The Dark Knight Review

The-Dark-Knight-Review.jpgThanks for checking out our “The Dark Knight” review. You can also check out our video version of The Dark Knight review at the bottom of this post.

**UPDATE – YOU CAN HEAR A FULL 35 MINUTE SPECIAL PODCAST WHERE DOUG NAGY AND I TALK ABOUT THE MOVIE. WARNING… THE PODCAST ASSUMES YOU’VE SEEN THE MOVIE ALREADY AND IS FILLED WITH SPOILERS. YOU CAN HEAR THE PODCAST HERE**

Batman Begins was easily the very best DC comic based film ever made. Yes, better than the Keaton Batman, yes better than the Reeve Superman. It was gritty, intense and fun all at the same time. The success of the film made it a virtual no brainer that there would be a follow up movie at some point… and the fact that Gordon shows Batman the Joker card made it even more obvious. But could another Batman flick live up to the expectations generated by the first? Would the film actually end up being as good as the fans WANT it to be? Would Heath Ledger’s performance as The Joker be as good as everyone is going to say it is regardless if he was great or horrible since there is an unwritten rule that everyone is SUPPOSED to say how great he is in it no matter what?

Well… off I went to see The Dark Knight this evening at the IMAX here in Los Angeles along with my buddy Robert from IESB, and I can tell you the film is not perfect… but it is one impressive movie nonetheless.

THE GENERAL IDEA

The synopsis for The Dark Knight looks like this: “In The Dark Knight, Batman raises the stakes in his war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising criminal mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as The Joker.”

THE GOOD

One of the things I was preparing myself for was how over hyped the performance of Heath Ledger was going to be. Since he passed away, I knew he’d be getting rave reviews out the ying yang no matter what and I’d be frowned upon if I said any different. But holy mother suck puss face… HEATH LEDGER DESERVES AN OSCAR NOMINATION FOR HIS PERFORMANCE AS THE JOKER… no… I’m not even kidding in the least. I was totally, 100% blown away like nothing I’ve ever seen in a comic based movie before. He is at all times completely believable, at all time relentlessly disturbing, at all times nightmarishly frightening and at all times THE JOKER. This is a slightly different vision of The Joker than we’ve ever seen before… but it hits the mark so purely that even Batman himself is made to feel like a secondary character. It really was the performance of a lifetime for Ledger in all its poetic tragedy. I can not stress this enough… Ledger really was that good in this flick, and if he gets an Oscar nomination (which he really should), it won’t be out of sympathy or sentimentality… it will be because it was a performance worth of the honor. Absolute best performance in a comic book movie I’ve ever seen. Yes, he was THAT good.

The script was fantastic. The story moved forward at all times, the dialog was crisp, at times profound and always in character relative to the scenario. The way all the key characters are used in vital ways in the plot… all interconnecting in a very naturally feeling way… never forced… was something to see.

The action in The Dark Knight was vastly superior to Batman Begins in every way, shape and form. And we’re not just talking about fight scenes either. There are a couple of scenes that are more like heist movies than comic book ones and they totally work. The camera work is also much better for the fight and action in this movie than they were in the original which was quite a relief since that was one of my few complains about Begins.

Speaking of cinematography… it was INSANELY good. Visually speaking, the camera did as much work in The Dark Knight communicating elements to the audience as the dialog did. It was never over the top or gimmicky either. Each shot felt purposefully selected to aide in communication the underlaying emotion and experiences of the characters on screen… while at the same time giving us a sense of vastness to the scope of the shots. I could just sit and watch this movie on mute again and I’d probably still like it just as much.

Maggie Gyllenhaal (who took over for Katie Holmes) actually made Rachel Dawes a GOOD character instead of the eye gougingly annoying one that Holmes managed to make her out to be. The Dawes character is an important one… but the way Holmes portrayed her made us all wish she was never there in the first place… Gyllenhaal made her work, and work well.

What can I say? All the cast were solid. Christain Bale, Caine, Gary Oldman (who was especially good with a much bigger and more important role this time around), Eric Roberts… the list goes on and on. When an entire cast does such a good job, you have to look at the director. Christopher Nolan sir…. we salute you!

Holy crap did Two Face look WICKED!!!

THE BAD

My biggest complaint about The Dark Knight is one that no one will agree with at first… but if you think about it after a while I think you’ll change your mind… at over 2.5 hours the movie was too long. Sorry, it just was. At about the 2 hour mark I was ready to call The Dark Knight the best film of the year so far… and maybe one of the top 5 movies of the last 3 or 4 years. Yeah… THAT GOOD. Now, I have to be careful here to not give any spoilers away… so if some of this doesn’t make sense to you… it will after you see the flick. After about the 2 hour mark, a major component of the story gets finished… and it was the PERFECT time to stop the movie and be wide open to the next film. PERFECT. But instead Nolan felt the need to tell ANOTHER part to the story in this same movie… that was a big mistake in my opinion. All that energy, perfect pacing and focus that the movie had for the first 120 minutes got lost. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that the last 30-40 minutes were bad… they just weren’t right for this movie. Something significant happens near the end (I can’t say what) that I believe was a total waste, and ultimately made the last 30 minutes a waste of time.

Scarecrow was WASTED… and I don’t mean he was on drugs. He’s on screen for about 30 seconds, then gone. Wheee… thanks for coming out. This may sound like a little bit of a spoiler, but it’s so irrelevant to the movie that it really doesn’t matter. Scarecrow isn’t even taken down like a true super villain. No no no… he gets taken down during a routine bust really. There was no need for Scarecrow to be used in that capacity… you could have had the same scene and had it be just another thug and it would have been exactly the same. Such a waste

OVERALL

This is a fantastic movie! Yes it’s too long, yes one or two of the characters are wasted… but aside from that it is a wonderfully told, MAGNIFICENTLY acted and beautifully shot comic book movie that ranks amongst one of the best films (not just comic book films) of the year so far. Not just a great comic movie… it is a great movie period. Overall, I give The Dark Knight an 8.5 out of 10.

CHECK OUT OUR VIDEO VERSION OF THE DARK KNIGHT REVIEW BELOW

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315 thoughts on “The Dark Knight Review

  1. Hey. Great review. I agree with most of what you said. Like the Scarecrow cameo. I mean is the Scarecrow really all that’s going on in Gotham City? But I disagree with your comments about the end of the film. If they would’ve carried it over to the next proposed film, it would’ve given the impression of an ending, and not the start of a fresh movie because it is obviously the end of the Dark Knight storyline. Okay, say they do that. Then, do they just try and scrape out a new villians? Not just to accurately depict them in their entirety, but also establish a resolution within two hours? The next film would have to be just as long as the Dark Knight, so length was inevitable. Of course he could have rewritten it to where it wasn’t as long, but then it wouldn’t be the Dark Knight we know and love.

    P.S. If you’ve read YEAR ONE, at the end of the comic, Bruce Wayne (as Bruce Wayne) saves Gordon’s newborn baby, and that is alluded to in the Dark Knight, thus further tying the movie to Batman Begins and Batman’s origins in general. Also, I think if you watch the Dark Knight right after Batman Begins, I think you’ll see the continuation and building of the new take on Batman. One more thing-Scarecrow is never officially arrested in Batman Begins. Nolan may have wanted to resolve him, but-oh look what happened, they concluded Crane in the Dark Knight and we sit here disappointed. Told you so.

  2. I enjoyed reading this review and i agree and disagree with it. I my view i thought this film was better than the first batman. The joker in my eyes was the best thing about this film and anyone else was no where near as good the Joker, he upstaged them all.

  3. excellent review , though i havent watched the film but just cant wait for it i know its an amazing movie with great actors ……. i guess its the most awaited movie of the year ..

  4. jokers, what??? the movie is a masterpiece that is great the whole entire time. i saw it on opening day and saw it again today. better the second time, i’ve read the script, and have seen it, don’t give me that. you don’t respect the vision Nolan took this. and in your comment, nothing about ledger?!

  5. i still wish Katie Holmes had stayed on board as Rachel Dawes for the Dark Knight; it was like the time spent getting familiar with her character in Batman Begins was wasted…

  6. Also, re the comment by ‘M’ above: “…the more I think about it the more frustrated I become. Its flaws are so glaring; I can’t understand why the filmmakers let them pass.”

    The answer to that is in your first sentence: If you thought it was flawed the first time, why in the heck did you hand them your cash TWO more times? You know perfectly well that the studios don’t care about reviews, they care about $$$. They “let them pass” because they were too busy rubbing their hands thinking about how the kids were gonna eat it up, than worry about pesky little plot holes. The best way to let a studio know that you thought their film was rubbish is to simply not give them your moolah. Give it to charity or something. Honestly. There is no sense in rewarding lazy, cynical filmmaking, which as you point out is exactly what Dark Knight is.

  7. Absolutely terrible. Boring, loud, stupid and long.

    There were about ten different stories, none of them properly explained or concluded. How did Oldman avoid death? We are not told. What happened to the ferry folk? It doesn’t matter because people are inerrently good in the face of terrorism. WTF? Why do Oldman’s family, he is the chief of police in Gotham City mind you, WHY do his family live in some kind of trailer park? How does his son go so quickly from being almost killed to cutesy admiration of The Batman?

    Could anyone else contain their mirth of the terrible CGI Twoface? Surely this is a setup for another movie, or, in the tradition of the rest of the film, was the Twoface sub-plot yet another 5-minute wonder that started somewhere in the middle of the story, went nowhere, then fizzled out?

    Utterly, utterly stupid and dull. Don’t bother.

  8. There is a parallel to be drawn between ‘The Dark Knight’ and that Bigfoot carcass found in the US this week which – surprise, surprise! – turned out to be a gorilla suit stuffed with roadkill. Heath Ledger is good, but I sincerely hope he does not receive a posthumous Oscar as it will be seen as an endorsement for this ridiculous, overblown, overlong, turgid and stupid film. More holes than a Swiss cheese. Acting performances phoned in. The characters in the Spongebob Squarepants film have more flesh on their bones. The Dark Knight is the best argument for illegal downloading I have seen in ages – it is the first film I have seen in a long time that made me truly angry to have squandered my hard-earned.

  9. I agree with everyone in saying, the movie was 30 min. too long. If Nolan had done withought the extra 30 min., there could have been a much longer story for Harvey (or maybe there still is one). I agree with M. that it would have been essential to see if Harvey would have killed Gordans son with a flip of a coin, but then Batman’s not that patient when it comes to crime.
    Another thing, I don’t think that Harvey is dead. If Batman was up and running after a fall like that, then Harvey was most likely unconcsious and sent to Arkham soon after. Just an opinion though.

    Thanks for reading!! :)

  10. I agree with mostly everybody here in the movie being 30 minutes to long. If Nolan had done withought the extra 30 min. he could have developed a much longer story for Dent. I agree with M. that it would have been essential to see if Harvey would have ben willing to kill Jack Gordan with a flip of a coin. But, that descision has probably been saved for the next movie.
    I know a lot of you are probably thinking “what the hell do you mean, Dent is dead!”. I think that if Batman was up and running after a fall like that then Harvey was most likely unconscious and soon his way to Arkham. It’s just an opinion though, that may or may not been true.

  11. Saw TDK a third time this week.
    I still like it, but the more I think about it the more frustrated I become. Its flaws are so glaring; I can’t understand why the filmmakers let them pass.
    In a movie world of MARTIXes and BOURNEs, the hand-to-hand combat scenes were unforgivable. It would have cost them (relative) pennies to hire a good fight-choreographer and bring in an experienced action director to film the fight scenes. What happened to all of his ninja training?
    The Scarecrow and Hong Kong scenes needed to be reworked/expanded or altogether dropped. The whole idea that, for all the good he may be doing, the Batman is also attracting nuts and zealots (the Bat-vigilantes, Joker) to Gotham was never fleshed out.
    The cell phone sonar gimmick was terrible, unnecessary and needlessly complicated.
    The Two Ferries dilemma was just rotten. The filmmakers obviously pride themselves in making a “gritty,” “realistic” movie, but that Ferry scenario was only there to lie to us. Only there to give Batman an excuse to make a sentimental speech about how people are good at heart. This is not only untrue, but it’s also internally illogical with the rest of the film.
    The worst thing though was Harvey Dent. He was just too handsome. How am I supposed to pay attention to the story when they keep showing me this handsome man and his tousled blond hair?
    But, seriously, it’s obvious the writers’ primary interest was the Tragedy of Harvey Dent. Everything else in the movie was peripheral, or there to move the tragedy along. Heck, all Bruce Wayne does in the movie is gaze dreamily at Harvey and tell anyone who will listen that Harvey is Gotham’s True Hero.
    So, I think a four hour, two-part DARK KNIGHT (the 2nd part out in December) giving Two-Face the attention he deserved would’ve been the way to go. Is Two-Face a villain? Or is he Batman’s nemesis- a twisted hero willing to do what Batman will not? Is Harvey still noble, dedicated to exterminating Gotham’s scum, but using his coin as an agent of clemency? Or is does his “good half” use the coin to keep Two-Face’s vengeance in check?
    Regardless, when the writers decided to have Harvey die, it became absolutely essential to let the audience see if Harvey would have been willing to murder little Jack Gordon. If that coin had come up with the scarred-side, would Harvey have pulled the trigger? That is the ONLY important thing for us to know about Harvey Two-Face, and they cheated us out of it. That’s just fucking terrible writing.

  12. SPOILER ALERT: I had a hard time feeling any emotion for Rachael when she died. I feel like if that character was developed at all, I would feel bad or something, but instead I felt nothing.

  13. Hey, great review, except… the comment about Scarecrow being taken down so quickly, well, that was just to wrap up a loose end. He was never going to eat up any significant amount of screen time in this already plot-heavy story, but at the same time he didn’t get caught at the end of “Begins.” I love the way Batman took him out. It’s like at the beginning of a Bond film where they show 007 finishing a case before the opening credits.

    A mishandling of the Scarecrow? Perhaps. But who was ever really a fan of his corny scarecrow outfit and long diatribes about how much he loves instilling fear? This Scarecrow, while more realistic and less fantastical, works in Nolan’s world. And it’s fitting Batman finally catches up to him and promptly and efficiently takes him out.

