Released: July 18th Genre: Comic Book Action and Adventure Rating: PG-13 Trailer: Click here The Film - The follow-up to the action hit “Batman Begins,” “The Dark Knight” reunites director Christopher Nolan and star Christian Bale, who once again embodies the man behind the mask. “The Dark Knight” takes Batman across the world in his quest to fight a growing criminal threat. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and District Attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), Batman has been making headway against local crime…until a rising criminal mastermind known as The Joker (Heath Ledger) unleashes a fresh reign of chaos across Gotham City. To stop this devious new menace-Batman’s most personal and vicious enemy yet-he will have to use every high-tech weapon in his arsenal and confront everything he believes. The Verdict - Long gone are the days when crime-fighting, cape crusaders relied on their snug fit multi-coloured spandex costumes, home made utility belts, catchphrase sidekicks and morals. Today; years later, we have come to idolize those bullet proof dependent, high tech weapon wielding "super heroes" - heroes who have no powers and whom are no longer invincible, simply because they have sacrificed their immortality to connect and relate more...with us; the every day, average, 9/5 hard working citizen, that hates their life, hates their job and who's luck always seems to have run out, because they are at the end of the day, no different from the likes of you and I - or so were supposed to believe. I have to admit, i haven't watched a Batman film for many years, not since the release of Batman and Batman Returns back in '89 and '92 when i was only a mere 5 years old. I grew up reading DC comics. My childhood was heavily influenced by the good deeds of The Flash, The Green Lantern and of course Batman. Though as i grew older, i got more into reading Marvel comics; replacing Batman & Robin with Spider Man, The Punisher and The X-Men. Who; with an exception to The Punisher, all had amazingly directed films produced. So, sitting down to watch The Dark Knight, had a lot of expectations to live up to. Of all Gotham Cities Villains, The Joker has always been my favorite, although i may be putting my neck on the line in saying that, Ledgers performance to me, given the talk/hype that this was his best ever, left much to be desired. Many may not dare compare his performance to that of the original Joker, Jack Nicholson but i think its important that any film critic does. When Ledgers performance is credited and recommended for being "one of his best", you can't help but question it, whether you care believe it is or not. The tragic loss of Heath Ledger is undoubtedly the soul reason that the film sky rocketed in the media. You can't say it wasn't. Although Batman has always been a successful franchise, no film in its series will have been as successful as this. And that is down to what exactly? It's like anything you see on the net today, we as people, as a culture, are drawn to seeing and watching such taboo's, thats just the times we live in. His death gave the film the notoriety that just another Batman film wouldn't have otherwise had. An almost perverse and voyeurist type sensation seemed to over thrall the entire theater as we all took part in one last visual for Heath. One last look at him in the flesh, living, breathing and doing what he loved best, before we were finally forced to succumb and accept his death. For me, Infact for any comic book flick, the action wasn't up to pare. However there were some pulse racing moments that creped out of the shadows that seemed to take my mind off of the numbness that had collected around my rear end. The Spotlight was firmly on Bale and Ledger, but there were people who should be given the true credit they deserve for this film. They are Garry Oldman, who did a fantastic job as Commissioner Gordon, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Aaron Eckhart and Christopher Nolan; all honorable exceptions. I have no comment on Christian Bale as I'm simply not a fan of the mother and sister beaters work. If you're a fan of Batman, you'll love it. But if you're a movie nerd like me, you'll see its just another Hollywood blockbuster riding on the coat tails of a death man.