Transporting Harvey

The Harvey Dent transportation scene was ridiculous.  How does an 18-wheeler NOT jack knife or have its tires ripped to shreds while changing lanes, crashing into cars, and hitting walls at high speeds?  How does The Joker manage to fire an RPG at a police vehicle and not manage to demolish it on the first hit?  It took TWO shots to take out the police car.  Yet it took ONE RPG shot to completely wreck the Tumbler (“Bat Tank”, er “Bat Mobile”).

Maybe the problem with the Tumbler was the same problem with the bat suit?  Maybe in Batman 3 (or 6?), there will be a scene of Bruce asking Lucious if he can have a Tumbler that can withstand missiles and Lucious will say “Yes, I have just the thing, except it will not be able to withstand a kick from a small child or cat claws.”

Secondly, it was known that transporting Harvey would lure out The Joker and it was known (Harvey even alliterated to this knowledge) that Batman would show up to save his ass.  They seemed awfully unprepared when things went ACCORDING TO PLAN.  The Joker shows up and it’s like chaos.  Not to mention the horrible “comic relief” from the 2nd driver of the van.

Now that I think of it, and all of Nolan’s films, he may have a good eye for visual impact or weaving complex stories (I actually do love “The Prestige” and “Batman Begins”), he clearly doesn’t understand humor or timing of humor in a movie.  Poorly timed, poorly executed.

Bookmark and Share

These Legos Don't Fit Together

I found this commentary on the TDK board.  I can’t seem to find the details of the original post, but it matches my own assessment pretty well, so I share it here as-is and unedited:

If I understand it correctly, Gordon faked his own death (even though it’s edited to make it look like he got shot for real) to protect his family. Batman then decides to announce who he is but Dent takes his place. The Joker intercepts the Dent convoy but is himself intercepted by Batman. Carnage ensues including the destruction of large parts of the Gotham road system and various buildings and, seemingly by fortune, Batman, the Joker and, the driver of the convoy who is, of course, Gordon, reach a point at which the Joker is captured. Unfortunately for them that’s what he wanted all along.

So: doesn’t make very little sense when you try and add it up from characters’ POV. Why would Gordon legitimise such a ridiculous plan: there’s no guarantee it would work and he’s placing the lives of his men and Dent in very real jeopardy because he knows the Joker is coming for them. Batman may suffer from incredible pride but there’s no way he could have planned, forseen or even imagained such a successful scenario as him flipping the Joker’s truck, faking his defeat and Gordon’s reappearance because it all happened just metres away from his vehicle. The Joker needs Dent for phase 2 of this particular plan os his attempt at killing him is self serving. He needs to be caught AND he needs the guy with the phone in his stomach to make it with him otherwise he’s got no way to get Lao or the money. He surely should have walked into the station with his men a la Se7en!

I put this to a friend and he suggested the whole ‘agent of chaos’ angle which doesn’t work for me because Dent, Gordon and Batman ren’t agents of chaos and that’s the force they’re fighting against. If the Joker had initiated this then, yes, I could agree. But this is their party which the Joker crashes.

(I also have another one which is a little smaller and more of a quibble. But all of the Joker’s plans are well prepared, well researched and devoted entirely to a double aim in which everyone looks one way while he goes the other. The only case that’s not true for is the boats. There’s nothing the Gotham PD can do OTHER THAN look for him. That does seem a) out of character (this is supposedly the beginning of ‘the game’… he doesn’t seem to have prepared particularly well) amd b) a writer’s convenience. The end of the Joker Batman story comes again through circumstance. Not sure on this one but thought I’d mention it while I’m writing).span>

But am I wrong? Maybe I missed something? Thoghts comments and flames wanted and expected…!

Lots of salient points in there.

Bookmark and Share

Brokebat Mountain

What was with the lovey-dove eyes Bruce Wayne was giving Harvey Dent when running into him and Rachel Dawes having dinner?  Clearly Bruce had determined where Harvey would be so he could casually bump into them while on a date with the Russian Ballerina, and then coordinated to join their table.  The purpose of that scene was to connect the characters and set up the rest of the scenes in the movie between Bruce and Harvey.  It was supposed to display Bruce subtly evaluating Harvey, who was coincidentally dating Rachel Dawes, his love interest from “Batman Begins”.  The problem with this scene is that instead of subtle observation, instead of evaluation of his character, the impression the scene gives is that of Bruce giving lovey-dovey eyes to Harvey.  If the sound was completely turned down, most observers would think Bruce had a schoolboy crush on Harvey.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

But in the context of the scene, it was awkward and a display of mediocre acting, questionable direction, or poor editing (if the editor had multiple takes to cut from, I doubt that was the best possible versions he could have picked).

