Combat Jack Is The Dark Knight!

dark knight

This past Tuesday, the homie Dallas Penn blessed me with a ticket to the screening of “The Dark Knight” at the Lincoln Center IMAX theater in NYC. What dude didn’t know was that last Tuesday (July 8th) was my birthday and for real, this was the best bday gift I received this year (sorry wifey). Eff 30yrs old, 40 is the new 14, for real.

Anyways, being that comic book dude since the ’70’s, Batman has been my favorite character ever since DC Comics blessed the world with the talents of the young legendary artist/ writer god Frank Miller who dropped the revolutionary graphic novel “The Dark Knight Returns” in 1986, the seminal piece that revolutionized the Batman/ Bruce Wayne brand and became overnight the blueprint for all creative teams to follow in Miller’s footsteps since. Taking all of the gulliest aspects of pre-Giuliani New York City, Miller was specifically inspired by the incident in which Bernard Hugo Goetz (dubbed the “Subway Vigilante” by the press) blasted four unarmed Black men with a .38 Special five-shot Smith & Wesson revolver on a New York City subway train in 1984 after he believed they were “intent” on robbing him. The shooting and following trial made front page news for months. Miller took Batman, an oftimes lame Superman wannabe and Super Friends flunkie and flipped the idea of what Batman basically was, a conflicted urban vigilante many times bordering on breaking laws as much as he fought the lawless, thus dropping the definitive Batman story and transforming the character into the complex urban myth legend known as the Dark Knight. Miller’s dark ultra-violent vision of Batman inspired the 1989 movie “Batman” directed by Tim Burton and starring Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne/ Batman and Jack Nicholson as the Joker, spurring Hollywood to drop several sequals until they damn near milked the brand dry with the teh ghey themed “Batman and Robin” starring George Clooney as the gay-ped crusader. This caused many viewers to pause and scream “Holy Batty Bwoy Batman!”

After reviving the brand with 2005’s “Batman Begins”, the truest version of post Miller’s Batman to date, directed by Chris Nolan and starring Christian Bale, the first cat that really pulled off that “I am crazy as all Bat shit and will squeeze your effin criminal ass nuts untils one’a them pops” look that the fictionally real Bruce Wayne/ Batman character would give before making the most hard body of thugs cry for their maam’s an’em, the critical and box office success was the perfect segue way for the sequel “The Dark Knight”. Speaking of being that believable Batman dude, I liked Micheal Keaton’s protrayal as the Bat, but if he ever jumped out on me in the dark, rocking the all black and gray skin tight jump suit with cape, I would commence to beat his quirky scrawny goofy looking ass all up and down Gotham Avenue until the cops came runnin. George Clooney too. Val Kilmer, not so much on account of him always looking a bit touched in the head and with that weird bulbous pus filled knot hanging from his elbow. Bale looks like he might could be that problem white though, all with that bone breaking close contact martial arts ish, plus that growly speak he drops when rocking the Bat suit.