  14. well actually, technically (SPOILER), it never shows the joker ide. i know that swat dude is there, but that couldve been anybody, it even couldve somehow been a henchmen. so basically the joker either, died, escaped, or got arrested. personally, i see know reason to carry him on in another film. the reason being no one could play him as good. heath had such an art to it. all in all, freakin great movie

  15. I fully agree the following comments, it’s bit of reduced the enjoyment, instead of expanding the film, after the death of real hero (heath ledger) Harvey Dent not stay in mind, so after the death of Joker the movie gots over, the best movie of the dcade. We all miss Heath Ledger, such a fentastic man, will always stay in our mind

  16. i think what john meant by the last 30 minutes bieng a waste, i think he meant harvey dent chasing ater gordons family. surely he didnt mean the boat scene including the joker/batman building fight, cuz i really enjoyed that. but, i also do agree,to an extent, that harvey/two-face going after gordon’s family wasnt needed

  17. Hey John

    I liked your review, I didn’t necassarily think it was to long, I just felt a bit let down with the ending. At some point(if they make a 3rd) they will have to show that Batman was not a murderer, which defeats the purpose of the ‘protect Harvey’ story line, and Batman is the protector of Gotham so how can he do this if he is to be hunted.

    A few people asked about a 3rd super-villain, will I think there was a reference to an appearance by Catwoman in the next film. When Bruce asks Lucius about the armour protecting against a dog bite, Lucius replies something like ‘it will stop a cat bite’

    Does anyone think that this was this movies ‘Joker card’??

  18. Your perception of “THE DARK KNIGHT” seemed spot on to me. I was ready to name it as the best summer movie . . . until I was forced to watched the last half hour. Not only was the movie a half hour too long, I hated what went on in that last half hour. For me, TDK lost its chance to be my favorite movie this summer, thanks to that unecessary last half hour.

  19. Good but too long. Tried to add too much there………..could have done without the whole littlegirl kidnapping thing. The ferry passengers gave us the hope message, without going there.
    I liked BB better.I may have to rent this to give it another shot.
    6/10 for me……………maybe it was just my mood at the time

  20. ALSO i totally agree with John the movie was too long i personally thought two faces “revenge” on all those that failed him would have been a great story line for the 3rd movie and a way of hunting down all the corrupt police officers would be a great starter for part 3 and then introduce the next super villains i was exhausted not only the wonderful andrenalin rush of a ride the movie took me on but also there is so much going on in the movie my it was too much absorbing it all in and seeing it 4 times made it so much better for me as i pay so much attention to the roles all the actors are in and even though in some movies ive seen i sometimes find i zone out in some quiter scenes but in the dark knight it was impossible as there is so much key moments that leads into the next scenes if that makes sense but again i absolutely loved this movie! THANK MR CHRISTOPHER NOLAN FOR telling the true “dark” story af batman the way it should be and i think Jessica Alba or Angelina jolie or Gina Gershon would make a great CATWOMAN.

  21. I was absolutely BLOWN away by the movie ive now seen it 4 times and my 4th time was at imax, i just wish i went there for my first screening and my GOD imax took it to a whole different level! I have always been a fan of batman and of Heath Ledgers and his performance was by far the most intense ive ever seen in a movie by any actor i would say it was as brilliant as Anthony Hopkins in silence of the lambs i was spellbound and totally drawn into every word Ledger spoke there was a method to his madness he was so intense i had tears in my eyes as i get really involved with the movies i watch and i was taken on an adrenalin rush ride with his performance and the whole movie in general there was so much going on i was exhausted and seeing it 4 times just made it so much better in the scenes in imax especially the hong kong rooftop seen was amazing it felt like i leapt off the building with batman and was flying with him and the cell room scene with batman and joker was incredible and i loved the way Ledger would lick his lips almost like a lizard and he just showed why the joker was eccentric and deadly and yet very intelligent as it made sense why he wanted the world to burn and his way of manipulating every one was amazing i sincerely hope ledger gets nominated for every possible award there is for an actor as he TRULY deserves it, Christopher Nolan did BATMAN so much justice by telling thre true story of batman and showing the way it was meant to be and i thank him for the best movie i have EVER been fortunate enough to see!

  22. I agree with John the movie was 30 minutes too long. It was like the director thought most of the audience might be mentaly challenged so he tried to explain as you would to a 5 year old. It was kind of like, ok now ladies and gentleman here is how this good guy will become the bad guy for the next episode, here is how he starts having bad thoughts, here is why he will be a bad guy, here is another shot of him just to make sure you remember you’ll see him in the next episode, here once again just so you remember he will be in the next episode. Meanwhile, don’t worry about Batman and Joker they are old news, just keep watching the promotion for the next episode.

    I was also disappointed to see early on in the movie the lawyer with mask from Batman Begins, there was no need for him unless he signed a 2 episode contract. Maybe I shouldn’t take this movie too seriously at the end of the day it’s a comic book on screen but like John said it could’ve been a better movie which would leave a sweeter taste in your mouth if it was shorter.

  23. Health Ledger’s performance in The Dark Knight was truly amazing! As for Christian Bale ……I cringed when I saw him attempt to play Batman. Christian Bale is NOT sexy enough to play Batman! In every past Batman that we have had, George Clooney, Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer….these guys all made Batman sexy! But NOT Christian Bale. I thought Christian Bale’s performance was stale and unmemorable. Thank goodness we had Health Ledger and Morgan Freeman to make the movie worth going to. Next Batman Movie can we have have a talented, SEXY, goodlooking actor play Batman??

  24. i totally agree that heath ledger’s performance was superb in every way… other than that; i really didn’t like it to much. there’s one reason i didn’t: christian bale. i really hated him as batman. i’m sorry, but i just thought he was trying way too hard.

    i did a review of it on my blog, check it out if you have time. :)

  25. Don’t get me wrong… I loved this movie, it was great. But I had two big dissapoinments at the end:

    1) I hated that 2 faces didn’t have a big part and obviously overshaded by the joker character. I thought they would used two faces in future moves, but they killed him. Not Good!!!

    2) The joker doesn’t die, what was the purpose? He should’ve died. There are two many villans in Gothic City for Batman to fight against. As in the original the Joker should’ve died.

    I just hope in the future Batman movies the don’t overshade the other villans… Each Villan should have their own movie.

  26. well… ledger deserves an oscar no doubt but movie was hyped a lot and failed my expectations sadly cuz it tired to fit in too much and that two faced died (which he shouldn’t have). oh yea my favorite quote of the movie was probly the scene where the two ferries and the bomb things at the end and batman has the joker hanging from a rope hooked on his ankle. so the joker says “u wont kill me because u complete me and i complete u” and then the joker says which is funny as hell “and i wont kill u cuz your just too much fun. i luv it also when he drops the joker then he laughs his way down which is previous to the commentary.

  27. The Dark Knight
    This is my first review on the movie many may like this or hate. My first initially experience on watching this movie was grate .Since the movie just picks up from where the batman begins was left . With the kind of all hype the movie got, it scored on all parts of the movie Heath ledger as role of joker has brought a life in the joke character, I guess he might stand a chance for the Oscars this time.

    Dark knight displays a perfect good and the evil. Christine bale has once more showed what he is made of .The joker part by heath is to impressive reminds me of the other sequels of batman where jack Nicholson played just a lunatic role in that, but this sequel is too good. The dialogs are too good the one which joker yells “why so serious?”,”you changed the plans” “I like bad & u are going to get it” are some of it . To close this I just want to tell all that this movie of the decade so just go and watch this movie it’s worth a watch in a cinema hall.

  28. The joker was one of the best villan’s ive EVER seen played.. the last half an hour was a little dragged but in a way was very clever too! i have also seen wanted and i must say.. how can that be better than this?!?!

  29. The guy initially slated to play the joker was… Sean Penn… The first time I heard about that, I was like “What? Sean? I can’t even imagine the guy smiling.”

    But Chris Nolan showed us good that the joker doesn’t need to smile in the literal sense. The ‘smile’ that they went with… is AWE inspiring. Whoever thought that up for the movie IS a bloody genius! That set the tone for the entire character. And of course, Heath Ledger overshadowed them ALL…

    When I went for the movie, I was already impressed by Heath through whatever was shown in the trailer. I loved Jack Nicholson’s joker, which suited the mood of Tim Burton’s movie. But the trailer was enough to show me that Heath had gone MUCH farther with the character. Even then, I certainly did not expect him to be THIS good. One of the best performances of all time. It’s been a week since I’ve seen it, and the dialogues are still running through my head…

    Why so serious?

  30. I’m going to see the film today in about 2 hours yet all you lot have done is undermind the fact that it is johns blog.
    ok so he thought wanted is better than the dark night by 0.5, it’s his opion atop judging a film on other peoples opinions and go out and see it for yourself like i’m gunna do!

  31. im trying to figure out what John is saying about the last 30 to 40 minutes were a waste and the movie should of ended at the 2hr mark. so can anyone or John tell me at what scene should the movie had ended?

  32. maria, thats cool if you didnt like it. but this WAS NOT i repeat WAS NOT a boring movie. we were always on the edge of our seats, and let me say this one more time: THIS MOVIE WAS THE FASTEST 2 AND A HALF HOURS OF MY LIFE, IT DIDNT DRAG AT ALL. best movie ever. best comic boo kmovie ever. Heath did the best acting EVER. the only thing i didnt like was batman’s voice and scarecrow. other than that, friggin awesome film. this blows iron man, kills the incredible hulk. and murders hancock, which is nothing compared to TDK. I thought the last 30-40 mins of the film was a PERFECT ending for the joker, A PERFECT ONE. it lived up to the hype. 9.8/10

  33. Nice review, but i have to disagree about the last 30 – 40mins of the movie. It was absolutely necessary. The title of the movie gets explained in the very last minute. That would not arise if the downfall of the white knight did not happen. To have stretched out those last 30mins into another movie would stink of the exploitation that most movies usually employ.

    No, those last minutes were absolutely necessary. The people of Gotham passed their test (the boats) thus dissapointing the joker, but Gotham’s hope in the white knight failed his test. This leaves the Batman as the true hero of Gotham even if he has to bear the consequences of the actions of the white knight.

    This was a crime drama exploring the battle between good and evil disguised as a superhero movie. Everybody complains about the popcorn movies coming out of hollywood, but then complain when served the real deal. In the “golden age” of hollywood movies lasted for 3hrs, now most people seem to want a quick hour and a half fix. 90 mins is fine if it comprises of bad plots, poor writing like Hancock and Wanted. No when i settle down for a full course meal like TDK I want to watch it as long as possible.

    I have seen TDK twice and left entertained both times. I cannot wait to see it on IMAX.

    How many movies leave you exploring the various themes that this one brings up. From the parallels it draws to the state of the world today, to the philosophical battles that it made flesh, this movie touches on something in all of us. This is why it has had so much repeat business and will continue to do so.

    This movie can stand beside ANY movie. One of the best i have ever seen.

  34. The film was completed by the last 30 to 40 minutes… If the movie had ended, not only would people have bitched about them not having enough two-face and him just falling out of the story and having no place in the resolution, the movie would be incomplete. Batman was forced to break his one rule at the end (assuming Harvey died, and since they had a funeral for him and the shooting scrips actually says he snapped his neck and died) for the greater good. Now, in the peoples’ eyes, Harvey died a hero (they’ll never know he was two-face) and Batman has lived long enough to become the villain (the deaths Harvey caused will be blamed on him).

    It’s central to and very important to the main theme of the movie, without it the movie is a superhero beat’em up with a freaky bad guy and a less effective message.

  35. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)

    The very best part of TDK is the last 40 mins. Had the film ended at the 2 hours mark it would have been cheap cliffhanger time. No, the last 30-40 mins give the film its iconic status as the best movie ( forget comic-book movie) of the year thus far. In terms of completing the story arc/s we have to remember that this story is Harvey Dent’s. He is the central character and without giving anything away, the main premise of the film demanded that last sequence. The Batman’s role is to solve and resolve and as such, he is utilised as the force to challenge chaos. He is the champion of order.

    The Nolans have got a masterpiece on their hands.

  36. Wow, I thought I was the only one who thought it was too long and I agree with you about there being an exact point where they should have ended it and then running it on beyond that being a mistake.

    I actually convinced myself I was being too hard because nobody I know agreed with me but reading this review I think your thoughts match mine perfectly. At the end I felt like the last 30 minutes had let the previous 2 hours down. Still a very good film but could have been so much more without the ending they chose to use.

  37. Didnt like it

    Too long, so boring, the girl’s acting skills were really bad. Batman’s voice is too much. I don’t know, I didn’t like it at all.
    The only positive for me was Ledger’s acting.

  38. im not a huge batman fan but i went to see it anyway because everyone said heaths performance was amazing .. and they were right .. he blew everyone out of the water .. it was believeable and freaky at the same time .. he could have been the next jack nicholson .. its a shame he had to die RIP heath

  39. I thought heath did an ok job as the joker and that you are over the top in saying that he was stunning. Any good actor could have done as good a job as heath, he wasn’t amazing, i thought the acting was standard, he could have made more of the role.

  40. Besides Clooney’s attempt at Batman, this movie was the second worst by far. Batman was the character featured least in the film and the whole project would probably have been better served entitled “The Joker.” I don’t know if Ledger’s death was the reason that the powers that be decided to show the Joker probably 65% of the time, but the movie was entitled The Dark Knight and shouldn’t have been. There were perhaps two action scenes in the whole damn thing. Iron Man and Incredible Hulk trounced this crap of a movie. Don’t see it. I should have seen Hellboy 2.

  41. i really disagree with the statement on the script.

    “The script was fantastic. The story moved forward at all times, the dialog was crisp, at times profound and always in character relative to the scenario. The way all the key characters are used in vital ways in the plot… all interconnecting in a very naturally feeling way… never forced… was something to see.”

    i felt that alot of the words were wasted on unneeded exposition of the plot and some of the dialogues that should have been shining fell flat simply by never really blooming into anything interesting. this was slightly confusing, as at times (mostly containing the joker) the scripting was spot on.
    i think the dark knight could be a prime example of a movie where they just didnt know where to cut the fat out of their movie, or alternatively they just never pushed for it to be any different.

  42. I know this is your review and all, and you can do whatever you want, and this is obviously just my opinion but… thinking a film was a little too long and wishing ONE character had more of a role is a pretty bad reason to give it an 8.5

    As gushing as you were about the first 2 hours, I don’t think it would be a stretch to say you would have given it a 10/10 if it had stopped then. Now for the 30 minutes, you said it wasn’t bad, just that you didn’t really like it… so that sounds like a 8/10 to me, certainly not BAD, but nothing to write home about.

    As wrong as it is to review a movie based solely on the first 2 hours and ignore the end, it’s just as wrong to review a movie mostly on the last 30 minutes and practically ignore almost everything else you said.

