15 Years of The Dark Knight Appreciation Thread

15 years ago, on July 18, 2008. Christopher Nolan releases one of the most highly-praised comicbook/superhero films of all time. The Batman vs. Joker oriented-story took the world by storm as one of the greatest Batman stories told, complimenting actors performances, beautiful cinematography, and amazing storytelling. The film surpassed $1.006 billion in the box office, and to this day still stands as a major fan-favorite.

Today, feel free to join in on the discussion and talk about your experience with The Dark Knight and why you love it… or hate it, everybody has their own preference lol. Don’t hesitate to get even a little philosophical with the film, like the film itself.

Here’s a quick listen to one of my favorite film scores ever…

My first time seeing The Dark Knight was not in theaters, but on DVD. It was the first superhero/comicbook film that I’ve seen, next to Iron Man. The Dark Knight was what really introduced me to the world of superheroes. Now at the time time of seeing it, I was only 6 yrs old, so I didn’t really understand what the hell was going on lol. But as I got older, becoming more familiar with superheroes, the different universes, and even the multiple meanings behind it, I started to understand and gain an appreciation for The Dark Knight as a growing Batman fan.

In my mid to late teens, someone who’s been learning film, my appreciation for it grew EVEN MORE as a film lover. There’s a lot of layers and backstory to this movie, and it’s remained to this day being one of my favorite films ever. :batman:

11 Likes

I remember early on in the trilogy I would think to myself that Christian Bale didn’t really look like Bruce Wayne to me. Over the course of these three excellent movies, being as good as they are, totally changed my mind. You heard that criticism often with the Heath Ledger casting, but I sort of felt the same way about Bale.

Goes to show you that casting based on looks isn’t everything. Good story, good direction, and good acting is what makes these movies great.

Also I love after this movie how the “Batman voice” became a thing. I remember in Endless Winter I think the Justice League is teasing Batman about who can do a better Batman impression. Classic.

6 Likes

Man, can you believe it’s been 15 years since “The Dark Knight” came out? I remember being totally floored by it. Heath Ledger as The Joker? Mind-blowing. And the way it was shot, just gorgeous. But what really gets me is how deep it goes. It’s not just good guys versus bad guys, it’s this whole tangled mess of order, chaos, and what it means to stick to your guns. Plus, that score - it gives me chills every time. It’s one of those movies that just sticks with you, you know? I still find myself thinking about it all these years later.

7 Likes

Fifteen years? I simply cannot believe it! I still remember it like it was yesterday, almost, lol. I remember I was a little late getting to the movie. My girlfriend at the time and I were…uh tied up finishing something up first, lol. We didn’t miss the movie though. Maybe some of the previews. But keep in mind this is BEFORE buying tickets on-line and already reserving your seat. We got stuck in the front row. At first…it kinda sucked. But over time, it kinda helped. Being forced to see Heath Ledger’s face like that, up close, and personal is something else.

All of those action set pieces and score was something else! I did not know what to expect, especially since rumors were still in the air that Two-Face was not in it and will be in the third or he is in it. One could not help but assume the interrogation scene is probably somewhere at the end. NOPE!

The Dark Knight I think was the first movie I went to go see again in theatres. I freaking loved it and wanted to see it with my buddies. Better seats on the second viewing, lol. I remember that summer of bumping the score in my car too.

4 Likes

Cheers to 15 years of the best live-action Batman movie from a filmmaking perspective! :beers:

I saw The Dark Knight close to, if not exactly, 10 times during its theatrical run (including IMAX) and have owned it on Blu-ray (Lord, the number of different Blu-ray releases I had of this movie :smile:) and digital 4K of which, I have seen the movie on both formats more times than I have bothered to keep track of.

Good stuff, indeed.

4 Likes

2008 was one of the worst years of my life, but having this movie made it a little better.

image

6 Likes

The Dark Knight is incredible. One of my favorite movies ever made.

4 Likes

I remember watching it back in 2008 with my little brothers, and I was blown away. The trailer alone had me hooked from the start. :fire:

4 Likes

Probably one of DC’s most financially successful home videos with making over $300 million domestically to date.

The only thing that tops it is Batman (1989), when adjusted for inflation.

4 Likes

I remember when I saw this movie I went back and watched Batman '89, given that was the last time we had Joker. All of a sudden, Jack Nicholson came off like Casear Romero, lol. Don’t worry, my thoughts have changed over the time and I love Jack. But, again, at the time, that’s how it felt to me, lol.

2 Likes

Most of the film is really solid, and it goes far in redeeming that awful attempt at a romance in the previous film…

…but the end of the movie is a huge disappointment. The sequence with the two ferries, while thematically appropriate, was so schmaltzy that it stretched credibility. Oh, sure everyone would find it within themselves to be noble. That’s even harder to believe than the technobabble about getting a fingerprint off a fired bullet.

But even worse is the mad rush to kill off not only a major Batman villain, but any potential opening for a sequel. It’s as if Batman Begins had added a 10-minute epilogue where the Dark Knight tracked down and immediately defeated the Joker. Harvey’s descent is tragic enough without throwing away the opportunity to do anything interesting with him in the future.

Still, these gripes do not sink the movie (though they arguably sink the following movie). It is easily, without a doubt, the second-best Batman film. And besides, it’s a long-standing tradition for the ending of a Batman film to miss the mark (literally in the case of Bruce failing to hit the Joker with his Batwing rockets!).

