Wednesday, June 25, 2008

First Look: "The Dark Knight"

Rolling Stone's Pete Travers has gotten a sneak peek at Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight (Warner, 7/18), and he pretty much creamed his critical pants.

To wit:
Heads up: a thunderbolt is about to rip into the blanket of bland we call summer movies. The Dark Knight, director Christopher Nolan's absolute stunner of a follow-up to 2005's Batman Begins, is a potent provocation decked out as a comic-book movie. Feverish action? Check. Dazzling spectacle? Check. Devilish fun? Check. But Nolan is just warming up. There's something raw and elemental at work in this artfully imagined universe. Striking out from his Batman origin story, Nolan cuts through to a deeper dimension. Huh? Wha? How can a conflicted guy in a bat suit and a villain with a cracked, painted-on clown smile speak to the essentials of the human condition? Just hang on for a shock to the system. The Dark Knight creates a place where good and evil — expected to do battle — decide instead to get it on and dance.
I'm trying not to get my expectations up too high for this one. But Travers' largely spoiler free review (I only had to skip a few portions) has really got me excited. Admittedly, I was not a big fan of Nolan's Batman Begins, which I found a bit...underwhelming and overpraised. But I am fully expecting The Dark Knight to make up for that.

Travers finishes up the review by saying:
The haunting and visionary Dark Knight soars on the wings of untamed imagination. It's full of surprises you don't see coming. And just try to get it out of your dreams.
Of course, as Jeff Wells points out, Travers is not necessarily to be trusted in cases such as this. He has a tendency to go a bit overboard on films that don't always deserve it. Although I've always respected Travers, he's no Pete Hammond in that regard. But I can't help but feel that he's right on the money with this one. It sounds as if it's exactly what I hope it will be, and if it is, then The Dark Knight truly will blow the summer wide open.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am glad someone agrees about Batman Begins.

Daniel G. said...

Somehow Batman Begins has grown on me a bit over the last few year. The first viewing didn't blow me away, though I always like Bale. My hopes are pretty high for Knight.

Rick Olson said...

I kind of agree with Daniel ... I liked "Batman Begins" better on the second viewing. I am getting so sick of this summer's crummy mainstream offerings, I'm just itchin' for the knight. I hope Travers is right.