The Dark Knight

Posted by batman567 on Jul 31st, 2008
2008
Jul 31

The Joker - played by Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight


The much-anticipated Batman: The Dark Knight lives up to the hype – and what is being lauded as an Oscar-winning performance by the late Heath Ledger.

The movie takes one on a dark journey into the minds of the Batman and his nemesis, The Joker, exposing the underbelly of a violent society mired in chaos. As the second of the Batman films directed by Christopher Nolan, The Dark Knight continues the dark mood. Stellar performances by Michael Caine, as the butler Alfred, and Heath Ledger, as the Joker, add a level of depth to the film. Bale has certainly made the role his. Ledger’s portrayal is a stand-out performance.

Brace yourself, the movie’s long – over two hours – but despite some gratuitous scenes, the cast does hold this one together quite admirably. The Dark Knight returns to that style and Nolan makes a very decent fist of giving us a Batman with a realistic gloss, a Batman who could almost exist in the real world. This suits the figure of Batman himself, because he’s not really a superhero in the way Superman, say, is a superhero. Alone of the great comic-book heroes, Batman has no supernatural powers; his martial skills are painfully and laboriously acquired and then enhanced by some majorly futuristic technology. Batman - played by Christian Bale in The Dark Knight

Batman Begins and now The Dark Knight have some fun with using Morgan Freeman as the Q figure to Batman’s Bond. Freeman’s Lucius Fox makes the ultra-hard-but-light suit and the extra-super-Batmobile-cum-Batbike; he deals with the Batcomputer’s super-surveillance program and so on. This sort of techno-gumf can be fun. It adds something that we don’t usually get in comic-book-hero movies, where we just have the mysteries of getting superpowers from radioactive spiders and the like, or start feeling weak from kryptonite poisoning. It makes Nolan’s Batman feel a bit more as though he lives in the real world and not in some mythical parallel universe.

What helps that sense of realism, too, is the picture of politicians and policemen fighting a desperate battle against crime in a vast urban conurbation. Even the Joker, a real pantomime villain if ever there was one (only the Penguin beats him at that), is transformed here into a convincing psychopath. The characterisation is helped considerably by the fact that he’s played by a real actor, Heath Ledger — and there’s talk of a posthumous Oscar for his portrayal. Ledger’s Joker isn’t funny in the way Jack Nicholson’s was: he is simply very scary.

There are now six Batman films and I must say that The Dark Knight is the best out of all of them. The title is good because that is what Batman actually is. It has been 3 years for the adventure to continue from Batman Begins but that entire wait was worth it. Gotham city is very Gothic looking and is very haunting and visionary. The whole movie is charged with pulse-pounding suspense, ingenious special effects and riveting performances from a first-rate cast especially from Heath Ledger who gave an Oscar nomination performance for best supporting-actor. It is a shame that he can’t see his terrific work on-screen. The cinematography is excellent which is made so dark & sinister that really did suit the mood for the film.


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Female Logic

Posted by batman on Jul 18th, 2008
2008
Jul 18

When girls don’t put out!!

This was written by a guy ….. it’s pretty damn smart.

Girls — Please have a sense of humor! I never quite figured out why the sexual urge of men and women differ so much. And I never have figured out the whole Venus and Mars thing. I have never figured out why men think with their head and women with their heart.

FOR EXAMPLE:

One evening last week, my girlfriend and I were getting into bed. Well, the passion starts to heat up, and she eventually says, ‘I don’t feel like it, I just want you to hold me.’

I said, ‘WHAT??!! What was that?!’

So she says the words that every boyfriend on the planet dreads to hear…

‘You’re just not in touch with my emotional needs as a woman enough for me to satisfy your physical needs as a man.’

She responded to my puzzled look by saying, ‘Can’t you just love me for who I am and not what I do for you in the bedroom?’

Realizing that nothing was going to happen that night, I went to sleep.

The very next day I opted to take the day off of work to spend time with her. We went out to a nice lunch and then went shopping at a big, big unnamed department store. I walked around with her while she tried on several different very expensive outfits. She couldn’t decide which one to take, so I told her we’d just buy them all. She wanted new shoes to compliment her new clothes, so I said, ‘Lets get a pair for each outfit.’

We went on to the jewelery department where she picked out a pair of diamond earrings. Let me tell you… she was so excited. She must have thought I was one wave short of a shipwreck. I started to think she was testing me because she asked for a tennis bracelet when she doesn’t even know how to play tennis.

I think I threw her for a loop when I said, ‘That’s fine, honey.’ She was almost nearing sexual satisfaction from all of the excitement. Smiling with excited anticipation, she finally said, ‘I think this is all dear, let’s go to the cashier.’

I could hardly contain myself when I blurted out, ‘No honey, I don’t feel like it.’

Her face just went completely blank as her jaw dropped with a baffled, ‘WHAT?’