dark knight

The very effin minute “The Dark Knight” starts, you really effin know that this movie will be big, like ginormously huge. Like MAMMOTH! Reportedly filmed with that IMAX technology, the joint instantly grabs you by the throat and does not ease up on the pressure for a full rollar coaster of a ride that’s 2 ½ hours long! Speaking of IMAX, the last piece I saw on that IMAX was about some gay ass penguins or seals or some lame ass sea beasts that my kids begged me to take ’em to see. Did catch up on some good ass sleep though. Anyways, this joint opens with a grander cleaner Gotham city than last we saw, safer, shinier and whiter. Batman has mos def made his presence felt, and although the city seems a whole lot safer, the criminal element, inspired by the caped crusader’s actions decide it’s time for them to up the ante as well. The intro shot immediately jumps into a scene that makes the bank heist scene from “Heat” look like that movie should be retitled “Warm”. Really. There’s not enough G in gully to describe the action filled gunplay that instantly sets the theme for the rest of the flick. Getting back to the perfect set-up for a movie, when Heath Ledger died earlier this year of an accidental overdose of “prescription drugs” right after finishing up in filming his role as Batman’s long-time arch nemesis the Joker, fans got the sense that TDK would be on some next level ish. Fighting against that typical “white died after dropping his best work to date” hype that white usually gets after dying from choking on their own spit up, I refused to get caught up in the hype. All types of reports started leaking of how dude owned the role once “borrowed” by Nicholson, but you know how the media stay bigging up young dead white. Word to my own maam’s, when the Joker makes his first appearance, after having organized the events of said first action sequence, Nicholson’s portrayal of dude is confirmed 100% fugazy. Scarred up cheeks, ghouled out make-up, disturbing speech pattern, and eyes crazier than that Black chick who attacked the old woman on the Atlanta train system a coupla months back as captured on youtube, I won’t be surprised when an image of Ledger’s Joker is placed next to Webster’s definition of “7:30”. Joker makes it real clear, up front and early in this film, not only to the audience but also to the rest of his criminal peers onscreen, that he’s way beyond being on some Tony Montana insane, he is not in the street game for the fame, the glory or the money. It is real clear that he is that criminal truly on some next level shit. As he establishes, and as he continues to convincingly demonstrate throughout this film, the Joker is solely in it for the crazy, in it solely to make shit burn, in it only to make sure shit gets blown up real effin good. Joker’s passion, his expertise is chaos and believe me, he comes off as a genius in spreading it throughout Gotham.

When the film reintroduces Bale as the Bat, we see a man more comfortable in mastering his craft as the city’s protector. Fighting some low level cats, Batman is more focused, more brutal. Because this movie is bigger in all aspects, we actually get a better vantage point in seeing how he goes about breaking his vic’s chins, elbows, legs, backs and all types of body parts. Think of the “Bourne” series fight scenes, only less frenetic camera work, louder fuller sound effects, and much more bone breakage. Mad nose cartilage gets damaged. Batman from the gate is not happy, he’s mean as all fuck, church going alcoholic uncle mean, and although you know he’s skilled enough to take his various opponents down with the application of a simple Vulcan nerve pinch, he’ll always opt for the more violent ultra-painful route. In between fight scenes, we get exposed to some more toy eye-candy as Bruce Wayne gets to spend more of that trust fund billionaire coin improving all his gadgetry. Bat suit becomes more flexible, more tricked out; Batmobile gets all type of upgraded features. The Bat-pod, an ill ass motor-cycle thingie is mos def militarized out. We get to see Wayne build with his trusty weed carriers “Alfred” played by the impeccable Michael Cain and “Lucious Fox” as portrayed by Morgan Freeman of “Electric Company” fame. These two characters, the ones closest to Wayne and who share in his Batman secret help to flesh out Wayne’s true human side, as it is only when he’s around them that Bruce Wayne is comfortable in telling jokes, in cracking the genuine smiles. These old cats, as refined as they are, have that glint in their eye that they too were gully once, and as their boss and also, as their student, Caine and Freeman pull off the fact that they really care for Bruce Wayne, and will do almost anything to make sure Wayne’s night time activities don’t end up getting him merc’ked.

dark knight

Did I mention that this movie is BIG? Without giving away any spoilers, there’s a scene that takes place overseas, where we really get to see Wayne play out his billionaire status, chicks, yachts, and more Bat-toys that come in play during the 2nd major action sequence. Here, Nolan masterfully shows you that although this shit is soooo effin seeped in reality, Wayne is that dude that is licensed to kill James Bond. It was at this point that I told Dallas that as tricked out as his shit gets, Wayne is capable of making Tony Stark of Iron Man fame wash his drawls on the daily. Batman > Iron Man. And not just in the movie sense.