Are we being warmed up for the appearance of Robin in the next installment of the series?  A return to nipples on the rubber suits?

Bookmark and Share

"I'll Have What He's Having."

In the world of super-realistic Batman, if you get half your face melted off, you are endowed with the following amazing super powers:
  • A magic eyeball that is impervious to harm, even if every piece of flesh around it is burned beyond recognition.  You will no longer need to fear death because your eyeball will live on.
  • Immunity to infection that would kill any normal human being.
  • Be able to speak with your normal voice even though half your mouth and lips are scorched off.
  • The power of instant teleportation and being able to get to any part of a city in the blink of an impervious eye.
  • The ability to kill someone in a car crash while riding in the same car and, even though you enter the car with half an exposed face, and the other person just has (almost) broken legs, you will be the one who survives UNHARMED.
  • Be endowed with the ability to be the only one of a few people on Earth who not only shoots AT batman with an actual gun (versus using fists, sticks, pipes, and dogs), but actually hitting him with a bullet.
  • Be able to find anyone you’re looking for, anywhere, at any time, when you need to find them.

Bookmark and Share

Made it to #15, Probably Still Climbing

As I reported a few days ago, this site was climbing up’s “blog of the day” page which is updated daily.  It’s been on their BOTD pages for over a week and it’s now reached #15 globally and #8 for “English” language blogs (sorry I don’t have a permanent link for that).  The home page states they host 3,688,271 blogs (so in other words, out of over 3 million blogs hosted by, it’s currently #15).  I can’t verify how accurate that is, I’m just reporting the stats.  Although I doubt it could seriously happen, if it reaches #1, I will proclaim this site a masterpiece and then someone can put up a blog about why this site sucks.

Bookmark and Share

What Happened in YOUR Theater? Dispel The Myth.

I am in no way a fan of things based on idolizing characters or brands or companies.  I like things I can perceive as having quality and that are entertaining and positive to me, regardless of who brings it to me, or what “icon” it represents.  I state this because if I don’t then people who can’t formulate arguments will try to dispel my statements by merely slinging poo claiming I’m a “fanboy” of a certain flavor.  Just preempting the bull.

At the showing I went to for “The Dark Knight”, the theater I was in was packed.  Clearly everyone there was hoping to see a great movie, whether fans of the character, comic, hype, actors, director, whatever.  Whatever the case, it was packed.  So if it was so good of a movie as claimed by the majority of people with Internet access and a desire to share their opinion, why was there practically no audience cheering or clapping that I observed?

I’ve heard from many people this was their same experience.

Movie ands and its… “clap…[pause]…clap…[long pause]… …. clap” and then silence and everyone starts getting up barely before the credits start to role, and start walking out.  Pretty much everyone has a deadpan look on their face, and nobody (literally nobody) has a look on their face that they just saw “the best movie ever”.  Rather, the opposite look like “WTF? Was I supposed to have liked that?”  This wasnt a surprise – it completely matched my own perception.

During the movie, there were only 2 or perhaps 3 moments where even just a few members of the audience reacted to what happened on screen with clapping or hooting.  One was when Gordon showed up behind The Joker pointing a shotgun at him (indicating he was alive the whole time).  About 5 or 6 people clapped and that was it.  The second was that stupid idealistic prisoner moment with Tiny Lister (Debo)… same 5-6 person clap.  I don’t recall if there was any other clapping or reactions which would indicate more than a few people were enjoying the movie.

In contrast, when I went to see “Iron Man” earlier in the Summer, the audience enjoyment was significantly more apparent.  This was in the SAME theater, SAME night of the week, SAME midnight style showing, and same packed theater.  During “Iron Man”, the audience was fantastically engaged – laughing when things on screen were actually funny, cheering when particularly action-filled moments were taking place, clapping fairly regularly when it seemed pretty appropriate, and at the end a roar of applause.

Now, do I think “Iron Man” is the greatest movie ever?  No, it was cool, entertaining, and well-made, and clearly deserved the kind of audience reaction it got.  Had it been lauded online as some kind of flawless piece of cinematic art, I would consider that bizarre but could shrug it off as an oddity and temporary insanity of the masses.  The reaction to it in the media and online pretty much matched the reality I observed.

