie? I see no reason not to get him back. A fatter paycheck wouldn't be out of the question considering TDK is box office gold. I imagine all the stars would ask for more money to make the next one.

    However, if Nolan, Bale, Kane, Oldman, Freeman, Eckhart, et al never contribute to another Batman movie again, I won't be bitter about it. They gave us one decent film and one spectacular film. There's no reason they have to follow it up. I'll respect whatever decision Nolan makes regarding a third film.
     
  14. Young Justice

    Young Justice Silent Master Apprentice

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    I believe all those actors signed for a three movie (Eckhart maybe a two movie) contract, as it's standard when dealing with movie franchises. Unless the creative team doesn't want to, all of them will return to their roles.

    Of course we could see a "Katie Holmes" episode happening again. But I think the contractual fine for Bale bailing out, for instance, is too big for him to afford.

    I think the comment of the IMDB poster about Morgan Freeman leaving was because some people believed that he resigned from Wayne Enterprises in the end of TDK. I think it's an interpretation. But I think he didn't resign. When he typed his name on the cellphone surveillance machine and the thing goes into auto destruction, Lucius Fox smiles, hinting that maybe he will stick around for another movie.
     
  15. BonyT

    BonyT Sisyphus in Hell

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    I feel compelled to point out, DB, that as I read your post I was struck by the fact that the very things that you object to in Nolan's Two-Face (particularly what I've highlighted) don't bother you at all in Burton's Batman -- which was a radical reinterpretation of the Batman character versus what he has come to be over most of his existence. Now, I will grant you that Burton had precedent for some of his changes, like making his Batman a killer, in that Kane's very earliest Batman was also uncomfortably casual about taking lives. But that isn't what Batman came to be at his best. At his richest and deepest as a character, Batman is so fascinating in large measure because so many compelling and powerful opposites are wed within him. One example (which I touched on in a post in another thread recently) is that he is the creation of what Jung and others might call the most fundamental of mythic forces, the archetypal "power of the psychology of violence," and he employs violence in what he does -- yet he is someone who WILL NOT (and in some interpretations, like Miller's, CANNOT) KILL. The energy and driving central conflict of The Dark Knight flows from that: The Joker wants to prove that people will abandon their morality when the chips are down, when they would have to suffer in order to maintain it; and he is particularly fixated on Batman -- because Batman, despite dancing on the edge (and over it) of legality, is ironically NOT a moral relativist at all; indeed, he is the most rigidly moral absolutist character in the film, particularly when it comes to not directly taking a life -- and that draws Joker like metal to a rare-earth magnet. He wants to tempt Batman to abandon his morality, to "break his rule"; but if this were Burton's Batman, we couldn't have a film, because Burton's Batman wouldn't have the slightest compunctions about playing judge, jury and executioner -- and as such, he wouldn't even register on this Joker's radar. He wouldn't matter any more to Nolan's Joker than his own henchmen, whose lives or deaths are meaningless to Joker, because they're already morally compromised.

    My point is that, while Batman may have started for the first few issues under Kane as a killer, it has come to be one of Batman's most defining characteristics over his existence as a character that he has absolute lines that he won't cross (as Maroni says in the film, he's got his rules), particularly when it comes to not directly taking a life. So, while some elements of Nolan's Batman are perhaps a departure from the comic book model, the moral and personal character of Batman -- which is what really defines him, and indeed what makes him such a worthy and compelling character for my money -- Nolan translated that unadulterated from the best and most compelling of Batman in his comic book / graphic novel legacy. Burton is the one who turned from that and radically reinterpreted Batman, dropping Batman's most defining moral imperative and drawing his model from Batman's earliest, brief incarnation as a killer. And yet your objection centers on Nolan's reinterpretation of a secondary character (albeit an important one) in the Batman universe, while Burton's radical reinterpretation of the primary, namesake character doesn't draw a similar reaction from you.

    Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I too take part in a similar double standard. If we were to take your post that I quoted above and substitute "Burton's Batman" for "Nolan's Two-Face," particularly in the parts I highlighted, it would be a pretty good summary of some of the reasons I dislike Burton's films. And yet, I must admit, the differences in Nolan's Two-Face from his comic book model I ultimately excuse, because I think the comic book Two-Face, with his pre-existing troubled personality, his predisposition to go over the edge anyway, couldn't serve the role Two-Face needed to play in the larger Joker story being told.
    And maybe that sentiment kind of gets at my real point. You have certain ideals, DB, regarding Batman stories that you want to see; without those, you're really not going to be happy. I'm exactly the same. As I said, for me, Burton just misses too much of what I see as the fundamentals of Batman's character at his best for me to enjoy Burton's Batman. But I guess what I'd really like to bring to light here is that, because we all do have those preferences, it tends to make us excuse things in our favored version, and yet condemn those very same kinds of things in the film version we don't cotton to -- and so when they're boiled down, these kind of objections are perhaps born less of objective validity than they are simply of tastes. Which may not be fair -- but it's very human. :)
     
  16. SB20xx

    SB20xx Oooooh!
    Staff Member Moderator Reporter

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    After a few weeks, I -finally- saw The Dark Knight this morning. Haven't decided where it stands in the film series. But for now, some random thoughts...

    Good movie, though a little long. After some have said the Joker was funny and scary at the same time, I went in expecting lots of dark humor from him, but really... I didn't find him funny at all.* He's a deeply disturbed individual. But that makes him a good villain, too.

    *That said, I did get a chuckle out of him fiddling with the remote when he didn't blow up the hospital all the way.

    The transformation to Two Face was VERY cool, and he definitely looked much closer to the comics than the Tommy Lee Jones version.

    Joker's talk about anarchy wasn't exactly fresh territory, but I did like his line about "We're destined to do this forever" and how he can tell someone's true persona right before he kills them. "You want to know which one of your friends were cowards?" :D

    Good tension in the double boat scene. I certainly didn't expect the prisoner to do what he did. But it does prove Batman's point about humanity.

    I got a kick out of the judge reading the charges, asks how do you plead, and a bunch of mobsters all shout at once.

    Totally didn't see the twist coming with Gordon. Nice job.

    Overall, I enjoyed it, though the hype was definitely overwhelming.
     
  17. Temple Fugate

    Temple Fugate Active Member

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    Joker, to me, was more horrifying than funny. All of the things he did, even when he wasn't in the scene, were just cruel. (The dead Faux-Batman on a noose at City Hall for one.) The people in my theater actually laughed a lot more than I did. I think that's sadistic. :p But for some of the instances, Ledger just acts so darn quirky during his sinister schemes that he really does make it funny. It's just not funny in the normal Joker way, and people are going to respond to that tango of quirky and sadistic in different ways.

    I don't know how much of the praise of Joker is consciously or unconsciously affected by the fact that Ledger is dead, but I did think he was appropriately hilarious. Maybe not super-hilarious like other people are saying, but still. As Joker said himself, "Let's not blow this out of proportion."

    It was DisneyBoy that I was responding to on that point, and I realize there is confusion among those who watched TDK over whether Lucius ultimately resigned or not. (My money's on "of course he didn't.") I didn't want to just assume DB thought Lucius resigned. He could have easily been referring to something Freeman or Nolan said in an interview regarding Lucius' return.
     
  18. Batboy

    Batboy Member

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    It was a bit of a joke actually. But of course I want more :D

    But then, if you really wanna know about my seriousness, I guess you could just go the easy way and put a blade in my mouth, saying 'Why...so..SERIOUS?!?' :D;)
    WHAT?!?!?! WHY?!?!?!? Where the heck did this information come from?!? :O:O:O:O:O:O:O
     
  19. Drachentöter

    Drachentöter Good night. And good luck.

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    I think the guy on IMDB read way too much into the politics of the movie. I like TDK because it DOESN'T necessarily evoke a dated political era (see: Lions for Lambs). And it can't be boiled down simply to Left v. Right.

    I hate the concept of the Patriot Act, and wiretapping, and political secrets. But when Batman claims that people deserve better than the truth, I read into it on a broader scale. Mainly that, in life, we shouldn't always constrain ourselves with the apparent facts, but allow ourselves to believe in a more ecstatic truth. One could say that's a very liberal notion, but that's really not the point.

    Harvey was unlike any political party, because Harvey got things done.

    And Rachel was killed because everyone was tired of her. Simple as that.
     
  20. Bat Bruce

    Bat Bruce Active Member

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    I think its people misinterpreting Fox saying he wont be around as long as Bruce's sonar device is, since it's gone now theres no reason for him to leave. Course i could of missed something about Freeman actually wanting out.

    Also does anyone think it ever occours to Gordon to trace the phone number that keeps texting him about cops with family in the hospital, or get a handwriting specialist on the note taped to Lau? These plot holes are to big to overlook dangit! ;)
     

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