    Read your review again, maybe. All that great stuff? It doesn’t become worse or less meaningful because you didn’t think the last few minutes fit in very well. An 85 is a B. Not even a B+, a B, and I honestly can’t see how you can say so many great things about a movie and give it a B.

  43. This film is a ten. Yes, it is long, so it “2001 a Spacy Odessey”. It tells a big story. It is a very deep film.

    Anyone who thinks TDK had anything to do with superheros and villians missed the point.

    You do need the last 30 minutes of the film. Again, it has nothing to do with putting the Joker behind bars. This is NOT a cops and robbers story.

    This one belongs in the time capsule.

  44. hello
    went to see the dark night
    first i adgreed to long about the 2 hrs
    joker was great all most like the comic
    as a comic book geek y biggest bitch dc does not make movies for the fans un like marvel that ad stuff for a fan of comics i get kick out out
    i would give 31/2 out of 5 but ironman still rock as a super hero movie it much better

  45. It was good, really good. Could someone explain what The Scarecrow was doing in the movie since batman took care of him in batman begins. Could someone explain?

  46. Saw DK last sun and seeing it again tomorrow. Heath Ledger..awesome, and so sad he is not with us anymore.

    My son reckons reason Scarecrow was taken down so mundanely was to show what a bit character he is in this movie plus he is now just one of the many crims around..as opposed to the Joker.

    Movie was too long, but hey enjoyed it overall! Roll on tomorrow!

  47. I gotta re-post this…

    Ok quick question but first everyone must forget about Heath Ledgers tragic death, the eye popping visual effects, the ear numbing explosions and focus… WHY THE H*** is the Joker literally wearing make-up? I mean come on am I the only one who realizes that the Joker’s entire body was turned white, his hair green and his lips red from dropping in vat a chemicals? Oh yea lets not forget his smile wasnt carved into his face it was a result of the chemicals as well so why does Heath have huge scars to protray a smile? Now I can’t deny that Ledger did an awesome job with what he had but lets look further into the “Joker” did he really nail the Jokers personaility? I think not I think he feel wayyy short on the mannerisms and who can forget that mind rattling laugh of Mark Hammill?

  48. HI John, Thanks for the wonderful review. I really enjoyed watching TDK and it was more than what i had expected from this movie. Hats off to Heath Ledger and Nolan for making the characters look real and ruthless. and yea, i agree to your point that movie is too long and scare crow is really wasted in this movie. But as for Joker, hez the real character who steals the show from everyone. Enjoyed watching it and wish to see it again. But for me as compared to Batman Begins, i feel Begins was more better in showing a Super-Hero uprising.As I am a fan of Batman, its rather disappointing to see Batman loosing its way in this movie. Its like, I am a fan of Joker now, instead of Batman. hehe. Another thing that disappoints me is the character of rachel dawes which was never suitable for katie nor properly done by Maggie Gyllenhaal… She looks very old for the role (that’ wat i think) Well, overall, a great movie with loads of action pack and great plots. It gets slow n little boring in between (Mostly the last 30 min as you have mentioned).. which should have been shown in a better way. But Joker really steals the show from everyone.. for me, this is the best and most serious comic movie i have ever seen.. Great work by everyone in the movie and also by the movie makers….

  49. Only thing i agree with is scarecrow was wasted lol i didnt even notice he was there :O lol
    besides that i dont think it was too long everything was just right definately give 10/10 if u havent seen it go watch it
    i honestly mean u wont regret it
    The ticket price just seem’d to cheap to see such a amazing movie
    Ive seen it and gonna watch it again

    Joker hahaha omg , movies need more classy criminals like him forget gotham lol

    every character played great and the joker will never be matched i can say that with 99.9% confidence, 0.1% chance if i played him lmao , na im messing.

    honestly giving him a oscar would be a under-statement deserves more

  50. i just think the last 30 mins completed the joker, it wouldn’t have been complete if it ended at 2 hours though, but i will admit there was about 5 minutes in the film where i said “when is this gonna end?” not in a bad way though, becuase this is the best movie ive ever seen

  51. I agree with most of your points, including that it felt like the film was over after around two hours. However, I feel that the last bit, though not completely necessary, was something like an added bonus. If the film would have ended where we all expected it to end, I wouldn’t have been as satisfied. I wanted to see some Twoface action, and I wanted more from the Joker. By the end of the entire film, I truly felt fulfilled and satisfied, and I wouldn’t have without the last thirty minutes.
    I would have added more depth and reasoning, but I’d really rather not leave any spoils in my comment.

  52. Ok quick question but first everyone must forget about Heath Ledgers tragic death, the eye popping visual effects, the ear numbing explosions and focus… WHY THE H*** is the Joker literally wearing make-up? I mean come on am I the only one who realizes that the Joker’s entire body was turned white, his hair green and his lips red from dropping in vat a chemicals? Oh yea lets not forget his smile wasnt carved into his face it was a result of the chemicals as well so why does Heath have huge scars to protray a smile? Now I can’t deny that Ledger did an awesome job with what he had but lets look further into the “Joker” did he really nail the Jokers personaility? I think not I think he feel wayyy short on the mannerisms and who can forget that mind rattling laugh of Mark Hammill?

  53. TDK’s the best comic-book movie ever, period. No two ways about it, I mean look at the films we’ve made to go through so far excepting a couple of good ones, a giant green thing with no brains going gaga jumping up and down, a tin-head b-grade hero wearing tin underpants, oh sorry, that’s “iron” underpants, Superman returned and they writers forgot to give both Clark and Supes talking parts, and look at those earlier Batman movies….he has nipples on the neon suit!!!!!!

    TDk’s one of those movies which you wanted to put a frame on and take home and hang somewhere you’ll always see and keep looking at for the rest of your days…..

  54. I belive that ledger was in fact ment to play that roll, I was very happy when I seen batman begins and the dark knight because it has been long overdue to make batman no longer look like a wimp. The fact that (((spoiler))) ******batman beat the hell out of the joker*****, made me belive that batman was awsome. Now the roll with the joker, made me glad to see that his clown make up wasnt neatly done with presision, how it looked rough was a good part because it made him look more agressive to the camera

    Very well done movie, but the end could have done without, i think that (((spoiler))) *******Two Face would have been a great villin for a third movie

  55. if anything i think it was too short. they should’ve added a scene showing the joker and two face in arkham. the scarecrow wasn’t wasted either it was just a cool cameo appearance just so people could see where he was at these days. i mean the last time we saw scarecrow he was goin crazy off fear toxin on a fucking horse riding off to god knows where. it was nice to see that hes settled in as one of batmans regular mischief makers

  56. I was stupid enough to go see the movie The Dark Knight and to sum it up in a few words review – it SUCKS.

    Right from the beginning the movie lived off of the fact that one of their main protagonists – Heath Ledger died. As much as the passing of Heath Ledger was a very sad thing to happen, it did help promote the movie and made people talk about it and want to go see it. Had Heath Ledger not died, The Dark Knight would be just another Batman movie that makes a few million dollars and is put on a shelf as pretty good, but nothing much.

    I wish I could classify The Dark Knight as “pretty good, but nothing much” but considering this is a 2008 movie, I can’t. All I can say is – The Dark Knight Sucked! It sucked elephant balls. The cast, except from Heath Ledger were almost all amiss. In particular Christian Bale who is the most obnoxious male actor out there. His acting skills suck, how face sucks and the way he talk completely sucks.

    And… and this has got to be a fucking joke – did those people in Hollywood, in particular Warner Bros not notice that it’s fucking 2008 already? Batman used to wear rubber costumes back in the 70’s when computer effects were not as advanced. This has been figured out by movie studios from 1980’s and now, three decades later, Warner Bros come with a movie where Batman wears a silly rubber costume. Give me a fucking break, what a failure. The Dark Knight Sucks!

    Nevermind third grade special effects, let me get back to terrible acting and absolutely horrible cast (once again, Heath ledger DID do a great job, he’s not included in this). Christian Bale is the worst actor ever. I enjoyed Shaft, great performance by Samuel L. Jackson, and the only weak link in entire movie was obnoxious, untalented presence of Christian Bale. then look at America Psycho – could have been a good movie, but the obnoxious mug of Christian Bale and his speech impediment fucked it all up and made it worthless. And it is just the same in Dark Knight. Add to it female character who hisses as she speaks and you have a cast that you can’t listen to. It was annoying listening to the dialogue by people who can’t talk and make who sort of annoying sounds.

    The movie itself has way too many long and boring passages. I can’t imagine anyone who’d buy a DVD watching it without a remote control in their hands. Never ending, boring scenes that take away from any potential excitement you may have accumulated during some potentially exciting minute.

    Overall I find The Dark Knight a joke. A failure. The Dark Knight Sucks. If it wasn’t for Heath Ledger’s death, it would have never broken the Box Office records. He was the only one who did decent job acting and he’s the sole reason why box office figures for this movie seem to suggest it’s a success. Look past the tip of your nose and you’ll see a worthless movie that’s a waste of time to watch. It will irritate you with hissing sounds main characters make as they speak and the special effects look like they were done a few decades back.

    The joke robotic voice run through 1978 voice effector that Batman uses when he’s dressed up in his 1965 rubber batman suit that went out of style for Halloween 25 years ago sort of masks irritating voice of Christian Bale, but it is such a joke, you ask yourself inside – what in the crappy hell am I doing in the movie theater. Is this a movie for backwards people who still live in the 70’s and haven’t noticed that the world has moved forward, or are we in an asylum for mentally challenged so we’re going to clap even if something sucks?

    The Dark Knight = FAIL

  57. way funnier than batman?! hmmmm…i guess that’s why they called The DARK Knight and not Late Night with Batman. i haven’t seen wanted, but Joker’s pencil trick, and his sarcastic clappling during gordon’s promotion to commisioner was classic. that’s all the humor i need.

  58. I agree with John, that the Dark Knight was so so much better than
    “Wanted.” That movie spent a trememdous amount of time preparing for the big fight scene than actually progressing in the story plot. I give “The Dark Knight” a 10! I never wanted to end. John is hott

  59. batman was pretty good, but i just felt that there was nothing unique about it besides heath being an awesome joker. Wanted was something i expected, and more. the twist and action packed scenes.

  60. alright i can see where the 2 hour mark would’ve been a good ending, and left alot of doors open, but it wouldn’t have finished it! the last 30 mins were perfect, not gonna say what happens to joker or batman, but it was good to end the story

  61. I have yet to see Batman. I probably won’t, but I have enjoyed watching hundreds of people line up around the block from the 42nd street Lowes. With all of those commercials and posters, it’s impossible to not want to see this movie. So I decided to download it last night. I watched the first ten minutes before I realized my mistake. I was watching a movie that made me, made all the poor schleps of the world into villains. This is the story of a wealthy white man who uses his fortune to monopolize virtue. “For money buys all virtues.” His incredible wealth is surmounted only by his unjustified hold on morality. Gotham has put its fate in the hands of a man who cannot fathom want, lack, or need. If Batman symbolizes anything, he is an exaggerated depiction of our dilapidated morals in this capitalist, Hollywood-worshipping world. We are the relentless joker, the loathsome masses. Here is our chance to look in the mirror to glimpse our devastating image. The joker is the synthesis of all that is hideous about poverty and neglect-ugly and ridden with mental illness. Say for his intelligence, he is all that we wish we were not. His greed is that of all who lack. His misery and self pity transformed into a rightful anger. He is perhaps the only character who deserves respect. And all this unfolds in the hellish Gotham, a city of millions where wealth is concentrated into the hands of few hundred, and every dark corner wreaks of “the humiliation of poverty.”

  62. hello john i agree it was a lil long i totally agree heath ledger gave me chills i mean litarelly i was so taken ive been a huge joker fan for so long wow he was amazing if he doesnt get a award im rioting lol

  63. Good review thank you sooo much for telling people how good heath ledger was in this role! It pisses me off when people say if he gets nominated its just out of symphathy because i honestly think he made the whole movie it definitly wouldn’t have been the same without him.
    I do disagree with you about one thing. I do thing it was necesaary to have the last 30 or 40 minutes because they needed to tie up all the loose ends.

  64. p.s.

    can anyone tell me where they thought would’ve been an appropriate point to end the movie if it seemed to long?

    i’ve seen it 3 times already and have not seen one scene to say, “alright, now we can stop! time for the third!”

    oh yeah,

    best batman movie. by far. (but you knew that already)

  65. best movie i’ve seen in years. i think some are losing sight of the fact that batman is more of the anti-hero. there’s a reason he’s the “dark” knight. try to look at this as the most accurate perspective on the batman character and his legacy, not just a random batman movie.

    this movie was probably not meant to inspire hope in the sense of most superhero/comic book movies already out there, and given that, the last 30-40 minutes were completely necessary. they set up a third installment perfectly, especially the very last scene (gordon’s speech). without that entire 30-40 minutes, the movie wouldn’t have had as much essence to carry over into the third because it’s a great ending that would’ve otherwise came in the beginning or middle of the third movie. i don’t think anyone could validate the last 30-40 minutes actually boring them. simply put, it was a powerful ending, much less a movie.

    i can’t say enough about ledger that hasn’t already been said. if he gets an oscar, its for the performance hands down, not sympathy (with respects). best movie villain i think i’ve ever seen.

    this movie was dark, intense, non-stop, and even macabre. and i loved every minute of it. every scene was completely necessary and kept your interest for the entire length of the film. go ahead and complain of how long and cramped it seemed to you because that didn’t take a damn thing away from the movie.

    best of 2008. by far.

  66. I agree that TDK was quite long and I left feeling like I ate too much. An entertaining movie but I have a few small beefs:

    1. Batman often talks like he needs an inhaler – they should maybe loosen the suit a bit.

    2. As the agent of Chaos and apparent loner, Joker must have legions of well “Organized” and connected loyal henchman to pull off his increasingly elaborate schemes.

    3. Commissioner Gordon could not look any more like Ned Flanders.

    Other than that, plus being a little dark to make out some of the action where I saw it, this movie was very good.

  67. First of all i have to agree with you John Heath Ledger gave the performance of his life. and it showed. What i dont understand like other people is how you rated wanted higher. in my opinion wanted felt more dragged out than the dark knight. for about 45 minutes to an hour we see the main character training and getting beaten to a pulp over and over again. its like the writers couldnt think of anything else so they just kept doing the same thing. Also the story was ridiculous. The whole loom thing, i mean really? is that the best they could think up. THey rushed explaining the process and why you were left confused. THe twist was pretty good but it just took to long to get there. I felt wanted was sooooo dragged out and a bad plot and bad writing. and i loved the length of batman. i never wanted it to end. Great movie and a hundred times better than Wanted!

