My stance: ‘The Dark Knight’ will be nominated for Best Picture

Posted by · 11:28 am · November 15th, 2008

Heath Ledger in The Dark KnightSo much speculation has surrounded the possible inclusion of this tremendous film in the year’s final five.  And though there are those who believe it has no chance of happening, the majority has gradually seen otherwise.

Where is written that entertaining films cannot be art? Where does it say that a box office smash cannot be a genuinely great film? May I remind everyone that “The Godfather” was a major hit at the box office before it won the Oscar for Best Picture, basking in some of the finest reviews ever written. That said, success can sometimes be the enemy of both the film and the director (ask Steven Spielberg).

While no one is calling “The Dark Knight” a film on the level of “The Godfather,” it certainly has its own particular brand of appeal and excellence. Made with breathtaking confidence, technical brilliance and spectacular command of the language of the cinema, the film moves constantly, yet director Nolan never allows the spectacle to overwhelm the very intimate story he is telling here.

His actors are sublime, beginning with the extraordinary performance from Heath Ledger as the Joker, a performance that takes madness to a new level, one that is terrifying in its realism and authenticity. Yet Ledger is surrounded by a strong ensemble, Christian Bale very good as Batman/Bruce Wayne, a troubled, contradictory man at war with himself, knowing the only way he can remain a hero is to appear to be the enemy.

Michael Caine, good in just about anything, is sturdy and heartfelt throughout, as is Gary Oldman, the heart and soul of the film as a purely decent man who knows and understands the plight of Batman and as his friend accepts it. Aaron Eckhart gives a powerful performance as Harvey Dent, and though overshadowed by Ledger, is integral to the film in his own right.

Nolan made a film that plunges us directly into the story and hurtles us towards the conclusion at breakneck speed, but he allows us to care about the characters, and to fear the Joker. There is never a dull moment in the film, nor is there a false moment with the actors, and though Maggie Gyllenhall’s role is under-written, never does that storyline distract from the overall film.

The film is brilliant and has been embraced by the critics and audiences around the world; how can the Academy ignore it? Incredibly well made, with magnificent cinematography (perhaps the year’s finest), art direction, costuming, editing, sound editing, and scoring, the film as a whole is utterly magnificent. Sure it may not deal with the issues of the world, (though the Joker as urban terrorist is quite polemical) or ennoble mankind in any way, but who says all films have to do that? Why can they sometimes not be thoroughly entertaining, fun to watch, exciting to be a part of, well crafted from top to bottom, and as a result, a genuine part of the year’s the Best Picture conversation. And let’s face it, there have been much worse films nominated…

I spent much of “The Dark Knight” on the edge of my seat.  I took my 16-year-old daughter the next day to see it again.  It grabbed me and never let go, even after seeing it two, three and four times.

As we near the end of the year, “The Dark Knight” is looking more and more like one of the year’s best films and I see no reason to believe the film will not be an Oscar nomine for best picture of the year. And at this writing, it deserves it.

Have your say.  Do you think “The Dark Knight” will be nominated for Best Picture?

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47 responses so far

  • 1 11-15-2008 at 11:44 am

    Speaking English said...

    Do I think it will be nominated for Best Picture at this point? No. Do I think it has a pretty good chance? Probably.

    What bothers me about this film and this year is that it’s a good picture, a VERY good picture, but it has become immensely over-hyped, overrated, and held to a regard it should have never even reached. #4 on IMDb’s Top 250? Utterly appalling… a film that is really good should stay really good. All this exaggerated praise is making it more and more dislikable by the minute.

    As good of a picture as it is, it is hardly a masterpiece and is hardly the flawless film people tout it to be. You may say it never gets dull, but I was sitting there in that theater on a hot summer day in July and guess what? I got bored. Nolan can’t handle his overly talky exposition, his pacing problems, or the long meandering sections of his film that quite frankly drag on. There is excellence IN there, but it was buried under bloatedness that needed to be severely cut.

    At the end of the day, it was a good picture that unfortunately had to become something more in the eyes of people holding it to their higher ideals. Does it deserve to be nominated for Best Picture? NO. And that “no” will become far more resounding when we see 5 better pictures in December, I assure you.

  • 2 11-15-2008 at 11:52 am

    michael mckay said...

    I know it’s comparing apples to oranges, but I think WALL-E is more deserving of a Best Picture nod then The Dark Knight (though I loved both).

