As expected, THE DARK KNGHT finally fell to number 2 at the box office, although it took a superteam of Nacho Libre, Iron Man and Zoolander to stop him, with a cameo by Ethan Hunt.
Nonetheless, DARK KNIGHT is now officially the second biggest grossing domestic film of all time, and expect a new cottage industry of psychoanalysis as to why. The Guardian lays out various theories in the link, and you know it is serious whenever someone uses the word Manichean!
“Nolan turns the Manichean morality of comic books — pure good vs pure evil — into a bleak post-9/11 allegory about how terror (and, make no mistake, Ledger’s Joker is a terrorist) breaks down those reassuring moral categories,” writes Dana Stevens in the online magazine Slate. If the references weren’t obvious enough, the Time magazine critic Richard Corliss calls the Joker “the Bin Laden of movie villains”.
Both conservatives and liberals have been rushing to claim that The Dark Knight has become such a phenomenon because it validates their beliefs about the ethical issues at the heart of the war on terror. “There seems to me no question that The Dark Knight is at some level a paean of praise to the fortitude and moral courage that has been shown by George W Bush in this time of terror and war,” the conservative novelist Andrew Klavan writes in The Wall Street Journal. “Like W, Batman is vilified and despised for confronting terrorists in the only terms they understand. Like W, Batman sometimes has to push the boundaries of civil rights to deal with an emergency, certain that he will re-establish those boundaries when the emergency is past.”
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