Back in Gotham, Wayne’s other main homie, the only real honest cop “James Gordon” played by the OG Gary Oldman is down with the Bat in the war against crime. Gordon, no way as gully as Batman, still demonstrates that he is in no way bitch-made. He’s down for whatever. Gordon also pulls in a new recruit into their secret war, district attorney “Harvey Dent” (Aaron Eckhart). Eckhart is that typical all American blonde, square jawed out for truth and justice type cat. He plays that pre-hooker fiasco Elliot Spitzer type that you know hates crime, and all the Jokers, niggers and spics that are down with the criminal element. Dude is so effin righteous, so effin firm in his aim against all things underworld that Gordon and Bats have no choice but to enlist him in their secret crime fighting boys club. Oh yeah, he’s the new boyfriend sliding kielbasa to Wayne’s ex-chick Rachel Dawes, now played by Maggie Gyllenhal. Didn’t really feel the Dawes character last played by Katie Holmes, but even though Gyllenhal is more of a dog faced looking chick, she pulls off a better Dawes. This character is clearly introduced solely as a romantic interest, but as the film grandly orchestrates the story, as it continues to weave plot upon plot, we begin to realize how Dawes’ role, the weakest character, ends up having greater relevance than initially expected.

dark knight

Confession. For as long as I’ve been a fan of the Batman character, I never truly felt the Joker character. As we reach mid-point, Joker has developed into more than just the bad guy. He’s a force of nature, he’s hurricane Katrina, he’s Bin Laden’s 9-11. He’s that Tsunami that wiped out those hundreds of thousands of South East Asians in 2005. And the more shit he blows up, the more he’s getting started and the more Batman is NOT having a good day. Right at the point where I’m ready to give this movie four stars, right when my brain tells me that I’ve seen it all, Nolan at the halfway point shows the audience that up until that point, HE’S BEEN FUCKING WITH US! He starts going APESHIT, pulling out all sorts of FUCKERY he was holding back on. Everything displayed thus far, all types of pain, ugliness, action scenes, plots and twists, all that was just a tease. Imagine WWII. The Japanese had just been completely obliterated by the efforts of the Allied Forces. Defeat was evident and they were poised and eager to surrender unconditionally to the United States. The US held back from jumping into cease fire mode, they knew they had to end the war in a major symbolic way, just to back the Russians the eff up, lest those crafty Ruskies were up further spreading their pinko commie rhetoric. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!! Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The fucking atomic bombs. Japan was exposed to the wrong end of a secret weapon so unimaginably powerful that they were damn near blown back to the Stone Age. That’s what the fuck Nolan does. He starts RAINING bombs down. Endless. Loud. Violent. Ugly. Tragic. IMAX. I swear, the adrenaline is now pumping so freely and vigorously in my system that if I had snorted one line of the yay, I would have suffered a major cardio arrest. No one in the audience can fucking breathe because the pace will not effin let up. Like I said earlier. This is a 2 ½ hour roller coaster ride. Dallas, am I lying?

I read in an earlier review on that the only bad thing anyone could say about Ledger’s portrayal of the Joker is that you can totally get distracted from Aaron Eckhart’s flawless “Dent”. Dent is that third Musketeer to Batman and James Gordon. He is definitely on some ride or die shit. Joker brings the pain; Dent’s ready to bring the pain right back. Thugs push him, he’s ready to shove back, and he convincingly pulls this off. And right here, when we see how high Harvey Dent can fly, how honorable and just he is, this is when all shit hits the fan and HELL truly breaks loose! Dent’s transformation into the villain he’s destined to become, “Two-Face” is not pleasant. Not one effin bit. Warner Bros. gets mad props from keeping early images of Two-Face from leaking to the public via the Internets. You know Dent will forever be disfigured. As a comic fan, I’ve seen so many versions of Dent’s face. But no one has a clue how Nolan will drop the Two-Face bomb. We see the painfully painful incident that occurs, we see Dent, the former white knight of Gotham fall to such a tragic event. We see his entire future collapse before his and our eyes. And at this point, Nolan does a superb job of visually teasing us with the actual damage. We get a few peeks, a few glimpses, and the entire audience is anxiously waiting to see the full scope of damage. But no one is really ready when Dent actually turns to look straight into the camera and we all get to see the dreadful horror that is now Two-Face. Upon seeing the grotesque thing that Harvey Dent has now become, well, I think at that point, I actually effin fainted for a brief second. I think I also heard Dallas shit his drawls. [ll] on that, for real.

