Monday, June 21, 2010

The Colonel's Countdown: "Controversial" Omissions

I was going to use this space to discuss in some depth movies I omitted from my Top 25 movies countdown and the list of 25 that missed the cut, but I just started writing about one movie in particular, "The Dark Knight," and I couldn't stop, mainly because I've been inspired by an argument I had with some friends -- including my two best friends and my fiancee! -- the other night at a party. Okay, so that makes three subjects off-limits for me at bars or parties: Politics, religion and "The Dark Knight."

Before I get to that, though, I'll address in a pithy way other movies I've been asked about. And, as always, comments are encouraged.

THE DEPARTED: Great, bloody, fun movie. Just a little too sloppy, and the love triangle part of the story is a bit too contrived and dull. Jack Nicholson, while entertaining as always, overacts in some scenes to the point where it seems like he thinks he's in another movie.

THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS: I started watching this the other day and was reminded of its near-perfection. I regret leaving this out of my Top 50 and possibly my Top 25.

DR. STRANGELOVE: OR, HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB: I swear, I love this movie to death. If I had made a Top 60 list, it would be there.

THE DARK KNIGHT: Okay, deep breath. And ... here ... we ... go!

"The Dark Knight" left me buzzing the first time I saw it. It was an exhilarating big-screen experience. I just had to see it again, which I did on an even bigger, "IMAX-approved" screen, whatever that means. As with most movies, its power waned a bit on the second viewing, but I still loved it. Alas, it was not a love that would last forever. 

The more I watched "The Dark Knight" at home on DVD or HBO, the more its flaws, which had been somewhat apparent to me from the beginning, really started to bug me. Most notably, the plot. For a movie so driven by its plot and the plots of its characters, who are depicted as plotting plotters, there's an awful lot of plot left off the screen and then explained in expository lines that suggest the writers covering their continuity asses.

Take the Joker's pursuit of Harvey Dent, who had earlier falsely outed himself as "the Batman." At that point, the villain is under the impression that Dent is indeed Batman, as he says later, but then Batman shows up and the Joker seizes his opportunity to unmask and kill the caped crusader. He is thwarted at the very last moment by Lieut. Gordon, who, even though he was shot in front of the whole city, had faked his death with apparently nobody's help (this is explained away by the mayor later telling him that he "really plays his cards close to his vest") just so he could spring up at this exact moment to stop the Joker from killing Batman. Oh but then later on, when it becomes clear that everyone is caught in yet another Joker trap, Gordon says definitively that the clown prince of crime actually meant to be caught so he could implement the rest of his nefarious plan. The Joker is not two steps ahead of the good guys, he's 27 steps ahead of them. His true advantage over everybody is not his desire to "see the world burn." It's that he's read the screenplay.

I'd also like to point out two pretty important moments that disregard the movie's own established sense of physics and space:

1. When the Joker has Rachel at knifepoint in the party at Bruce Wayne's penthouse, the camera circles them, showing the partygoers assembled in a ring around them. If anything, especially an enraged man dressed as a bat, is coming at them, we should know just by hearing or seeing the response of the gathered crowd. But no, Batman is just there, by the grace of editing, ready with a growling quip and a punch. At least show him swooping in from a vent in the ceiling or bursting through the crowd.

2. The Joker throws Rachel out of the penthouse, which is clearly dozens of stories above the street. Batman plunges after her. His cape, which we know can act as sort of a parachute, is never fully deployed, but they both land on a car at seemingly high impact but with little or no apparent injury.

"But it's a comic book movie." Yes, I've heard this retort several times. Some friends threw this at me the other night when I astonished (annoyed?) them by revealing my changed attitude toward "The Dark Knight." I know it's a comic book movie. My disbelief is appropriately suspended. Remember, I bought tickets to see a movie about a billionaire who dresses as a bat at night to fight evildoers who wear masks and clown makeup. But "The Dark Knight," other than the fact that the central conflict is between costumed heroes and deformed criminal masterminds, makes it clear throughout most of the movie that it's taking place in something that approximates our reality, a reality that obeys the laws of physics ... except when it's inconvenient to the plot or the action. A director as good and detail-oriented as Christopher Nolan (see "Memento" and "The Prestige") should know these things, but he takes the easy way out time and time again in "The Dark Knight" even when he doesn't need to. It's almost as if he's thinking to himself, "but it's just a comic book movie." Did he take this "comic book movie" less seriously than his other works? Did he just see it as a way to earn money and clout so he can make the kinds of movies he actually wants to make? I'm inclined to say yes.