“The Dark Knight”, on the other hand, had the poor audience reaction, yet somehow online and by critics is being lauded as some kind of masterpiece.  This contradicts common sense and it’s a wonder what is really going on here… that perhaps the Internet hype marketing machine for the movie is still going on and people’s opinions are still being influenced by others, by brand, by media, but not by the true opinion of the masses.  Sure, it got a huge opening box office and held steam, but that could only mean a “follow the crowd” behavior, especially during economic times where other forms of entertainment are far more expensive.

So… what was YOUR theater experience and observation?  Did your audience cheer, hoot, and clap or did they just sit there like lumps on a log?  Was there a massive applause at the end or did people just silently scuffle out of their seats to go home?  Did they have happy and entertained looks on their faces when walking out or did they look like they were on their way to work on a Monday morning?

Bookmark and Share

The Dark Knight: 21 Bloopers and Counting

In addition to the large number of major story, logic, writing, direction, and other issues documented on The Dark Knight Sucks web sites, the Movie Mistakes web site currently has 21 “bloopers” listed for the movie, and the list is growing.  Bloopers are primarily continuity goofs or unintended editing mistakes.

Bookmark and Share

Ow My Balls: We're in Idiocracy

I would bet that most people who’ve seen “Idiocracy” (2006) and loved it, are probably not in the crowd who believes “The Dark Knight” is “OMGZ the best movie ever!”  If you haven’t seen Idiocracy, check it out – it’s building up a cult following and for a reason: It’s a biting satire of what the future holds for society and is at times absolutely hilarious, and sometimes discomforting – primarily during the moments it rings true.

The general premise of the movie is that an average man from 2005 who’s put in deep freeze in a U.S. Army experiment is forgotten about — then gets revived 500 years later.  The world he re-enters is a future that predicts what would happen if present-day society (whose culture is becoming more and more fixated on corporate brands, celebrity, sex, money, and superficial trivializations) is taken to it’s most extreme.  It’s by no means a Shakespearean effort, but the many moments of comedic commentary are truly brilliant.

The people of the future are so stupid that the lead character effectively becomes the smartest man alive. If you don’t mind spoilers, a full description is at Wikipedia.  For anyone who hasn’t seen the movie, this article might not make complete sense, but at least the general point will probably still be clear.

“The Dark Knight” marketing in many ways was pretty effective at what it intended to do: Indoctrinate the masses into believing that the movie would be amazing by immersing them into it before it premiered.  A large number of viral websites were launched that gave peeks into the background of the movie’s storyline.  Further, the actor playing the role of the lead villain passed away tragically 2 months after production was completed and his death became a pseudo-marketing vehicle in and of itself. People who otherwise would not have had an interest in seeing the movie in a theater were now fixated on it.  When the movie finally premiered, the conditioning that all the marketing and hype induced caused the vast majority of people who saw it to believe it truly was an amazing movie and not just a mediocre run-of-the-mill action movie.  So many people invested themselves in the belief that it would be amazing, that dissonance kicked in and caused them to believe it was, even though it wasn’t – because to believe otherwise would mean that they would have to contradict their own consistency.

"Welcome to Costco. I love you."

"Welcome to Costco. I love you."

In the future presented in “Idiocracy”, one of the running gags is there’s a drink called “Brawndo: The Thirst Mutilator” and apparently the company that markets it, Brawndo Corporation, apparently buys up so many government agencies that it can go unhindered when marketing (and institutionalizing) Brawndo for everything imaginable, including crop irrigation, and water is only used in toilets.  The tagline for the drink is that “it’s rich in electrolytes”, although nobody knows what that means, everyone accepts it because “it’s what people crave”.  Why is it used to irrigate crops?  “Because it’s what plants crave.”  Which of course results in massive crop issues, and nobody knows why, because everyone is too stupid to figure it out.

Also in the future, the most popular movie is called “Ass” and it’s entirely just a movie of someone’s ass (just doing nothing, occasionally farting, etc).  The most popular TV show is “Ow My Balls” which is about (and only about) a guy who constantly gets his balls smashed, banged, hit, whacked, etc and yells “ow my balls”.

