Join Date: Mar 2013
Re: The TDKR General Discussion Thread - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Part
I really don't get this ripping of Avengers (or Marvel Studios for that matter), I really don't. It's like we're treating it like it's a soulless piece of box office strategy here. Why? Because it's a crowd pleaser? Because it's lighter tone? That's pretty pretentious to think that it's simply a movie for mouth breathers that don't want to think. These movies are made to purely entertain, plain and simple. Nolan will tell you that, Whendon will tell you that. They hopefully live for the smiles, the applause, etc.
TDKR isn't exactly some high art (certainly not what people try and make it out to be), it over compensated too. The movies' giant, climax, is proof of this. It had commercial blockbuster written all over it too, and people ate it up. You think everyone that saw it was thinking about symmetry or symbolism, allegories and character arcs? No. I'm sure there were people that saw it for Batman's new, big flying vehicle, DA BAT. Or Batman fighting bad guys, or Bane punching out Batman. Just like some people look at Avengers like pieces of colorful candy with big explosions and big dumb action like Iron Man pew pewing and Cap throwing his shield. These things are only what we're willing to invest ourselves in nothing more, nothing less.
We're talking about character development? Alright. Put aside your bias for all that is Anne Hathaway and look at Catwoman as she is on the written page and on screen. Is she really all that different and more "developed" as far as character goes than say Black Widow? Absolutely not. Catwoman has that whole lame, one-dimensional "clean slate" deal. Black Widow has that lame "I've got red in my ledger and I'm looking to do good deeds to get rid of it" thing going on.
We know that they were both hardened, rotten little girls (either by stealling or killing and being an assassin) and now they're trying to be clean. That ain't exactly deep or complex.
But you know what? I like them for superficial reasons and that's totally fine. They only insult your intelligence if you let it get to you. Other characters like Bruce Wayne, Tony Stark or Steve Rogers haul around the dynamics, the moral issues, the character evolutions.
Avengers doesn't feel like some dumbed down, self-indulgent crap that was thrown on screen to sell tickets. You can SEE the work and effort that went into it, and the love. The character interactions are GOLDEN (better than TDKR's, the main 4 heroes anyway), that's what the film was MADE for. Character interaction. The lines are quick, smart and witty. Can anyone debate that it's poorly written? Are there really any cringe worthy Goyerisms or long, speechy Nolan rants that are repeated just in case you forgot what was going on? The references are fantastic too and fit the reactions of the characters. Galaga, Wizard of Oz, etc. how is this stuff "dumb"? I mean, is Avengers and it's characters really comparable to something like Transformers? Really? Those characters have no soul. Tony Stark, Rogers, Thor, Banner, Loki? They're FULL of character and are great, uniquely crafted archetypes. It's not like there are potty jokes and mechanical testicles for children to giggle at.
I keep seeing "they lack development", well that's simply not true. In fact, the movie thrives on development. It's not all mind numbing action (like Man of Steel towards the end that everyone seems to love and have in their avatars and sigs), there's Cap dealing with his problems, Stark with his insecurities, Thor having to battle his brother, Banner dealing with the Hulk and his fear of destroying everyone closest to him. There's plenty of development for a film that focuses on not one, not two, not three, not four, but MANY main characters.
I heard laughter, I heard clapping, I heard cheering, how can that all be forced and non-genuine. How is it something that "the suits" dictate and control to grab more $$$? That's sort of insulting to everyone involved isn't it?
Now I love Batman, I'm much more of a Batman guy then I am Marvel, Avengers or what have you. But the crap slinging on Avengers in here, and other "lower" movies is just sort of obnoxious. Art? Another level? TDKR is still a big, dumb, comic book movie with a nuclear bomb macguffin that's going to destroy the entire city if the hero doesn't stop it. Man of Steel even more so. It still has the cliched, big bad who's out to destroy said city and has little complexity. It has forced cringe worthy dialogue, it has big action packed scenes, etc. etc.
The difference is tone. The only thing I'll give the filmmakers a hand on for TDKR is it's gorgeous cinematography and it's use of practical effects over CGI unless it's un-doable. That's it.
As far as depth goes, there's no way TDKR is "on another level" than Avengers. The viewer dictates that entirely when they walk in and sit in the darkened theater. If you're going to not give a film the benefit of the doubt and think, "oh, this is just a big, dumb, "funny", action movie" chances are, that's what you're going to get. Especially when you're looking for it. It's called bias.
If TDKR was so "much more" than what people make it out to be, there would be character moments that don't feel like they're on fast forward suffering from pacing issues because the plot is so bloated. When Bruce comes in through the window and Gordon talks and sees him for the first time, we would have actually FELT like this was a scene of old friends seeing each other after a long, 8 years. Not a sped up, blink and you miss it scene that jumps into the next plot point.
If this was so much more, there would actually be a class war allegory depicted on scene. If this was so much more, Nolan wouldn't have been looking to top big, action sequences from previous movies or make a bigger, badder movie. He'd have made it more personal, more indie and artsy version of Batman, an actual character study of Bruce Wayne locked away in his big old Mansion secluded from the rest of the world. Not an action blockbuster with characters that are preachy, exposition spewing stand ins for specific ideals or themes.
The difference is tone. Just because Avengers isn't a droll, depressing film about over coming pain and moving on doesn't mean that it's dull. It's enthusiastic, vibrant and ingenious. About characters coming together (multiple characters that were built up in a handful of other films in the same world, something that hasn't been done before) and putting aside their differences to fight a common threat. It's a melting pot of colorful characters . . . sorta like a comic book. You know, the very things these things are based off of?
This criterion, pseudo-film buff attitude towards these films does nothing but make us more jaded and cynical. Worrying about Oscars, awards, what other people think, the standards they have, it just ruins the very reason we go see these things. When I see lists of favorite movies, or top 100s and I see kids slapping their heads in disapproval like it's common knowledge that "this is better than that", it sort of puts things in perspective really.
I think TDKR is pure crap, inferior to Begins and straight up mediocre compared to The Dark Knight. But that doesn't mean it's without merit or that other people that love it are being hypnotized into dumb zombies. Or that they're being controlled by the filmmakers and companies. Or that they don't have "taste" (which is purely subjective).
I just don't understand this "holier than thou" attitude at all. If anything, these are all "crappy" comic book movies that we fans over-exaggerate and over-expose to the point of delusion. This is "superhero hype" after all.
Last edited by milost; 06-28-2013 at 06:49 PM.