  68. I can’t wait to see this movie.
    It looks like the newspaper in Jacksonville had a blast finding a unique way to cover the movie release as well!

  69. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)

    Awesome movie, I agree however with John as the movie does drag on for the last 30 minutes, they could have with that material, created a whole new movie. Ledgers performance however, is absolutly incredible, ocsar worthly in my opinion.

  70. This was such an incredible movie to see, I agree with many of your comments. Heath Ledger’s performance was absolutely legendary, and will go down as one of the greatest in cinema history without question. He owned every scene he was in and took the movie to an entirely different level by himself. I will disagree with your comments about the last 30 minutes being a waste. Frankly I wanted it to keep going just so we could see more Joker scenes. If the movie had been less than 2 hours long I would have been dissapointed. In my opinion this is one of the best movies of the last decade and far and away blows every other superhero movie out of the water.

  71. great review but disagree with the whole scarecrow being a waste thing. in my opinion scarecrow was great to use because it showed how nothing a villain he was. The whole point of the scarecrow was to show that there are much worse criminals out there (the joker, twoface etc) and batman how a lot to worry about.

  72. Just listened to your podcast. And i’m seriously considering to never come back to the blog again. I thought the film was long, but never thought that it wandered from the realm of possibility or believability. (Unlike some movies where the hero takes his orders from woven cloth?!?!?! Never thought fun could be so stupid.) And who said that the Two-face is dead? We all know Harvey Dent is.

    It is possible to survive from that high of a fall . . . if you remember when Batman throws that guy off the building.

    I thought it was a great movie. Better and smarter than Iron Man. Wanted is not even in the same league as this movie. And listening to you guys rant on the details that you disliked is almost as annoying as Bill O’Reilley flipping out on the set of Inside Edition. At least that was funny.

  73. sorry but i thought it sucked. no one can beat Jack Nicholson point blank. there were too many dialogs and not enough action. the Joker wasnt even funny and hardly laughed. i was bored several times

  74. I just saw the movie and was impressed. I usually don’t go to see movies these days, because most are not worth the waste of time and money. Being a fan of classics, well produced, directed and acted films, solid films in other words, I’m delighted to see that some people still care to make movies right. When I heard that they were making Batman Begins, I thought just another crappy Batman movie, considering the previous two. That makes me want to say that I was a fan of the Burton films, especially Batman Returns. While the Burton films put Batman in a more mythical setting, one that fits in well with comic books, Nolan’s vision is different; he puts Batman in a more realistic setting, a setting that represents more of what the present realities are in certain cities. But my point is after seeing Batman Begins I was surprised how well it flowed, the actors were cast perfectly and the acting was very good. Batman Begins was structured very well and it worked so it was not what I imagined it to be. So this naturally led me to have high expectations for The Dark Knight. While the movie started out like a classic heist movie which I liked, it went immediately into what I perceived to be weak dialogue and pointless introductions, like the director wasn’t sure of himself or what he wanted of the part of the movie right after the first minutes of action. So I was happy to see that as it progressed it got more serious.

    Now about Ledgers performance, as Gary Oldman said, it’s right up there with the best of actors such as Al Pacino, and in my opinion as Robert De Niro, especially since I think a lot of Ledgers’ inspiration for the Joker came from Robert De Niros’ performance in Cape Fear, but at the same time creating a character that’s all his own and leaves you with a sense of an enigmatic figure, illusive and the type that runs in kids imaginations when they think of villains, at least in my mind when I was a kid. I remember the Batman cartoons in the early 90’s and the Joker in those, and I get reminded of that type of Joker from Ledgers performance, but certainly more cruel and graphic. I remember seeing the trailer for this film and reading about Ledgers’ performance, how great it might be and from seeing the clips and images they had of some scenes, I imagined his complete performance exactly as he delivered it. When you think of something inspiring and something cool, something over the top, considering I’ve been disappointed in the past from other hypes, this performance really dug deep, and when someone can convey depth to the level of fantasy, I mean this guy disappeared in this character. I’ve seen many actors and their supposed immersion into the character or disappearance in them, but this guy literally disappeared into the Joker, something I could say that in watching thousands of movies I’ve rarely seen, others being like Al Pacino in Scarface. Now the Joker is Ledgers’, no one has or will duplicate, certainly not make him better. When he even surprised himself with his performance, he certainly reached a level of where he became this character.

    That being said I can probably guess right when I say that they were planning at least another movie with him reprising his role. Now to all those who complain about the length of the movie, I will admit that even I thought that the movie was ending right when two face was getting introduced, but I think the point was that the Joker is a much more enigmatic figure and certainly with Ledgers’ performance who would you rather see in the next one, two face or the Joker again? Heck I’d go for Ledgers’ Joker another 3 movies, sadly that won’t be, and with two face and the Joker gone, who are they going to bring next, Robin?, I guess that’s why Christian Bale was complaining lately that he would quit if they brought Robin back. Also about the complaints about inconsistency in the movie and quick illogical end to scenes, I think that’s just for the sake of the theatrical release, where they had to cut it from over 3 hours to the studios request, so expect a much more complete version on DVD. One more note, about the other actors’ performances, especially Christian Bale, he seemed like someone took the life out of him, he seemed very uninspired at times to even be in the movie, which he made up for when he was in costume, but certainly weaker then in Batman Begins. I’m a fan of his ever since his Empire of the Sun days with solid performances, but he should definitely be more inspired in the next Batman if he stars in it. Since I’m also a fan of realistic special effects with minimal camera movements to make up for lack of skill or imagination, Nolan’s handling of the special effects reminds me of the days of James Cameron and his Terminator 2; very realistic, everything looked real, real cars, real explosions, real trucks and helicopters, even the computer generated things looked real, you can’t beat that. Overall, this is a rugged masterpiece: that combines different elements to deliver a movie that’s rarely made in Hollywood these days.

    Thanks for taking the time to read.

  75. It didn’t live up to the hype. Yes, Ledger was good. Spectacular in fact. But it didn’t deliver. Iron Man was a more satisfactory movie. Maybe he should play Joker in the next one.

  76. Dude, the whole movie was really great, AND THE LAST 30 MINS DID NOT DRAG. What? You think seeing bullets defy physics and CGI effects was better than the flesh and blood that is The Dark Knight??? The movie is arguasbly the greatest comic-book flick ever made, and hey, like Bale said, it’s a great movie, irrespetive of genres. Really, the movie was THAT GOOD, the people who’ve already seen this film would agree with me.

    But then again, this is only my humble opinion, thought I’d put it across. Thanks.

  77. John, excellent review. I do agree that it was too long, by about a half hour. The first two hours flew by, and then the last few minutes seemed weirdly long. I went into the movie with high expectations for Ledger, completely prepared to be disappointed. He completely blew me away. I’ve always been a fan and have seen most of his work, but his Joker was just amazing. All of his mannerisms, his voice, his presence, was nothing like the Heath Ledger of other films. He was just truly and completely immersed in the role. Add me to the posthumous Oscar campaign! Christian Bale impressed me too, I’ve never thought too much of him but he was very solid and Maggie Gyllenhaal was a refreshing upgrade over Holmes.

  78. I just finished watching the Dark Night. The best super hero movie ever. In comparison to these cheezy ones coming up… iron man, water man, weather man… you name it! LOL. Anyway I agree the last half hour with the district attorney was completely unnecessary. They should have made him into a bad character for the next movie. It would be more productive. I do agree that at 2 hour mark the movie was at the right time to end, then all these plots came in… I am sorry after 1 1/2 hour I got go to the bathroom after a large diet soda. Have u seen the size they serve? I waited for another hour afraid I was going to miss something. Now I realize that I should have gone to the bathroom… I would probably enjoy the movie better… but I will definitely watch it again when it comes out on DVD.

  79. The movie is an interesting study in contrasts.

    The first ten or so minutes are a sublime study in storytelling-by-visuals. Truly stellar stuff. The way an action film should be told: visually.

    The final portion…and indeed, the second half…are overburdened by a surfeit of dialogue; way too many declamations, way too many speeches. The Mayor…Gordon…Alfred…Dent…Joker…The Good Humor Man… (Just checking to see you were paying attention…) EVERYONE gets a speech. Here’s a little bit of insight: you can’t continually
    ‘go back to the well’. You diminish the intensity of anything repeatedly offered past a certain point. Wisdom, insight offered eventually becomes meaningless. Just, as Hamlet said, ‘Words, words, words…’

    The movie’s about a hero…and heroes usually have a primary enemy in each story…but here, there ends up being two. And really, as any storyteller will tell you, splitting the focus is dangerous. In this case, the payoff fizzled. (It was limp.)

    And, as a capper, the hero really doesn’t take center-stage. There is very little ‘pro-actively’ done by Batman…except when he has to. This is SO contrary to how things are normally done…effectively done.

    Right about here is where people…fanboys, primarily…chime in with ‘Clearly, you have no understanding of Batman, especially Miller’s Batman…’ and I respond by saying ‘None of that matters. The only thing that matters is what’s on the screen. I shouldn’t need notes or references or some pre-constructed understanding of things in order to ‘get’ what’s going on, to appreciate just how great this film actually is.’

    ‘The Dark Knight’ is a very good film. It has some fantastic elements, Ledger should be nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar, and it most certainly could be the ‘best’ superhero film ever made. But it’s certainly not a ‘great’ film, and doesn’t warrant all the goo-firing that’s been going off since last Friday at 12:01 am. With a better script…and yes, John, about 30 minutes cut from its running time…maybe it could have been ‘great’. As it is, from where I’m standing, it’s a 7.5/10.

  80. LUKE you made a good point, I also liked how they didnt leave a cliffhanger for the next movie. As said before, the unexpected makes the best movies, and that part of the movie was completely unexpected. Also, the Joker is one of the most loved/ famous villians of ALL MOVIES, he’s right up there with Darth Vador, and I love how at the end yes he is captured but Nolan sort of leaves it up to you to decide if The Joker won, or Batman, yeah you can say they covered up The Jokers plan so the city wont ever know about what Dent really did, but The Joker has caused COMPLETE chaos in Gotham, and The White Knight is gone!! So after thinking it over for hours for me I came to the conclusion The Joker sort of won, which is awesome because you rarely see villians win in movies, PLUS i’m a HUGE Joker fan. It was amazing how the Joker was able to hold his own with Batman despite not having the billion dollar suits or any super weapons. Every time they met in the movie I say The Joker left with the upper hand, even when The Jokers boat plan was flawed and Batman caught him.

  81. #1 movie on imdb!
    9.7- i give it 10 out of 10. Started off pretty good then got better and better. I like how they didn’t leave a cliff-hanger. Being a fan of Heroes and Lost, i’m sick of cliffhangers.

    It felt like two movies in one Batman vs. Joker and Batman vs. two-face. Thats a complaint and at the same time a bonus.

  82. The Dark Knight….
    A fantastic movie. As of Saturday July 20th..152 million with Sunday yet to go. It is unfortunate that great fantasy movies like the Dark Knight don’t receive the recognition they deserve by the Academy.

    No doubt Heath will be awarded something and maybe another for the graphics or musical score.

    I think it’s time the Academy responded to the “Peoples Choice” which would be as easy as following ticket sales.

    Anyway great movie, see it at least twice,and Great Blog!
    moviedownloadreviews.info

  83. Wasup John I appreciate you doing this review over a monthago…i refused to write something until i saw the movie. I completely agree with your opinion over a month ago when you said the movie went 30 minutes too long. It was not dry, however it could have ended and had two-face a leading character in the third intallment. Right after the bomb scene when alfred reads the letter is when the movie should have ended. Harvey should have been left in the hospital, angry, with a two sided coin, one being dark. Funny thing to me was the bomb scene was the climax of the movie. So very late. It kinda threw me off. Throw offs obviously make the best movies though. But if that movie would have ended right there, what would they have done with the joker?? or heath ledger since hes passed(RIP)

  84. The movie was too long and nowhere as impressive as Batman Begins. Heath Ledger is the only reason to enjoy this, and they should have called the film “The Joker” rather than the Dark Knight. Aaron Eckhart is a lot more interesting too. As for Christian Bale – he just didn’t have enough going for us to empathise with him. The film is definitely dark…and not for kids.

  85. well i honestly loved the movie although its sad that it just had to be the last for Heath Ledger…out of all of the batman movies i think they are getting better but at the same time its like they are going backwards but its whatever…the explosions and the who plot of the story was amazing. but i will say at the beginning i was a little disappointed but after 5 min of it i began to like the movie..and also if anyone thinks that TIM BURTON IS OVERRATED then they are just crazy cuz he has came out with the most wonderful movies and best ones to may i say cuz of course its just a sequel atleast its not of the same movie just different actors and more computerization.in it..

  86. Richard, you really just care about the cursing? You know your 12 year old already knows those words. What you should be worried about is disturbing IDEAS not curse words. Sheesh.

    Also, all pre-Batman Begins movies are garbage. Tim Burton is one of the most overrated directors of all time, up there with Terry Gilliam. (Pee Wee’s Big Adventure is Burton’s only good film)

    Finally, Maggie Gyllenhaal is not “some plain girl with a pig nose”. I love her. Go see Secretary.

  87. Actually, I was somewhat disappointed. Not as good as the first.

    Some things just didn’t make sense, which in a “comic book” movie they don’t have to, but part of what made the first so good was how realistic it stayed.

    But the Joker just happened to put two men with harpoon guns on the right level of fire escape at just the right street where they could knock down a helicopter? Ludicrous.

    And he used a timer to exactly coordinate a shade flying open with the end of the mayor’s speech? Um, sometimes they go long you know, not really a great plan.

    I thought much of the pacing and dialogue was very choppy and rushed. The plot was very crowded and overly complex.

    That said, Ledger was great, The Joker was always great to watch on screen. Most of the action scenes worked, and the Two Face effect was really cool.

    But still, not as good as the first and a bit of a let down.

    My $0.02

  88. the movie freaking rules!! yeah if i saw iron man after this, i would’ve been incredibly bored, i loved it. and actually, it was so good, i dont want to see another film for a long time, but thats just me

  89. Are you kidding?!?! ONLY 8.5? You gave Iron Man an 8.5, there is NO WAY that this movie is on the same level as Iron Man, like the kid on the VMA’s said… Iron Man was just to hold you over until the Dark Knight came out. You either have to reduce your rating on Iron Man or increase the Dark Knight. If I would have seen this before Iron Man, Iron Man would have been SUPER boring, the villians in Iron Man are a JOKE (no punt intended) compared to The Joker and VILLIAN I wont name so I wont spoil anything. Dont get me wrong Iron Man was a good movie, but dang compared to The D.K. it looked like minor league comic books, Marvel took it in the nuts after this one. The complaints on D.K. arent completely wrong, I can see where your going, I thought it was raping up at the 2 hour mark to, but honestly think about it, was Iron Man just as bit as good as the Dark Knight? That is what your rating of the 2 is saying.

