Wednesday, July 16, 2008
In this movie we see more of the battle between Bruce Wayne and Batman. The film is also an examination of crime, justice, and punishment. As the movie starts, things seem to be going well. Batman has just apprehended crime boss Sal Maroni. Harvey Dent wants to prosecut him to the fullest extent of the law, but Commissioner Gordon wants to try to broker a deal with Maroni. They have suspicions that Maroni is actually in the employ of a much larger crime boss (Oswald Cobblepot) but they don't have sufficient evidence. Dent has taken to carrying the coin that Bruce gave him around with him, constantly playing with it. Dent proceeds to prosecute Maroni, but during one fateful court session, Maroni throws acid in Dent's face, scarring his left side. Some of the acid also makes it onto the coin, marring one of its sides. Dent is rushed to the hospital, but runs out before they can do any sort of reconstructive surgery on him. That night he breaks into prison and confronts Maroni. Maroni informs him that he is working on a deal with Gordon to give him enough information to implicate Cobblepot in exchange for complete immunity, and because of that Dent can't touch him. Dent replies that he'll let fate decide. He pulls out the coin and flips it. It falls damaged side up. Dent kills Maroni and escapes. Two-Face is born, and now Batman is forced to track down Bruce's friend and bring him to justice. Meanwhile in other parts of Gotham, the beautiful Selina Kyle, catburgler extrordinaire, is inspired by the heroics of the caped crusader and decides to take up her own version of masked crime fighting as Catwoman. Of course she does things her own way. She will break into the corporate safes and send the incriminating documents to the police, but she keeps the cash and jewels that are also stored there. She ends up teaming up with Batman, though their's is a strained relationship. He doesn't like her using crime fighting for her personal gain, and she isn't too thrilled with his no killing philosophy. The each end up knowing who the other person is in real life, but that only serves to complicat matters. Selina likes Batman, but thinks Bruce is a loser, while Bruce likes Selina, but cannot condone her actions as Catwoman. This movie is also the one where we get the Riddler. I've always thought that the Riddler seemed like a Joker wannabe, so I figured I would play with that idea for this movie. We get Edward Nigma (who might have been one of Joker's henchmen) who decides that since the Joker is imprisoned, he is the heir apparent to Joker. He leaves clues to his crimes, partly to taunt Batman, partly to prove that he is so brilliant, he can still outsmart Batman even with Batman getting clues. (I'm not sure what happens to him in the end. Maybe he joins forces with Two-Face, but that seems a little too Batman Forever for me. Maybe he tries to join forces with Two-Face, but Two-Face just shoots him. Either way, he is more of a minor villain here.) Meanwhile, Two-Face is busy tracking down all the people who he prosecuted but received a "not guilty" verdict, regardless of their actual innocence. He lets the coin decide if they live or die. Batman (with the help of Catwoman) tracks down Two-Face, and in the final confrontation, he kills Two-Face. I'm sure many Batman fans would be up in arms about this, saying that Batman would never kill anyone, but the way I see it, while Bruce Wayne would definitely never kill anyone, Batman would. Bruce is horrified with what Batman did (after all, he and Dent were friends). Catwoman tries to convince Batman that what he did was right. "Think of all the people he would have killed, had you not stopped him." Batman tells her to leave him and never come back. The end of the movie leaves us with Bruce almost gone; serving only as the shell for Batman. This is definitely intended to be the darkest of the films.