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As the movie moves to closure, Two Face and Joker reaching a climaxing concerto of destruction, of death, of despair, of creating actual Hell on earth, amazingly with few to no loose strings left dangling, we all get a sense of dreadful relief in knowing that our senses, wholly kidnapped by this movie for 2 ½ full hours will shortly be returning to us. The demon that Ledger/Joker has fully become is intoxicating. You know how easy it is for mad, angry people to suck you into their world. Ledger does this here. In this film. At this point and up to the end, I’m ready to let go and join in his crazy. Let it all go and just rabid the fuck out. Nolan does this to me. Joker does this to me. Two Face does this to me. Then, just as the intensity built up to the stratosphere, the film, coming to a close, starts coming in for the landing. Final fights, final words, final scene. Fade to black. Credits. Applause. There was not one effin moment during this joint where I ever wanted it to end. People have started comparing this to other movies of its genre. That’s a cot-damned shame. Is it better than “Spider Man 2?” How does it compare to “Iron Man”? Fuck that. I feel like comparing it to “The Godfather 2”. “Apocalypse Now”. The first “Matrix”. There’s all this talk about Ledger getting the Academy nod, and I’m feeling that. I will be seeing this movie again, and again and again, like that crack head trying so desperately to recapture the rapture of high off his first hit. I beg beg beg beg beg all of you wanting to see this: PLEASE MAKE YOUR FIRST DARK KNIGHT EXPERIENCE AN IMAX ONE. This movie was only built for IMAX links. The odds of a third installment topping this is way close to effin impossible and if I die today, I’ll be glad to die in peace knowing I got to see TDK.

Oh yeah, much props for the brothers that were on screen. Michael Jai White (of “Spawn” fame) gets a lil’ shine. I always wanted to see dude play that next Black action hero role (Black Panther, Luke Cage). Tiny ‘Zeus’ Lister Jr. also gets to play a small but extremely important role in this piece.

My last words, I got to thinking last night, this morning and all day how good this movie made me feel. I determined that, if in some chance I became a billionaire within the next 12-24 months, I would buy a HUGE effin cargo plane. And I would fly that huge effin plane over to the most starving-est war ravaged part of Africa. And I would land that huge effin plane and load that bitch up with nothing but hongrey kids; I’m talking about really effin starving man. Then I would fly that huge effin plane filled with so many effin hongrey kids STRAIGHT to the nearest IMAX Theater and buy each and every one of those effin hongrey kids a ticket to see The Dark Knight for the first time in their effin hongrey lives. Oh yeah, I’d throw in mad tubs of popcorn, nachos, hot dogs and soda, but my humanitarian act of this lifetime would be knowing that for over two hours, those effin kids would COMPLETELY forget about how eff’d the eff up their situations were!

Peoples, see this on IMAX or please, just go a kill yerselves by having your neighborhood doctor surgically implant a live explosive right up in yer abdominals!

Yo Dallas! My man, MY NEW BFF!!! [ll]. BEST. EFFIN. BIRTHDAY. GIFT. EVAH!

dark knight

39 Responses to “Combat Jack Is The Dark Knight!”

  1. Robbie says:

    I haven’t caught a flick at the cinema in 5 years but you’ve sold me on this joint CJ.

  2. 40 says:

    So my interest in this movie went from “I’ll see it because its what every other American is gonna do” to making an effort to catch this next week on the IMAX butters…

    Siskel and Ebert be dammed – Combat Jack just took your spot.

  3. good post combat jack…only read the first 1/3 though (it seemed like there might be spoilers in the rest)…

    i’m gonna come back and read the whole thing after i see the movie…

  4. nerditry says:


    I actually feel fortunate in the grand sense that I got to sneek preview Tuesday night at the IMAX here in Orlando.

    @CJ : When the movie opens and you heard the bass drop on the 11,000 watt IMAX stereo, did everyone in that theater go “Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh.”? 400 nerds in rapt attention. Fucking glorious.

    This movie is the absolute truth. No Iron Man. No Handcock. No Batman ’89.

  5. Candice says:

    I just bought my Imax tickets. WOW

  6. Sangano says:

    saw it in Linden…gangsta.

  7. Amadeo says:

    There are some reviewers out there that get paid…based on what those few have said you should get their check for this one.

