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Buzzkilling Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight (2008) August 2, 2008

Posted by Richard Bolisay in Hollywood, Literature.

Directed by Christopher Nolan
Cast: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Gary Oldman

Call it a segue from a truckload of expectations to a flock of incarcerated yawns. The sight of Mahone in the beginning is a jumpstart, a giveaway of partial happiness, the drugged star holding a machine gun, only they have to kill him off at the end of that scene and let me suffer. Vigilance is the price of safety – – true – – the only morality in a cruel world is chance – – false. The only morality in a cruel world, the world we are living in right now, is religion – – demi-gods, reincarnated souls, fake prophets. Chance is omnipotent; the religions are not. Morality is determined by sinners not by gods. Gotham City is a beautiful experiment. Everyone relates to Batman because he doesn’t have superpowers – – the gadgets he possesses are no way extraordinary, made only to deliver his prime needs and security – – and like everyone of us, Batman is vulnerable, Batman commits mistakes, Batman is fooled, Batman gets hurt, Batman is hopeless romantic, Batman is vain, Batman is human. . .we even throw to him all our troubles – – Bahala na si Batman – – he is the dork knight everyone loves. Unlike Parker, he is not divided by love and responsibility (why does it always have to be love? – – oh yes, love makes this world go ’round) but by himself and responsibility. Conscience, ethics, safety – – he thinks about them a whole lot, he is the embodiment of sacrifice – – why the hell would Joker dare to challenge him? Is that how this world has become – – wicked and morally bankrupt? Yet evil has to exist and Batman too – – but that’s fiction. Bush can even claim that he’s Batman. Too bad Arroyo cannot – – we’re not that dumb. Nolan is a god when he made Memento – – talented, brave, and pound for pound. Here he is confused – – the dolly that rotates and gyrates – – he proves that that shot is not only reserved for Hugh Grant or Sandra Bullock flicks. Ledger terrifies, but when he sinks in, he leaves a mark of sadness – – because the thought of his death adds to his performance, come on, admit it. People clamoring for a Peter Finch Oscar, please, don’t wake him up in his coffin, give him peace, he might even thank you for it, and well, he doesn’t need it. Enough immortality in this world – – too many immortals, nowhere to place them. Burn Eckhart’s face in three or four sides and he would still be marvelous. Dent is well-characterized; the arrogance is charming. Bale is quite tired from start to finish; give him tea. The box-office serves the DC executives right – – might as well give more than half of it to Africa – – but show them the film first, the hunger might forget itself. Walk on my shoes: a lame childhood – – no escape given by superheroes – – pathetic, loser, right. A hard-sell. * *



1. YerskY - August 5, 2008

hi. agree po ako sa sinabi mo kay bale. gayundin sa oscar para kay ledger. papahingahin na natin siya. pero di ko naman naisip na patay na siya habang pinanonood ko yung tauhang joker, pero ako lang ito. nagustuhan ko rin po yung memento, dahil dun kaya sinusubukan kong masubaybayan ang mga pelikula ni nolan. kaso medyo naidlip nga ako nang konti dito sa dk. isa pa pala, medyo hindi ako kumbinsido sa transpormasyon ni dent.

ok po itong blog mo, kung may panahon din lang ako, lagi akong dumadaan dito.

2. Richard Bolisay - August 5, 2008

salamat ayer, daan ka lang enitaym.

(hindi naman ako nakatulog sa dk; napapikit lang ng matagal. haha)

3. dementedguy - August 5, 2008

Nice review, Richard. If you don’t mind, I would like to add your blog to my blogroll. Thanks. :D

4. Richard Bolisay - August 6, 2008

Thanks, demented guy. Sure link up! Anyway, who’s this?

5. dementedguy - August 6, 2008

Just an anonymous movie lover. :D

6. Richard Bolisay - August 6, 2008

Hah, I know who you are! (We share links and we share the template. Haha.)

7. tofu kid - August 7, 2008

you don’t understand Batman at all. is Bruce Wayne a sinner?

8. Richard Bolisay - August 7, 2008

should batman be understood only by his fans? i have no qualms about batman at all – – he’s a great figure – – but Nolan is quite excessive about him, I guess.

Or aren’t the fans the ones who are excessive?

9. me - August 7, 2008

It’s obvious you waited for Noel Vera’s review and followed his leads. To rate Dark Knight with 2 stars is far-fetched. From the way you review films it seemed you are unhinted. You are a Noel Vera fanatic who thinks that Batman Returns is better than Dark Knight. What a crap way to appreciate a movie. What really escapes me is why you believe Noel Vera’s questionable taste. You are like Oggsmoggs. Get out and stop reading Vera to develop your own taste. That’s for you and Oggsmoggs, fake critics. Noel Vera must be very proud of himself, yuck.