  • 3 11-15-2008 at 12:07 pm

    JAB said...

    i’ve thought it deserved it since Heath took off the mask at the end of the opening sequence the first (of four) time i saw it.

  • 4 11-15-2008 at 12:13 pm

    Diego said...

    Dark Knight is overrated. I like it, but Wall-E is more deserving…

  • 5 11-15-2008 at 12:25 pm

    JAB said...

    Well, Wall-E is gonna win like 4-5 oscars, animated, both Sound categories, Score, and Song. I realize none of those are as big as Best Picture, but I don’t think any other film will win as many.

  • 6 11-15-2008 at 12:30 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Since it’s on the debating table, I’ll just say it (though I’ve kind of said it before): “WALL-E” is far and away the most overrated film of the last decade. Only “Cars” is a lesser film from the Pixar stable.

    I’ll be glad when we can move away from the subject of it’s Oscar chances, as much as (I’m sure) plenty others will be happy to move on from similar talk for “The Dark Knight” (a film I’m on the record as considering a bit less than the hype has made it out to be this year).

    The bottom line is this: these films are being discussed purely because this is the weakest Oscar year since 2005, perhaps in all my years of doing this.

  • 7 11-15-2008 at 12:34 pm

    JAB said...

    PS i really dig the picture on this post.

  • 8 11-15-2008 at 1:27 pm

    The InSneider said...

    I’m with Kris. Dark Knight and Wall-E do NOT deserve to be nominated for Best Picture. Wall-E was the 2nd worst Pixar movie behind, or rather in front of, Cars. I didn’t care about the character of Wall-E like I did Woody, Buzz, Mike, Sully, Remy or Nemo. And Dark Knight, despite being a great movie that transcends the superhero/comic book genre, is just not Best Picture material. Ledger is excellent and deserves a nom and perhaps even the statue itself and I’d be down with Nolan getting a directing nom if only because he’s done what no other filmmaker had been able to do, plus you can’t begrudge the film its phenomenal success, but it does have its flaws as most films do, and once again, the third act was a bit of a letdown, similar to my reservations about Batman Begins. Wall-E is a fine accomplishment but it was not a masterpiece just because it invoked the silent film era. It wasn’t nearly as fun as either Toy Story film, Monsters Inc., Ratatouille and Finding Nemo, or even The Incredibles or A Bug’s Life. Sorry, Wall-E.

  • 9 11-15-2008 at 1:57 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Kris is absolutely right. Last year (and most years, for that matter) nobody would have considered “The Dark Knight” as a contender — though I do admire the film a great deal.

    Considering that US cinema is having its worst year in ages (worse than 2005, in my opinion), while Europe is having an incredible one, I wish the Academy would look abroad for contenders, but that won’t happen.

  • 10 11-15-2008 at 2:28 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Sneider: Slow down there. As of now, I would put The Dark Knight in the top five for the year. But that can easily change after today, Wednesday, Thursday and next Monday. Then there’s always Gran Torino waiting to be brilliant. But right now, yeah, it deserves it.

    WALL-E, on the other hand — no. Never.

  • 11 11-15-2008 at 2:30 pm

    Diego said...

    Kris you are not right. Wall-E es a beautifull film and Best Motion Picture material…

  • 12 11-15-2008 at 2:32 pm

    Speaking English said...

    Kris, you really have to see WALL-E again. It’s still likely you may feel the same way about it, but I can’t help but feel you’re missing something…

  • 13 11-15-2008 at 3:05 pm

    Kokushi said...

    I cant wait to see Wall-E but knowing my taste in movie no way in hell i will like it more than TDK, thats the same as last year with Rataouille having better reviews in RT than TWBB and NCFOM and Rataouille is not even close of those films.

    Films > Animation.

  • 14 11-15-2008 at 3:12 pm

    Jack said...

    I completely agree with Kris about Wall-E being way overrated. It’s not that I don’t like the film and didn’t enjoy it, it is the my second least favorite pixar movie. The Dark Knight on the other hand is a film far superior to Wall-E and brilliant. Not only should it be nominated for Best Picture, but in such a weak year, who’s to say it won’t win it all?

  • 15 11-15-2008 at 3:16 pm

    Speaking English said...

    That is one of the most ignorant things I’ve ever heard. Films > animation? Are you fucking kidding me? Animation IS film, and if you can’t see that then frankly you are blinded to what art really is.

