Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Metal Mummy's Movie Meme: 21st Century Films

Pick one?! Just one?! How very dare you! And Metal Mummy nicked my first choice for starts. Jeeez, one week in and all the turmoil - it's going to be good, I can tell. This week Metal Mummy has asked us to pick our favourite 21st Century film, or the film we feel best embraces and embodies the 21st Century.

Nearly, but not quite.

Toughie. It's so easy to remember recent films, as I did, my initial thought was 'got to be Inception', for its amazing visual effects - showing the audience what 21st Century cinematography is really capable of. Not merely for this reason though, but for an introduction to fantastic new talents such as the wonderful Tom Hardy (Eames, if you've seen it). This film requires thought, attention, concentration but it makes it so easy for us to grant this - and boy, oh boy, does it deserve it. Faultless from beginning to end, that is of course if you think the end is actually the end. For those who are interested, I know the Inception answer. Let me know if you want it.

Right, on to my choice and I ummed and ahhed over it. I really did. Purely for fear that in the coming weeks I would be asked for my 'Favourite Film' and I would have already have used this one up in week one. It's definitely up there on my Top 5 all time greats. 

Cast your minds back to 2008. Kidder had just been born and I was unable to visit the cinema. I will regret, always, for the rest of my days that I didn't see this film on the big screen. 

Joker: 'And... here... we... go!'

The Dark Knight is my choice for 21st Century Film. For those of you who don't know, and probably not many of you do, I am a huage (huage is bigger than huge) Batman fan. From comics, to early cartoons, to the Burton classics to 'Oh my lordy, I can't wait for DK Rises 2012'. When this film was released there was such hype, such rave reviews - and then of course the wonderfully talented Health Ledger left us so tragically and the world wondered if the madness in the Joker's eyes was his true self seeping through. Quite rightly, he was posthumously awarded the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 2009. Of course this added to the film's fame, such a sad loss of a fantastic talent however it is not easy to forget the real reason behind the initial excitement this film caused.

Bozo: 'I believe what doesn't kill you simply makes you...' [takes off mask]
Joker: '...stranger.'

The Dark Knight took home a breath-taking 82 awards, with a further 62 nominations. Remember the amazing visual effects? The hospital explosion? The batmobile-truck collision? Impressive. What's even more impressive is that Nolan pretty much insisted that the majority of what we assume must be visual effects actually aren't. Those explosions blasted, the gun shots were fired, Gotham was realised. The scripting was edge of the seat stuff, witty, spine-tingling in parts. The casting was also superb, we've already covered Heath's fantastic portrayal of the Joker, but what an enigmatic Batman Bale makes. And that's what tickles my stomach when I watch any of the Nolan Batman Series. He just gets it. After years of stereo-typical comic book-esque versions of this fictional world, Nolan shows the true foundation to the Batman legacy; harrowing, disturbed, unbalanced, psychotic characterisation - with reason, all with a story, a history, insanity almost justified. It's complex. For once I am so pleased to say that I feel that Nolan has managed to give the tales of The Caped Crusader the depth they deserve.

[Rachel knees the Joker in the groin; he merely laughs it off]
Joker: 'A little fight in you. I like that.'
Batman: 'Then you're going to love me.' [attacks him]

So, my 21st Century Film. I probably wouldn't struggle to write about it again if the time arises. There's so much more can be said for this amazing film. It is after all a, some may say surprising, interest of mine. Great cinematography led by one of our finest 21st Century Directors.

Joker: 'Why so serious?'

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