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Today is the tenth anniversary of Warner Bros./Time Warner Inc.’s The Dark Knight. Yes, the Chris Nolan crime thriller is still a stone-cold classic, with Heath Ledger’s trip-wire act balanced out by Gary Oldman’s heartbreaking weariness. The narrative ambition, strong acting, visual splendor and razor’s edge intensity makes up for the periodically dodgy plotting (faking Gordon’s death, turning Rachel into a romantic prize and then a woman-in-refrigerator) occasionally campy dialogue (like in Batman Begins, Nolan gives the sole major female character all of the scold-y lines) and the fact that Batman still sounds silly when he monologues. It’s still the best comic book superhero movie ever made, and I imagine it may hold that title for a very long time.
It essentially caused the entertainment media at large to be taken over by geek properties and geek interests, to the point where everything else is now fighting for air in a click-driven news cycle. If Heath Ledger’s death catapulted the film, pre-release, to the category of mainstream news, then its record-breaking success (a $533m domestic total and a $1 billion worldwide cume) cemented the fact that the geek entertainment fans had won the battle for the hearts and minds of Hollywood. On one hand, that’s why I have this job. On the other hand, it’s why I write more posts about Ant-Man and the Wasp than Sorry to Bother You.