  • 16 11-15-2008 at 3:26 pm

    McGuff said...

    Speaking English and I have disagreed before, but I’m with the man (man, right?) here. Kokushi, and other people who have been guilty of commenting before, why are you attempting to judge a movie you have not seen, especially based on credentials (Film>animation) that make NO sense. You haven’t seen the movie … shut up. I don’t talk about Revolutionary Road or Australia like I have seen either, I read what others write, attempt to keep my anticipations in check, and wait. Please, do the same.

    While, in a separate thread, I’d be happy to debate WALL-E’s merits with anyone (it’s still my top picture of the year), we are getting away from the point of John’s post. Will TDK be in the Final Five?

    I think so, but like Kris, I blame it on a weak year. I have a friend in the Peace Corps, who left in June, and actually is an extra in the Dark Knight. He was unable to see the film, and is a huge pop culture nut, so I send him my top pics of the year after every five films or so. Right now — without having seen any of Tapley’s projected five — I have it ranked second, behind … only WALL-E. Here’s what I wrote to my buddy/extra:

    “2. The Dark Knight — A tour de force powered by its villain, keeping the camera on Ledger helps Christopher Nolan keep his film in focus even when its ambitions get too large.”

    In other years, this is a cinematic achievement awarded only by large box office numbers. In a year that, through Halloween, has been THIS disappointing, it’s a Best Picture nominee.

  • 17 11-15-2008 at 3:29 pm

    Scott Ward said...

    Even at this point in the year I don’t think that we can accurately gauge The Dark Knight’s chances of a Best Picture nomination. Yes, I absolutely loved the film and gave it four stars, but at this point to say that the film definitely deserves a nomination is premature and also ignorant. People, don’t forget that we have still seen absolutely nothing form movies such as Curios Case of Benjamin Button, Gran Torino, and Revolutionary Road, and very, very little from Doubt, Frost/Nixon, Australia, and Defiance, all of which at least have the possibility of being great films. Add this with the exceptional things I’ve heard about Slumdog Millionaire and Wall-E, and I don’t see how anyone can say that beyond their own personal opinion that they believe that Dark Knight will get the nomination.

    And there are a few critics who have said that some of the highly touted movies this year aren’t deserving of Oscar consideration, think about how few times that there is a movie that EVERYONE thinks will get a nomination.

    Using one recent movie as an example, when The Departed came out two years ago, many will remember that it was the front runner for Best Picture for the majority of the Oscar season. However, not many drooled over it and said it should win the Oscar when it came out in October, they said this after the rest of the films had been seen. I saw it in theaters upon its release and couldn’t have loved it more, but I still didn’t think it was a complete shoe-in for a Best Pic nomination since it was just October.

    So while now I DO think it will get a nomination, I think it is completely wrong to say that it SHOULD get a nomination. Also on a side note, you have to agree that soon to come movies like Benjamin Button, Gran Torino, Australia, Milk, Frost/Nixon, Defiance, and Revolutionary Road, all have a slight handicap over TDK simply because of their subject matter. I say this meaning that if a movie, just take for example, Frost/Nixon, was not quite as good as TDK, it unfortunately might get the nod over TDK simply because it covers an important historical event.

    So basically I say we just all what until the new year, when ALL OF THE FILMS HAVE BEEN SEEN, to say who SHOULD get the nominations.

  • 18 11-15-2008 at 3:38 pm

    McGuff said...

    I agree with Scott on virtually everything he wrote. +1.

  • 19 11-15-2008 at 3:52 pm

    Diego said...

    It doesn´t matter, i still think Wall-E should get the nomination.
    Why we put TDK against Wall-E??

  • 20 11-15-2008 at 5:51 pm

    Ben said...

    Personally I think Wall-E is far and away the best picture so far this year, there are films a number of films that are close for my #2 (The Wrestler, Slumdog Millionaire, Rachel Getting Married etc.) but nothing has come anywhere close to Wall-E yet this year and I’m starting to think perhaps nothing will. Still, I don’t think it will get a BP nom even if I do think it is worth Disney at least trying to campaign for it.

    As for Dark Knight, Batman Begins was nearly BP nom worthy in my mind and Dark Knight is a good movie, but I feel it is a step down from Begins, overrated and isn’t one of my top 15 or so this year. At first I didn’t buy its BP chances but for now I’m at least willing to consider it a contender even if I’m not predicting it, I think if it can get both Globe and PGA nods (the two major precursors who I feel would most receptive to it) then it has a good chance.