That disappoints me because Nolan's considerable talents are certainly on display in "The Dark Knight."  I don't begrudge him the paycheck or Hollywood influence this movie won him, I just wish he'd take the material more seriously. I'm with critic Jim Emerson on this, I think filmmakers and audiences alike should take superhero and comic book movies as seriously as they would horror films, science fiction flicks, westerns or gritty urban dramas. There's nothing wrong with escapism, alternative realities or surrealism. Just look at my Top 25. It's full of movies with ridiculous premises, and even some plot holes, although not as pervasive as the ones in "The Dark Knight." (Examples: How is the crew of the Venture able to keep Kong sedated and shackled as they ferry him halfway around the world? And how the Hell does Indy get on that sub in "Raiders"?) I'm willing to believe the premise of any movie, even if it's one that winks at its B-movie roots through stylistic choices (i.e., Quentin Tarantino's entire filmography). "The Dark Knight," though, doesn't wink and nod at its roots, it broods. It's serious, but not in all the right places.

Compare "The Empire Strikes Back" with "Lost in Space," or "Raiders of the Lost Ark" with those Brendan Fraser "Mummy" movies. "Empire" and "Lost in Space" are both science fiction action movies set in outer space, but which one's the classic? "Raiders" and Fraser's "Mummy" are both adventure romps featuring supernatural forces and mystical relics, but which one is better? Neither "Raiders" nor "Empire" sacrifice quality even as they embrace their goofy, pulpy, genre roots. Now, I don't think "The Dark Knight" is anything close to as awful as "Lost in Space" or "The Mummy" series, but, despite its depiction of a comic book hero and villains, it spends much of its time repudiating its genre roots through "realistic" posturing. But then it relies on structurally implausible plot tricks and fudged action-scene physics, which are in turn defended as mere conceits of a "comic book movie." Since when do aesthetic and narrative inconsistencies define the "comic book" genre? "A History of Violence" is a movie based on a comic, er, "graphic novel." If it were rife with implausibilities, such as non-supernatural characters who pop out of nowhere, would you defend it by saying it's just a comic book movie?

Wow, I've made it seem like I really don't like "The Dark Knight." That's not the case at all. I still like it a lot. Despite its faults, it is still a very good, entertaining, albeit flawed movie I can rewatch every now and then like, say, "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" or "Avatar." It's got a high "awesomeness" quotient, and it's such an intense experience -- due in great part to its atmospheric score, sterling production values and its narrative momentum -- that I can get caught up in it without paying much mind to its serious narrative and aesthetic lapses. It also tackles some pretty weighty themes, such as the conflict between security and civil liberties in times of terror, the battle between self-interest and community, and how we perceive heroes. Plus, it doesn't hurt that Heath Ledger delivers an immortal performance as the Joker.

"The Dark Knight" is better than the sum of its parts. But, for me, a movie can only be great if it holds up when I'm thinking about it later. "The Dark Knight" has plenty to savor, but it doesn't hold up for me, not anymore. It amounts to an elaborate magic trick that relies on some very expensive smoke and mirrors, as one of my colleagues said recently. There is greatness in this movie. It's just not as great as I once wanted to believe.


  1. I dont believe in nothing no more.

  2. No one can tell you what you like. I am just personally surprised that some of the movies that made your list (not just top 25, but top 50) beat out Tenenbaums and Strangelove. And I'm not saying this to validate my picks, I'm saying this because I know you love those movies and some other movies that appear on your list I have never really heard you talk about Or maybe I just wasn't listening.

    As for "Dark Knight" we've discussed this numerous times and we're going to have to agree to disagree here. I didn't want to do this but after years of watching Lost, here I go.

    1 - The Joker knowing all - He didn't know it all, he just had contingency plans in place just in case. The guy with the bomb inside of him was in place on the chance the Joker did get caught. He didn't want to get caught, but the whole city and a dude in a bat suit is after him, so why take the chance?

    2 - Gordon - Easily explained by the fact that Dent put mistrust of his colleagues into Gordon's mind. Gordon didn't want to get shot, but when he did he used it as a way to be behind the scenes and protect Dent the best way he knew how: by doing it himself and not depending on others. Could he fake his death on his own? No, I'm sure some doctors were in on it. If I watched this again, I bet you I could explain it even better.

