Actors: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhar, Tom Hardy
Directors: Christopher Nolan
Number of discs: 6
Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Studio: Warner Home Video
Release Date: September 24, 2013
Run Time: 456 minutes
From the very first time that I picked up a Batman comic back in the 80’s, he was always my favorite superhero. When you think about the word superhero and then think about Batman, some can debate whether or not his is really super. But in my eyes he is definitely a hero. Batman is one of the more darker of comic book heroes. His back story is grim and he is always battling himself with what he is doing and why he is doing it and always looking for a way out. Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” trilogy has been the best portrayal of the caped crusader to date, no question. His vision of these characters are so deep and lined with tons of great themes. These themes are what take this film beyond the typical superhero action film into something with much more depth and drama. Now that Nolan’s chapter for The Dark Knight has come to an end and we are celebrating the recent release of “The Dark Knight Trilogy: Ultimate Collector’s Edition”, I wanted to take some time to look into these themes that are presented in these great films. I figured we have all seen the film, so I wanted to focus on something new.
When you think about “Batman Begins”, it’s main focus was the rise of our hero. His struggle and fight through his own issues and fear is what made him the hero that he became. Heroism in the film is an apparent theme. The city of Gotham has never had anyone to look up before like him and putting their well-being over his own is what helped Bruce Wayne transforms himself into their hero. This also brings up point of what makes a hero? Batman wouldn’t be where he was if he didn’t experience all his pain and suffering. That is what made him a hero and helped him to overcome it. Another theme that plays a prominent factor in “Batman Begins” is fear. Like I said Bruce Wayne fights not only the villains in the film but also is own fear. His fear of bats and his want to strike fear into his victims are two main points. Also focusing on fear would be the Scarecrow, who hoped to expose the city to fear with this hallucinogen drug.
Anarchy comes to mind when I think about “The Dark Knight”. The Joker’s role in the film is to just spread anarchy and wreck havoc in Gotham. He doesn’t have any clear reasons or purpose, he just does it because it is fun and it entertains him. His back story isn’t clear at all, especially since he changes it every time he tells the story when he asks “You wanna know how I got these scars?”. He is one of the great villains in history due to that reason of him being unpredictable and unreasonable. To be honest, I think that we are all scared of anarchy in general and what it would bring if there really was someone like Joker terrorizing our streets. That is why it resonates with us so well and we are enamored with this character. Betrayal is also a theme that The Dark Knight faces himself when the city of Gotham turns there back on him after the death of Harvey Dent.
In “The Dark Knight Rises”, I have always felt that it is a blend of all the themes from the previous film and wrapping up all open-ended questions. Carrying over from “The Dark Knight”, Bruce Wayne is dealing with the denial from Gotham turning their backs on him. He continues to fight with him fears of continuing to put on the cowl and fighting for justice. He questions his intentions and almost let’s it get the better of him. With the character of Bane, the idea of order really comes into play. Bane wants to take all order out of Gotham and succeeds for the most part when the city is under his control. His character also deals with a bit of betrayal as well as we see in his back story when we find out what made him snap. Human nature is also a very big part of the film, as we see what happens when the order is removed from society. Luckily strength defeats the chaos in the film as we seen not only Batman’s rise over his enemies and his own struggles but the city itself as they step up on their own.
So obviously these are only a few of the dozens of amazing themes included within these three very well made films. Before Nolan’s trilogy for “The Dark Knight”, you would never have thought that a “superhero” movie would have this much depth and character to it. I believe that it has changed the path for the future of these films and it will open doors for filmmakers to expand the universe of this films. I would love to open the door as well to everyone reading to point our your favorite themes from these films as well in the comments below. If you are looking to revisit these great themes and enjoy these films again, I would highly recommend picking up “The Dark Knight Trilogy: Ultimate Collector’s Edition”.
This amazing release includes all previous special features from the films as well as a bunch of one extras as well. “The Fire Rises: The Creation and Impact of The Dark Knight Trilogy”, is a behind-the-scenes look on the franchise and is full of never-before-seen footage, rare moments, and exclusive interviews. “Christopher Nolan & Richard Donner: A Conversation” is a sit down chat with directors Christopher Nolan (“The Dark Knight Trilogy”) and Richard Donner (“Superman”). Lastly there are the complete IMAX® Sequences included for “The Dark Knight” and “The Dark Knight Rises”. There is also some great new and exclusive memorabilia including three premium Mattel Hot Wheels Vehicles: Batmobile, Batpod and Tumbler. There is a newly commissioned collectible art cards by Mondo featuring Scarecrow, Joker, Bane, Harvey Dent, and Ra’s al Ghul and a 48-page book featuring production stills and behind-the-scenes images from all three movies. Lastly, you get digital copies of all the films to add to your Ultraviolet account. Act quick though since this set is limited and numbered to only 141,000 copies.