  • 21 11-15-2008 at 7:26 pm

    N8 said...

    I know it’s been a weak year for movies, but no other film moved me this year like WALL-E did. For those who say it’s Pixar’s 2nd worst film, that’s hardly a damning statement. It’s Pixar we’re talking about! Perhaps the reason I’m banging the WALL-E drum so hard is because the studio still hasn’t earned a Best Picture nod yet. God knows they’ve been deserving of one in the past (more than once), and WALL-E deserves one just as much.

    I know I can keep dreaming, it aint gonna happen, but I’m used to the Academy ignoring great films.

  • 22 11-15-2008 at 9:39 pm

    Daniel said...

    At this point, I certainly hope The Dark Knight doesn’t get nominated. Seeing it twice, I felt that it meanders to an extreme, has extreme pacing issues in general, and was horribly directed (actions scenes were bland, the spiraling camera on dialogue was laughable).

    As for better films… my top 10 of the year so far:

    1. The Wrestler
    2. Bigger, Stronger, Faster
    3. Wall-E
    4. Happy Go Lucky
    5. Synecdoche, New York
    6. Snow Angels
    7. Pineapple Express
    8. Ballast
    9. Vicky Cristina Barcelona
    10. Forgetting Sarah Marshall

  • 23 11-15-2008 at 10:08 pm

    Glenn said...

    Can we just deal with the fact that some people think “Wall-E” was great and should be BP nominated, and others think “The Dark Knight” was better and should be BP nominated. Just because one person says one doesn’t mean their opinion is any more valid.

  • 24 11-15-2008 at 11:30 pm

    Bing147 said...

    John, you make a great arguement for why the movie deserves to be nominated. But deserves has nothing to do with it. They don’t nominate movies because they deserve to, its all about politics. And I still can’t see it getting in.

  • 25 11-15-2008 at 11:42 pm

    Chad said...

    What’s all this about a weak year at the movies? This is the first time EVER that I have a top 10 list filled at this point. 2005 still hasn’t produced 10 films worth a damn that I’ve seen. But if you are simply looking at “Oscar” contenders as the basis for disappointment, then I can’t comment because I see hardly any of them.

    P.S. I’m with Tapley. Wall-E begins sublimely but ultimately renders itself forgettable by the end.

  • 26 11-16-2008 at 1:34 am

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    The IMDB hype for TDK is completely normal in terms of fanboy reaction. Sure time will correct it and the movie will drop to a more relevant position. But I can tell this, not since LotR did I go to see a movie, again and again and again and again and again and again and again. That’s right 8 times I’ve seen it in cinema. Sure there’s flawes and not everything works as a whole, but I’ve said so before and will do so again. This movie manages to overcome those flaws and deliver a 2.5 hour non-stop thrillride where, even in retrospect, the good outweighs the slightly less vastly.

  • 27 11-16-2008 at 3:54 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Each to their own, Chad, but in saying 2008 looks like a bad for US cinema, I’m not merely talking about Oscar contenders. Whether in the realm of blockbuster, indie, highbrow, lowbrow, there hasn’t been much so far that has really fired my imagination.

    Several good films, yeah. But only a small handful (led by Synecdoche, New York) that I think will really stay with me over the years.

    I’m also in the minority who thinks 2005 wasn’t THAT bad. Any year that gives us A History of Violence, Cache, Brokeback Mountain, Last Days, March of the Penguins, etc, is okay by me.

    Now 1995 … there was a crappy vintage.

  • 28 11-16-2008 at 10:28 am

    Silencio said...

    I barely got through Last Days. Sorry.
    I do think that TDK could take The Departed’s slot this year (except for winning).

  • 29 11-16-2008 at 12:27 pm

    Brandon 'No Hay Banda' House said...

    Wall-E most definitely should have stuck to the course it started with in the first forty minutes, an animated film’s political contention toward obesity- not quite for me. Also, it sort of makes it difficult to get past seeing these 3d characters later on, when we had seen live action people beforehand (frequently, I might add). It causes it to seem unbalanced, which is a real shame, because that first half was incredible.