    3 - Rache at knifepoint - "Batman Begins" explains this one. Rewatch the whole "ninja" training scene. Batman is a ninja and he used the distraction of the Joker to make a sneaky, ninja-like entrance.

    4 - Landing on car - What we didn't see is Batman going to the chiropractor the next day.

    Again, I can't sway your opinion, nor do I want to. I'm just saying that every movie has holes and if you think Dark Knight has more than others, cool. I just don't see them as that glaring enough to knock it from great to okay.

  3. said it before, I'll say it again, Dan Milczarski is a smart man.

  4. @Milcz:

    1.That's a pretty specific contingency plan. If he didn't want to get caught, why did this contingency plan put all of the pieces to execute his grandest plans in such perfect position?

    2. If Gordon didn't plan on getting shot, when does he plan faking his death? The moment the bullet hits his bulletproof vest? For that matter, all of those cops surrounding him and holding him after he gets shot can't tell he's wearing a vest or that he's not bleeding? This is not something that needs to be ambiguous like some of the thematic questions TDK laudably poses. It's a concrete plot issue. As a fiction writer, would you let yourself get away with something like that in a story? I mean, sure you don't want to waste your or your readers' time by explaining something to the most minute detail, but there's a point you have to decide what's necessary and what makes sense.

    In fact, the more I think about it, this Gordon plot "twist" becomes even more unnecessary. What purpose does Gordon getting shot serve the story? He can save the mayor without faking his death, and he can later help catch The Joker without being in disguise. Does he need to fake his death to achieve these results and, in turn, be promoted to commissioner? Absolutely not. This faked-death subplot should not have made it to the final draft of the screenplay, and it most certainly shouldn't have been in the movie, taking up the time it does.

    3. It's a good thing you bring up the "Batman Begins" ninja training sequence. It serves not only to explain Batman's ability to move without being seen, but to demystify it. We as the audience get to learn the nuts and bolts of Batman's tricks with shadows and illusions. However, in that TDK scene, there are no shadows or dropoffs near The Joker and Rachel. It's a completely open, well-lit area under very close observation by hundreds of people. I would agree with your distraction explanation if Batman had appeared somewhere out of the observers' field of vision. But he pops up right next to The Joker and Rachel, where everyone has focused their attention. He's just there. No smoke, no swooping in. Hell, two of the absolute coolest things about Batman is those moments he uses his Batline or smoke pellets to appear or disappear. At least in "Batman Begins" you see him use his Bat line to pop up and down to snatch Falcone and his men.

    Again, this is something that doesn't need to be ambiguous. This isn't about questions of morality or right and wrong or even the metaphysical forces that may or may not have created life. The moment of Batman's appearance isn't about abstract notions of space and matter. It's about something being there the moment after it wasn't. Frankly, that moment comes off as a bit insulting especially when you consider the precedent and explanations offered in "Batman Begins."

    4. We also don't see the six months Rachel spent in a full-body cast.

  5. @Milcz, again: And, yes, I agree that just about any movie can be picked apart, as I mentioned in my post above with regards to "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "King Kong." Some movies withstand it better than others, though, because of their tone or style. "The Dark Knight" is a little constrained by its tone, though. It just won't let itself have a little fun, which would go a long way in helping me forgive its contrivances. It makes me wish that Nolan had just a little bit of the old Tim Burton's sense of the absurd and playful creepiness of Batman's world. (Then again, I wish that Burton had more of Nolan's expansive social and philosophical curiosity. But that's another story ...) There were some of these Gothic touches in "Batman Begins," particularly during the scenes set in The Narrows and the Scarecrow hallucination scenes, but other than Ledger's immortal performance and Nolan's vision of The Joker, all of that wonderful Batman weirdness is missing in TDK. Note: I said weirdness, not camp. Joel Schumacher can go fuck himself for all eternity.

  6. 1) Every great chess player has the whole game mapped out in his head as well as numerous plays in case someone does something out of the norm.

    2) People don't die right away from gun shots. The shots clearly knocked him out. The people around him didn't confirm he was dead. He got sent to the hospital and died. Maybe it wasn't a gunshot, maybe he died of a heart attack as a result of the stress. While I agree the "plot twist" was not needed, it was needed for emotional purposes - get the audience vulnerable. I remember feeling shattered when Gordon died and when he returned it was like "HELL YEAH!"