    The DAMNED IMAX HERE ISN”T SHOWING IT. FUCK our Imax. What type of retarded fuckery is that? Oh…but Kung Fu Panda will be showing….next week.

  8. Marvelous Mo says:

    CJ you def sold me in the IMAX experience. I’m going to go with my Dominican Papi and peep this shit.

    This should be a reg feature…CJ movie reviews. D, your reviews are cool, but CJ went in.

  9. Big Homie says:

    Saw this joint last night and I must say it is worth it. Joker made that movie. Applaud Heath.

  10. Teh Ric says:

    I was planning on writing my own TDK blog. But I think Im just going to post a link to this one.


  11. […] Don’t even read what other critics wrote which insighted fanboy mob attacks, the only one you need to read is Combat Jack’s review. […]

  12. Dart_Adams says:

    Nigga, you already know I’m gonna see this shit.

    Y’all caught that new “Watchmen” trailer?


  13. Big Homie says:

    Y’all caught that new “Watchmen” trailer?

    ^ looked pretty ill. Looking foward to that shit most def.

  14. dubble13 says:

    Combat Jack:

    I couldn’t tell from the review whether you REALLY liked this movie…

    Please clarify…

  15. LM says:

    Robbie said it first… this is the only movie review I’ve ever read that absolutely compels me to see the flick in question.

  16. oooooooooooh.
    So “The Dark Knight” is the newest Batman movie?
    Suddenly a lot of things make a LOT more sense. Thanks, Combat Jack!

    …too bad I still won’t go out and see this. I’ve seen one movie in a theater in the past…well, quite a few years. Shame on me.

  17. Lion XL says:

    CJ…I think you need more words to tell us how you really feel.

  18. Lion XL says:

    “For as long as I’ve been a fan of the Batman character, I never truly felt the Joker character”

    that pretty much sums up my whole opinion of the DC universe…right up until the Dark Knight graphic novel, then I started giving DC a pass…

    Good ass review CJ..fianlly got the chance to read it alll

    (and its not spoiler at all!)

  19. the_dallas says:

    Yeah, I shat myself

  20. Ernest Paniccioli says:

    Fuck IMAX. I just bought the bootleg in 3D with smell-o-ramain Chinatown for five bucks- not!

    Jack if anyone but you had given such a STAN review I would have dissed them and kept it moving. Knowing your intellect and mental I am going out on the corner with my Stevie Wonder glasses and a cane and beg enough money to come to NYC and see it in IMAX ,
    As always thanks for the tip, it’s been a whole long time since I saw anything worth watching (VANTAGE POINT and No Country For Old Men stand out) Peace, Ernie

  21. they cant even stay true to the comic book sad

  22. Combat Jack says:

    Ernie, whaddup. No Country was that realest ish! I know I stanned out a bit, and no apologies, but Batman’s been my ish for most of my life. Frank Miller’s early works had as much influence on my young mind as Hip Hop. Word life.. Watching TDK was like going through a time machine and landing in the middle of a Cold Crush set at the Disco Fever, joint in hand, Clarks on my feet, mock neck on chest and a mini bottle of Moët being drank through a straw. I kept the review as real as a fan who finally got what I been feenin for for 22 years! As my man way before this blog ish, you KNOW your homie Combat Jack will ALWAYS bring you the real as I see it!

  23. thoreauly77 says:

    CJ- i was going to see this anyhow, but yesterday morning after reading your review, i had to go out and catch the matinee. this movie was hard as nails and this was a great review.

  24. Gee says:

    Damn! It was ALL that? I had pretty much dismissed it but thanks to your reviee, I’m going to be all up on it.

  25. LL says:

    I cant wait to see it! great review…..and Ill make sure to see it in IMAX!

  26. @CJ: Dope post. Wish I had held out for IMAX, but it was still dope.

    Dark Knight was so good it made me forget about how geeked I was over The Watchmen trailer.

  27. thoreauly77 says:

    ^^^^^ that watchmen trailer was serious though!

