The first shocker I had during the movie came before the movie even started. The movie is rated “U” over here, which means that everyone can watch it. I’ll elaborate more on this later.
The movie starts off by showing the Joker and his minions pulling off a bank heist. We get to see how ruthless the Joker is by killing off his sidekicks one after another, then stuffing a grenade into the bank manager’s (played by that guy from Prison Break, Bill Fichtner) mouth. When we see the Joker’s face for the first time, everyone in the cinema seemed to be taken aback (gasps and chills).
Batman himself is in a bit of a dilemma, because his big mission is to paralyse the mob by seizing their funds bladibla. A bit politicky and drama, but who cares? I just want to see the fighting and butt-kicking. Batman himself is cast into a bit of doubt because some people love vigilantes and some hate them, particularly the enforcement. Although his voice is still as raspy as ever, he starts having thoughts of hanging up his cape for the good of Gotham’s mankind. See what I said about drama?
Anyway as far as characters go, I feel that Batman is somewhat overshadowed by the Joker, predictably. Batman is after all, the dark knight. The Joker is flashy with his purple suits and white makeup on the other hand, completely stealing the show. Because Heath Ledger is so maliciously evilly good in his role. He’s a bit eerie even. His sociopathic ways, lack of conscience and sneaky little tricks makes him the ultimate villain. The type that everyone fears and no one wants to be up against. Batman of course tries to fight it out with him, but the Joker knows he won’t kill him, because he is too righteous to kill. And the Joker won’t kill Batman either, because it’s ‘fun’ for him to toy with Batman and test his limits. The Joker even has his own metaphors (like House!) and compares him and Batman to an unstoppable force meeting with an immovable object.
Another reason why people are flocking to watch this movie is because Katie Holmes isn’t in this movies. Maggie Gyllenhaal takes over, boy, she is so much better as the feisty lawyer who is Batman’s love interest. Harvey Dent is another new character who makes things complicated between Batman and Rachel. Awww. Their love triangle is fit well into the flow of the story, so thank goodness there was no prolonged mushyness.
Lastly, I think Heath Ledger did an amazing job with his role, and he does deserve an Oscar for his work. However, my only gripe is that the movie was given a “U” rating here. From the level of violence shown in the movie, I personally feel that it deserved an 18SG rating. How is it possible that our stringent censorship board allow kids and teenagers to watch something this violent? This coming from a country which censors kissing scenes on tv. Hmmph. The Joker is the type of sick, demented criminal who kills people for the sake of killing them, not for money, not for power. The ones usually seen on Criminal Minds who enjoy seeing the life leave their victim’s eyes. Even I find that profoundly scary. If kids were to watch it, who knows what they might learn from it?