    Well… this next bit isn’t in regards to anyone else or their opinions, but seriously? The Dark Knight for Best Picture, being named in the same sentence as The Godfather… I may as well quit film. Was it entertaining? I suppose so, though I tend to not find myself thinking about it as I did with Burn After Reading (sorry it wasn’t ‘No Country For Old Men: Part II’ those who didn’t like it, for who knows why). Batman was just that, plain old Batman. It was all over the place, a sloppy sloppy mess of a production, disjointed and really lax with it’s connections. Heath Ledger is dead, and no offense, but because of this fact people flock to this movie as if it were the second coming of Christ- and that’s the thing, it’s not. His acting was good, albeit within the strict boundaries that the script allowed his character to be (it was a constrained role, not his fault, but come on now). To me, placing this movie in the top five of anything is the equivalent of placing Crash as best picture of the year. There is a vast difference in quality over this movie and The Godfather- or any deserving best picture nominee (which is frankly far and between). TDK never transcends the realm of comic book, anyone who says so really never sat down and watched the movie without this bias. I came into TDK knowing the hype, but knowing as little as I could about the film itself. Well hey, if you want to copy a bank robbery ala Heat, go ahead; if you want to make some of the driving sequences come off as Miami Vice, do it. Nolan even clarifies that this was an influence. Copycatting Michael Mann is shameless, and if you’re really going to try to make a superhero movie that comes off as realism, I’d rather watch ‘The Incredibles’, which does so without ever being something it’s not. TDK if filled with too many holes, too many plot jumps and ploys to bring you in. SO MUCH HAPPENS, and by so much I really mean to say far too much. It is all over the place, and completely unbelievable. I have learned one thing though, that I too, can sound like Batman if I lower my voice (Bale is phenomenal, save for Batman- not his fault either, ie; script/character given to him). I understand why ‘people’ like this movie, but critics making it out to be an amazing example of fine film is laughable. Even The Matrix is better than this movie, much better (especially if you forget the other two, though enjoyable, movies ever came out). I could name a comic book movie off the top of my head that achieved that sense of realism much better than Batman ever did, and here it goes: Ghost World. Okay, so there are no superheroes in that one, but what do you want? Superheroes are not realistic. Making some subplot about having all of the cellphones in the city being able to give you sight due to ‘who cares if this makes sense, we need the story to progress’ is just plain stupid. The same goes for Harvey Dent’s character becoming evil overnight, the Joker getting out of prison, Bruce Wayne destroying all of his Batman related items even though nobody knows where those things are hidden except for him and Alfred (because he wasn’t going to be Batman anymore, even though they planned everything from the start, as I’ll get to), and especially (and the one nobody seemed to notice) when Commissioner Gordon gets shot by one of the Joker’s goons and somehow all the good guys knew this was going to happen and meant for him to be shot, even though at the time of the shooting they had no clue that the shooting would ever take place (they just happened to know about it then later on in the movie, and that’s because they knew the audience was too stupid to latch on and care). For a summer movie, it gets its four stars, it’s fun to watch. For a movie past that point, I’d give it a two and a half. Watch it on DVD, maybe you’ll see how ‘blah’ it can really be.

    Oh, and by the way, the Oscars mean nothing. They never have. The New World, anyone? How about Hitchcock never winning director? Raging Bull losing over Ordinary People? Goodfellas just being robbed of everything, Magnolia, The Aviator, Gangs of New York, Saving Private Ryan, Crouching Tiger, Chicago winning best picture, and more than anything and as I’ve mentioned before- CRASH (5/10) winning over (and get this, you’ll love it) Capote (9/10), Brokeback Mountain (9.5/10), Goodnight and Good Luck (8.5/10), and MUNICH (10/10- though a lesser 10). Seriously. The Oscars never meant a damn, because, look who votes for it! Regardless, if TDK gets a nom, I wouldn’t be surprised in the least. If it won, I wouldn’t be surprised. Hell, it’s #1 on imdb’s top 250… that says a lot about a lot of people.

    Oh, and Last Days is amazing. Might want to give it another try there buckaroonie.

    -Brandon House

  • 30 11-16-2008 at 1:58 pm

    Robert Wills said...

    The Dark Knight is #4 and dropping. That’s about where No Country was when it joined the list and where is it now? The fact that TDK is so high reflects the fact that many voters at IMDb in general have not watched nor do they care about classic movies of the past. And if you don’t know the movies I mean, case proved.

  • 31 11-16-2008 at 2:02 pm

    daveylow said...