    (Also whats you thought about that crappy Harry Potter IMAX clip, it happened so fast I missed what he even said?)

  90. Never read IMDB’s lists or take them seriously. People can vote 200 times and vote without ever seeing the movie. Do you realize how many people voted it a 10 out of 10 before the film ever came out?

  91. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)can’t believe anyone would not like this movie. I saw it with my 15 yo son this morning and at the end we were both in “shock and awe”. It is a great movie and you could take Silence of the Lambs+No Country for Old Men & multiply them by 1000 and not get the effect TDN had on us. It is an incredibly intense movie and no other movie ever has made me feel that it will take days at least to shake off the awe I have. Heath Ledger was phenomenal. I have to disagree with John on the length- I thought it was perfect. This film is simply an amazing entertainment achievment. I do hope Heath gets the best actor Oscar posthumously, his portrayal of the Joker was just literally INSANE!

  92. I didn’t read many of the other reviews but if you didn’t enjoy this film you can’t possibly understand Batman. Totally blew the 1989 version out the water. So far it’s been the best comic book adaption IMO. Better than those crumby X-men movies, Spiderman, and the countless others Hollywood botched up. Even Ironman pales in comparison. Second best being this year’s Incredible Hulk. The Joker completely stole the spotlight. But the villains should be the focal point. Heath Ledger pulled you into the Joker’s world. He mastered the character. The lack of humanity and, what seems like, lack of a soul is what made the Joker what he was. Simply calling him insane or crazy doesn’t even scratch the surface. And the Dark Knight is exactly what the name implies. He’s a hero but not in the cookie-cutter, boy scout since that everyone routes for like Superman. It’s like he stood in a gray area.

    With that being said, I couldn’t help but leave the theater in a melancholy state. Knowing Ledger will never reprise the role left me with an emptiness. Ledger’s performance was masterful. Not like Nicholson’s portrayal which was along the lines of the 60’s TV series. The scene where the Joker demolished the hospital while leaving in the nurses’ uniform culminated the character’s persona.

  93. how can u say the movie was good. it was disappointing.. cuz of the end and too much action even though that sounds stupid. but i did like the beginning tho, it was very original by just hitting the movie off with a bank robbery but just the movie tried to put too much stuff in it.

  94. I went last night to see this movie FANTASTIC!! . I don’t think that was too long it was perfect. I really think that this movie is an OSCAR movie.
    If the Joker won it is because is real. The bad guys are never defeated they are prisoner of the Good guys until they break free. That’s why we always need a hero.

  95. I think everyone who thinks it went on too long, or the end UN-necessarily dragged on was expecting a trilogy, I wasn’t.

  96. I didn’t think it was too long…in my mind Two-Face was proof that the Joker won. Had they just ended the movie with the Joker hanging from the building, that point of the Joker winning simply wouldn’t have felt as emphasized or meaningful.

    Also my own little nitpick…why was Lau a native Mandarin speaker being a business man from Hong Kong? Hong Kong is predominantly Cantonese. Heck you hear more English there than Mandarin. Sure there are ppl there who speak both dialects but Cantonese is the main language so it’s really unlikely that Lau’s character would be native Mandarin (not to mention his name would be spelled Liu in Mandarin).

  97. saw the movie it.is good, two face should have been a spin off and he should have been played by tom cruise, anyways did anyone notice the amount of blacks that was killed in the film. the black comminsoner, two black cops and two black gangsters. I was just hoping morgan freeman would stay alive in this picture lol. Heath played the joker, made him his own but I still put jack’s performance above his. two face character wasn’t deep enough for me, he and bruce was not friends like in the comics, he wasn’t a pretty boy like he should have been, his breakdown and hatred for the law wasn’t believable for me, two face would have been a perfect role for cruise. next it would have to bee the pigun and the riddler, it would have to bee real darker film. all in all I give it a 7 out of ten. my reason is the movie added too many variables to a simple equation

  98. sorry but as any critic of the movie comments must be made in defense for “the bad” that you have set upon the dark knight.
    yeah sure it might have been long as hell but like any good book
    the author must build up the setting and create the ideal seen for the story. Every clip of the story had a purpose within the story and essentially it was to show that no matter what there always will be an equal balance between the good and bad. Furthermore this was alluded in the beginning with scarecrow and the batman wanna be’s. know scarecrow might have been a waste in the fact that the comics might have made him more than he was in this movie but we must move on past this, as this batman movie series is not a regular DC comic story of batman but Christopher Nolan’s vision of batman. In saying this Batman begins must have alluded into the fact that the scarecrow was rather a mere pawn in the story so one should expect the same in the next film given the previous circumstances. And the last 30 min of the film where the best! the whole idea of “you either die and become the hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain” was pronounced in the juxtaposition between batman and twoface.
    I think that your 8.5 is a sore in the series of this batman films and as a fan and critic of the movie i would definitely give it a 9.5. =P
    p.s. no hard feelings and look past the action and drama and look towards the character interactions you’ll see how amazingly they connect and interact it’ll give you reason to change your opinion lol =)

  99. Almost a great movie. This was to date the best Batman movie made, until the part where Lucius Fox gets upset with Bruce about the phone tapping. Ok I get it, there are too many people in this country with something to hide and are afraid of the government of listening in on their phone conversations…but really, is it necessary to put this political crap in a movie? It’s sad enough Happy Feet had to make political statements. Pearl Jam was one of the greatest bands this country ever produced, now they are just whiney asses with instruments. Is there no source of entertainment left that we can enjoy without hearing Hollywood’s view on our government?

    If the phone taping crap would not have been in the movie I would have given it a 9 out of 10 due to the lenght. However I’m dropping to a 8 out of 10 only because of Ledgers performance. It would have been lower with out him.

  100. my expectations were so high and they were so disappointed. except for heath ledger, bravo great job i thought he was the best villain ive ever seen played. the movie would’ve been great if they ended the movie after rachel died so that they wuld have joker batman and two faced in next movie but harvey dies along with the movie. the people who made this movie tried to fit in soo much. that is a risk and reward thing. they took the risk and blewwwwwww it. very disappointing movie but joker is best heath for an oscar.

  101. A bad movie.

    The plot was like loose sand, with loose ends and too many climaxes.
    Half of the talking was difficult to understand.
    Actings was generally mediocre, totally not compatable with Batman Begins. Katie Holmes was dearly misssed and instead we had a badly cast plain looking girl with a clowns nose. Not exactly a heroine type.
    The directing was subpar, with many scenes being chaotic and illogical in their order. The final hostages scen was aslo very overdone. One such sequenece woudl have suffised to make the point.
    The planned assault on the Joker burning his money was a loose end that was annlounced but never happened.
    Especially in the final 15 minutes one could not even see what exactly was happening.

    My advice: Ask your money back if you can and use it to rent Batman Begins. This was worse than Batman & Robin with George Clooney, which I had previously rated as the worst Bat movie!

  102. I usually don’t get caught up in rushing to catch summer blockbusters on opening day. Well, I was bored on a hot summer day, and let’s just say, it was even hotter inside the theatre! Awesome movie! I agree that it was about 30 minutes too long, but there is enough action that moviegoers won’t really notice. I also agree that I was a bit skeptical about how Ledger would perform as The Joker, but he did not disappoint. It’s very unfortunate about his passing, but I definitely believe he deserves a posthumous Oscar. And at the risk of sounding morbid or insensitive, the fact that The Joker was being portrayed by a dead actor added a bit of “chill” and darkness to this movie that gave it even more of an edge. I give it a 9.5 out of 10!

  103. I would have liked to see scarecrow more, but gawd, three villains with major parts? Good movie on Nolan to have scarecrow’s biggest scene full of him getting his ass kicked.

  104. I disagree about the last half hour, maybe its because I’m a comic book guy. The police are out to get batman, that’s just how it is. Harvey Dent is a hero, how futile would batman’s mission be if batman allowed “message” to be tarnished by the joker. The movie absolutely did not feel forty minutes longer then it should have felt. The amount of time was perfect. Movie is perfect.

  105. I totally agree with you John about the last half hour of it but the movie was overally AWESOME. I think the scene where Harvey wakes up in the hospital, with a dramatic shot of his half-disfigured face, could’ve been saved after the Joker getting-caught scene for a better ending giving the audience a hint for a follow-up movie with Two-Face.

  106. wow!!!!!!!! i saw it today, freaking blew my mind. but John i actually
    liked the last 30-40 mins, and it didnt drag to me. it was a quick 2 hrs. and 32 mins, but people see this it is mind-blowingly good!!

  107. After seeing the movie I was looking for someone that could hit the point I wanted to make about the last 30min. And you hit it on the head. And without giving anything away. I wish I could express more about why I agree but I dont want to give it away to anyone that may happen to read the 180th reply to your review.

    nicely done

    Karmen

  108. I loved it except for one big reoccurring problem that happens in scene-to-scene transitions. Often scenes were cut from one to the other leaving a trail of unfinished logic. Two Face shoots a mob driver instead of a mob boss yet remains in the car as it tumbles. No explanation how the mob boss was or was not killed and two face walks away the same? The Joker drops the girl and Batman follows to save her but leaves the rest of the guests with the Joker. So what did the Joker do? Did he just tell his thugs “oh well, I guess Harvey really isn’t here so instead of tearing the place apart, let’s split without killing everyone for curiously uncharacteristic $%#$s and giggles.” Great movie, but I think there were some alarming gaps in logic that only an audience member wearing a batsuit could forgive. Personally, after saving the girl, I would have shot back up there and taken care of The Joker faster than he could say “$%*$s and giggles”.

    Yours truly,

    The Batman

  109. John, I totally disagree with your complaints on the final 30 mins of the film. Your belief that the time spent wasn’t necessary is completely absurd. You are also completely wrong about the scenes with Scarecrow. Oh and by the way the scarecrow had more than 30 seconds of screen time. I think you need to go see the movie again!

  110. I’ve seen the premier last night and I have to say that is the best Batman yet. All this fuss about the Joker role made me believe that am going to be disappointed again but it was the opposite. Ledger was evrything and more and he stole the movie. The only thing I have to criticize is couple of unneccessary dialogs and I think that Ms. Gyllenhaal sucked especialy in the scene before her death. Look for your self. (no emotions, bad acting) 9 out of 10. And one more little thing. In order to save money and time the craated Two-Face with compute graphics which I wouldn’t have done. They could have created it little more believable.

    Dino

  111. I just saw this movie this morning and yes it did run long but it still sucks you right back into the movie and I applaud Nolan for being able to do that. I dont believe the last forty minutes at all brought down the quality of this movie whatsoever though, its childish to think that way simply because something extra is added. This simply means that the writers and director are good at changing storylines within the movie which is not really a bad thing. The part at the 2 hour mark that you claimed ended the movie was very anti climactic and would be a disappointing end, I feel that the movie ended as it should.

  112. So, I was sitting there on my blog, with all my readers getting more and more anxious to see the new movie, when drkllpnt the great writer extraordinaire finds something that raised the hair on the back of my neck. It was the first 6 minutes of the movie!

    There are some other great stories about The Dark Knight and Batman in general at the blog as well. I think this may live up to the hype.

    http://themicrocosm.wordpress.com/2008/07/18/the-dark-knight-prologue/

  113. I went to see the dark knight today and it was probably the best movie I have ever seen. This movie had me on the edge of my seat. Heath Ledger did a terrific job as the joker. This movie is a must see and is probably going to win the best movie of the year.

  114. Let’s be honest folks with the unfortunate death of Heath Ledger there how’s been a lot hype about ‘The Dark knight.” This movie is a good movie, but to say it’s the best movie of 2008, I’m not sure about that. Everyone loved heath and I’m taking away from his performance, because I think he stole show. He brought something darker to the Joker character than Jack Nicholson, but I was expecting a much darker Joker. I wanted to see more MAYHEM and CARNAGE brought on by the Joker and that wasn’t delivered, but that’s okay. Once again Heath did a magnificent job with the character and I would have to say that Heath played a better Joker than Jack. Overall the movie was great, but don’t create this illusion around the movie as if this is the “Messiah” of the 2008 summer movies. The movie was great, but that’s it.

    If you want to see my critique of the movie with spoilers, go to blogger.com/brothawithavoice

  115. John,

    I saw the movie last night and I couldnt agree with you more. The last 30 minutes or so were unnecessary. Great movie for sure!! But you are right that if it had ended at the time you are talking about it would have opened a sequal for sure and ended this movie better… but as you and the other people know that saw the movie… the sequal is not what we would think it would be… at one point it looks like the sequal is going one way then at the end it changes… the last 30 took the movie from a 9.5 to an 8.5 for sure! But i will pay again to go see it this week… again! P.S. DONT TAKE YOUR KIDS… even I had nightmares about the freaky ass joker!!!!

  116. John, I agree that the movie did somewhat slow down after the first hour, as to whether or not it was necessary that he add the last 30 mins the “jury will be out” on that until the next one comes out IMO

    I don’t remember who posted the question/comment on here but according to some interviews that i read by Chris Nolan, he’s not inclined to add Robin to his series since he’s starting when Batman was young(er/ish) http://www.superherohype.com/news/batmannews.php?id=3189
    http://www.starpulse.com/news/index.php/2008/07/02/batman_bale_says_no_to_robin_

    And also the writer David Goyer said he’d more inclined to show villains in the next batman that have not come out on the big screen yet http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=17036

  117. RICHARD i saw the movie today and as for language its not bad at all maybe afew words here and there like maybe 2 or 3 in the whole movie. And as for the movie i think it Was good Not Great, i agree that it was too long and the fact it could of ended alot earlyer and theye even shoot them selvs in the foot abit with the ending theye do have. But i have to say that Heath Ledger’s JOKER is the best Villen in all the batman movies and no im not just saying that because he is dead but beacuse he just is. He was the best Actor in this film and deserves all the prase he gets for it. HE Makes this move!!!!!!

  118. i haven’t seen the movie yet but in my opinion i think maybe nolan used all the footage of heath ledger as the joker because they didn’t finish cutting the film until after ledger died so i think maybe he used all footage he had of him so he could put it out there and if that meant lengthening the movie then maybe that’s only a good thing. It’s released in Ireland next Thursday and I cannot wait!!

