Tuesday, August 26, 2008


One of the happenstances of being on vacation is getting to see a film a second time that one would not necessarily choose to see twice, in this instance The Dark Knight, about which I wrote here. I did not, as it happens, find much that I had missed the first time – notably who were the hostages dressed as clowns in the final confrontation scene. And how one particular officer telegraphs being “bought” by the other side even in the first scenes of the film.

More interestingly, tho, was how the violence plays a second time. As before, the only true moment of gore other than the creation of Two-Face is the self-stitching scene with Bruce Wayne & Alfred early on in the film. Now, however, all of the later scenes of violence – the blood & guts suggested rather than shown – is continually being foretold, seconds, even minutes before. The disappearing pencil trick, for example, is very different when you know where it is going. As a result there is only one surprising moment of violence in the film – when the Batman wannabe bangs against the window. And, with these other moments expanded, the film feels far more violent and dark than on first viewing. The second time through, it really does feel as tho the Joker’s perspective is very close to that of the director.


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