    I’m with those that think The Dark Knight and Wall-E are overrated. I’m hoping the November-December releases with give us some films that knock them out of the top 5.

    I thought Wall-E was a shoo-in for the Best Animated Film award but now I’m thinking Kung-Fu Panda has a better chance.

  • 32 11-16-2008 at 2:06 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    “I thought Wall-E was a shoo-in for the Best Animated Film award but now I’m thinking Kung-Fu Panda has a better chance.”

    As if.

  • 33 11-16-2008 at 3:18 pm

    Kokushi said...

    Guy, 1995 wasnt that bad: The Usual Suspects, Heat, Casino, Se7en, Braveheart, Twelve Monkeys, Toy Story, Apollo 13 and BATMAN FOREVER (joking).

  • 34 11-16-2008 at 4:01 pm

    Mark Kratina said...

    All of your guys’ TDK envy is showing…… really. Let’s all play “Find a reason to knock this Film” when you can’t deny it was great. When something or someone becomes successful or breaks through in anyway, people seem to go into attack mode. It sounds ridiculous.

    TDK is easily one of the five best films of the year right now.

  • 35 11-16-2008 at 5:11 pm

    Patrick F. said...

    Whether or not Wall-E or Dark Knight deserve to be nominated, it would fit with a certain narrative that seems to have evolved this year.
    Clearly the box office dominance of TDK stalled much of Wall-E’s momentum, so its chances are less likely.
    Still, Both deal with the idea of the pains of a corrupted world as the worthy fight to restore it. This resonated over 60 years ago when Warner Brothers’ Casablanca won, and it resonates now, particularly in context of recent political developments.

    Oscar winners tend to converge on narratives
    I’d maintain that without the sense of utter helplessness that followed the 2004 election, Million Dollar Baby wouldn’t have been as big deal. I think we all wanted Clint to pull the plug on us then. That’s what kind of year it was.

    In 2006 we wanted to expose the flaws in our establishment, so Departed Wins. A Year Earlier, we wanted to feel a sense of liberal self- richeousness in the face of allegedy regressive policy So Crash won. In 2003, we wanted our wars to represent the nessecary triumph of absolute good, even when we knew they weren’t, so Return of The King won. You get my point.

    I tend to feel that The Dark Knight’s narrative works the best for this year. It clearly resonated with audience and critics in ways that no one could have imagined. America wants heroes that recognize how impossible it is to do the right thing, but then do them.

    Now if Bruce Wayne can get over the perception that he’s a Muslim, then it has a shot.

  • 36 11-16-2008 at 5:36 pm

    Jeff said...

    Some thoughts….
    First, let me say that I think Wall-E is terribly overrated. The first act was beautiful, visual poetry, but the end of the film was far too politicized and almost bordered on parody (two elements which did not mix well with the near-silent beauty of the scenes leading up to the humans introduction).
    Let me also say this: I challenge all the people here to define “Best Picture Material”! If it is a sturdy, constant criteria, and if it indeed is high, there are so many films in Oscar history (especially recent history) that have undeservedly done well at the Academy Awards. I think Dark Knight was unworthy of No Country for Old Men, The Departed, Return of the King, or Gladiator, but it is far more worthy than such films as Chicago and Crash. Therefore, I must say that, pragmatically speaking, BP Material is a very relative term. It all depends on the slew of films yet to come (there being so little competition already, at least released in the mainstream cinemas). Frankly, there is so much mystery surrounding so many of these potential BP picks that it is impossible to ascertain whether or not The Dark Knight will make the cut. My guess is that it will.

  • 37 11-16-2008 at 7:30 pm

    Cat said...

    Kokushi are you a fucking idiot? Animation IS film. It’s a medium you uneducated fool. God, what an idiot. Get off this site, it’s over your head.

  • 38 11-16-2008 at 7:46 pm

    Nick said...

    Both walle and TDK are great movies, but that is all that they movies, they are not film in anyway. Film requires a certain amount of finesse that neither of these movies have. TDk beats you over the head with too many story lines, while walle beats you over the head with their green message. They are both great, and the story in walle is much more developed than that of TDK. TDK may be incredibly well constructed, but they attempted to cram too much into the movie, and it suffered because of it. Kokushi’s ignorant view is right in one way, film is better than animation because the academy doesn’t view animated films to be in the same bracket as live action. The view animation no matter what the message as being childrens theater, which points out one major flaw in the academy it self. That the whole process is rigged, and what may actually deserve the award will never get it.