10. Richard Bolisay - August 7, 2008

Haha – – you have a bright future in local TV, me.

(Plus, haven’t watched Batman Returns yet so I guess that’s a loss on your part.)

11. Oggs Cruz - August 7, 2008

Anybody who’s indifferent to The Dark Knight is a Noel Vera fanatic, or anybody who writes about his opinion for that matter. Nice logic that person’s got there.

Hi Chard, liked this better than you did. It at least got me interested (without yawning) for its entire duration. I didn’t like the action scenes (oh wait, Noel didn’t like the action too, I must be aping Noel… I’ll start flogging myself.) and that questionable speech in the end which made all the film’s promise of sense senseless.

12. Richard Bolisay - August 7, 2008

this guy probably saw the dark knight innumerable times, hence his judgment. and i bet he is one of those clamoring for ledger to receive a posthumous oscar, oh-la-la. great sentiment.

that gordon speech in the end is like something reserved for a messiah. my eyes rolled – – but then maybe i’m just a fool not getting all these things about superheroes. i still like nolan, but even kubrick makes films that nonetheless leave you hanging out of nowhere, but yeah, I know that’s beside the point.

13. Oggs Cruz - August 7, 2008

Best thing Nolan did is the Following. I didn’t buy The Prestige. Memento gets weaker and weaker after every other viewing. Insomnia pales in comparison to the original version. Batman Begins is like The Prestige, with masks and capes. Oh well. I guess I get grumpier with age.

14. Richard Bolisay - August 7, 2008

Where did you see the Following? I can’t download it in Torrent. Memento still looks good in my second viewing, but nothing beats the first of course. I often get him confused with Aronofsky, must be the feel of their films, but I thought Pi is strangely good. Must be because Nolan has lost his rawness as a filmmaker? His films work visually – -some parts in Prestige are quite good- – but his narratives fall in the end.

15. Oggs Cruz - August 7, 2008

I have the DVD, Chard. I still owe you some DVDs (those Bollywood films, etc.). I like Aronofsky better, but I see the comparison. They’re both products of the nineties American indie boom, or something. Nolan’s a good writer, it takes a lot of intelligence and wit to make scripts like Memento, The Prestige, or even his Batmans, but there’s something that happened on his way to mainstream; his directing got a bit more conventional, a bit more contrived, I guess.

16. me - August 8, 2008

There’s no wrong rating a film with 2 stars out of possible 5 but were you able to justify yours on Dark Knignt in your review? Read your review again, Noel Vera fanatic. The same advice holds true: stop reading Vera to cultivate your own taste.

17. me - August 8, 2008

For crying out loud that Dark Knight is a 2 stars out of 5, you were actually trying to make a statement. Well, the film was not perfect but 2/5 is too big a statement on your taste. You are a FAKE!!!!!!!!!! Kapal mo, boy!!! Kapal ng mukha mong ipagsigawan sa buong mundo ang taste mo. Kunting hiya naman jan.

18. bittergrace - August 8, 2008

wow, what’s with the unwarranted aggression? honestly, the anonymity that the internet offers is not an excuse to forget that there’s a courteous way to disagree with someone else’s opinion.

and lol at the idea of you, chard, being a tasteless, immodest plagiarist. it’s so absurd, it’s out of this world…no, it’s a parallel universe. hahaha. it’s probably the same parallel universe where that person is a real critic.

19. Richard Bolisay - August 9, 2008

In this case, I wonder, who is the one crying out loud? Who uses excessive exclamation points to prove his worth? Somehow it does not surprise me that while you are defending The Dark Knight as a good movie, you have not even told us why. Where is the point of discussion, jonathan? Or maybe you just need attention, huh? Don’t worry, right now, you’re having the time of your life. How long would that last? A minute?

Peace out. Don’t spread yourself, you’re contagious.

(And thanks, Ayn. hihi.)

20. Ash - August 9, 2008

I happen to be a Batman fan, but I like your review of The Dark Knight :-)

21. staycat260 - August 10, 2008

Kakapanuod ko pa lang nito pero mukhang ok naman sa palagay ko. Kakaiba nga sa ganang akin ang batman na ito dahil di niya talaga market ang mga kids unlike dati. Brutal at bayolente ang pelikulang ito mula sa umpisa hanggang katapusan. Panalo sa sound at special effect lalo na sa dumadagundong na dolby sound ng The Block. At ang Gotham City dito parang walang pinagkaiba sa normal na syudad sa Tate. Galing din ni Heath Ledger, feeling ko sya talaga ang bida sa pelikula. Mas ok na Joker ang title.

