Thursday, September 18, 2008


Tell me, what are you up to this weekend? Between you and me, I don't see a lot coming out worth spending your money on. I suppose you could watch Samuel L. Jackson terrorize Patrick Wilson in LAKEVIEW TERRACE. Or you could check out Dane Cook steal Kate Hudson from Jason Biggs in MY BEST FRIEND'S GIRL. C'mon though. Neither one of these movies, which are the best Hollywood has to offer this weekend, actually seems "must see", so why not put your money towards a good cause instead of a two hour waste of your time? How about you go see THE DARK KNIGHT again? It doesn't matter if you've already seen it twice already, this is important. THE DARK KNIGHT is currently running about $82 million below the grand total earned by current all-time box office champ, TITANIC. Sure that's a very large number but this is the only time in recent history that a film has come anywhere close to toppling that record and TITANIC needs to go down.

Now, let me ask you a question. Have you seen TITANIC recently? Time has not been kind. This is a film, that when released, struck such a chord with viewers that it shattered all notions of what a successful film could be. It was released just before Christmas, opened at number one with $28 million and stayed on top for a whopping 15 weeks. In the current box office climate, this would be impossible to accomplish. This is the era of the opening weekend. People need to see movies as early as possible so that they can chime in with their opinions before the following weekend when everyone starts talking about the next big thing. THE DARK KNIGHT opened with $158 million. For those of you who don't do math, that's $130 million more than TITANIC. You would think that would be plenty to overtake the king of the world but TITANIC was taking in more week on week by week four.

There is already talk of a DARK KNIGHT rerelease in IMAX theatres this January in order to generate buzz for potential Oscar nominations which could generate some decent business, maybe another $10 or $15 million. Should it earn those nominations and even go on to win a few actual awards, it could tack on another $20 million or so. That will not be enough. Batman needs your help! The campaign is officially on to sink the TITANIC and all you need to do to help is get out there and drop ten bucks to see a movie you know is going to rock.

It all comes down to this. What would you rather see as the all-time box office champ? A dated film with a story that is at times so cheesy it could be a bad movie of the week or a masterful revelation that has redefined the comic book genre? Give THE DARK KNIGHT the last laugh it most definitely deserves.

Box-Office Mojo (for a complete box-office comparison)

IGN (for the originating campaign and plea)


TALKING MOVIEzzz said...

To be honest, I'd rather TITANIC remained the champ. While I didn't love it, I can understand why people did. It is a grand epic, an old fashioned type of film.

THE DARK KNIGHT, I guess I'm in the minority, I thought was wildly overrated. I thought the story was very clunky, overblown, and even unpleasant in its grimness. BATMAN BEGINS was a much stronger film.

I mean heck, Billy Zane's ineptness in TITANIC was more entertaining than THE DARK KNIGHT.

Black Sheep said...

I can almost accept this response but that last little bit about Billy Zane changed everything. I had forgotten about him. He is the worst thing about TITANIC. He is embarrassing even. I was not taken with TITATNIC when I first saw it. I was impressed by the visuals and the sound work but I found it insipid - less classical and more plain schmaltzy. THE DARK KNIGHT can be grim and I do know a few people who believe it to be overrated but I found it grand, shocking and gripping.

TITANIC deserves to keep its title because of the sheer impact it had on the public at the time. Given the setup though, it was designed to succeed. THE DARK KNIGHT on the other hand, is a stronger, cohesive work that reached so much further than anyone would have expected.

Salty Popcorn said...

No no no no!!
Titanic still remains my number one film of all time. I just love it.
I may consider offing myself if it loses its title! I was working as a projectionist when it came out and played it in 70mm for close to 6 months.
I loved Dark Knight but Titanic is a masterpiece in my mind!
Viva La Leo!

Gino said...

Guess who?!

What you said about Titanic aging poorly could apply to Dark Knight. In fact, in my opinion, TDK was stale on arrival. This isn't quality story-telling, it's spoon-fed and self-important cinema. The plot-holes are gaping, and the drama, if you really follow it as it unfolds (although I think a casual viewing should do the trick, but due to the massive props this film gets it's worth stressing), doesn't make much sense. I would have loved an intelligent film, and it certainly had the potential for it, but that's not what we got. Perhaps like those original Titanic fanatics, only time will make current fans of this come to the realization that they've supported a not so good / pretty awful movie.

Anonymous said...

Hey man, Hollywood may be offering shite this weekend, but there are some great independents opening!

Farzan said...

Im not going to see The Dark Knight again just so it can beat Titanic. Thats pretty stupid and un-needed. So what if Titanic remains the most grossing film of all time. So what if The Dark Knight comes close to beating it. What ever happens should just happen. Im not going to waste another 10 bucks on a movie that I have already seen just so it could beat a movie at the box office.

p.s cool blog

Black Sheep said...

Wow, you make a tiny suggestion and look what happens. I will level with you. Seeing as how I never really fell for TITANIC like the rest of the population, I found it amusing that it could lose its throne. That said, I won't lose any sleep if it doesn't and, given the way the box office works these days, I don't actually think THE DARK KNIGHT has much of a chance to beat it. (Salty, this means there will be no need to kill yourself.) It was just fun that for the first time in ages, a movie actually came within reach of accomplishing what no other has come close to in the last decade.

