Friday, July 25, 2008

The Dark Knight

After all the hype the lights went down and the noise began. An audio visual assault that provides significantly more than most summer blockbusters. But then this is action film by Chris Nolan with Bale and Ledger.

Understandably all the talk has been about Heath Ledger's performance, and on this occasion the talk delivers. I imagine sentiment plus the performance may well equal an Oscar for him. It would be deserved. He's surrounded by a solid cast in Bale, Caine, Freeman, Oldman, Gyllenhaal and Eckhart.

The film continues with the good vs. evil theme of Nolan's reboot. This time things aren't as simple as good and bad, justice and revenge. The Joker arrives bringing devilish chaos: “Some men aren't looking for anything logical. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

Nolan's Gotham is outwardly worse than our world. It is a dark world that needs a white knight who will come and save it, not some superpowered superman but a man who will rise from among the people. Evil has been opposed and good is beginnning to triumph, but can all this spitting in the face of evil triumph? Can good overcome when it is so closely focussed on evil?

The issues become clear and more pressing as Nolan poses the questions. What will the people do when evil reigns, will they find good within themselves? Will heroes arise who can lead them? And what if those heroes aren't 100% heroic? Can we still believe? What will we do with them?

Enjoy the show. Enjoy the questions.