    3) Are you sure there is no where to drop from in the place? He could have easily dropped down at that exact moment and say "Then you're gonna like me." In fact, look at the scene again, there is clearly a woman in the back clutching her chest in surprise, like as if a Bat-man dropped from the heavens. I would also like to note that there is commotion in the background including the jokers goons pushing people. Lots of distractions for Batman to seize the opportunity for some ninja drop-ins.

    4) Batman clearly does get his cape to slow the impact at the last moment and she lands on him, so she would be fine anyway.

    Last point: at least Batman didn't fly around the world a bunch of times to reverse time to save Rachel from falling from the building or get blown up.

  7. we could have just recorded our flag day conversation and saved a lot of typing

  8. @Milcz: I don't question that there isn't a place for Batman to drop in from. But why not show it? Again, it's not a matter of ambiguity. We've seen him do it before, why not show it again? Just for a cheap payoff, that's why. Lazy filmmaking.

    And with the Gordon stuff, it seems like you're putting more effort into explaining it than I think even the Nolan brothers and David Goyer did themselves. There are certain "blanks" filmgoers should be empowered to fill in, such as meaning or who's right and who's wrong. Basic plot mechanics should be one of them.

    Now, you're on to something when you say the revelation of Gordon actually being alive has a lot of power within that moment. It is a "HELL YEAH" moment, but nothing more. It doesn't hold up, and the plot weakness ends up diminishing what could have been a rather solid payoff moment. Think of how satisfying it really could have been had it made sense.

    As for the flying around the world to reverse time thing: Yes, that's ridiculous. But so is the idea of a man from another planet who is powered by our sun to lift anything, fly and withstand any force, other than an alien element known as "kryptonite." The thing is, I can believe that Superman does those things in the context of that movie. That is, in a world where someone like Superman, whose very existence defies all notions of science and physics, could exist. "Superman: The Movie" is clearly having fun with the concept. It is not ashamed to be a work of fantasy.

    The idea of a "Batman" and a "Joker" is also fairly ridiculous. I'm not challenging that. But why spend so much time explaining away and establishing the "reality" of the world of Batman only to bend the rules when it's necessary for those "HELL YEAH" moments. Now if TDK's sole purpose was to just entertain the shit out of us, it largely succeeds. But it's Hershey chocolate in a Godiva wrapper. It promises complexity and subtlety to go along with its visceral appeal, but it never really finds a way to bring it all together.

    Now you may argue that Batman and Superman exist in the same world. Yes, but that's in the comics. There is nothing in TDK or BB to suggest that the last son of Krypton is flying about and reversing time to save Margot Kidder. If that were the case, though, I still wouldn't let TDK's seeming violations of its own rules of space and physics go. After all, the allure of Batman in comparison to Superman and heroes with superpowers is that he is doing everything through practical means, through detection, through physical fitness he had to work to achieve, through devices he's developed himself. How many times have you argued to me that Batman is cooler because "he does it all himself," without the benefit of being supernaturally gifted like Superman is? Batman is not supernatural, no matter the illusion he creates for himself, and Nolan has taken the inherent realism of the character and over-applied it to the point where something implausible happens, it seems like laziness or an error and not like someone trying to entertain you.

  9. And if you think I'm being nitpicky, you should check out Jim Emerson's writing on certain shots and scenes that, if executed better, would have made the movie as great as it could have been. I warn you, though, you may respond angrily to his writing about "The Dark Knight" followed by grudging agreement in several instances. (I think he's a little too rough on the movie, myself.) Here's a link to his archive of TDK articles:

    Reading through his stuff, I came across this passage that I find especially pertinent in light of Milcz's invocation of "Superman":

    "I didn't feel the Batman of 'The Dark Knight"' belonged in the same world as the movie's Joker. I'm talking about the portrayal of a flesh-and-blood crimefighter versus an 'agent of chaos.' It's explained, but I didn't believe it. On the other hand, I don't recall being bothered by implausibilities in 1978's 'Superman' (yes, I love it when he turns back time by reversing the Earth's orbit -- it's a supremely romantic gesture) or Tim Burton's 'Batman Returns.' They were different worlds."

    Here's the link to that article:

  10. have to say I think you're nit picking minor points of the movie just to annoy those of us that loved the movie. Maninly because you simply love tearing down things that other people enjoy.

  11. @that dude: I think you're getting me confused with a friend of mine named Marty. He absolutely can't stand when people enjoy or find comfort in things, especially when such things don't make complete sense, like religion or ghosts, etc.

