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26 July 2008 @ 05:34 pm
The Dark Knight, and The Middleman  
I saw The Dark Knight. I loved it. I was not a fan AT ALL of Batman Begins, and I'm not particularly fond of Christian Bale. Michael Caine will never be right as Alfred in my eyes, and I still have issues with the complete masculinity of this incarnation of the Batverse, but despite this I loooooved The Dark Knight.

I saw it at IMAX, three rows from the front, which was very fun. The floor shook when the bat-bike roared into action.

TDK was gratifyingly well plotted and well EDITED (what a friggin' relief: first blockbuster all year I can say that for!), and I appreciated not being left with too much time to dwell on the more implausible aspects. I did have a few nitpicks but they didn't interfere with my overall enjoyment, and I was blown away by how truly chilling both the Joker and Two-Face were. Heath's Joker was, as everyone keeps saying, incredible--and I honestly thought going in that it had been over-hyped and wouldn't be that good. The creepiness and strangeness and sense of chaos were the things I liked the best. There were so many amazing scenes--I was actually glad it was so long.

Dear people that told me to watch The Middleman: THANK YOU! It is awesome and cute and adorable and I have only seen one episode and must watch the rest straight away. :D
 
 
Current Location: sofa of comfiness
Current Mood: bouncybouncy
 
 
 
Nora Norwichnorwich36 on July 26th, 2008 08:27 am (UTC)
Oh, yay! I'm glad you liked it. Honestly it just gets more awesome and adorable as time goes on--it has some of the best quotable lines of any TV show I've ever seen. (From this week's episode: "There's no negotiating with plagiarists.")

And yes, I agree with you about TDK. It was a little dark for me, but definitely terrifically well-written and acted.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Yay!bop_radar on July 26th, 2008 08:38 am (UTC)
I LOVE IT! It is exactly the sort of fun froth I have been looking for. It's so entertaining! And I like the leads already. And it's so absurdist and does not take itself seriously. After all my issues with my big shows this year, that is very refreshing. :D
wisteria: middleman - !!!!wisteria_ on July 26th, 2008 08:58 am (UTC)
So glad that you're enjoying The Middleman! It's just such a darling show, and it's more clever (and more "adult") than it appears on first glance. I love that everyone involved seems to be having FUN. Quite rare these days! I look forward to you saying more when you're caught up. ;)
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Lois smirkbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:24 am (UTC)
Yes! The exuberance and sense of fun are really infectious. I look forward to sitting down with more once I've done my house chores.
tragicllyhiptragicllyhip on July 26th, 2008 10:03 am (UTC)
and I still have issues with the complete masculinity of this incarnation of the Batverse

What does that mean, just curious:)

And i think this is the first movie I;ve seen that was over-hyped and I was over-excited for and it STILL surpassed my expectations.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:27 am (UTC)
Well there were practically no female characters--and apart from Gordon's wife they all died. Rachel was a write-off as a character, even though I enjoyed Maggie in the role more than Katie Holmes. The world they've created feels like it's completely dominated and inhabited by men. They could have chosen to make another of the main characters female to balance that, but they did not.

i think this is the first movie I;ve seen that was over-hyped and I was over-excited for and it STILL surpassed my expectations.
Hee. Yeah! I can't really think of another either.
tragicllyhiptragicllyhip on July 27th, 2008 11:30 am (UTC)
Ah, i really liked Maggie's character--thank god they replaced Katie Holmes and I thought she was important, kind of representing what he was giving up being Batman, and its funny with Batman, his public persona isn't really him either so only the people who know he's Batman truly know him. And I prefer mostly men onscreen, so I probably didn't really notice. I know thats sad, but i think its all just a visual thing, and women just aren't as interesting to look at for me:) For whatever reason I've always identified more strongly with male characters, i guess being raised by the strongest woman I'll ever know, I've never really sought that out anywhere else. Who knows? I'm rambling now, probably. but i hope i'm making sense:)
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Ericabop_radar on July 28th, 2008 05:29 am (UTC)
I agree Rachel represented something--but I kind of felt she only existed for that reason. *shrug* Don't mind me--I've got a lot of issues with Blockbuster/mainstream movies and their portrayal of (or complete lack of!) women. I find it really interesting that you feel you don't need to see women onscreen because you have such good role models in real life.. that's given me insight into why some women don't find the lack of strong women on screen a problem. For me, I'm not looking for a personal role model: I'm looking at social trends and subtextual messages that mainstream culture puts out about women, and the lack of strong (or even realistic!) women bothers me.
tragicllyhiptragicllyhip on July 28th, 2008 11:57 am (UTC)
I've often wondered about why some women feel so strongly about relating to female characters in films, tv or even fiction. And I know that you're not looking for a role model, but I think a lot of women and girls are. Lots of my friends identify strongly with some female characters and I never have, I think because I was drawn to strengths in characters I saw in myself or wanted for myself, and usually those characters have been male, and I'm sure thats because of there just aren't enough good, well balanced, realistic female characters. Even strong characters tend to be overly tenacious, or at times brutish, which I don't really appreciate either. I've also noticed that the people I know who focus on strong female characters don't find that strength in themselves and usually feel un-empowered in some way. I'm sure thats not the case for everyone, its just my personal experience, and its something I've always wanted to understand. I've gotten chided for being a female misogynist at times even.