I then said, ‘Honey! I just want you to HOLD this stuff for a while. You’re just not in touch with my financial needs as a man enough for me to satisfy your shopping needs as a woman.’

And just when she had this look like she was going to kill me, I added, ‘Why can’t you just love me for who I am and not for the things I buy you?’

Apparently I’m not having sex tonight either….

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2008
Jul 15

A day after US online retail giant Amazon announced that it was no longer offering South African customers standard postal delivery due to massive theft by SA Post Office employees, the Post Office has announced that it will sell cut-price books, DVDs and CDs direct to the public outside the back door of its branches nationwide.

According to a statement made by Post Office spokesman Gift Mkhize, the new retail outlets would operate on a cash-only, first-come first-served, don’t-ask-don’t-tell basis. He added that for those customers who did not feel like queuing there would be “mobile franchises” parked near most branches, where the public was welcome to buy goods out of the boots of Post Office employees’ cars.

Asked if the Post Office was ashamed at being the only postal service in Africa to be blacklisted by the US retail giant, Mkhize was defiant, saying that Amazon’s bold branding on its packaging was to blame for the rampant pilfering. “Those parcels have ‘Amazon’ written all over them,” he said. “Our employees find this very provocative.” “Most of our staff are functionally illiterate, but over the years, handling many printed items, some of them have developed a rudimentary sense of lettering, and that big A and big Z are unmistakable.”

He said that expecting Post Office staff not to pocket their clients’ packages was “as naive as expecting Members of Parliament not to fiddle their expense accounts”.

According to Mkhize, the decision to sell merchandise outside the back door of branches had been made at board level, after initial anti-theft measures proved ineffective. He said that a 2003 initiative to install metal detectors at staff entrances had been compromised when all the metal detectors were stolen by employees, who then sold them back to the Post Office, which subsequently lost them.

“It was very demoralizing,” he said. “At least this way our employees feel like stakeholders in the whole process.”

Meanwhile a police spokesman has admitted that postal theft is very difficult to tackle. Superintendent Magda Siff said that the problem was compounded by the fact that Post Offices clerks traditionally moved “incredibly slowly”. “Anyone who has ever used a Post Office in South Africa knows that it takes up to 20 minutes for the sullen lady at Counter 4 to get off her stool, waddle into a back room, have a cup of tea and packet of tennis biscuits, and waddle back with the wrong parcel. “During this time she has any number of opportunities to secret away DVDs and suchlike in her industrial-strength underwear.” She said new bras featuring heavy-duty underwires, high-tensile nylon straps and titanium clasps could cope with much greater loads. “We’re seeing small TVs, ant farms, box sets of Desperate Housewives. That kind of stuff.”


Compliments of The News Reporter – PRETORIA, 19 July 2008

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Amazon blacklists South Africa’s Post Office

Posted by batman567 on Jul 15th, 2008
2008
Jul 15

RAMPANT theft by Post Office workers has infuriated the internet retailing giant Amazon so much that it will no longer send goods to SA by post.

Anyone wanting to order directly from the US-based website must now pay for a private courier service – adding about R420 to the price of a DVD.

SA’s postal status makes the country the pariah of Africa, since no other country has had postal deliveries scrapped. The only other African country that cannot use the cheapest standard postal service is Nigeria, although Amazon still trusts Nigeria’s post office if buyers pay a slightly higher expedited shipping rate.

The new restriction came in at the weekend, with customers being told the theft rate was so high that goods would no longer be delivered unless they paid a priority shipping rate of $39,99 per order and an incremental $9,99 for each extra item.

Amazon has long distrusted SA’s postal service, and already refuses to deliver high-priced goods such as electronic items or perfumes, restricting shipments to CDs, DVDs and books. Private scamsters have also aggravated the crime rate, as people ordered and received goods but claimed not to have received them, forcing Amazon to send replacement items at its own expense.

The clampdown will benefit Wantitall, a local website that thrives on Amazon’s wariness. Wantitall collates orders for all type of goods and orders them from Amazon, but has them delivered to a warehouse in the US. They are then repacked and sent in bulk via courier to SA.

Amazon’s action is bad for consumers but good news for Wantitall, said its founder Justin Drennan. “Because of the fraud, they have stopped shipping via the standard postal service. Everything is being stolen at the Post Office,” he said.

Drennan said Amazon deliveries were easily targeted because of their distinctive packaging. “Ask how many people have had stuff stolen from Amazon and it’s massive. Amazon was reshipping things at its own cost but it’s had enough,” he said. “People were also ordering DVDs and telling Amazon they hadn’t received them. They are saying we are as crooked as they thought we were.”

Wantitall mainly handles the high-priced items that Amazon does not deliver to SA.

No one from the Post Office would comment yesterday. Its executives have been trying to clean up its image by improving systems, and reported a 69% reduction in theft last year.

Compliments of Business Day – 15 July 2008

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