The Dark Knight
The latest edition of “Batman” is slick, scary, and contains an outstanding performance from an actor since deceased. Heath Ledger plays the part of “The Joker” in a way that somehow makes him seem rational and insane simultaneously. He’s so leeringly devious, so rabidly brilliant, so vengeful and vindictive, but so needy….you just can’t take your eyes off him. He recognizes full well how much he needs the “good guy” as a foil. Batman is, of course, Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale), the wealthy socialite who appears to be simply a handsome bachelor about town, but is actually a vigilante crimefighter who enjoys a tenuous relationship with the local gendarmes. His identity is known only to his trusted butler (Michael Caine) and his former girlfriend (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who is now dating the handsome, dynamic new District Attorney (Aaron Eckhart), having told our caped crusader that she’ll return to him when he is ready to hang up the black mask.
But it’s not as simple as just
feeding his ego by being the mysterious evaporative hero.
Batman understands that there are moments when he will have to sacrifice
his own carefully-guarded reputation for the greater good of
“The Dark Knight” is not uplifting. But it is mesmerizing. And Heath Ledger may very well win a posthumous Academy Award.
Questions For Discussion:
1) When have you participated in an intentional deceit for the greater good? (Hint: start with lying to your children about Santa Claus.)
2) Have you ever encountered someone so evil that you did not think there was any possibility of redemption or restoration?
3) Do you think it’s possible that a vigilante crimefighter could do more good than harm?
Dr. Ronald P. Salfen, Pastor, Grace Presbyterian Church,