Monday, July 21, 2008
Quick movie reviews
The Dark Knight: Most times I view hype as suspect, but this film is worthy of the praise (and huge box office). Crafting a dark, smart, and epic movie, Christopher Nolan has evolved from Batman Begins - the guy can finally shoot an action scene where you can tell what's going on (gone are the extremely tight close-ups and shaky camerawork)! This is largely an ensemble piece and Batman/Bruce Wayne is just another player, which works to the movie's credit given the abundance great performances that we get. Obligatory Heath Ledger praise: yeah, he really gets lost in the role of the Joker and comes across as truly unhinged. I don't know if anyone else has made the connection, but Gotham's mayor is played by Nestor Carbonell, who previously played the role of Batmanuel in the lamentably dead-too-soon live action version of "The Tick". Hilarious! Out of all the very good comic book adaptions to come out this year, this take the top honors.
Batman: Gotham Knight*: I'm usually no fan of anime, but I dug this. I guess I just need Western source material to enjoy this medium (see also The Animatrix). It started out a bit slow and some installments are better than others, but still I found it entertaining overall.
*Yes, this is not a movie per se, but it is related to The Dark Knight as it takes place within director Christopher Nolan's Batman universe.