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From the Notebook

-The second Twins Podcast of the year is up, Dan Wade, Dan Carey, Seth Stohs and Jeff Straub all joined me for an hour long roundtable discussion. I will be the first to admit I’m a little rusty, but I think other than some little snafus and a lot of verbal pauses I feel did alright.

-Saw The Dark Knight over the weekend. I tried writing up a longer review but my thinking isn’t real clear yet. I didn’t enjoy the movie as much as so many others have. The movie was a bit long and the “arc of the story” was muddled. While it is a good movie, it’s simply not one I would call “revolutionary” or “The best ever” or “best of the genre”. I will say I think Heath Ledger is quite deserving of Oscar consideration for his role as the joker (though I haven’t seen a lot of movies this year so I have no idea about what kind of competition there will be for the supporting actor role (or best actor?)). While my suspension of disbelief in Batman Begins was never really challenged, I can’t say the same for The Dark Knight. I say go see it, but it’s a guarded recommendation.

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6 Responses

  1. Totally agree with your thoughts on the Dark Knight. Definitely enjoyable, but the the arc was definitely drawn out and tempo was frustrating. Ledger and Morgan Freeman shined the most. Overall theme was an interesting one. The execution of the Two Face origin was excellent. But a little too much sadistic violence for my taste. At times, I actually thought I was watching the latest installment of Saw. Other than those complaints, I was content. Christian Bale is as good of a Batman you can ask for. Much more believable than Michael Keaton (not the Keaton did a bad job. He was pretty decent.)

  2. And I also, at this point, think Batman Begins is a slightly better movie, due to the fact that it was revolutionary step forward for the superhero genre. I may see it a second time. This time at an Imax theater.

  3. I like how the movie tackled some difficult philosophical questions. What is justice, can unjust actions have just results, vigalantism v. the rule of law, I doubt it will get people reading Plato’s republic or Aristotle’s Politcs, butkudos to the filmmakers for tackling so many complex subjects.

    Just, maybe, they should have focused on some sort of recognizable story.

  4. The movie was awesome. Aaron Eckhart did a great Harvey Dent/Two Face. I appreciate that a main line villian such as Dent was not brushed over as Jim Carey’s side kick.

    Heath Ledger was superb, but he did to Nicholson’s Joker what McGuire did to Ruth’s home run record – he beat it but didn’t revolutionize the role. All that being said, a Leading man Oscar is deserved and not just a memorial.

    Eckart deserves a best supporting Oscar – throw in Best picture, best director, a slew of effects awards – and Titanic is going down!

    Regarding Scribe’s Saw comment – I actually appreciated the fact that the Saw moments were never grotesquely shown – hinted at, some after effects such as Dent’s face were shown – but the really gross parts were left out.

  5. Nicholson’s joker was a gangster with make-up. Because we all like Nicholson as a gangster, we like him as joker. Take off the make-up and make him irish = The Departed.

    No doubt Ledger took this role in a different and better direction. Ledger was actually acting, which is very rare to see these days.

    No comparison between the two.

  6. regarding my comments on the film having a touch of Saw in it. That boat scene where each boat can make the choice to blow the other up. And that scene where Joker tells Batman and Gordon they have to make a choice whether to save Dent or Dawes. Very reminsicent of the predicaments people get themselves into in the Saw movies. That and the whole Joker threatening to or actually slicing peoples mouths open to make them smile. Very sadistic. Not necessarily over the top. But very sadistic. I read an article where Ledger told the interviewer that to prepare for the role he rented a Psycho-like motel room and isolated himself there for about a month to meditate and perfect his Joker mannerisms and state of mind. His portrayal was borderline haunting, regardless of the fact that he offed himself in real life with meds.
    Oscar-worthy? yes. Possible? yes. Joaquin Phoenix was nominated for his role in Gladiator, a blockbuster motion picture, which ended up winning over the Academy despite its popcorn-flick feel. Dark Knight has the ability to do the same. But as long as the Academy goofballs are praising films like Little Miss Sunshine. I don’t think Ledger will actually win the award. I’m sure he won’t complain, either way.

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