More Thanh Words

"My name is Thanh and I'm a Blogger". Now that I have admitted to that, I can say that I'm a stereotypical "geeky" Engineer who enjoys sci-fi books and movies and into all things technological. I also love music and have a passion for FOOD. I'm a social person and like to talk to people. I hate people who are fake or overly aggressive. If you're also into some serious discussion, with a pinch of sarcasm and a dash of real emotion, then please read on.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Movie Review - The Dark Knight


There was a lot of hype surrounding The Dark Knight due to the untimely death of one of Hollywood's rising stars, Australia's own Heath Ledger. All that hype has translated into box office success, with The Dark Knight gaining the highest opening weekend box office revenue in the US. I'm glad to say though, not only is the film a financial success, it's also a critical success.

All the reviews I had read before seeing the film all praised how good a film it was. Most had claimed that this film is probably the best film of this superhero genre. I would have to agree. The story and acting made this film a delight to watch, even at a lengthy two and half hours.

This film picks off where Batman Begins had ended. Gotham city has been cleaned of many criminals, but that has meant that the mafia have all joined forces and are working together to terrorise Gotham city. Batman (Christian Bale) is still in the picture, but he is torn between what to do. This uncertainty in Batman's own action is constant throughout most of the film. Batman is struggling with what he thinks is helping the city, but also being judged unfairly by the citizens as a vigilante. He, like us mere mortals, does not liking being wrongly accused and hated.

Hence, Batman sees the new district attorney, Harvey Dent (Aaron Echkart) as the saviour for Gotham city. He is the white knight to his dark knight. Dent can show his face in public and be the saviour and moral compass that the citizens can rely on.

And this is where the story becomes interesting for me. The new villian, The Joker (Heath Ledger) is hired by the mafia to stop Batman and basically run amuck in the city. However, The Joker is not driven by greed, he is driven by his own quest to prove that humanity is flawed and that any man can be turned from good to bad and do unthinkable evils. At every stage, The Joker tests Batman and the citizens and tries to make them turn on each other. Ultimately though, he wants to turn Dent from a saviour to a killer.

The constant psychological mind games is what makes this movie great for me. We, the audience are unsure whether to feel sorry for The Joker or hate him. His past is a blur of many lies and a truth hidden somewhere in between. His efforts to turn Dent into evil is a journey that takes the audience into many dark places.

The supporting cast all do a good job. Michael Caine is the dependable Alfred again, with some of the funnier lines in the movie. Morgan Freeman reprises his role as Lucius Fox and also does a solid job. Gary Oldman's James Gordon is now a lieutenant and again plays a prominent role in trying to catch The Joker. Maggie Gyllenhaal replaces Katie Holmes as Rachel Dawes. Maggie's Rachel seems to lack the fight that Katie Holmes brought to the role. Aaron Eckhart does a great job in portraying both sides to Harvey Dent. Christian Bale has again embodied Batman well, although his prescence in this film is less than in Batman Begins I feel. However, the movie definitely belongs to Heath Ledger. It's no wonder the critics are raving about a possible oscar for him. His portrayal is so astounding. There were so many moements during the film that I was totally captivated and just forgot it was Heath Ledger behind that make up. The vocalisation, body movement and facial expressions from Ledger just made The Joker so multi-dimensional, it was amazing. This may be remembered for Ledgers final and best role.

The interplay between Batman, Harvey Dent and The Joker with its dark tones makes this one of the best superhero movies. The constant pyschological warfare being wagered amongst the main protagonists is a delight to watch. The audience is left guessing as to what the final fate for each character is. The ending is not as you expect. It shows that humans are fallable and that even the best of us can be made weak.

Rating: ****/5. A dark movie with great characters.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Katie Holmes should have definitely been in this one. That Maggie Gyllenhall looks like a bulldog cross breed.

7/22/2008 9:30 AM  
Blogger PF said...

Lame comment. You obviously haven't seen THE SECRETARY.

7/24/2008 3:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lame comment. You obviously haven't seen THANH DO

7/24/2008 11:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanh do roflmao

7/26/2008 7:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I previewed some clips of The Secretary and I do admit she is hot and raunchy in that movie.

Nonetheless, she's still a dog face in the Dark Knight.


Movie Watcher

8/04/2008 11:57 AM  

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