Like with Smallville, I know my friends adore Lois, and I like Erica's portrayal of Lois too, its the first Lois Lane I've ever liked, I hated her as a kid and found her incredibly annoying, and I think Smallville's Lois is the first I've seen that is a bit more fleshed out., but she is still the typical "grab the world by the balls" strong female character I've seen too often. Still, there's not a single female on the show I relate to, and I've always related to Clark. What all that means I have no idea. As I'm in the middle of starting my own business with this incredible woman and an amazing partner, and I've had to prove myself daily, I've been thinking a lot about all of this. I've always tried to remain myself, my quiet self and still instill confidence in others and that I can do the job. I do wonder if at some point I won't have to be the typical strong woman that i see too often in business, I hope not.

Again I'm rambling, but I understand where you're coming from, and I agree with you, but i hope people aren't looking to summer movies to get their cues from, but I'm afraid sometimes they are, but Hollywood is just a mirror. Thanks as always for a wonderful discussion:)
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: TSCC Sarahbop_radar on July 30th, 2008 01:39 am (UTC)
because I was drawn to strengths in characters I saw in myself or wanted for myself, and usually those characters have been male, and I'm sure thats because of there just aren't enough good, well balanced, realistic female characters
Yeah, for sure! I have the same experience--I nearly always identified with boys in stories when I was a kid, and I still often relate strongest to male characters in shows (Lois is an exception) for that reason: they have characteristics that reflect my own. It wasn't until I was in my late teens and did some feminist reading that it really began to bother me that there weren't more female characters to relate to.

I also think we're the lucky ones: we've wound up relating to male characters without finding it a problem. I think a lot of girls identify with female characters just because they're female and I think there are some really damaging role models out there that they can hook into without realising.

I've always tried to remain myself, my quiet self and still instill confidence in others and that I can do the job. I do wonder if at some point I won't have to be the typical strong woman that i see too often in business, I hope not.
Eek! I think I can understand that fear. The women I see in higher positions in publishing are rarely women I'd like to emulate and I often wonder if success comes at a price. However, the optimist/idealist in me wants to tell you that being true to yourself--quietly instilling confidence in others is a great description!--will bring the greatest success.

Yeah, interesting discussion!
Melissa: beauty is tragicradioreverie on July 26th, 2008 11:40 am (UTC)
poke
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!bop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:27 am (UTC)
ICON!
Cris: Batmanduskwillow on July 26th, 2008 03:59 pm (UTC)
So glad you enjoyed TDK. I also thought it was spectacular. :D Can't wait to go see it again!

And yes! Another Middleman fan on my flist!
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:27 am (UTC)
Definitely spectacular! :)
Ms Cranky Pants of the Depresso Blogbofoddity on July 26th, 2008 07:14 pm (UTC)
I had some big problems with Dark Knight myself, but there's no way to deny that Ledger was absolutely incredible as Joker. I remember trying to see the actor behind the make-up at some points, but I just couldn't, he did that much of an incredible job. I also had big worries about them being able to fit both the Joker and Two-Face in the same movie, but they succeeded with that pretty well.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
Ohh, I checked your journal and I see one of your problems was one I had too: Gordon's little girl was ignored! And are you serious that the boy is being set up for her role?! Waaaah! See above re. the complete masculinity of this Bat-verse and having issues with it.

I do think the movie could have been two movies, but I appreciated the slick editing they did to get both plots into the one movie. It sucks though that they're now left minus two villains.
Ms Cranky Pants of the Depresso Blogbofoddity on July 27th, 2008 07:57 am (UTC)
As far as I know, the little boy being set up as Babs is just speculation at the moment, and hopefully it will stay that way. But they paid such suspicious amount of attention to him, and to me it looked like they put conscious effort in making Gordon's daughter as non-existent as possible. Maybe I'm too sensitive, but it really bothered me.

I agree that the editing in this movie was superb, although I think they could have saved Two-Face the villain for the next movie while showing how he came to be in this one, but I suppose that can't be helped right now. The next movie would be a great chance for them to introduce Catwoman, though, who is the next big thing in the Batman-mythos, since apparently we won't be seeing Robin in the movieverse.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 08:01 am (UTC)
Yeah, I thought the same thing about Catwoman--that could be potentially brilliant. However, I'm a bit worried given the extreme lack of respect for female characters in these movies so far. Hell, just the LACK of female characters.