It was just a bonus that it happened to be a movie I loved. Sorry, Gino, but I'm never going to understand your view of THE DARK KNIGHT ... you weren't simply disappointed; you seem to loathe it, perhaps more so because of the reception its received from the masses. Christopher Nolan is not someone I would consider to be a pompous director (James Cameron on the other hand ...). I felt his film to be well intentioned, ambitious and ultimately successful despite some perhaps minor mistakes that every film deserves forgiveness for. To call the supposed plot holes gaping when they were barely an issue, to call the film unintelligent when it was infinitely more cerebral than most blockbusters or to simply call it awful are such exaggerations that it makes it hard for me to take your opinion seriously. Sorry, dude. I tried to see it your way and I still feel like we saw different movies altogether.

Meanwhile, yes, there are independents this weekend. My review for BLINDNESS will be coming later today.

Gino said...

We don't know each other well enough, so I'll tell you, when I watch a film I leave everything at the door. In Dark Knight's case that includes ugly costumes and Heath's death, hype for and against it. You on the other hand seem to take into account Cameron's behavior when looking back on Titanic.

When I walked out of the screening of TDK thinking it was not only disappointing, but not good (with a group of friends who all saw the same film I did... they didn't like it either), I have reason and right to believe audiences are possibly suffering from some form of delusion. It's clearly unpopular right now to dislike or not praise this movie.

If you didn't find gaping (yes, gaping) plot holes in TDK, then I guess it's me that can't take you seriously. Answer me this, how much time passes through-out the film?

As for the film being intelligent, I'd compare it to a chess game where you're allowed moving the pieces however you like across the board with every move just so you can execute some cool and smart looking play. That's the level of intelligence on display in the TDK. It's borderline depressing to think this film inspires filmmakers and critics alike. I don't lose sleep over it, but if I see someone shouting its praises, for no real reason no less (an article pleading with us to help it over-take Titanic, when we all know it doesn't even make any sense since ticket prices have gone up), well then I might as well add my 2 cents. Furthermore, I wrote quite a bit on TDK in specifics to you a while back, but you never replied.

The only thing we can agree on for now is that it was ambitious, but so was Batman and Robin.

Black Sheep said...

Hey Gino. Sorry if I offended. I guess we'll have to agree to disagree. To clarify, I was not referring to Cameron's personality when I implied that his style was self-important - simply that the manner with which he presented TITANIC presumed its glory rather than allowed for its glory to just be. I'm not saying your opinion is invalid - and I commend you for having the capacity to leave your entire self at the door when you watch a film seeing as how my approach to film watching does include my personality and tastes as I could not nor would want to leave them aside - I'm just saying that I cannot understand your perspective. You seem to find nothing redeeming about a film that I believe could be disliked but never be called awful. And again, comparing it Batman & Robin is a great quote but it removes credibility from your argument as B&R was pure crap and you're ignoring a whole lot of technical mastery in THE DARK KNIGHT to make that statement. Even I will hail TITANIC for its technical accomplishments. I don't have to like the film to do that but you don't see me comparing it to something like BOAT TRIP - or in other words obvious garbage - to prove my point.

Gino said...

no offense whatsoever dude.

I think you missed the point in my last line, which was that ambition does not a great movie make. My comparison goes no further then that.

And I hate to harp, but you make a comment by flat out saying B&R is pure crap, and then ask me to see how at very least TDK has technical marvels...? If you believe what you say then even you would have to concede that B&R had technical and even visual achievements to its credit, thus no longer "pure" garbage. Just "garbage", maybe? Anyway...

Regardless, I gave Dark Knight 2/5 (ratings, yay!!), and it's because it does have some good stuff going for it. The reason for such a poor rating, and why it's a hard movie for me to appreciate is because of it's lack of consideration for good story-telling, good dialogue, etc... Dark Knight failed at the most basic levels, or it didn't do a very good job, I should say.

Also, I didn't say I leave my personality and tastes at the door, which I think is impossible. What I meant by "everything" was what I said in the following line (hype, ugly costumes, heath, etc...).

As for agreeing to disagree, sure why not. No point beating a dead horse, either way.

Salty Popcorn said...

Thank God!!! I was trying to work out the most peaceful way to achieve my goal. Should it be drugs, a noose......taking a small boat out and ramming an iceberg LOL.
Great controversial article by the way. My review of Funny Games nearly caused a few brawls. LOL

Anonymous said...

I think TITANIC should stay at #1 because like the film a little bit more than DARK KNIGHT BLACKSHEEP,plus I think people are mean to it.You actually think critics didn't like TITANIC.I've seen it on many best film lists in 1997.Roger Ebert, Peter Travers Richard Roeper, Gene Siskel,Joel Seigel, David Ansen,James Berdinelli. It w2as #83 on AFI list of greatest movies of all time and USA TODAY called it one of the 10 best films of the 1990's along with Schindler's List and American Beauty.Besides you know The Dark Knight got closer to Titanic because Heath Ledger died mere months before its release it wouldn't have made it to $500 million domestically if he was still alive. The romance in TITANIC made it a phenomenon. HELL I've heard people say SAVING PRIVATE RYAN was cliched and too simple storytelling,and I must admit all the critics talk about is the first half hour of d-day and not the performances or the main story, and people complanined about that film losing the best picture oscar