Let us talk then, you and I* …
… about The Dark Knight. It can be a long discussion, as I think befits the topic. Shall we say, maybe, a month-long one? Why don’t we just meet here, every day, starting right, mmm, NOW.
Here is the bank robbery, the scene which opens The Dark Knight. I found it somewhere. Do not ask me questions. Warner Bros, I am sorry but I cannot recall where. Please do not end my streak of six years without being sued. How does this grab you — everybody, go to the Warner Bros. website and buy directly from them the DVD of The Dark Knight, and you know what else? Get it on Blu-Ray too! Also on VHS, because when the machines rise against us, VCR’s will probably be sullen and resentful of having been discarded despite being the superior format (seriously, when your DVD of a certain movie starts skipping, you throw it out and have to buy a new copy: meanwhile, you can still fix a videotape with a motherfucking butter-knife — can we say built in obsolescence??) and try to join the humans’ side!**
Questions for discussion:The opening sequence is a wide-shot of Gotham (yes, it’s Chicago, but suspend disbelief — in fact I think it might even be Hong Kong in this scene), ending in a pan and slow zoom on a mirrored building. Security, corporate might, a reflection of society and the city as it ought be in the eyes of a business — *BOOM.* Can we agree that sets the stage for anarchy? Let’s also agree to look for windows, explosions, and the disruption and undermining of the expected and staid time and again this month, mmkay? The rest of the questions for discussion are really questions that I think I am not sure of the answers on, so feel free to comment.
What is the most important thing you learn via the henchmen’s gossip about the Joker in this sequence, in your opinion?
“That’s funny: it didn’t go to 9-1-1. It rang to a private number.” The now-dead clown, shot by the other now-dead clown, is speaking before his death of the alarm triggered by their disabling the bank’s security system. To whom did this call go, do you think? To whom, really? Recall that the bank manager says, “You don’t know who you’re stealing from!” and the police agree that this is a mob safe-zone bank, where they keep their money. However, everyone in “the mob” seems to have been caught totally by surprise with this job. This means that the call did not, even for one moment, ring out
to Maroni, nor Lau, nor any of the other Gotham gangsters present in
person or via telelink at the meeting so memorably interrupted in about fifteen minutes (we’ll get there) by the Joker and his Amazing Pencil Trick. So to whom do you think that call rang out?From where did the gas which clouds about the bank manager’s face come (I hope it looks familiar)? That part of the question was a no-brainer but it has far-reaching implications, that gas. What does this say about the Joker’s larger plans, and even how he came to menace Gotham to begin with? Go back to question three now.
*Prize in the mail to first person who catches that soundalike reference.
**Eskimo kisses to Polaroid, TDK, and those shitty yellow ones with black stripes from Target. You guys still dominate my movie collection’s shelves. And my heart.