Christopher Nolan is much, much smarter than your average filmmaker.
-Laremy LegelFull Review
Christopher Nolan's latest exploration of the Batman mythology steeps its muddled plot in so much murk that the Joker's maniacal nihilism comes to seem like a recurrent grace note.
-Joe MorgensternFull Review
The film is so relentlessly bleak that, paradoxically, its blackness is not given its full due. But this comic-book movie is more disturbing, and has more freakish power, than anything else I've seen all year.
-Peter RainerFull Review
Watching The Dark Knight is like gazing into a mirror on a waning moon night: chilling and mesmerizing.
-Lisa KennedyFull Review
Despite the tensions between its form and its function, The Dark Knight succeeds far more than it fails, and lingers provocatively in the mind.
-Christopher OrrFull Review
There is an exquisite order in the chaos, a fascist formality and video game surrealism that resists the forces of disintegration with a sort of superhuman determination.
-Ruth HesseyFull Review
Pitched at the divide between art and industry, poetry and entertainment, The Dark Knight goes darker and deeper than any Hollywood movie of its comic-book kind.
An explosively provocative [film]. ... Exhilaratingly straightforward action sequences matched by moral complexity of a sort not usually associated with comic-book movie franchises.
-Bob MondelloFull Review
For all The Dark Knight's occasionally bombastic excess, it sort of does top them all, and not only in star power and sheer number of things blown up.
-Dana StevensFull Review
[Ledger's] performance is also the most interesting thing in the film, and when the Joker is absent, The Dark Knight loses most of its energy and dynamism.
-Stephen HunterFull Review
This film is not only one of the year's best; it may well end up as the finest of 2008. At the very least, it deserves consideration for Best Picture and Best Director, along with the expected Oscar kudos for Ledger.
-Peter HowellFull Review
See this one on the biggest screen you can (IMAX, ideally), and experience both the magic of top-notch technical filmmaking and the bittersweet pleasure of watching a young actor, gone too soon, giving a performance that won't be forgotten.
-Moira MacDonaldFull Review
The Dark Knight is easily the most entertaining bummer of the summer.
-Chris VognarFull Review
Let's face it: If you're any sort of pop-culture or movie freak, you're going to see this flick. And you should, just for Ledger.
-Tom LongFull Review
Christopher Nolan's second Batman adventure is the rare blockbuster that left me engaged and thoughtful instead of bored and bummed out.
-J. R. JonesFull Review
You come away impressed, oppressed, provoked, and beaten down, holding on to Ledger's squirrelly incandescence as a beacon in the darkness.
-Ty BurrFull Review
Mixing bravura filmmaking with flat cliches in about equal amounts, The Dark Knight is all about dualism. Appropriately, the movie's half-inspired, half-frustrating.
-Liam LaceyFull Review
Shakespearean but overlong, The Dark Knight is two hours of heady, involving action that devolves into a mind-numbing 32-minute epilogue.
-Carrie RickeyFull Review
It's still too long, especially for a comic-book movie. But with Ledger's last performance director Nolan was blessed with the gift of light.
-Roger MooreFull Review
Whatever trepidations Ledger may have had about taking on such an iconic role, he blows past them brilliantly, carrying The Dark Knight along with him.
-Bill GoodykoontzFull Review
[Ledger gives] a fine performance regardless, and I wish the movie around it were more deserving.
-Stephanie ZacharekFull Review
As much as this is Ledger's movie, that should not diminish the notable accomplishments of other key cast members.
-Claudia PuigFull Review
Christopher Nolan wanted to make an action movie that was different from other action movies -- darker, more twisted, more despairing, more bleak -- and he has mostly succeeded in this latest Batman installment. He can thank Ledger for a lot of that.
-Mick LaSalleFull Review
This is not merely a Batman movie. It is not merely a comic-book movie. It is not merely gripping summer entertainment. It is, with Wall-E, one of the two best mainstream films to be released all year and far and away the most hypnotic chiller.
-Amy BiancolliFull Review
It's a comic-book movie, but it's also a dark and highly complex drama.
-Rafer GuzmanFull Review
Nolan hasn't simply made a popcorn movie for brainiacs. He's an increasingly self-assured director of action sequences.
-Colin CovertFull Review
To see it is to understand that Nolan and his co-writer brother Jonathan saw a chance to go deeper into familiar characters and mythology, a chance to meditate on darker-than-usual themes that have implications for the way we live now.
-Kenneth TuranFull Review
The Dark Knight is insurmountable fun.
-Rex ReedFull Review
I previously have had my own auteurist doubts about Mr. Nolan's work, but after The Dark Knight, I may have to rethink my past reservations about Mr. Nolan's place in the 21st-century cinema.
-Andrew SarrisFull Review
The Dark Knight [sounds] like heavy stuff -- and it is. But I should add that Nolan also delivers the kick-ass goods, from an opening bank heist a la Michael Mann to a climactic episode of vehicular mayhem a la William Friedkin.
-Scott FoundasFull Review