  119. Great review, but I really don’t think the movie was too long. I agree that cutting it off at that earlier point would have been a great cliffhanger for the next film, but I feel like adding the extra story into this film makes it view more like a comic, with several story lines and various resolution times.

  120. Thanks for the review. What about Language? Im wanting my 12 year old to see it. any vulgarities or cussing? What do you attribute the PG13 rating to? Thanks

  121. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)

    Thanks for the review. What about Language? Im wanting my 12 year old to see it. any vulgarities or cussing? What do you attribute the PG13 rating to? Thanks

  122. Let me first start out by saying thank you for telling it how it is man. I havnt seen this film yet but let me just say you just breathtakingly made me want to see it that much more even with the extra over time. Sometime people like more overtime but thats based on the person. By no way were you bashing this movie I coudl see and hear it in your voice how excited you were talking about it. Im seeing it tommorrow evening 12 am well which would be friday lol. But hay weve all had characters get the shaft in movies lets face it scarecrow I mean hes really not that great in the end of the movie either think about how they got rid of him in the first movie so yeah if he gets the shaft in this movie Id find it that much better we all kinda figured that anyways I mean come on hes no even in the reviews anyways so who care!!!!!

    But like I said thank you for the review It was nice to read a honest review!!!!!

  123. I haven’t read the review yet (sorry!) but I just watched the video and I am so pumped. I got a ticket to the advanced show at the IMAX tonight and I can’t wait to experience the film.

    I’ll hit you back up after I see the movie tonight.

  124. Here is my advice. If you are going to watch this movie, the first time round will probably not be pretty. DO NOT DESPAIR!

    Watch the movie a second time – I did. And all of a sudden, it WILL be that awesome movie that you wanted it to be.

    Why?

    Because the second time round, you knew what to expect. And on that, the film delivers. It is single handedly the film of the year with regards to ACTION scenes and an awesome villian. It has a good plot that you WILL understand the second time around. It will all come together the second time you watch it. And best of all, you won’t be expecting The Dark Knight to single handedly cure cancer, fight AIDS, and at the same time, take up the mantle of ‘Greatest Film of ALL Time’. No, you’ll actually go in like a normal movie-goer, watching a normal movie, and only THEN, will you be blown away, I promise you.

  125. Hey there…thought your site would be interested in this very cool promotion going on. Our mobile entertainment portal is giving away reserved VIP passes to Dark Knight screenings across the country. They also have behind the scenes content there… Thought your users might be interested…check it out: http://43kix.com/vip

  126. yup, cinco mas dias till the man of bat comes to your cavernous hideout called a theater. My question to John is, do they have a special dedication to Heath Ledger at the end of the movie, like an “In Memory of..” kind of thing? Oh yeah check out the masks they have of the clown dudes from the movie. They’re like $15 online at some Halloween site. Definitely something I’m looking at purchasing, like all 7 of em. Sweet. R.I.P Heath Ledger.

  127. i’m sorry john but i can’t see wanted being better, but thats just my opinion. i know i haven’t seen this, yet. i agree wnated was friggin awesome, and the effects were breath taking! but i just think TDK will be better

  128. Hello, Loved the review, good job. The one thing I must ask, is what you believe led to so much speculation to having about 4 villains in this movie. I’m not telling you to give it staright out to me, otherwise i’ll have no hype when i go see, but i just need to have some idea as to why their was a such a huge villain group created over the net, when theirs only 2, along with a 3rd cameo.

    Write back please

  129. Sorry, but Wanted is nothing but a pop flick with flashy effects and large breasts… I have no idea how anyone could give it a 9 and then give TDK an 8.5 … Wanted is a 7 at best!

  130. Hi John,
    Good review. We in Hong Kong cannot wait for the Dark Knight to show on the 17th. Many of my friends will see it since we are fans of the first movie. I guess most of us are really anticipating to see Heath Ledgers performance and one that hopefully will be unforgettable. I did watch “Wanted” but really didn’t enjoy it that much so I guess each person has there individual opinions so I am not all that concerned that “Wanted” got a 9.0. However I did enjoy RDJr’s performance in Iron Man. I am thinking that “TDK” will hit over 100 million in its first 3 days of screening.

  131. This is the best review i’ve read of it. I liked the video review, too. I hope the last 30-40 minutes don’t make me leave feeling unfufilled.

  132. John, can you please clarify what exactly happens to Scarecrow, I must know!!! He’s my favorite villain!!!

  133. i agree with you kate, yeah i watched the first 5 too and they couldn’t have started it better! but they left us hanging, if only they gave us the movie now…..

  134. I heard that Regal Cinemas is going to show the Dark Knight all night long starting Thursday at midnight, almost like a Star Wars.

    Guess they are as hyped about it as the rest of us.

    Can’t wait to see it. Watched the first 5 minutes on the web and I’m hooked from there. Even if the last 30 are irrelevant, I’m still game. Marking the 18th on the calendar!

  135. Hey Aarron,

    ummm… yes there is a “rest of us”. Unless Dark Knight makes $2 billion at the box office, then there are other people out there who think like Larry do.

  136. larry, i don’t mean this in a bad way, but there is no “the rest of us” we all want to see this film so bad we’d pay $30 for it. you said you were alot older, so maybe it’s for a younger crowd (again, i mean that in a good way). i think the target audience is for teens, and most people seeing it will be teens.

  137. hey john, i agree with your review, i’m seeing it on opening day and cannot wait, but i’m gonna ask a question, and i asked this on movie blog. who do you really think is the main character here, i know it’s a batman film. but who is REALLY the main character?

  138. You honestly think Wanted is a better movie than The Dark Knight. I AM OUTRAGED!!! Wanted had so many holes it was disgusting. I also thought the pacing for the movie was terrible and it did not effectively build to any climatic scenes. Also a magic loom?!?!?!?! Change The Dark Knight’s score to 9.2 and Wanted to a 7.1. OMG!

  139. I got my ticket and am pumped for the midnight showing opening night! I hope I haven’t set my standards too high but will find out in a week and a half.

  140. I haven’t seen ‘TDK’ yet, though at this point I believe John’s score rating to be a little off. I haven’t even seen ‘Wanted’ (rated higher than ‘TDK’), though, to be honest, I’m not over excited to see it at all. ‘TDK’ is going to be a great movie and will no doubt be better than ‘Batman Begins’ (even though I love this movie). I just wish that Katie Holmes reprised her role for this film, as it would give ‘TDK’ the continuity that the ‘Spider-man’ movies have (especially if they complete the trilogy that has been suggested)…Nevermind. For the rest of the cast, Heath looks great as The Joker and it will be interesting to see if he does get the Oscar that he apparently deserves. Bale will not disapoint, as he did a good job in ‘BB’ and everyone else will no doubt be impressive (Caine, Oldman etc). My only concern is that Nolan should finnish what he’s started. I’m dreading someone else taking over the frachise and screwing it all up. If Nolan passes on the next one they may give it to a less passionate director and spoil the series. Whoops Goyer co-wrote ‘BB’ and ‘TDK’…If he takes over then we’ve had it (Blade Trinity). Will someone, who has Christopher Nolan connections, please encourage him to direct one more Bat-flick, just so we have the trilogy every Bat-fan has been waiting for since they left the cinemas after watching ‘Batman Returns’?

  141. I’m sorry John but I too got to see a special screening of “TDK” and I have to disagree with you about ‘being to long’. The last 30 mins was perfect for this movie. The Rise and Fall of a great person becoming this horrible monster (Two-Face) is great for the movie. I have to say with strong feelings, you’re wrong John.

  142. I don’t know what the fuss about movie length is, I really don’t. Does a movie have to have a limit on length? Like a song has to be 4min long? Some of my favorite songs are over 10min long. Among my favorite films of all time are Munich (over 3hrs) and Apocalypse Now Redux (about 4hrs or more!)

    It’s not the length of your movie, it’s how you use it! I’ll be my own judge come July 18th… 14 days and counting. I gotta find some long movies to help kill the time in between…

  143. Personally I think theres to much hype for this movie,and we expect to be delivered with the greatest movie to come out in a long time.As a result of that we analyze and critique all of the aspects of the movie according with how we felt (obviously).Im not saying that John’s review was bad,but thats his opinion(freaking 8.5 out of 10 my [email protected]#…).Go into the movie with an open mind,and dont worry about the half hour gone wrong…is CHRIS NOLAN,there must be a reason.
    10/10!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ledger rest in peace.

  144. the dark knight well be a great movie to watch i think the batman movie are all great and im looking forward to see heath ledger in this movie………………………………………………….

  145. Here’s the confusion I think many of the visitor’s to your site are having with your rating of TDK and Wanted… it just doesn’t seem to have any order. Meaning, if Heath Ledger’s performance is Oscar worthy and TDK transcends its genre… how is it that “Wanted” gets a higher score or even the same rating as TDK? Wanted was neither transcendent for its genre nor were any of the performances even near Oscar worthy. These two films are not even on the same planet artistically… so the order of things would have you believe that TDK would be rated higher. You simply confused the order… that’s all.

  146. We are very excited for this movie here in our country. By the way are there any hints of AMH becomming The Riddler? I think Riddler would work very well in Nolan’s World. He can be played like the Zodiac killer.

  147. Hello John, GREAT reviews. I am now hungrier for Batman than ever.
    Please riddle me this: I am a musician so it is one of my favorite things to collect soundtracks from movies i love. Why haven’t you talked about the great job Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer have done for for this franchise.
    The score man, why didn’t you mention it?

  148. I think The Scarecrow would be necessary because he was left on the run at the end of Batman Begins and people will wonder what happened to him. And obviously making him a main villain wouldn’t work.

  149. how is i possible that you saw the movie before all of us?

    I believe what you are saying is correct (about how it is too long) but how can i fully believe your review if it could just be made up as it hasn’t been released yet?

    How and where did you see TDK?

    By now your probably guessing that i am very jealous that you have seen it. Its so close yet so far. =[

  150. The review seems to take an objective approach with both the first two hours followed by the final thirty minutes with a subjective preference as to where it should have ended, which I respect. As much as Ang Lee’s HULK was a bad movie and certainly doesn’t merit comparison, I felt it could have stood as an average psychological portrait- then they brought the “father” back in for a final battle scene and the movie went from, IMO, a 5/10 to a 2/10 due to how unnecessary the ending scenes were.

    In this case, the reviewer knocks it 0.5 but still rewards an excellent score. Whether some choose to see it in the same subjective way as John does is up to them, but at the very least he justifies his position and explains. No matter the circumstance though:

    This reaffirms my unhealthy anticipation (almost nervous anticipation) for “The Dark Knight!” Can’t wait!

  151. IF it is as good as I hope and expect….see it multiple times to bump up the revenue for it! Make this the biggest grossing movie ever! Shitty Spidey 3

  152. Defiantly, no question about it. I’m going to see it. 3 and a half stars!!!!! I can’t believe it!!!!!! Gotta see it!

  153. Hey John,
    I assuming we are supposed to get chills from Heath’s performance? I’ve seen a couple of clips from the movie and, though they definitely weren’t enough to say anything about the acting cause they were so short, they certainly gave me some goose pimples.

    And I have a question that goes along with Paul’s question from a couple of days ago. What under what age would you recommend not taking a child? I’m just a little concerned for my 10 year old sister, who, obviously, hasn’t built up a tolerance for disturbing images, though she did do OK with the hallucination scenes of Begins.

    Thanks,
    Lauren

  154. John How was it in Imax with the 6 scenes shot with the Imax Camera
    and John Is The Dark Knight In 3-D?
    Thank Mark
    P.S Great Review John you rule.

  155. This from MovieWeb.com …

    “While conducting interviews with the cast of The Dark Knight this afternoon, I got a chance to chat with director Christopher Nolan and Gary Oldman about the proposed third segment of their supposed Batman trilogy… When asked if he thought they should recast Ledger for the third film, or just not include the character, Gary thought it was a good idea…

    Oldman then took a moment to think about it some more, “Maybe we don’t need the Joker. Because we’ll have The Riddler.” Yes, Oldman alluded to the fact that The Riddler may in fact be the next on-screen Batman villain.”

    I personally got this information from WE ARE MOVIE GEEKS.com and you can view the full post with a cool “fan made” poster for the film HERE!

  156. So Joker is killed and we are left with 30-40 minutes of Two-Face development so we can have a full out war with him on the next film. Sounds alright with me.

  157. Hey John,

    I’m curious to know what rating you would of given this movie if it didn’t have the 30-40 minutues of which you felt were unneeded.

    Cheers.

  158. So you’ve addressed 2 of my concerns with TDK:
    – a) over-hype of Ledger
    – b) duration

    I have one more that perhaps you could shed some light on:
    – c) Batman being over-shadowed performance-wise, hence making Batman ‘less’ cool than he was in Batman Begins.

  159. Hey John,
    I enjoyed your review and do agree with you that when certain movies run too long it does kill there potential, example: pirates movies. loved those movies (yes even the third one) but obviously they were too long, but my question to you is, i agree that some people definitely jumped on the “heath ledger is awesome” bandwagon after he passed away, but why go into the movie not expecting him to do a good of a job as everyone thought?

  160. I was wondering how was Christian Bale’s performance, does he make the batman role his own, or was he better in begins.

    Since this movie is being compared to HEAT in some ways, do we get to see 2 great performances from bale and ledger( like pacino and de niro) or is it all about the joker.

  161. (i cant belive u think wanted is better than the dark knight and yes ive seen bothType your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)

  162. First, thanks Larry for that perspective. I can relate to your pov. I’ll still see it, but interesting POV non the less. (Btw, I hope your wrong). ;-)

    sahil, Nixon has an opinion, why don’t you go suck your thumb bra?

  163. John

    I did think of a question…..

    Would this be a movie that you would watch more than once in theaters?….that is if you had to pay for your tickets.

    I have a bet going with a few friends for $700 that Indy4 will make more money than The Dark Knight. When I made that bet back in April I was 100% confident that I was right but now I am not so confident and after reading some of the early reviews I feel like Batman actually has a shot. So what do you think John? Was I stupid for making that bet?

  164. Nixon
    “the dumbest review ever, you all should be shame for not giving 10 !!!!”

    I dont have any questions but I do have to say that Nixon is a fucking twat.

    How do you figure that this movie gets a 10? All you have seen is about 5 mins of a movie that is 2 hrs and 30 mins long.

