Although I enjoy superhero movies, I do not have particularly high expectations of this genre. Christopher Nolan definitely did an above average job with his Batman Begins, the prequel to this movie. Therefore I was looking forward to seeing more. It was more of the same though – well done, but not overwhelming, breathtaking or inspiring. The plot is ok and the cast is fine, too (although I found the Batman too smooth, he had no real depth, no physical doubts). With his first rendition of the Batman I was happy about the grittyness of the movie. With this one however, I had the impression that the movie tries to be gritty because that is what people are now expecting to see, because a certain kind of grittyness sells. But it was not gritty because it cared for the pain, for the irregularities and the damage that life involves. Therefore, it did not get me involved and did not touch me.
With one exception. Heath Ledger, whom I really, really liked since I first saw A Knight’s Tale, surpassed himself in this movie – tragically. One can too easily see that playing this role, becoming this utterly mad nemesis did not contribute to his well-being. It was a great performance that had almost all of the elements that the rest of the movie lacked and that I wrote abouth in the above paragraph. However, even this character lacked depth. He was the mask of cruelty and evil madness. But he was only barely human, only because of Ledger’s great performance. The short references to his (obviously imagined) childhood did not help. To the contrary, they were the most shallow of stereotypes and would not explain why he is who he seems to be. If you like this genre, I can definitely recommend this movie. If you liked Heath Ledger, it may be worthwhile to see his excellent acting – if you can stand the cruelty that it involves, a cruelty that Heath Ledger did not shun.
IMDb entry | Trailer
Tags: Batman, Heath Ledger