So I Had To Write A Paper On A Movie (part I)
by, 07-29-2008 at 12:09 AM (461 Views)
This is part one of the 3 page paper I had to write for my history of motion pictures class about a current movie. I wrote it directly after seeing this masterpiece for the first time. After seeing it three more times after that, I feel I'm quite knowledgeable on the move. Let me know what you think.
History Of Motion Pictures
24 July 2008
The Dark Knight
I. Plot Outline - The Dark Knight is the second installment in the new generations of Batman movies. The lead role of Bruce Wayne/Batman was reprised by Welsh actor Christian Bale. The now legendary, and unfortunately, the late Heath Ledger played the role of The Joker, the primary villain. Aaron Eckhart plays district attorney Harvey Dent, who after having his face badly burned and his fiancé murdered, becomes the villain Two Face. Dent’s fiancée, Rachael Dawes is played by Maggie Gyllenhall. Other notable actors are screen legends Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman.
The story revolves around Gotham City, where a mad man, known only as the Joker has began a series of bank heists and murders. Billionaire Bruce Wayne, who moonlights as the caped crusader known as Batman, works loosely with Gotham law enforcement to catch the Joker. The Joker, knowing he can’t kill the Batman, begins killing one person a day until Batman reveals his true identity. Batman considers turning himself in, because the new District Attorney, Harvey Dent, has inspired Bruce Wayne by his highly effective tactics that put several of the biggest crime bosses behind bars, all without wearing a mask. He feels that the city of Gotham no longer needs Batman when they have Harvey Dent. They devise a plan however to catch the joker by having Dent reveal himself to be Batman, then as the Joker expectedly makes a move to kill Dent, Batman can use it as an ambush. The plan works, and the Joker is apprehended, however the Joker wanted to be caught so he could be placed in a jail near a man who was to testify against members of the Mafia who were paying The Joker to protect their assets. While in the holding cell, the joker uses mafia contacts inside the police force to kidnap Harvey Dent, and his fiancée Rachael Dawes, who was once a love interest of Bruce Wayne. After a severe beating in the interrogation room, The Joker finally tells Batman what he wants to hear; the locations of Harvey and Rachael. There is only time to save one, he says, and Batman chooses his former love, Rachael. However, when Batman arrives at the building to save Rachael, you learn The Joker has flipped the locations of the hostages, and Batman ends up saving Harvey, and Rachael dies in an explosion as the Gotham PD was too late in getting to the second location. Gas that has covered half of Harvey’s face ignites as they escape the exploding building, badly burning the DA. This was all in the plans of The Joker, as he wanted to take away the most important thing to Gotham’s “white knight” Harvey Dent, knowing it would drive him insane. Dent is now referred to by the unfavorable nickname he was given during his time working at internal affairs, Two Face. He refuses skin grafts, and accepts the gruesome look of his face. He begins finding those dirty cops who had a hand in his and Rachael’s kidnapping. He flips a coin to decide if they will die. Batman apprehends the Joker, and then gets to Two Face before he can kill the police commissioner, whom he blames for the death of Rachael. Dent dies in the fight with Batman, but Batman and the commissioner decide to cover up the actions of Dent in his last day, as to not destroy the hope of the city that you can stand up against the face of terror. A movie like this is very hard to describe in 250 words, so you must forgive me for exceeding the guideline.
II. Theme – This movie can be crudely broken down into a battle of good against evil. But it goes far deeper than that. It discusses the line that we must toe constantly between the two. When pushed to our limits, we find that even the good men and women resort to the same tactics as those who stand opposed. The movie plays on the fears of the public, and how terror can play on them. In one scene, the joker announces that if one certain lawyer is not killed in the next hour, he will blow up a hospital. The people of the city take the matter into their own hands, feeling that losing one life is less important than the lives that will be lost in a destroyed hospital. He uses rather brilliant mind games to trick the people into becoming what they despise. Harvey Dent is targeted because he is the unblemished symbol of good, and The Joker knew that if he could be converted into a revenge filled murderer, hope would be lost, and chaos would ensue as all the criminals he put away would have to be released and retried. The movie speaks to what fear is capable of doing to us as a society. It can break weaker men, it can drive the strongest into decisions they never would have made otherwise, and can shake our very foundations. The movie is very dark, but isn’t without it’s moments of humor supplied by the certainly legendary performance of the joker. His one liners left the audience howling while still captivated by how sadistically he played the role once made famous by Jack Nicholson. Your emotions are thrown in so many different directions during the movie, with your eyes glued to the screen the whole time. Love stories, revenge, insanity, justice, and comedy are riddled throughout the film, with the audience never knowing what emotion will be played upon next. Calling it the Dark Knight is appropriate because the movie is physically dark. There are very few brightly lit scenes other than when the Joker is beaten in the interrogation room.