To be honest, The Dark Knight is a film that I’ve dreaded reviewing since I first saw it theatres. How could my words do justice to a masterfully crafted film? I’m not known for being verbose or even elegant with the written word.
The Dark Knight explores a side to Batman that has yet to be touched upon in film. A look into his psyche. While the first explored his origin and faced him against a pair of his lesser known enemies. The latest installment of the Bat has squared him off against his psychotic equal – The Joker, and what a showdown it is.
The late, and incredibly talented, Heath Ledger has taken the farce of a Joker we’d seen in previous films and turned him into one of the creepiest characters to ever grace film. What makes the Joker in this film so surreal is that there have been people in history who are similar to this fictional character.
Christorpher Nolan kept the movie based in a reality setting while turning it from a superhero film to a well crafted mob film with a superhero in it. Christian Bale once again brings his typically strong acting to the project, while Aaron Eckhart was the biggest surprise of the film.
Nolan has no trouble attracting talent to his films with Gary Oldmen, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and many more adding some serious acting talent to make the movie ever better.
The Dark Knight is nothing shy of incredible.
The transfer on The Dark Knight contains alternative aspect ratios due to the standard film and the IMAX scenes. It flips from 2.40:1 for the standard film to 1.78:1 for the IMAX. During my few viewings I didn’t notice the flip-flop due to being engrossed in the film. However, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that is the best transfer to come out WB this year and maybe even on Blu-ray.
It screams “use me to show off your system”.
If the video screams “show me off” then audio will blow you away. It kicks all kinds of bass. The Dolby TrueHD track shocked me and awed me. It truly abused each one of my speakers in ways it has previously not known. It was almost as though everything to this point was just to break in them in. I’m shocked mysubwoofer didn’t start coughing up blood after the beating it took.
Everything from the score to the well balance effects to the low rumble of the subwoofer made the home video experience incredible. The Dark Knight on Blu-ray is all kinds of awesome.
Shockingly, the extras are, well, not exactly what I was expecting. I’m not saying they’re terrible, but they could have been so much better.
The first disc contains around 18 Focus Points which are essentially short making-ofs, which can either be played directly from the menu or by pressing ENTER on your remote when the icon appears on the screen. I was expecting these to play in a PIP, but they exit the movie and play them. Together they total roughly 65-minutes.
Moving to the second disc there are some interesting documentaries to watch. I was impressed by the 45-minute Batman Tech documentary where we learn how many of the gadgets that Batsy uses based in the real world. The second documentary, Batman Unmasked, looks into deeper into the psychology of Bruce Wayne/Batman and the villains.
46-minutes of faux Gotham News can be watched in Gotham Tonight, while there are 5 galleries waiting for your perusal. When that’s all said and done you can watch the Teaser and two Theatrical Trailers along with six TV Spots.
It also includes Digital Copy for those on the move. News also broke out that on December 18th Christopher Nolan will be holding a LIVE commentary over BD-Live for around 100,000 Dark Knight Blu-ray owners.
Menu and Packaging
Warner Bros. continues to launch directly into the movie rather than slow us down with a menu. They continue to use a standard pop-up menu which does the job nicely. The packaging is your standard Blu-ray case.
On Disc Two head into the Extras then Trailers. Select Theatrical #3 and pause it as soon as it begins. When it starts punch in ‘56537’ or bring up the PS3’s onscreen number pad to input the code.
Conclusion and Final Thoughts
I have no doubt that everyone reading this right now already owns a copy of The Dark Knight on DVD or Blu-ray or will be getting it on Christmas morning. I feel sorry for the latter having to wait. The Dark Knight is an incredible film that I’m sure will stand up over the test of time as the greatest comic book based films ever made. With solid audio and video on theBlu -ray you’ll be wanting to use it show off your system. Extras are only so-so, but this is one case where I’d rather watch the movie again than partake in an extras.
And remember, WHY SO SERIOUS?