  28. jaislayer says:

    TDK is that SHIT!!!! Great movie, had to catch the matinee this morning. I was very impressed. This movie does not disappoint. Heath was good as the Joker, but I don’t know if he out did Jack Nic’s Joker. I have to watch the first Batman again. TDK is one of, if not the best movie I’ve seen in the last two years. I have to catch this in IMAX. I’m out here in Maryland and these fools are showing Kung Fu Panda….WTF?

  29. R. Diddy says:

    ok some combat’s review was the trufus like rufus…and i just asked the missus to occupy me to my local LA imax…however..i need this question to be answered…wheres my fuckin “SIN CITY” sequel…as well as the 300 sequel? And with the exception of Dark Knight (based on the internets)..Iron Man was the most hardbody superhero flick of oh eight..hulk = slight let down..hancock…too predictable…close

  30. Enigmatik says:

    just came back from the theatre…dope ish. i ain’t even a batman fan like that, but this particular pelicula was muy bien. ledger did his thing and the whole movie was top notch. only thing that sucked was that my gal didn’t want to wait til the late showing to catch it on IMAX cause she didn’t want to be tired at work tomorrow.

    damn her and her priorities.

    btw, that watchmen shiznit looks dope.

  31. Heath Ledger killed it.

    Or it killed him.

    Either way, he stole the show.

  32. When i saw the film when harvy is in Gordon office

    I was like wow he reminds me of elliot spitzer

    weird we both thought that

    I really think Aaron echart killed the movie

    heath ledger joker is intreasting but he more like a regular anarcohist

    i would like to seen him laugh /be more amused by his own actions …

  33. 911 says:

    Epic Review. Epic Movie.

  34. Rico says:

    On January 23, 2008 following the announcement of the death of actor Heath Ledger of prescription drug overdose, Gibson opened his show with funeral music and used an audio quote of Jake Gyllenhaal saying the line “I wish I knew how to quit you”, taken from the movie Brokeback Mountain, and commented “Well, he found out how to quit you!” Laughing, Gibson then played another clip from Brokeback Mountain in which Ledger said, “We’re dead,” followed by his own, mocking “We’re dead” before playing the clip again. Throughout the course of the show, Gibson continued to bring up Ledger’s death, jokingly claiming that current events may have caused him to commit suicide, suggesting that Ledger killed himself because he had “a serious position in the (stock) market” or perhaps “watched the Clinton-Obama debate last night. I think he was an Edwards guy, cause he saw his Edwards guy was just completely irrelevant.”[24]. He also referred to Ledger as “a weirdo” with a “serious drug abuse problem”. [25]

    The episode provoked a wave of severe criticism. Several media sources called for Gibson to be fired, including the Catholic America Magazine, which called his comments “hateful”. On MSNBC’s Morning Joe, hosts Mika Brzezinski, Joe Scarborough and Willie Geist expressed disgust at Gibson’s remarks. Scarborough commented “This is about as callous and harsh as anything I’ve heard. It is unspeakably rude. I don’t know who syndicates this guy, but that is absolutely stunning, that John Gibson would be that mean-spirited and hateful”. Brzezinski stated that “I’ve got to tell you, that makes me nauseous…I don’t know how you stay on the air after doing something like that, quite frankly”.

    On his January 24, 2008 radio show John Gibson responded to widespread criticism of his comments, saying that it was “a little Brokeback Mountain joke” and there is “no point in passing up a good joke.” Gibson defended his comments by claiming that “for months and months and months,” his show has consistently made fun of the line, “I wish I knew how to quit you” from Brokeback Mountain. “I’m not giving that up,” said Gibson.

    On the same day, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation denounced Gibson’s behavior and released a statement:

    “Gibson’s remarks are vulgar and disgusting,” said Rashad Robinson, GLAAD’s Senior Director of Media Programs. “It’s sickening that Gibson would exploit Heath Ledger’s tragic death to promote such hurtful intolerance. And to do so at a time when family and friends are grieving shows a level of insensitivity that is beyond the pale.”

    On the January 25, 2008, edition of Big Story, Gibson apologized for his remarks. [26]

    (via wikipedia)

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  38. Solstice says:

    You could tell by his reaction that Labron noticed it right away.

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