2 Likes

LOL. I do remember when Katie Holmes was recasted in TDK and nobody cared at all. If anything, this was for the best, lol.

5 Likes

:smirk: Good Evening ladies and gentlemen, I’m your tonight entertainment, I only have one question, where is @MidknightSon20? Have you seen him? I just wanted to tell him something…
Can’t believe it’s been 15 years that I don’t know where to begin.
Batman Begins was a huge success and I thought Christopher Nolan did a brilliant job telling Batman’s Origin story, I remember the ending… am I allow to spoil a 18 year old movie? I’m pretty sure everyone seen the movie, if not watch it on Max it’s really good!

I remember when Gordon hand Batman the evidence of a card, Batman turns, it, it was a Joker card! That scene back in 2005 got me so excited, is the Joker really going to be in the next film?! Who will play him?

2 years later, heard there would be a new Batman film, and was thrill that the Joker will be in it, but I wasn’t thrill about the casting, I thought at the time after seeing The Patriot (2000) that Heath Ledger was a terrible actor and wasn’t a fan.
When the trailer came out, Ledger really prove me wrong, I thought, wow this look awesome.
In January of 2008, I was watching Empire Strike Back, It was almost 4:00pm and during the snow scene battle, I stop watching the movie to watch Fox News with Shepherd Smith, I’ll never forget when he came on, “Actor Heath Ledger, dead at age 28.”
I was so shock and sadden by the news that my eyes were wide open and my mouth just drop. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, I even saw a footage of a bodybag carried out by the medic, I was glue to my TV.
The Dark Knight was just 6 month away and Ledger was gone,
Fast forward to July, I’ve got to see The Dark Knight at a midnight showing wearing my I believe in Harvey Dent T-shirt my brother got me, I really enjoy the movie, Ledger did amazing job playing the Joker, had Ledger live, I would’ve liked to see him in a sequel, even if it was a cameo appearance.
Aaron Eckhart did amazing job playing Harvey Dent and his Two-Face appearance was really perfect! Way better then Tommy Lee Jones Two-Face.
One thing I notice about Batman, his voice was different then the first movie, but it didn’t bother me.
In my opinion, this movie should’ve been nominated for Best Picture, and should’ve won for Best Picture, No hero movies can top this film, Spider-man: No Way Home came close, still it’s a greatest Super hero film of all time.
When I first saw this, the Joker really scare me and even made me nervous, love it when he’s telling his story, the haunting music plays and the camera look like you’re pushing towards him, that you wanted to push yourself away from him!:laughing:
Like with Jack Nicholson’s Joker, I also like to quote Ledger’s Joker as you read at the start of this post.

What do I think of Heath Ledger now? Even if he was still alive today, I think he was such a talented actor, after watching The Dark Knight and rewatching The Patriot, he did amazing job in those film, think I also saw Knight Tales, that was really good.
Sometimes when there’s a actor or a wrestler I don’t like, I sometimes ending up liking them. :slightly_smiling_face:

Now as for Dark Knight Rises…

3 Likes

Same. I had the OST on CD back in 2008. It was (is!) absolutely haunting.

Much like all y’all, TDK was my absolute favorite rendition of any Batman story. Heath Ledger was such an iconic Joker — but even aside from his part, the entire plot was just so captivating at absolutely every angle. I still look back on it pretty fondly.

5 Likes

Good morning friend, that was a very nice post to read.

I believe I heard somewhere that Christopher Nolan wasn’t planning on making The Dark Knight or a second film. He was going to leave it where the fans can kind of just come up with what happens next in their heads. Imagine if Batman Begins is where he left it… we never would’ve gotten the masterpiece The Dark Knight is and the impact it’s made on comicbook films.

:100:

I remember when I was a kid, Joker was the only thing that actually separated me from watching the movie again, but then you get older and you understand more, and now Heath’s Joker is one of my favorite movie villains. Heath Ledger really set the bar high for the Joker role.

When this movie hits it’s 15th anniversary, we’ll probably discuss that too

5 Likes

100% Agree!

4 Likes

Thank god it came out in 2005 and not after 2008, were people just assumed there’d be a sequel. To me it always felt like a great wink for the fans and kind of a ‘hey, if there’s a sequel, we don’t know yet, there’ll be Joker!’

And that’s what makes this trilogy so good. Each one feels like a separate installment you can almost enjoy on its own. I def. recall him waiting until he actually had a story to tell for TDKR, for Nolan doesn’t so soulless cash grabs and toy commercials.

4 Likes

My favorite Joker line:

“Uh, half.”

I use it quite often IRL and when amongst pop culture-literate family, friends and work associates, they always get what its a nod to.

Another favorite:

“Hi!”

Again, pop culture-literate folks get the nod when I use it.

Being that I’m a stickler for details, I remember my first showing of The Dark Knight (an advanced screening that began at midnight) had trailers for Watchmen (which, upon conclusion, generated a thunderous applause from the audience in the giant, sold-out auditorium) and The Spirit.

Anyone else remember the trailers that played with The Dark Knight when they saw it in-theater?

5 Likes

Two-Face say, “Uh half.”
Joker really said, “I’m burning my half.” :slightly_smiling_face:

3 Likes

Being a fellow geek for The Fugitive, you know the connective tissue the two share, yeah (beyond being releases from Warner Brothers Pictures, of course)?

3 Likes