  165. I just saw it.

    I’m older than most of you so my perspective is no doubt different. Bottom line: I hated it. If you’re expecting Batman Begins, you’re in for a completely different experience.

    Agreed; it’s too long. Should have been 1/2 hour shorter.

    Story is ok, but way too many tangents and characters which simply disappear. This contributes to the bloated extra 30 minutes.

    Ledger gives a fine performance, but this character is so heartless that you just lose empathy for him.

    The violence was over the top. For me, this was a “just because you can doesn’t mean you should” scenario. The movie didn’t feel like a comic book brought to the screen; rather, an action/drama with characters in wild costumes.

    No chemistry at all between Bale/Gyllenhall/Eckhart.

    Most of you will think I’m out of my mind for hating it. I hope you have a wonderful time with it. If you’ve already decided you’re going to love it, then you’ll pick it as your number one film of the summer. For the rest of us….yawn.

    One last thing. Not a spoiler, but…you’ll LOVE the origin of the Batcycle!

    Enjoy the popcorn

    L

    1. Wow Larry… you’re entitled to your opinion, but I couldn’t disagree more with your comment. I thought the Dark Knight out-did Batman Begins by far, and was one of the best movies I’ve ever seen.

      Firstly, you’re not supposed to empathise with the Jker, because he’s the protaganist in the story. the empathy is intended for bruce/ batman, harvey, rachael etc. reguardless, Heath Ledger was AMAZING, and had no trouble keeping my attention.

      I loved the story and how all the characters tied into it. And it’s clear by the way the audience is tied to the fate of the characters, that all the actors on the screen had a great chemistry.

      But hey, I’m only 21, so you’re right, an old fella like yourself would have a different perspective (judging by the $1 billion the movie made, a different perspective than most).

      sorry buddy, but your comment gets 2 thumbs down

  166. hey John I haven’t heard much about Two-Face and you didn’t even mention him in the review. I’m assuming he becomes two-face in those last 30 minutes your talking about. So I get u can’t talk about that. But i’d like to know how well the Dent character plays out.

    Because if I remember Nolan stated that “The Joker wasn’t really the main villian just a force of nature that occurs throughout the film”. If you could elaborate a bit it would be great, without revealing any spoilers of course.

  167. If this thread is any indication on how TDK will do opening weekend I’d say its about to break the 100 mil mark / post mark.

    So John are you flat out saying that the Riddler is NOT in the film?
    (Hope you expected all these questions). ;-)

    Also, there were stories of Heath delivering an Oscar worthy performance before he died, so yeah I think he will get nominated and I think he’s going to win. He will also prob win The Peoples Choice, Mtv award and possibly a Golden Globe. Just a vibe.

    I remember when the first Batman came out it was the same thing. Nicolson stole the film and made more of an impression than Keaton.

  168. Hey John

    I was wonderin if the transformation from Harvey Dent to Two-Face worked at all in the movie, if u can try to explain without spoilers, and was the look of Two-Face even more gruesome than you thought.

  169. Great review John, can’t wait until this film comes out I’ve already purchased my tickets and am counting down the days.

    July 18th get here soon.

  170. Hey John,
    I enjoyed youre review and do agree with you that when certain movies run too long it does kill there potential, example: pirates movies. loved those movies (yes even the third one) but obviously they were too long, but my question to you is, i agree that some people definitely jumped on the “heath ledger is awesome” bandwagon after he passed away, but why go into the movie not expecting him to do a good of a job as everyone thought?

  171. John your one lucky son of a bitch for seeing this so soon…I’ve already pre-ordered my imax tickets and am absolutley dying to see this thing mainly for Heath Ledger’s preformance.. great review by the way

  172. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)
    Thanks for the review John! Keep up the good (great!) work! Can’t wait for this movie to come out in Sweden …

  173. Would you rate Heath’s performance better than Jack’s or not. I’ve always thought Jack was good, but he didn’t make Joker that scary, just awkward and kind of weird. Heath seems to have that, but also the violence and creepiness.

  174. Hey, I saw what you said about Anthony Micheal Hall earlier, but do you think that he was good enough in the film to stand out at all. I’m a big “The Dead Zone” fan and with a little bit of talk about a possible movie to wrap up the series correctly I was hoping that he could get some notice in this film and like you said have a major resurgence.

  175. Hey John,

    I’m not really sure if anyone else here has addressed this yet, and I’m really in a pinch for time and can’t scroll through all 87 comments to make sure so…

    Anyway, I’ve always thought that the score for BB was vastly underrated… I thought that it fit the tone of that movie perfectly. Being somewhat of a lover of movie scores, what I’m curious about is what you thought of the score for TDK. Was it about the same as BB, was it better, or was it not as good?

    Thanks.

  176. @Paul

    Interesting you brought up Rolling Stone. If nothing else, Peter Travers also thinks Ledger should be in the running for a posthumous Oscar.

    Now, I just got back from ‘Wanted’. It was better than I thought it would be…and, to each his own I guess, but if ‘Wanted’ is more satisfying than ‘Dark Knight’, we are royally fucked.

  177. Hey Andy,

    When a studio asks you in advance not to print a review until a certain date, that’s called an “embargo” and you should honor that.

  178. I knew Nolan was gonna botch it on the runtime of the film. I felt the same way about the MOST of the last 20 minutes of Begins. He can’t help himself. It’s why Insomnia sucked elephant balls.
    Thanks for confirming this,Campea. Iron Man is still at the top of the mountain. Only Hellboy II might still match or outdo it this year.

  179. John, just a quick administrative question. I do reviews for the Herald Journal in Logan, Utah, about 90 miles north of Salt Lake City. When I go to screenings, they specifically tell us not to publish our reviews until the day of release. I’m not seeing this until July 16th. Doesn’t the studio get huffy when you do the review a few weeks early, or do they give you permission. Just wondering.

    BTW, I totally agree with your “Wanted” review. I’m excited to see “The Dark Knight” now too.

  180. Hey John,

    I know you harped on the length of the movie. Yet, without giving any spoilers away, could it be construed that the movie was extended to bridge the gap between this and the next movie, due to Ledger’s death? We all know that Nolan wanted to use Ledger in the third movie. Unfortunately, those ideas were shattered due to Heath’s untimely death. Now obviously I have not seen the movie yet; but the extra 30 minutes could have been added to give the studio the new direction they needed. Nolan has repeatedly gone on record saying that they were looking for a way to bridge the gap and fill the void. If that were the case, then the first two hours could be considered pre-Ledger and the last 30-40 minutes could be considered post-Ledger.

    This is all speculation on my part obviously, since I have not seen the movie yet. Yet, one has to wonder if the last part of the movie was not added in response to his death.

  181. John,

    I dont think u understand the last 30min. this movie isnt about the joker(villain wise yes its about batman but) its about the rise and downfall of Harvey Dent. his transformation into two face in the final 30(not exactly just the final 30) is def needed in this movie. i understand that u think it should stop after the transformation and lead into the 3rd with that but it imp. that it goes on and show the things it did.
    like the scene with gordon and two face, which is a powerful scene. i respect ur opinion but maybe u should watch the movie again and try to understand y nolan(a genius) put it in this movie….or maybe when u see the 3rd movie u’ll reconsider the last 30

  182. Hey Joey,

    AMH is an actor I’d love to see make a major resurgence, so I was pretty pumped about him being in the flick. Unfortunately he just there. Nothing good nor bad to say about him… he was just there. Small role, nothing significant.

  183. John

    great review. i just was curious what you thought of Anthony Michael Hall’s perfomance in the movie. I don’t want you to give anything away about the character or anything, just curious about your opinion of their performance.

  184. Hey John,

    Nice review, I like a honst review even is there is negitive aspects towards the film (last half hour).

    My question for you is: Was it THAT good? I mean was it a very dark movie? Also I am a fan of crime films, so I know that TDK is a superhero movie, but the crime aspect of the film, how does it stack up against others? And one more thing, how was Erron Eckheart, thats the one character I’m sceptical of. I just want to know if his performance is good and did two face seem kind of forced? I mean I want to see two face be givin a decent comic to film translation.

    Again thank you for your review and help.

  185. Hey George,

    I see what you’re saying… but why not then make Dark Knight 4 hours long instead of just 2.5? Longer doesn’t mean “more complete”.

    The movie (once you see it, you’ll know what I mean) was very complete after 2 hours.

    Once again, it’s not that the last 30-40 minutes were bad… not at all… they were just unneeded excess that didn’t add to the film, and thus made it feel stretched out.

  186. Better than Donner’s Superman movie? You’ve got to be kidding me. Granted Batman Begins is brilliant and from what you’ve told us the same can be said about The Dark Knight. BUT I wouldn’t go so far and say it’s better than Donner’s masterpiece. I think the hype is clouding your judgement, not that I would blame you – it’s happened to me. But when things die down, watch Donner’s Superman film and remember.

    Great review – keep up the good work!

  187. One thing Nolan has said is that he wanted to make The Dark Knight as complete of a film as possible. Thus I think that is why the last 30 minutes were included in the film and not saved for a sequel.

  188. Hey Jay E.

    I understand what you’re saying… but…

    No. I gave Wanted a 9 and The Dark Knight an 8.5 (both are excellent movies) because I just slightly enjoyed Wanted more. It’s a fantastic movie. My expectations or lack thereof had nothing to do with it.

    On that point… I wasn’t expecting either movie to be as good as they turned out to be. I knew they’d both be “good”… but I didn’t think THIS good.

  189. excellent review John!! you had all the references posted that i hoped you would mention. I’m very surprised to hear that character Daws is actually important. however, i’ve been peeing my pants with every whisper of this movie and when i get to see it i dont ever want it to end so i’m not so sure the extra half hour is going to lower my enjoyment so i give your review an 8.5 out of 10. LoL! looking forward to dougs reveiew too!

  190. John,

    Overall the numbers don’t really matter since they are arbitrary assigned in relation to your opinion, and we are all going to see the movie anyways, but…

    Would you say you gave “Wanted” a 9 because it was a fresh surprise and you didn’t expect it? And TDK an 8.5 because you had high expectations and it just barely didn’t hit the same mark as you wished?

    I find that when I see movies I know nothing about and are blown away by them I give them higher “scores” (ex. The Matrix, Fifth Element). But when I see a movie that I have been anticipating for a long time I am much harder score-wise since it failed to fully meet my (absurd) expectations, even if it is a “better” movie than those that surprised me.

    Hype and expectations are the bane of score-base opinions.

  191. Hey Moe,

    Every film is different as to when they should end… but I’ll say this…

    Yes, the last 30 minutes do kinda set up for the next batman film… BUT…

    If they ended the movie 30 minutes sooner, it would have been set up for the next film even BETTER.

  192. Thanks for the response, John. I guess i’ll have to leave the kids at home for this one, and take my wife to see it. I have to say, this site is the best movie site out there, in my opinion. You guys are damn entertaining, and you guys are also extremely accessible. LOVE IT! Also, will we get Doug’s reaction to this movie as well???

  193. Hey John…

    Great review – can’t wait to see it.

    One question: you and Doug often talk about movies running too long or how once they reach a certain point (either in time or in plot), that the movie should end.

    How to you determine that? I’m certain there isn’t a scientific formula, but is there something that you notice or feel in films that tell you that it’s time to wrap it up?

    One last question – you said that the last 30-40 minutes weren’t needed. But (without giving spoilers) do you feel that they built something in that last segment to start the third film from? Or better yet, do you think that there will even be a third film?

    Thanks again. Love the Movie Blog.

    Cheers.

  194. John, could you help me out here? I’ve been reading on multiple sites from multiple people who have seen the movie that a certain baddie bites it at the end. You’ve seemingly confirmed it in your review. What I want– nay, NEED– to know is, is the death concrete, or is it left open? Like, do we see a corpse? Or do the characters just THINK he’s dead? Great review, btw.

  195. Hey, John! Love the review! Had a question. Is it too disturbing to take kids to see it? I remember when Batman Begins came out, some parents complained that it was too disturbing.

  196. (The past decade has been this Movie Addicted 37 year old Comic Book Geek’s idea of Heaven on Earth!! And hell, as a kid I had SuperMan 2!!! 1 was cool but #2 set the bar at that time. “Kneel before ZOD!!” We all know how that worked out for him…
    Fast Forward several years………. Burton’s BatMan blew my mind by treating my beloved Comics and in particular the most interesting and complicated hero (well actually he’s more of an angry as hell, revenge filled, psychotic vigillante that enjoys brutalizing Bad Guy’s) with a measure of respect and Jack was Jack, and that’s always fun! My expectations were raised far too high as I walked out of the theatre at 3 a.m. opening KNIGHT!! Sadly, Bat Nipples were what were on the way instead of the Bad Guys getting a share of the Darkest Dread. It was Comic Book fans who got that instead, thanks HollyWood!! It’s the thought that counts, right? Actually… Then from out of the shadows of cult obscurity “Somebody” actually put some darn “Thought” into a crazy idea for a Comic Book/G.Nov based movie and what can only be described as “Divine Intervention” for casting the main character came together and what resulted is; in my oppinion “THE” reason Comic Book fans have been having a blast since 2002. And though “THE CROW” has remained relevant all these years just becase they did it right in every possible way, Brandon Lee defined the entire experience. He Rocked and “Martial Arts” had nothing to do with it!! Since Heath’s passing I have “To a lesser degree” been feeling the return of that “Glorious, Excited, Hollow feeling Sorrow” I felt for some time before & after “The Crows” much delayed release and having my suspicions that Brandon Lee was very special and left us just after giving a “Legendary” performance verified with undeniable talent and a passion that I just knew was going to be matched by Heath Ledger before he passed away, then the irony. Why did we have to lose them so sudenly, tragically? I guess there job here was done maybe. They played the role they were born to play with perfection. Stunning you said, Stunning! I believe you! So, to John I say Thank You for your earlier than expected review and your honesty and what sounded like fairness! Now it’s Dejavu man!!For the second time that I can remember the anticipation of a film fills me with (At this moment) such excitement, anticipation, sorrow and sense of loss!! Brandon Lee’s “Eric Draven” haunts me “IN A GOOD WAY” even still, it appears that Heath Ledgers “Joker” is going to haunt us all now. Brilliantly!!! My point to all this? If Brandon& Heath and any like minded fans out there can “Feel Me” right now; I say “ROCK and ROLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” Let’s go to the movies, I’ll buy the PopCorn cuz it’s gonna be a Dark Knight!!)

  197. Maybe I missed it, but did John even mention Christian Bale once in his video review?

    I think the more film savvy people out here knew the edgier, psychotic Joker that Ledger would play was going to be brilliant. But Bale was fantastic as Batman in the first movie so his lack of praise makes me feel like he got overshadowed.

