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Random Reviews and Stuff

The Hyped Knight: A spoiler filled assesment of Batman: The Dark Knight

Posted by Mister Random on July 30, 2008

One Sentence Review

A good film but in my opinion slightly over-hyped with too many sub-plots 

Plot Summary

The film opens with the Jokers gang breaking into a mob bank and succesfully robbing them of millions of dollars. As the robbery progresses more and more of the jokers gang are killed off as their usefulness ends, until just the Joker remains.

We first see Batman breaking up a drug buy led by the scarecrow, he also ends up repremanding some copy cat Batmen who also try to intervene. He later meets up with Gordon to plan to take the whole mob down. The Mobs banker finds out about the plan and takes all the money with him to China.

Batman then follows him to Hong Kong, using absconding with the entire Russian Ballet on a boat as a cover. In Hong Kong Lucius Fox plants a “jamming device disguised as a mobile phone in the Mobs building under cover of a business meeting allowing Batman to infliltrate the building and kidnap the banker and bring him back to Gotham.

The Joker is then hired to kill Batman and starts off by killing a copycat Batman and threatening, Harvey Dent, the current police commisioner and the Judge in charge of the mob trial unless Batman turns himself in and unmasks. The Joker suceeds in killing the Police Commisioner, and the Judge but Batman manages to stop him from killing Harvey Dent. The next day the Joker threatens to kill the Mayor through an early obituary in the paper.

The attempt on the mayor fails but Gordon is apparantly killed saving the mayors life, the next person named by the Joker is Rachel who Harvey tells to go to Bruces penthouse. Harvey is gradually becoming unhinged and nearly kills the scarecrow based on the flip of a coin until Batman stops him. Batman then tells Harvey to call a press conference the next day as he is going to give himself up to save lives, Harvey does as aasked but claims to be the Batman himself.

This causes a rift between Bruce and Rachel and as Harvey Dent is taken to prison his van is attacked by the Joker and his gang. The Batmobile is badly damaged whilde defending the van and Batman is forced to set it to selfdestruct before leaving on an enclosed “Batcycle”. Batman manages to catch up with the Joker and when it looks like the Joker is about to kill him Gordon reappears and stops him and as a result of his actions ends up being promoted to Commisioner and getting slapped by his wife.

Later that evening we find out the Harvey Dent has been kidnapped by someone hired by the Joker, Gordon lets Batman interrogates the Joker and finds that Rachel has been kidnapped as well and that they are at separate addresses but only 1 of them can be saved. While Batman and the police race to save them Harvey Dents face falls into a pool of liquid while trying to escape his chair. The Joker manages to escape from his cell and sets off a bomb at police HQ.

Batman arrives at where he thinks Rachel is but it turns out to be Harveys location, and while Harvey is saved Rachel is not and dies in an explosion, Harvey is also caught in the fringes of an explosion and his face is burned due to the liquid he was covered in. 

The next day a former employee who worked out Batmans identity goes on TV to expose Bruce, but the Joker phones in and threatens to blow up a hospital if the employee is not killed within the hour. This leads to lots of people trying to kill him and Bruce eventually saving his life before the hour is up and the Joker blows up Gotham General Hospital. Prior to this the Joker torments Harvey Dent who eventually breaks and goes after the corrupt cops who kidnapped him and Rachel and the mobs boss. In order to find the Joker, Batman turns every mobile phone in the city into a sonar (similar to Hong Kong) and gets Lucius to moniter them.

The next Joker plot is to rig two ferrys with explosives with a remote on each for the other ferrys bomb and tells them that if anyone tries to escape or if no one presses the remote by midnight he blows them up. Batman is able to track the Joker and tells Gordon where the Joker is. At the same time Harvey arranges to kidnap Gordons family.

At the Jokers location, Batman finds out as a Swat team raids the location that people in Joker masks are hostages and Doctors and nurses are the real kidnappers forcing him to take out the Swat team in order to save the hostages lives. The Batman then confronts the Joker and manages to stop him from blowing up the ferrys and no one on either ferry uses a remote either.  As this was going on Harvey phoned Gordon and got him to come to where Rachel died.

Harvey driven mad by what has happenned threatens to kill Gordons son infront of him. Batman tries to reason with Harvey but gets shot for his troubles, but recovers in time to save Gordons sons life, but Harvey gets killed accidently during the confrontation. In order to preserve Harveys legacy Gordon and Batman agree to put the blame on Batman instead of revealing the truth. 

Thoughts and Analysis

Overall The Dark Knight is a very good film but as always with films as hyped as the Dark Knight was probably not quite as good as some people make out, I also dont think that if Heath Ledger was still alive his performance as the Joker would be quite as hyped and personally I wasnt all that enthused with the take on the Joker that The Dark Knight took.

My main issue with the film is that like Spiderman-3 they tried to cram too much into it (though it is a much better film than spiderman 3) and while Harvey Dents transformation into Two-Face was believable and well plotted out the resolution of the plot seemed to me to have been something that could have spun out into the next sequal rather than being kept in the Dark Knight, similarly the reasoning for having Batman take the blame for Harveys actions seemed ill thought out as they IMO could easily blame the Joker for them, and in a sense that would still be true. Similarly Rachels relationship with Harvey Dent seemed to me something contrived simply for the purpose of killing her off and driving Harvey Dent into becoming Two-Face rather than being a natural thing.

It is this abundance of subplots which in the end reduces my enjoyment of The Dark Knight as there is easily enough to put into two films rather than one even given the films length. But overall I would still say that the Dark Knight is well worth seeing

Liked

  • Batmans dissappearing acts
  • Continuity from the last film
  • Early Nods to Two-Face in Harvey Dent
  • Gordons progression to commisioner
  • Playboy Bruce Wayne
  • The Origin of the Two-Face name
  • Lucius’ response to attempted blackmail over Batmans identity
  • Lucius’ integrity 

Disliked

  • Too many sub plots
  • Rachel having a relationship with Harvey Dent seemed too contrived
  • The pace of the film was slightly too slow for my liking
  • The Joker in a female nurses outfit its just plain wrong
  • No ferry was blown up
  • The reasoning for putting the blame on Batman when the Joker could easily be blamed

Rating

8/10 – Worth watching but not as good as some would have you believe and far too many subplots

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