It’s been a year since our caped crusader stopped the toxin attack on Gotham, now Batman (Christian Bale), Gordon (Gary Oldman) and new district attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) are cleaning up the streets of Gotham, and they’re doing a good job at it as well. Crime rates in Gotham are at an all time low, and criminals are afraid to do… criminal like things at night because of a little guy called Batman. That is until a certain clown prince of crime, The Joker (Heath Ledger) decides to take a stroll into Gotham.
“Madness, as you know, is a lot like gravity, all it takes is a little…push." The Joker
Bale is great in the film, even though he has that…voice, you know what it is. He does Bruce Wayne, Millionaire Bruce Wayne and Batman all brilliantly. But this is the Joker’s film. This is Heath Ledgers film. Ledger as the Joker is quite honestly my favourite performance in just about any film I’ve ever seen. Every scene he is in he just steals, he grabs it and runs away. You forget you’re watching a performance, you forget that he’s following a script; it’s just the Joker being himself on camera. There is no greater praise an actor can get, there is method acting…and then there’s Ledger as the Joker. It’s a league entirely on its own. What I love so much about Ledgers performance as the Joker are the little things, the slight lick of the tongue, the changes in his backstory, and his laugh, which is just menacing, psychotic and riveting. But by far, the most compelling aspect of the character is the intellect. He’s a villain, but everything he says makes sense, and that terrifies Batman. He’s not a psychopath; it’s all an act. He plays the audience as much as he plays Batman… it’s fucking brilliant. I could talk about this character and performance all day, but I’ll continue with the rest of the review.
“You either die a hero…or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain." Harvey Dent
The Dark Knight has so many memorable scenes that it hurts, thanks again to Nolan’s superb understanding of the world he has created, his sublime direction and killer writing. He just nails the whole film. The opening bank robbery shot in IMAX (AKA best format ever), Joker’s pencil trick, the hospital explosion, cellphone in the belly, Jokers fall, Harvey’s death and on and on. But by far, my favourite scene in this entire movie, my favourite scene in the trilogy, one of my favourite (lots of favourites in this film) scenes ever put on celluloid: the Interrogation. The scene is so incredibly written, insanely directed and the performances from Ledger and Bale encapsulates the characters better in just 3 and a half minutes then most movies do in 2 and a half hours. Seriously, if you haven't seen The Dark Knight in a while, YouTube the scene and just salivate at how perfect it is. Film at its finest.
“I’m not a monster. I’m just ahead of the curve.” The Joker
The ending is cathartic and incredibly unexpected, genre defying, emotional, not happy? Batman taking the blame for Dent’s death and riding off into the night with the police chasing him behind, Gordon knows Batman is the hero Gotham deserves, just not the one they need right now, a silent guardian, watchful protector…a dark knight. BANG. END CREDITS. Liam wipes away the tears, hits the replay button and watches it again for the six thousand and forty seventh time.