Sa kabilang banda, inantok ako sa haba kasi akala ko tapos na yun pala di pa. At gusto ko ang pagrebyu mo Chard.

22. me - August 11, 2008

Well, I’m crying out out loud of your fakeness and you are crying out loud of your bad taste and fanaticism. Now, can you honestly say Dark Knight is a 2/5 film? Can you? Huh!

23. Richard Bolisay - August 11, 2008

Thanks Ash and straycat.

Ledger is terrific. I like your point that Batman has now moved into a different audience, more likely older ones, how it tends to be more serious, more conscious, more human. The length is quite tiring, I must admit, and though I can sense the effort to deliver in Nolan’s part, I still find it a misfit.

24. tofu kid - August 11, 2008

fanboyism is very different from understanding or even appreciating the concept of a dual identity. (e.g. Bruce Wayne’s dual identity with Batman, Superman’s dual identity with Clark Kent, and no, i didn’t take this from Kill Bill Vol.2). kindly get that straight, otaku.

i can understand the issue with length. it has been criticized for having high points all the time (Denby, The New Yorker). which is way different from all the ‘realistic’ movies you might be seeing right now (enormous low points). which gets me to the point that a little peek at some other summer movies (e.g. Ironman) won’t hurt your TDK viewing experience. i’ll pay for your ‘admission’.

25. Richard Bolisay - August 11, 2008

That’s clear, robin. I think preference is not a concern here, I pick films that I watch because I pay for them – – not necessarily because I like them or I don’t like the films that I don’t watch. But if you would seriously pay for my admission, then let’s have that date. :D

So not liking the Dark Knight is a sin? (just thinking aloud)

26. me - August 11, 2008

it’s never a sin disliking dark knight, but were you able to articulate your reasons? hello! legit critics would go as far as rate TDK with 2/4 stars, that’s a 50%, and that they are already making statement, but rating it wit 2/5, that’s a 40%, is a statement you must be willing to defend at every turn. now lay down your valid, i mean valid, reasons of your dislike. and that 2/5 came out after vera came up with proclamation that batman returns is better than dark knight, huh! now, since you are trying to tell the whole world that your taste is above every critic’s there is, you must be willing to enumerate your reasons why TDK is so a baaaaaaaaaaaddddddddddd film it’s in only worth 2/5. alam mo kung ano labas mo sa aming film buffs? masyado kang atribida at nagmamarunong, itsura mo lang! now, lay down your reasons otherwise you don’t have business telling the whole world TDK is so a baaaaaddddddddddddd film.

27. Oggs Cruz - August 11, 2008

It’s a sin according to the gospel according to Heath.

28. me - August 11, 2008

well, between oggs and heath, on whom to go to bed with, the difference is as vast as sky and sea. kay heath, tinitingnan mo pa lang, nagwa-water water ka na, kay oggs, ewan. :D so i would believe in heath more than in oggs and bolisay… that’s according to me. harharhar.

29. Richard Bolisay - August 12, 2008

Great mathematical defense! I flunked math in school so I guess I wasn’t able to see that analysis. Opinions justify themselves well enough, so I believe it all boils down to delivery. I may have not articulated my points very well but if being fake means having similar opinions to other people, or being fake is not being able to appreciate The Dark Knight, THE greatest film of all time according to YOU, or being fake is not subjecting myself to fantasies of necrophilia, then yes, haha, rejoice my friend, I’m a fake.

30. me - August 18, 2008

Huh!? Actually, it’s not about you not liking TDK. It is about you *making a statement*. TDK is not the best film of all time but from all angles it IS a good film rather than a bad film. Almost everyone , even its supposed critics, will agree with me that it IS a good film. So it’s not like making an issue about you not liking this good film as it is about you making a statement. Anyone shouting to the whole world that a good film is a bad should be ready to support the claim. TDK is a good film and almost all will drink to that assessment and you say it’s bad film, now can you oblige giving us enumeration why your claim is not a by-product of your phony?

31. me - August 19, 2008

nakatawa kayong mga fake. look at pinoydvd. pag sinabi ni vera na pangit ang ganito-ganiring pelikula, nagsisipaniwala naman ang kanyang mga alagad, kasama ka na dun at si oggs. look at wall-e thread, before noel posted a review, halos positive lahat ng comments sa wall-e. after the post, ayan na, naggagayahan na sa mga comment ni noel sa wall-e. mga fake kayo. plastik. stop reviewing if you don’t have a mind of your own, fake!

