This Jokers no joke

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Heath Ledger as the “Joker” in “The Dark Night” has many speculating he may win an Academy Award posthumously for the role. Ledger died last January of an accidental prescription drug overdose at age 28. The New York Times reviewer called his performance “so visceral, creepy and insistently present that the characterization pulls you in almost at once.” Commenting on the film’s record box office opening, the reviewer noted, “Apparently, truth, justice and the American way don’t cut it anymore, [which] helps get at why, like other recent ambiguous American heroes, both supermen and super-spies, the new Batman soared.”

The UK Independent reviewer called it “a film for troubled times” and said “part of the film’s project is to show how even the most courageous figures can lose their moral bearings.”

Boston Globe critic Ty Burr commented that the “pop-tsunami”-like response to the film “represents a perfect storm of studio publicity, public mourning, epic seriousness of filmmaking purpose, and the unspoken need for something in this crass tinsel culture to mean something.”