The optimist in me wondered whether they were not showing us Gordon's daughter so that they could show her (as a different actress) later on... but then that doesn't hold up because they'd have a good excuse to use someone else just by virtue of her being older in a later film.
Ms Cranky Pants of the Depresso Blogbofoddity on July 27th, 2008 09:04 am (UTC)
I'm worried about that too, so while it would make perfect sense to bring Catwoman in, I don't think I want to happen it yet. I didn't mind Rachel the character so much in the first movie, but she didn't have that much of a purpose. Yet she's the only woman so far to even have some kind of role in the movies.

It would be so nice if they were taking the attention away from Gordon's daughter for now so that she could have a bigger role later, but yeah, it doesn't hold up in the end. I guess Nolan is afraid of making his world less serious by bringing in characters like Robin and Batgirl who are supposed to make Batman's world less lonely, but they are important in the comic universe for a reason.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Boppybop_radar on July 27th, 2008 09:12 am (UTC)
she didn't have that much of a purpose.
She really didn't and I never really bought her in the professional role they gave her, because we never saw her actually perform it: she was basically just a symbol/object.

I guess Nolan is afraid of making his world less serious by bringing in characters like Robin and Batgirl who are supposed to make Batman's world less lonely, but they are important in the comic universe for a reason.
I agree. I think that IS Nolan's fear, but it doesn't hold much water for me because I feel like he has diffused Batman's loneliness in other ways. Principally the Alfred-Batman relationship. They're so chummy. Batman isn't alone! He's constantly chatting to Alfred! I know it's a personal thing, but it doesn't work for me. I want an Alfred who is more restrained and understated, and a Batman who is more 'difficult' (for lack of a better word).
Ms Cranky Pants of the Depresso Blogbofoddity on July 27th, 2008 09:30 am (UTC)
She really didn't and I never really bought her in the professional role they gave her, because we never saw her actually perform it: she was basically just a symbol/object.

Exactly. I saw a review that compared Rachel and Iron Man's Pepper to each other and it really showed why Pepper's character worked; we actually saw her doing things and being competent, living up to things that were said about her. Pepper may not have been perfect either, but I think the viewers got a grasp of her as a person, and that just doesn't happen with Rachel.

I agree. I think that IS Nolan's fear, but it doesn't hold much water for me because I feel like he has diffused Batman's loneliness in other ways. Principally the Alfred-Batman relationship.

Alfred is now the only true human contact Batman has in Nolan's universe, and that doesn't work for me either. Their relationship in the comics has never been as easy as it is in the movies ('difficult' is the best word I can come up with, too), and Alfred loses a lot of his own self when he has to fill up for Batman's other contacts. I didn't mind the Batman/Alfred-relationship so much in the first movie, but I thought it was losing its steam already in this one, and if Nolan plans to keep it as it is, it's going to backfire on him.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 28th, 2008 05:33 am (UTC)
Yeah, thinking about it, Pepper did seem slightly more fully realised (not an Iron Man fan though, sorry!).

I agree the Alfred/Batman rel was losing its steam in this movie--perhaps that's why I was extra thinky about what bothered me about it, why it wasn't really working for me. Perhaps they'll shake things up in another movie.
brokenmnemonic: Dance of bloodbrokenmnemonic on July 26th, 2008 07:34 pm (UTC)
I still have issues with the complete masculinity of this incarnation of the Batverse
Will this incarantion of the batverse sit a bit more easily when they introduce Robin and it all becomes one big slashfest? ;)

The people I know who've seen TDK seem to have enjoyed it - I might have to go try a movie day sometime, when I have money again ;)
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Batgirlbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:32 am (UTC)
Will this incarantion of the batverse sit a bit more easily when they introduce Robin and it all becomes one big slashfest? ;)
Gah! No! In fact I am right now extremely cranky because of something I've heard about the way they've planning to appropriate one of the female stories in the Bat-verse and give it to a guy instead. It's clear that these producers have no interest in or ability to write female characters. :(

TDK is, however, brilliant and you should see it for the villains even if you don't like Batman.
(no subject) - bloodygoodgirl on July 26th, 2008 11:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Lee not drunkbop_radar on July 27th, 2008 01:34 am (UTC)
Yes! Check out Middleman! It is adorable--I think you would like it. It makes me LOL a great deal.

I'm not a Bale fan but he was really strong in the role. I found him stronger in TDK than I did in Begins--perhaps because his coldness and isolation was more important for the plot in this one. Very cool. Chicago as Gotham does seem rather inspired in bringing that gritty realism they're going for with these films.
Zoi: hobbits3gomez on July 29th, 2008 06:57 pm (UTC)
I'm soooo happy that more people seem to like "The Middleman"!!It is the weirdest AND cutest show I've seen in a while!

I've heard there is some possibility it may get cancelled though...but I have hope. *crossed fingers*
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Pushing daisies make it betterbop_radar on July 30th, 2008 12:35 am (UTC)
Yeah, you may have heard that from me... I am glad I watched it despite that--I think I'll enjoy every ep, no matter how few there are. :)