Film: The Dark Knight
Director: Christopher Nolan
Writer: Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan
A group of gangsters rob a bank that apparently holds a large sum of money that belongs to the mob. One of the bank managers grabs a shotgun and fights back but he ends up getting shot. Meanwhile the bank robbers take each other out. After one has completed his task another bank robber takes him out as the Joker has told them that would be one less share. When one of the bank robbers who is actually accompanied by the Joker himself realizes that he is about to be taken out he pulls a gun on the Joker. The Joker stalls by saying that he was supposed to take out the driver and steps back. A bus drives into the bank and kills the other bank robber. The Joker takes out another accomplice after they load the money onto the bus and after he kills the driver he drives off. The grenade he put into the mouth of the bank manager explodes.
What makes it great
Simply everything. Let’s starts with how it looks. The entire scene was shot with an IMAX camera and this attributes to the stunning and gorgeous look of the scene. It was also the perfect way to introduce the long anticipated and much talked about appearance of the Joker. There was much said about Heath Ledger being cast in that iconic role and because of the actor’s death people seemed to be looking forward to the performance even more. And boy did he deliver. The rumors the bank robbers discuss about the Joker sets the character up perfectly. He wears some kind of make up or war paint. He is crazy to think that he is getting a share while he is not even there. It’s just a perfect set up. We as viewers already know that the Joker is in fact one of the robbers and that makes his instruction to the other robbers to take each other out even more sinister.
The confrontation with the bank manager adds another layer to the joker. He has the balls to go against the mob and does not worry about the possible consequences. The way he kills the bank manager shows his ruthlessness and the way he drives off into a long line of identical school busses also shows his brilliance. The scene was expertly written by the Nolan Brothers and expertly directed by Christopher Nolan. Wally Pfister also delivers exceptional work as the Director of Photography. This is one of the best openings scenes in the history of cinema.