  • 39 11-17-2008 at 8:10 am

    Patrick F said...

    Whose to say what is film?
    By looking at cinema this way, you miss a lot of good quality product. I think it’s way too easy to look at the film industry as those that are “films” and those that are “movies” I think it’s been a great year for those so called “movies” and horrible year for “film” Barring a masterpiece in the next 3 weeks, my top 3 films will be a Chronicles Of Narnia, Wall-E, and Son Of Rambow, and I don’t regret this for a second. Much like The Dark Knight, these films work because they speak to us collectively instead of as individuals, something that No Country For Old Men, (no matter how brilliant and groundbreaking a film, could never do.)

    I think it’s ridiculous to discount the quality of something just because it has broad appeal. It’s like saying that Casablanca wasn’t worthy film because it “was too broad and pandered to pro-war sentiment.”

  • 40 11-17-2008 at 3:37 pm

    Rob said...

    Why The Dark Knight WILL be a Best Picture nominee…

  • 41 11-17-2008 at 8:27 pm

    Scott Ward said...

    Rob, I read the piece, and he (or she), doesn’t make a good argument for the movie’s chances.

  • 42 11-19-2008 at 8:28 pm

    Brandon "No Hay Banda" House said...

    Thank goodness I’m not alone on TDK being bad… because it is. I’m glad it’s dropped to number four on imdb, I hope it gets even lower and lower. The thing about that site though, is that you’ll never be seeing ‘Last Year at Marienbad’ on their top 250, ad you wouldn’t expect to.

    Oh, and just to push some buttons… ‘Casablanca’… my vote for most overrated film of all time. DISCUSS. I’m not kidding though, it is a very dull film. As far as Noir goes you just can’t beat Melleville, Bresson (the anti-noir noir), LYNCH (noir aspects in every film), or Carol Reed’s ‘Third Man’. Even ‘ChungKing Express’ is noir in it’s own quasi way. Hell, ‘Double Indemnity’ is far superior to ‘Casablanca’. Can I back that up? Surely. Cinematography, acting, script, editing, direction… all lacking compared to many other films. It’s the facts people. Stop loving a film because everyone else does and take it for what it really is. Make your own decisions for once. Though, if you love ‘Casablanca’, YOU ARE ALLOWED TO! These are just my opinions based on hours and hours of analysis. Which brings me back to TDK. I don’t like it, not because everyone else is just now starting to knock on it, but because it deserves to be knocked down! It’s just not a fantastic film, it’s not. You want a real Science Fiction? How about Andrei Tarkovski for directing ‘Stalker’? Cristopher Nolan will never be better than ‘Memento’, which is in itself, a flawed film, but better than TDK when it comes down to it. Underrated Nolan was ‘The Prestige’, which I felt was MUCH better than ‘The Illusionist’ in the areas of quality control, but to each their own… And now I’m rambling. I’m done discussing a movie unworthy of discussion. Twenty years from now this film will be forgotten in the wake of Malick and Mann.

  • 43 11-22-2008 at 3:22 am

    Ryan Thoroman said...

    It would be a huge mistake on the part of the academy not to nominate this film. It has been hailed by both critics and fans alike and has a massive level of appeal. But, more importantly, it’s the ratings draw the Oscars need so desperately. It’s no secret that the ratings have been consisently poor over the past few years because, so often, the Academy does focus on those films that audiences really connect with. Yes, I agree that a part of the role of the Academy is to develop some hype for smaller films that would otherwise not be seen, but should that really be there sole purpose?
    Bottom Line: Movie lovers want to see a nomination for “The Dark Knight”, so give it to them.

  • 44 12-05-2008 at 12:24 pm

    Chris said...

    I think it deserves a nomination at least, and I think it has pretty good chances of a nomination. How can the Academy ignore the biggest film of the decade, which also happens to be the biggest film since Titanic?

    Answer: They can’t.

  • 45 12-06-2008 at 8:43 am

    braveheart said...

    Not only should The Dark Knight be nominated it should WIN Best Picture! Great film that says a
    lot and has everything, great performances, smart script, brilliant direction and epic in scale.
    So why not break with tradition and see it become the first comic-book adaption to win big!
    It’s 2nd to Titanic in the money stakes and better critically received than Cameron’s film was so
    why can’t a popular fictional hero be the star of Oscar Knight?