The mass of people who proclaim “The Dark Knight” remind me of the sad citizens of this future.  They don’t know why they think TDK is “awesome”, they just know it is, because everyone else thinks it is.  “Because it’s got electrolytes.”  The hoopla over TDK is a hint at what’s happening in society now.  For example, the Internet’s existence, instead of helping people get smarter (by making access to information easier) is just causing them to become dumber.  Just look at any random MySpace page or peruse the kind of moronic questions people ask on “Yahoo! Answers“.  Take a look at the current US President – is he a representative of the people?

The sad thing is, I’m pretty sure that only a small number of people visiting this site or reading this will ever comprehend the irony of what’s happening in society, and the majority of others are just reading this and thinking “you fag!” and will never know exactly how far into the depths of “Idiocracy” the world is actually spinning.  That’s because for those who the movie makes fun of, they will never actually comprehend that it’s a parody of them and a satire of where society is going because of their consumerist behavior.  If that’s you, then you probably found this article hard to follow, difficult to understand, and one of the few things running through your mind is “what a fag”.  If so, go back to ‘batin.

Bookmark and Share

Special Effects for Two-Face

OK, this was visually well-crafted. Executed perfectly. Visually well-blended. Impressive.

So how come he ended up looking like half an alien from “Mars Attacks”?

It was “too perfect”.  I used to do 3D rendering and animation.  I pay attention.  The problem with a lot of 3D animation (many times referred to as CGI, or Computer Graphics Imaging) when it’s intended to appear realistic is that the element of real-world “weathering” is forgotten, poorly executed, or unable to be mastered.  I can understand this difficulty when an entire movie is dependent on CGI but, as far as can be discerned, the only significant CGI in “The Dark Knight” was the burned side of Harvey’s face.

If you can stomach it, go to Google Images and do a search for “burn victims” (you may have to turn SafeSearch off).  That’s some scary shit, and had they managed something that realistic looking on the Two-Face CGI then maybe his quick dissent into psychotic dementia would have been a little more believable.

Bookmark and Share

Is it in the Cards for Heath? (with Poll)

When many people think of Heath Ledger, I would gather the following words come to mind: sympathy, sadness, good actor, gay cowboy. He’s played: a patriot, a drug addict, Casanova, a surfer, a knight, and most recently a deranged psychotic. Regardless of how mediocre “The Dark Knight” was overall, he did succeed in out-shining all the other actors – although that wasn’t too hard since most of the acting in the movie was quite wooden.

The disturbing part about his role as The Joker was that it’s resulted in some kind of mania in the public’s eye that has so many people clamoring for him to get a posthumous Oscar. The problem is it wasn’t some kind of genius role, it wasn’t even anything really standout, it was just a decent execution of a somewhat extreme character. Most people who can’t act can have makeup put on their face and told to act like someone disturbed and it can be pulled off. One of the easiest kinds of characters to play is someone that’s crazy or psychotic.

Some actors have done superb jobs in such roles, such as Anthony Hopkins as Dr. Hannibal Lecter in “Silence of the Lambs”, Joe Pesci as Tommy DeVito in “Goodfellas”, or Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance in “The Shining”.

Heath Ledger has done nothing special in his role as The Joker and the only reason it’s even being suggested that his role as The Joker deserves an Oscar is because:

  1. He’s dead
  2. He lifted the movie up from being abysmal to at least mediocre
  3. Most people are sheep
  4. The movie is making a lot of money
  5. A lot of critics forget that their role is to critique, not ass-kiss the box office

One other factor is that the role was “different” and anything “different” in Hollywood (if it’s meant ot be serious) is considered ground-breaking. For example: Viggo Mortensenhas a 5-minute nude brawl in a bath house in the movie “Easten Promises” and the next thing you know he’s being applauded. Seriously, I don’t want to be enjoying a fairly decent sober movie only to then have the equivalent of a Borat hotel scene (minus the censoring) shoved in my face. I guess in Hollywood when an actor allows his small shriveled prune-looking dangling bits to be exposed at length in a movie, it’s considered groundbreaking. “Different”? Yes. “Groundbreaking”? Um, no.

Although no shriveled bits to speak of in Heath’s role, the same concept applies.  The role is different but that doesn’t mean it’s groundbreaking or astounding.

Speaking of Borat – THAT is someone able to stay in character for a whole movie and with significantly more screen time. Should Sacha Baron Cohen have been nominated for an Oscar? If he died, would people be clamouring for that?

And now the poll:

Bookmark and Share