I'm a big Batman fan. In my opinion he's by far the greatest super hero; much cooler than that wuss Spiderman and certainly more interesting than that pretty boy Superman. Batman has soul – sure it's a dark, brooding soul – but soul nonetheless. I always liked how, unlike the aforementioned crime fighters, Batman doesn't have any actual super powers, just his intelligence (and, I guess, all that money he has to play with doesn't hurt).
Coolest super hero ever
As a kid I was crazy for Batman. My room was a shrine – posters, action figures, bed sheets, shoelaces. I even had a life-size cardboard cutout of The Joker. For Halloween one year (probably due to the expense of the elaborate cape and cowl), that's who I went as – painting my face white, my mouth bright red, and donning a purple jacket I had found with my Mom at a Salvation Army store after hours of tireless searching. I even wrote a short (and sadly never-finished) story about helping Batman fight crime.
In essence my childhood
could be summed up in a few words: Sesame Street, Big Wheels, and Batman.
The Hyped Knight
So it might come as a surprise that I still haven't seen the latest Batman film, THE DARK KNIGHT. I wanted to – still do – but for some reason just never got around to it. I think part of the reason was the massive amount of hype. I heard it called not only the best Batman movie, but perhaps the best super hero movie of all time. There was talk of Oscar nominations for the film and perhaps Heath Ledger (forgive me but – and although I haven't seen the movie – I feel if Ledger were still alive these accolades wouldn't be as strong). Hearing about the packed theaters, people camping out for tickets, some of them seeing the movie three or four times in single day, really turned me off too.
The other and probably more truthful reason I have yet to see the movie is because of something that happened when I was eleven years old: I saw the first BATMAN and it forever changed my life. Well,
perhaps that's overstating it a little but at the time I'm sure I believed it. I still recall that night vividly. It was a midnight showing, one of the very first ones in the area. I went with my older brother and two of his friends. (Why and how that happened I still have no idea; most of the time my seventeen-year-old brother wanted very little to do with me). The theater was across the street from a Pizza Hut and that's where we went beforehand. I remember feeling like the food would never arrive and, when it finally did, eating very quickly, worried we would be late. My brother, reluctant to throw away what we didn't have time to finish, grabbed a box of breadsticks and as we got into the theater and the very long line, stuffed it under his shirt. We were some of the last people inside and had to sit in the very back row. Sliding into my seat I could feel the nervous anticipation in the air. I don't remember too much about the showing other than it was sometimes hard
Does it get any better?
to hear because of all the excited chatter, and at one point someone a few rows over farting loudly and everyone laughing hysterically, but I'll never forget how thrilling it all was.
Still got it
That day marked the beginning of my Batman worship. I got the movie on tape for Christmas and watched it constantly. In my mind then (and probably still now), it was the pinnacle of perfection; how could someone possibly be a better Caped Crusader than Michael Keaton or a better evil villain than Jack Nicholson's Joker? To me the film still remains by far the best in the series and one of my all-time favorite movies.
I'm sure THE DARK KNIGHT is a fine movie – perhaps not as wonderful as touted – but still probably very good. And now that it's on DVD and soon to be on pay-per-view, my excuses for not seeing it are running out. But until I do, I could always pop in that old VHS, the one with just the gold Bat-symbol on the black cover (yes, I still have it), and be thoroughly delighted.
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Thoughts, observations, conjectures, complaints about movies and mostly how they relate to me personally. If you're looking for something a little broader, try Ebert.
Born to write (literally – much to the displeasure of his mother, he emerged with a pencil clutched in one tiny fist), Tim spends most of his days crafting epic monosyllabic poems, new comical titles to his favorite Beatles' songs (Hey, Dude), and angry letters to local businesses that have wronged him in some way. He's really an okay guy once you get to know him.|
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