  12. well he sounds like a real son of a bitch... oh wait, damnit it! there I go getting lost in my persona again

  13. for me, the Dark Knight gets better with each viewing. Not in a technical sense, but its just more fun each time. The first few times I watched it I got more and more out of it. There's quite a lot going on for a first time viewing. And for me, most of the flaws you mentioned MAKE the film for me. Yes, its set in our reality, not a comic book fantasy land. But the over the top, physics defining moments make it FUN. I won't use the "but its a comic book movie" excuse because it isn't a "comic book movie." Its a crime drama based on a comic book. Above all though, it's a Superhero movie. That doesn't necessarily make it a comic book film at the same time. For me, I though Nolan made a good, serious crime drama without forgetting to give us a few nutty rollicks in the world of Superheros. That's just me and I respect your opinion.

  14. @Nick: Your comment underlines something that Milcz already mentioned and has been the rule of the road when it comes to my Countdown itself. We can debate absolutes like aesthetics, plot mechanics, writing, etc., but it all comes down to how a moviegoer responds to the material, emotionally and intellectually. We all love some movies because of their imperfections, or for their shamelessness, or for their gratuitous sex and violence, or for their "rollicks," as you say. It just comes down to how much we can take, or what kind of flaws we can accept.

    In the case of TDK, my lowered opinion (from "holy shit that was great" to "It's very good. No masterpiece, but very good" stems mainly out of my disappointment in Chris Nolan. He could have made it all work, made it fun AND stimulating, epic AND intimate, but he just got lazy in some points. For me, that keeps it out of the realm of the "favorites."

  15. I just think you are in the minority of people who think it's just very good, though. Not right or wrong, I'm just saying more people are going to say it's a great or best movie for them and that more viewings increases that.

    And do I think its a perfect movie? No, I've already said that. Maybe what you call lazy film making is there to appease the masses (I can't say if it would have been better if he dropped out of the sky in that party scene - fact is, I LOVE the scene and have never questioned it and still won't question it even though you've put a shadow of doubt there, it's awesome and fun).

    And about Superman, talk about lazy filmmaking (or screenwriting). Oh crap we killed Lois Lane, don't worry, Superman can turn back time. He can do anything. He's Superman! Yeah, much better plotwise than the Gordon pretending to be killed stuff. The "HELL YEAH" factor of that scene does get less each time but not because I doubt it's credibility, its because I know he's alive. Nothing compares to that first time.

  16. @Milcz: Re: "Superman." Ha, yeah. I'm not denying the ridiculousness of it. I laugh to myself every time I see that part. And I suppose you can call it lazy, but then you'd have to contend that the character of Superman himself is a one-man deux ex machina that explains everything away. He's supernatural and nearly all-powerful, like God or Jesus or Gandalf or a Jedi using The Force. You either accept that at the beginning of the movie or you don't. I guess it just comes down to whether you like Superman and accept his corny, fantastical nature or not. I'm very curious to see what the Nolans do with him.

    The Batman v. Superman debate will never die, although I think it's possible for both characters to have rich and satisfying storylines. I count myself a fan of both characters, for completely different reasons. I love how Superman evokes the mythical concept of a superhuman savior at least somewhat limited by time and space and his inability to be all places at once. That he has to live with hearing so many cries of anguish without being able to answer them all is extremely poignant. The fact that he's shown turning back time appeals to my gooey, romantic side. It feels right and accurate because it's something a guy with super powers would do if he were so madly in love. Batman's allure, as I mentioned before, is in his practical abilities, that he's taught himself all of this shit. Also, it's because of his complex and even contradictory motivations and psychology. He's the perfect masked avenger for this fractured, consistently terrifying and morally ambiguous modern world.

    Back to the disparity between the TDK and Superman plot contrivances: At least we get a clue to Superman's power to reverse time or whatever since Marlon Brando in that awesome wig tells him in the Fortress of Solitude that he is forbidden to interfere with human history. There is nothing -- nothing -- in "The Dark Knight" to suggest Gordon has the capacity or assistance to pull off such an act. Why not have Batman in on it? That would make it so much more plausible and it would serve to deepen the relationship between the two.

    "I LOVE the scene and have never questioned it and still won't question it even though you've put a shadow of doubt there, it's awesome and fun." First, I apologize if I created a shadow of doubt. I'd hate to be the guy that even slightly alters or affects someone's enjoyment of the movie. On the other hand, I'm glad my writing has been at least somewhat convincing!

