Right about here is where all the gushing and excitement and enthusiasm should begin, because I'll tell you right off the "bat" that Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight is cause for celebration indeed. But then you'll figure out -- after only one sentence -- that I pretty much loved this movie, and then you'll head off to another, more unpredictable film critic. But it's the WHY that interests me so much. What I enjoyed about Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, and Hellboy 2 could probably be covered in one lengthy -- and inevitably nerd-tastic -- conversation between the two of us. But The Dark Knight... Well, clearly we're approaching a whole new level here.
Several of the pre-release gushings are accurate. Some say "Scorsesian" and others reference Michael Mann. Many spend paragraphs on the (truly amazing) penultimate performance by Heath Ledger, while others will revel in the grown-up tone or epic scope of the film. What amazed me most about The Dark Knight, among several things, is that the flick's got more layers than an onion farm -- and yet it never loses touch with the idea of FUN. True that we're talking about a comic book fun that's decidedly more melancholy than the cinematic exploits of The Marvel Gang, but dang if TDK isn't supremely satisfying for about a dozen different reasons.