  198. Oh thank Crom, that’s all i have to say.

    My only concern was that the fight scenes would not have moved on from ‘shake ‘n confuso-vision’ that was in the first film but it looks like they have so i’m over the moon. That’s a shame about Scarecrow but i loved the character so much in Begins and what Cillian Murphy did with it, and was hungry for more of him by the end that i’ll probably just be happy to see him on screen again in this one, wasted or not; we’ll see.

    @krazie835

    John didn’t say Scarecrow got killed off. It might happen but John didn’t say that. He said ‘taken down’, he might just get arrested.

  199. Great review john, cant wait to see it, one thing thought, is there anyway u could tell us about the look of Two-Face without going into any spoilers, i simply must know, and an 8.5 is a great score and should be enough for anyone to go see the movie

  200. The Dark Knight could be 6hrs long and still not long enough for me, if the last 30mins is simply Bruce sitting in a chair dreaming about the Joker I would be fine with that. Just give me Dark Knight!!!

    Someone said 85% is an A- well where I’m from that’s a B+ at best.

  201. Hey Jeff,

    I don’t think you understand what a “blog” is. Also, I don’t write academic reviews… I’m a film fan… and so I like to give context when I give my opinion on something.

  202. I read a little of the review but I want to keep myself pumped for it and not read it all and get spoiled going into it, though I did notice the 8.5 rating out of 10. And hey I can live with it, I certainly stand by your rating as I have many other ratings you have for other flicks in the past.

    I cannot wait though to see this myself :)

  203. Stop giving the reviewer here a hard timem about DK’s 8.5 and Wanted’s 9.0..didn’t you guys know this website is “the official home of correct movie opinions”. He must be right.

    In reality, his review was as awkward as his websites tagline. Half the review was about how we was afraid of the backlash he was going to get if he didn’t say he liked Ledger. Reminds me of a Harry Knowles review in which Hary spends half the review describing his wheelchair ride to the theater.

    It’s a review, review the movie in confidence. If you are aware a review is just an opinion why worry about any backlash and why feel the need to address it.

  204. Hello John,

    Im new here, just have one question for you:
    When is The Dark Knight releasing in INDIA ??

    I tried to find out but there’s no information about its release….
    I would love to watch this this movie first day after reading your REVIEW.

    Thanks a lot,really appreciate your work & opinions.

  205. Hey John, did you hear another early review of TDK compared it to the Godfather 2 and Heat?

    What do you think of that comparison?

  206. this suit looks amazing- waaay beter then any other batman suit ever used in a movie.

    i wonder if theyll be bringing in a robin in the next one?
    hey..
    why not?

    some of your responses to that question might be “batman forever”
    but i think that it wouldnt be such a bad idea.

    as long as they stay away from mr freeze and the ridler this time

  207. “Was Ledger better than Downey Jr. was in Iron Man
    In my opinion yes”

    An apple to an orange. It would be a better comparison if Downey was a bad guy. A better comparison is “Heath better than Jack”. I should note that when you say “the mark so purely that even Batman himself is made to feel like a secondary character” it does ring a slight alarm bell with me because that was one of the main criticisms (not mine) of the 1989 Tim Burton film, in that the Nicolson Joker made the Keaton Batman look like a secondary character.

    As for Scarecrow, if that’s the screen time, shit. I would rather like him to be in a jail cell next to Joker or one of Joker’s crew at least. Then again, Dawes took the dude out with a stun gun…

    …the IMAX comment is a good one. Indeed, perhaps when ‘Dark Knight’ comes to a regular screening, let’s see if your opinion is changed any.

    …and that’s where I have to stop. Because I cannot disagree or agree with you on the film at this time. As with most of the masses, I haven’t seen the film yet. But I *will* say this:

    Whether or not I wind up agreeing with you, it is an excellent review. Hardly any spoilers, you focus on the actors, cinematography, script, second unit action (stunts), and the only spoiler you do give away indirectly (I’m not pointing it out if anyone missed it) is something that most of us had already suspected.

    As for the rumors of “the third villain”. I always thought it was a nod to Scarecrow or a character like BB’s Zasz, or Gator is a codename for Croc, or something like that. But since there was discussion a few months ago about Deathstroke, I could have sworn I seen the character….

    …in an ad for The Gotham Knight.

  208. Great review John, July 18th can’t come soon enough. It looks like The Dark Knight will make up for how much Indy 4 sucked.

  209. Hey John,

    First off, great review. I enjoy not only hearing positive reviews but CRITICAL reviews, so this was really refreshing. However, you said that the movie went on for about 30 minutes “too long” after Joker’s story had been wrapped. I have a good guess as to what that additional 30 mins is about, and though I haven’t seen the film yet, Nolan has been quoted saying that TDK is Harvey Dent’s story, and that the Joker just cuts through the film like the shark in Jaws. While I’m not a critic and my opinion may/may not change after I watch the film, don’t you think you might have been just a little harsh on that assessment?

  210. John answers the question:
    1) Did the new Bat suit work?
    Yes. Actually the new design of the suit is a part of the story and is worked in well.

    …Hmmm. It’s interesting that they chose to make the new design an actual part of the story. I am actually happier about it now. Look forward to it and thanks for your response.

  211. John – Thanks for the review and I’m stoked that you enjoyed the film so much.

    I’m anxious for July 18th….I tell you the days are getting longer as my anticipation grows.

  212. Ok, to answer some questions:

    1) Did the new Bat suit work?
    Yes. Actually the new design of the suit is a part of the story and is worked in well.

    2) Is it better than Batman Begins?
    In my opinion yes.

    3) Was Ledger better than Downey Jr. was in Iron Man
    In my opinion yes.

    4) Is there another Super Villain introduced besides Two Face and The Joker?
    No. Not that I noticed.

    5) Was Ledgers performance better than Anton in No Country?
    In my opinion… yes… just slightly.

  213. FROM Rob Forest
    Sorry. I actually do have a question of interest for you. In your opinion, John, how does the new batsuit come accross in action and movement on the screen in TDK?

    FROM ME

    THE NEW “BOBBAFETT”BATSUIT AND THE “SLIMER” BALE.

    How they looked in the scream?
    Its something you can note while seeing the movie?

    Can you give us your opinion ?
    it worked well?

  214. Hey Guys,

    Man… sorry, but I can’t help but giggle a little bit when people say “How can you give it a lower score than Wanted?” When they haven’t even seen Dark Knight yet.

    Yes, I gave Wanted a 0.5 higher score than The Dark Knight… because… I enjoyed it 0.5 more. What can I say… the last 30 minutes really sucked a little steam out of my enjoyment.

    NOW REMEMBER… I’m NOT saying the last 30 minutes were “bad”… there’s some good stuff in there… but it was unnecessary and made the movie start to drag after the first two hours. Some will disagree, but that’s my opinion and I’m not afraid to say regardless.

    Still… AWESOME movie, Loved it, and I think you will too.

  215. Sorry. I actually do have a question of interest for you. In your opinion, John, how does the new batsuit come accross in action and movement on the screen in TDK?

    I have always had a problem with the way the fashion designers feel the need to “outdo” the last batsuit. For me the batsuit that the makers of “BATMAN: DEAD END” use is the best batsuit that can possibly be made. If you don’t know what I’m talking about here is a link to it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUdG0VFFNSU . I just don’t get why they always have to make it so fancy. It’s a simply costume design. It’s a classic costume design. That’s just me. So, yeah… What do you think about the outfit and how it comes accross on the screen.

    NOT THAT THE WAY THE SUIT LOOKS IS GOING TO RUIN THE MOVIE FOR ME, IT IS JUST A MATTER OF PERSONAL TASTE AFTER ALL.

  216. great review.. though i havent seen the film, i have to say that i like the idea of Scarecrow being brought down easily….it kinda makes it seem more realistic—not every criminal gets taken down it a dramatic scenario….take real life serial killers–sometimes cops just get lucky and there it is. I am hoping that it makes the film seem more realistic……like i said i havent seen it yet but thanks for the review and getting me geeked for the next three weeks to pass.

  217. I dont care what John scored the film. Numbers and Letters are so unreliable when reviewing diffrent media. I like just to know what was good about the film and what was not good about the film. Im happy overall that the troubles with BB were fixed in this film. However John forgot to mention about the fighting in this Batman. He talk alot about how he didnt like most of the fighting in BB so i like to know if its much better in this film. So when your fist date with Ling?

  218. Hey john great review…got me soo pumped..but i just one small questions..which is a greater movie overall Ironman or TDK, since you did rate both of them the same. and Wanted is better than both?!?!..

  219. THE BAD

    My biggest complaint about “The Dark Knight Review” is one that no one will agree with at first… but if you think about it after a while I think you’ll change your mind… at over 7min. 50sec. the review was too long. Sorry, it just was. At about the 5min. 20sec. mark I was ready to call “The Dark Knight Review” the best film review of the year so far… and maybe one of the top 5 movie reviews of the last 3 or 4 years. Yeah… THAT GOOD. Now, I have to be careful here to not give any spoilers away… so if some of this doesn’t make sense to you… it will after you see the review. After about the 5min. 20sec. mark, the major components of the movie review gets finished… and it was the PERFECT time to stop the movie review and move on to the next film review. PERFECT. But instead John felt the need to blabber on and on about how bad the last 30-40min. of the movie was… that was a big mistake in my opinion. All that energy, perfect pacing and focus that the movie review had for the first 5min. 20sec. got lost. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that the last 2min. 23sec. were bad… they just were very redundant for this movie review. Something significant happens near the end (I can’t say what) that I believe was a total waste, and ultimately made the last 2min. 23sec. seem like an overstated and redundant waste of time.

    Johns words were WASTED… and I don’t mean he was on drugs. He’s on screen for about 8min. After the first 5min. and 20 sec. he just starts to yammer on and on with no seemingly apparent rhyme or reason of where he is trying to go. Wheee… thanks for putting that out there. This may sound like a little bit of a spoiler, but it’s so redundant in the movie review that it really doesn’t matter. John can’t even end the review like a true super film reviewer. No no no… he gets too caught up in his own blah, blah, blah and yimmer-yammer really. There was no need for John’s words to be used in that capacity… you could have had the same review and had it be just about 2min. 23sec. shorter and it would have been exactly the same. Such a waste

    Sorry John. No disrespect. Just feeling the need to point out the redundant nature of the end of your review.

  220. i understand you didnt like the last 30 or 40 minutes of the film. or thought it was unnecessary, but you gave wanted a 9. you gave it a 9 after you said there were some scenes that were laughably unbelievable.
    Just a little thrown, potential oscar performance, one of the best youve seen in the last 3 or 4 years and it gets an 8.5? it is your opinion, but shouldnt you have some sort of scale with which you grade things? a measure of standard?

    Love the blog, honestly i do. checked it everyday when i was in afghanistan. THanks brother.

  221. I gotta say that I was also surprised to see your score after reading the review – I expected to see a 9 or 9.5.

    Been reading this blog for a long time and I hardly ever comment – just thought this deserved it.

    Love the site – love the podcasts – keep up the good work, guys!

  222. Hey John, One of the things I loved about Batman Begins is that “explains” a lot of things. Do they do that in this film?

  223. HI JOHN!
    Thanks a lot for the review.

    9 FOR WANTED 8,5 FOR DARK KNIGHT??
    WELL ITS YOUR OPINION ANIWAY

    Why the lenght would have so much weight in the ”MOVIEBLOG”movie score,after all looks like its a hell of a movie.

    30/7 IN NAGOYA … TAKING A DAY OFF…IM THERE,FIRST SESSION!!!

    If you care to anwer me this:

    THE NEW “BOBBAFETT”BATSUIT AND THE “SLIMER” BALE.

    How they looked in the scream?
    Its something you can note while seeing the movie?

  224. No, it wasn’t better than Superman (1978). It was very good, but it lacked the epic scope, wit, and excitement of Superman.

    I don’t want to knock Batman Begins, but I have to defend Superman. It’s a classic.

  225. It seems the one thing i was worried about actually happens. But as long as the the rest of the movie is great it’s okay

  226. (Type your comment here. Make sure you’ve read the commenting rules before doing so)

    my dear jhon…it can’t be possible that Wanted is a better film than THIS Batman movie..you talk about Batman fantastically..but why..WHY?? 9 out 10 to Wanted an “only” 8.5 out 10 to batman…?? WHY?? ’cause the last bad 30-40 minutes are not a very good explanation..

    your blog is my second bible..

    bye davide..

  227. Hey man, my only question I hope you answer is do you think is-aight it’s a 2 parter-

    a) is it better than Batman Begins?
    b) best comic book film ever?

    Thanks

  228. ok, so IronMan wasn’t 2.5 hours long… but the action was indeed 5 minutes long, I really enjoyed it, but really… only 2 action scenes… is there a better balance in TDK?

  229. Hi John,

    Thanks for the reply.

    I dunno, it just seems like your review is slightly incongruous with your score especially because Iron Man got an 8.5 from you as well. Oh and 85% is an A- so it’s not that great :)

  230. Hey there Eric,

    Yes, I said that FOR THE FIRST TWO HOURS of the film… then the film went too long (about a full 30 minutes too long), which reduced my enjoyment a touch.

    But dude… how can you say “ONLY” an 8.5? That’s a great score!

  231. Hey John,

    You said that TDK would have been one of the best movies in the past 3-4 years and you also said that it’s one of the best movies (not just comic book movies) this year yet you only gave it 8.5/10. In fact, you gave Iron Man 8.5/10 and surely you don’t think that Iron Man is one of the “best overall films” this year?

  232. 2 questions. You probably can’t answer this one.

    #1. Is there another popular villian introduced in this movie? I heard there was. I don’t want to know who though.

    #2. I hear The Heat being brought into discussion a lot, and that this movie inspired Nolan with some of his heist scenes. Do you get that feeling watching it?

  233. Excellent review. Holy timesink batman, that runtime is crazy for a comic book movie. Glad to hear that Heath Ledgers last performance will not disappoint. Now to wait 2 weeks…

  234. Hey Ginger,

    No, it’s not absolutely necessary to see it in IMAX. I saw no issues at all with it…. but hot damn did it ever look great on IMAX.

  235. Hey John, good review…Just wondering, do you think it is totally necessary to see the movie in Imax? I want to, but I’m just hoping that the scenes filmed normally won’t llook distorted or out of place when viewed with the scenes filmed in Imax, and vice versa…any issues with it?

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