    I, too, love that scene, at least until Batman shows up. (Actually, and I think you may agree here, Batman and Wayne are given the short shrift in this movie, particularly on the heels of Bale's terrific, Patrick Bateman-lite performance in BB. You can't spell Bateman without Batman, after all. Whatever that means ...) The Joker sauntering around the place, munching on shrimp, threatening Sen. Patrick Leahy (D, Vt.) with a knife, how Wayne oh-so-casually dispatches the Joker's goons on the way to his inner sanctum. All great stuff that withstands Batman's lazily presented entrance.

  17. as for Batman's "lazily presented entrance," I thought it was perfect. Batman is basically a ninja-detective. His reputation of being a living shadow is presented perfectly here. As an audience memeber, you get the same impact of his from-out-of-nowhere appearance that his foes get when unaware. His IS a shadow. The impact of that scene is so bad ass. That's what I want out of Batman. The mythological aspects of the character should not be ignored for the sake of linear storytelling. I love how even in a grounded setting you still get the fantastic. Could Nolan have done things better to make things more plausible? Of course! But I don't want that in my Batman. I want to be whisked away to the Batman comics of my youth, but still have it maintain the mature entertainment factor that I crave as an adult.

    you have never been more correct regarding religion/politics/Dark Knight. I've debated this film with someone before though his opinions are worth shit. According to this fellow, the Lord of the Rings movies had ZERO action and showed nothing but people walking. He also called Avatar a "chick flick" yet salivates over the Spider-Man films. He's a fucking idiot with no brain and I kind of hate him.

  18. "Could Nolan have done things better to make things more plausible? Of course! But I don't want that in my Batman. I want to be whisked away to the Batman comics of my youth, but still have it maintain the mature entertainment factor that I crave as an adult."

    This cuts to the heart of my criticism of "The Dark Knight." This movie is not comfortable in its comic book skin like, say, "Batman Begins" is or "Batman Returns" is. Hell, remember when Batman burst in through the museum in Burton's first "Batman"? That made sense in the context and physics of the scene and it was a "HELL YEAH" comic book moment. Much of "The Dark Knight"'s running time is spent bristling at its comic roots that when something like this happens, it feels like it's from another, dare I say, more fun movie.

    "The mythological aspects of the character should not be ignored for the sake of linear storytelling." I agree with this, but I don't see how showing Batman jumping down from the ceiling or bursting through a skylight or using a damned smoke bomb (which we've seen him learn to use in BB!) would detract from his mythic aspects. In fact, I could only see it reinforce his terrifying, mythic stature. Not only would it be practical, which is true to Batman's character, it would be very disorienting to The Joker and the partygoers. And it would make aesthetic sense, which Nolan, to his credit, usually seems to favor.

  19. @Nick: Oh, and that guy does sound like a fucking idiot. Is he even watching the same movies we are?

  20. this guy is a fucking moron. i work with him and he thinks he knows everything. i may talk like my opinion is the only one, but at least i'm aware that i know nothing. he claims to be a huge Bruce Campbell/Evil Dead fan yet has only seen Army of Darkness and has said, "I don't have to see the first two. Army of Darkness is enough for me." His excuse for not liking Dark Knight? "They went all Batman Forever on it." What the fuck is that!? "Too many villains," he says. When I tried to explain that the film at heart is about the rise and fall of Harvey Dent and the Joker is just a mere interference in Dent/Batman's war on organized crime he dismissed me completely. I told him that when Harvey becomes Two-Face, he is NOT a villain, but another vigilante, only he is after what HE feels is justice (murder) unlike Batman. It's a total greek tragedy. The Dark Knight is the story of Harvey Dent, not Batman vs place-villain-here. That was beyond his mental reach. "Nope. Batman Forever. That's all I have to say." This dude frustrates me so much over the most useless, unimportant shit, but I just want to tear his face off whenever he shits out an opinion. See? I'm getting all tense and pissed off now! Also, he claims his wife is a music expert and tries to cut me down on any music conversation because he's never heard of any of the artists I discuss. He truly believes that if he hasn't heard of it then it isn't any good. YET! His van is filled with Christian music CDs and he thinks hair metal (not even the decent ones, we're talking Warrent) is the best music out there. Oh, and the Monkees are one of the best bands out there. When I felt that we may have had a bond with the Monkees and I told him how much I love the song "Valerie," he tells me how that song is "terrible." Fuck him.


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