32. yoshke - August 25, 2008

hala, hala, grabe naman ang discussion dito.

I love Dark Knight. (Well, I gave it a 5/5, haha.) Pero I like your review (and you know I love all your reviews), it’s amusing and it makes sense. But then I recognize our differences (sa taste, sa criteria, sa experiences, sa expectations, sa kung papano natin tiningnan ang pelikula). And I’m not you. Hehe.

At natawa ako nang bonggang bongga sa comment ni ayn. haha. she’s so right.

Keep your reviews coming.

33. Richard Bolisay - August 26, 2008

I love the term “unwarranted aggression.” Haha. Maraming salamat ES. I hope I can keep up.

34. yoshke - August 26, 2008

yeah, that’s just so ayn. haha

35. me - August 27, 2008

yeah, you’re so right! my “unwarranted aggression” to a rather “unwarranted aggression” to a good film TDK. hahaha. yeah, i’ve been asking this fake critic of yours to enumerate his reasons for not liking TDK and making a statement but what did he show? hahaha. it was he who did “unwarranted aggression” when he made a statement that a good film like TDK is a bad film. hahaha. kaya di umuunlad ang pilipinas, somebody trying to pin down a fake and his friends come to his defense at all cost as if he was aggressed. huh?! who is the aggressor here, me who doesn’t dilly-dally in disproving a fake, or him who is too makapal-ang-mukha to lambast a rather good film? hahaha this is like nepotism: let’s-rescue-him-because-he’s-our-own. indeed! hahahaha of course, im so right. hahahhaa

36. bittergrace - August 27, 2008

Dear me, I find it amusing that you are so amused with yourself. Had you made at least one reasonable argument in this discussion then perhaps your smugness would be justified. But your arguments are based on assumptions and assumptions are insupportable bases for rational debate. Furthermore, there is no such thing as “unwarranted” aggression towards a film because they exist on a field that relies on the subjective. Therefore the audience or a critic is entitled to feel aggressive (either positively or negatively) towards it and it is all just a matter of opinion. From there, discourse,hopefully intelligent discourse, can begin. However, attacking a person’s character without satisfactory evidence does fall under my concept of “unwarranted aggression.” Jumping to conclusions only makes you look stupid and calling people names is just immature. Please remember that the next time you think so highly of yourself.

37. Richard Bolisay - August 27, 2008

very well said, ayn – – i can’t believe you said all i wanted to say.

oh for your sake, my friend, i did not like the dark knight because:

1) i find it excessive, some parts i cannot follow, i find myself cringing in my seat and closing my eyes for a minute (beh – – Wanted is more fun, violent with less pretense)

2) it’s the type of indulgence that i don’t like

3) superheroes do not fascinate me, not unless they’re not in costume

4) christian bale’s lisp is distracting

5) and what’s with the gordon speech in the end? after all of the visual suffering?

see, the reasons are very personal. i can’t admit to like it if i don’t, more so if everyone, including you, likes it. and one more thing, stop polluting other people’s blogs. as i told you, you’re contagious.

38. me - August 28, 2008

“Dear me, I find it amusing that you are so amused with yourself.”

I find it MORE amusing that you are so amused with yourself by taking messianic complex stance in this discussion. So dear you indeed.

And who is more amusing than a obscure wannabe who try to make a statement on a good film? Tell me.

“Had you made at least one reasonable argument in this discussion then perhaps your smugness would be justified.”

Yes. The argument that your best friend who postures as critic tries to making a statement on a good film. Hello?!!!!! He rated Bakit May Kahapon Pa, a one-dimensional revenge movie, with 3/5 while a a definitely better and good film TDK 2/5. Hello?!!! That is the argument!!!!!!! Don’t try butting in if you don’t know what and where is the beef.

“But your arguments are based on assumptions and assumptions are insupportable bases for rational debate.”

Assumptions? You may be referring to your fake best friend’s reviews. They are purely assumptions.

“Furthermore, there is no such thing as “unwarranted” aggression towards a film because they exist on a field that relies on the subjective.”

There is “unwarranted aggression” when a good film comes out and you try to make a statement shouting to the whole world it is a bad film. That is unwarranted aggression, so shut your mouth up.

“Therefore the audience or a critic is entitled to feel aggressive (either positively or negatively) towards it and it is all just a matter of opinion.”

Aggressiveness in your friend’s case is unwarranted. TDK is by all means A GOOD FILM, WHY PAN IT IN THE FIRST PLACE??????!!!!

