Originally Posted by Shikamaru
I don't believe "cursed" is the way to put it. A curse is defined as something horrible that you cannot get rid of no matter how hard you try and how much you want to. Although that is true with Batman to an extent that he is cursed forever, I don't think it is true in the way you're referring to it as. Bruce intentionally transformed himself into Batman and knows why he is important and why he has to do what he does.
What you said is certainly true about TDK and it is a constant theme in the film but I personally I personally never found it to be the theme. I think that if you analyze Bruce's character arc and progression from the start of BB to the end of TDK, what I told redfirebird2008 is the character arc that Bruce experiences. TDK could have went in a number of possible story directions but I felt that this character arc I am referring to was fully necessary to be there in order for the story to feel like a natural continuation. As The Joker already said, not a single person walked out of theatres expecting Batman to go home and retire for 8 years. But once again, this is a discussion that we've had over and over again in this thread.
What would you say "the" theme is then? By definition, a theme in fiction must be a broad concept that comments on some aspect of life. Therefore, "Bruce must be Batman forever" does not qualify as a theme. Obviously his character arc is something separate, but it should ultimately be an expression of that theme. Also, if it's the most prevalent and recurring theme- chances are, it's the main theme. The major theme is also usually summed up by a line of dialogue. In TDK's case, the obvious pick would be:
Originally Posted by ThePhantasm
Well, I guess you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain...
(Heh, and indeed Phantasm).
I've been reading a several books about screenwriting lately as research for my own writing, so my apologies if I'm coming off like some wannabe screenwriting professor, but all the stuff I've been learning is very fresh in my head right now.