“From there, discourse,hopefully intelligent discourse, can begin.”

I was asking him to enumerate his reason for his belief that TDK is a bad film. I was asking an enumeration that will support his unwarranted aggression to the movie, because his review failed to articulate it. There should be no discourse if in the first place your fake critic-friend can’t support his STATEMENT.

“However, attacking a person’s character without satisfactory evidence does fall under my concept of “unwarranted aggression.””

I am questioning your fake critic-friend’s making a statement on TDK without valid supports. My concern was not him not liking TDK but him and his guts making a statement. As I said in my previous post, it is not a case of an audience not liking a film as a case of a fake making a statement on a good film.

“Jumping to conclusions only makes you look stupid and calling people names is just immature. Please remember that the next time you think so highly of yourself.”

So that means, your fake critic-friend looked stupid big time because he jumped to a conclusion that the good film TDK is a bad film? Your statement states “makes you look stupid”, so does that mean you are immature yourself big time?

And please, Im not thinking highly of myself, I’m just putting things in their proper perspectives and your fake critic-friend in his proper self, so shut up.

39. doc sixto antonio - August 28, 2008

waw. ang sarap ng spam.

40. bittergrace - August 28, 2008

I never called you stupid. I am saying that the way you’re acting gives off the impression of stupidity. “TDK is a good film!” is not a truth, it is just an opinion and Richard has every right to think the opposite just like you have every right to disagree with Richard’s opinion. But you argue with all the arrogance and futility of a barking puppy behind a cage. When you learn to argue without resorting to immature words like “Shut up!” then maybe you can inspire thought-provoking debate rather than annoyance at your offensive behaviour.

41. me - August 28, 2008

“I never called you stupid. I am saying that the way you’re acting gives off the impression of stupidity.”

Your messianic complex where it isn’t needed gives off an impression of your stupidity more than my desire to squeeze out valid supports from your fake critic-friend.

““TDK is a good film!” is not a truth, it is just an opinion and Richard has every right to think the opposite just like you have every right to disagree with Richard’s opinion.”

TDK is a good film, it is my opinion and opinion of 98% others. Even Vera who proclaimed Batman Returns is better didn’t opine it is bad the way your fake critic-best friend did. Now, can you tell me if it is indeed a bad film? That TDK is a good film is an opinion in nature but it ceases to be one when almost everyone nominates the common opinion. FROM ALL ANGLES, TDK IS MORE A GOOD FILM THAN A BAD FILM. And it seems you didn’t get the gist of my posts. I will spell it for you again. I am not making an issue about an opinion from your fake critic-friend, however I do from his MAKING A STATEMENT.

“But you argue with all the arrogance and futility of a barking puppy behind a cage.”

I argue with fierceness to pin down an obscure fake trying to pass off as critic. See that?

“When you learn to argue without resorting to immature words like “Shut up!” then maybe you can inspire thought-provoking debate rather than annoyance at your offensive behaviour”

Your unnecessary messianic complex and your fake critic-friend’s “unwarranted aggression” on TDK initiated and heated up this useless debate. Hahahahaha

42. me - August 29, 2008

ikaw e, ang hilig mo sumawsaw, di ka naman tatagal. nakatikim ka tuloy. hahahha para kang kaibigan mong si bolisay, ang hilig gumawa ng statment pero di naman kayang panindigan. kakahiya.

43. Richard Bolisay - September 8, 2008

me, yes you, i hope this article gets into your mind. read and understand it, ok?


or if not, maybe i just wasted my time. (see my effort to save you from your own silliness!)

44. noelvera - January 26, 2010

Haw, chard, this is really funny. Poor guy–with English like that, can he actually understand the dialogue? Or does he just look at the purdy pictures? I wonder.

I’m actually a little jealous. If he hates me so much, why doesn’t he visit my blog? I promise to play nice. I won’t bite. Really.

And to clear up any ambiguity, for which I apologize to meh–sorry, me. I do think, thinking about it, that Dark Knight is worth spreading evenly over a wheat field for fertilizer. It has the stink of mass produced chemicals about it.

Hope that helps.

45. Richard Bolisay - January 26, 2010

hello noel, i forgot the childishness of this thread, but reading it again, it seems that i was even taking the exchange of words seriously, not that i shouldn’t but it strikes me as hilarious now. you seem to be every critic’s litmus test here. how does that feel? :)

46. noelvera - January 27, 2010

Frankly I’m offended–why didn’t he think I hated Dark Knight? I hate clarifying myself!

47. imackigarge - September 6, 2011

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