Hollywood hasn’t been this consumed with A-List talent since the Golden Age. As award season is on full display, we see young and older alike in all their regalia impressing critics and cinephiles alike.
Among the throng of talent is Christian Bale, who is easily among today’s pantheon as one of the greatest actors of this generation. Recently, Bale spoke on “Playback,” a podcast from Variety, where he shared many candid thoughts, including why he won’t–and can’t–watch The Dark Knight trilogy again.
Let that set in: Easily, one of the best trilogies in cinematic history and certainly the standard to telling a story in CBMs, won’t be seen again by the man who helped bring them to reality.
Patrick Bateman in American Psycho and Trevor Reznik in The Machinist. He was Dicky Eklund in The Fighter, Irving Rosenfeld in American Hustle, and most recently, Vice President Dick Cheney (for which he very well will win another Oscar in Vice.
The dude was even Jesus Christ in a 1999 made-for-TV movie Mary, Mother of Jesus (1999). Despite all those roles of greatness, he may be singularly regarded as the Bruce Wayne by many. And now, he refuses to watch it. Ever.
Life Imitates Art
It was an eerily cool summer night on July 20, 2012 when the act of a twisted, maniacal person in a mask and kevlar outfit infringed on the safety and joy of others, ran into a theater screening opening weekend of The Dark Knight Rises with an open gas canister and began firing without aim or remorse.
There were 12 people killed and 70 people injured at the hands of James Holmes (who later dyed his hair bright orange and called himself ‘The Joker’). He was later arrested behind the Century 16 theater — standing quietly and idly by his car. This feckless thug would later be found guilty, sentenced to 12 consecutive life sentences, and given a specific 3,318 years in prison. Without parole.
If Santa exists, someone in prison will be from Denver as his bunk mate.
Back to Bale: He’s known as a method actor of the highest order, like, Daniel-Day-Lewis-on-a-good-day method acting. That said, emotion and psyche are two overwhelming motivators for people like Bale.
So, when an event of this real-life horror stains the culmination of his comic book acting tour de force, it sticks with the guy. And that’s what he shared with Variety.
Very sadly, I have not been able to watch that film since because of the whole tragedy of Aurora. I have not been able to sit down and see it without thinking of that. I’d love to be able to, one day.
Art Reflects Life
We sit there, sometimes in privacy, other times in public. We go to escape. We go to be entertained. And we forget the people representing our superheroes are real people.
For them, it’s a gig. For many, it’s a check. For others, it’s a true passion, an art form of the ilk we would find Da Vinci, Picasso, Amadeus, Webber, Lloyd Wright, and Shakespeare. They would never abuse a memory or a role for shtick, so when someone else does it, the memory remains.
Why do things like religion and politics and even the inane debate over Marvel and DC cause such tempers to flare? Because people have more passion than temperament, ideas than intellect.
Don’t believe me? Meet Fort Worth Police Department’s own Cpl. Damon Cole.
I’m a proud Texan who lives in a certain cowpoke city known as Fort Worth. In these parts, Corporal Cole is a hero in every sense of the word, in real life, for more reasons than one.
Yes, his civil service alone grants him a heroic acknowledgement, but Cole understands when kids see him in a bulletproof vest and polyester, he doesn’t really reflect “a superhero.” So… he dresses like those for children who have battling much more than androids, aliens, and cosmic forces of evil.
They fight cancer and he inspires them.
I bring this up because we forget humans wear suits and dawn a mask for our vain entertainment. And for some reason, we forget who they really are.
Bale can’t watch one of the greatest CBMs ever because of another guy who thought he would the Clown Prince of Crime in real life; thus, affecting ‘Batman’ in real life for years.
People throttle directors on Twitter because they can, not because they are right, but because they are self-entitled. Other people dress up as superheroes–be it cosplay or cancer–because they are escaping. Just like the people who watch movies on a random weekend, it’s an escape.
However, if you run to a batcave or watch others run into a fire, heroes do exist. They are on earth. And lives–in any color–do matter. Mean people suck, folks. If you know a mean person, turn on a vacuum and tell them what’s going on.
And now, some pictures of the intersection with heroes and reality, all from Cpl. Cole’s awe-striking Twitter feed.
I met this little girl in San Jose, California at the Cops Care event sponsored by San Jose Police Department. I was so honored to be able to make her smile. She is a REAL HERO and I know she will kick cancer’s butt. #KindnessIsFree #BeTheReasonSomeoneSmilesToda #CancerSucks pic.twitter.com/FOQjqK2OnY
— Officer Damon Cole (@HeroesandCops) December 15, 2018
— Officer Damon Cole (@HeroesandCops) December 1, 2018
This is HERO Wilson Adams, he is 10 & he is fighting brain cancer. His dream is to me the real Captain America @ChrisEvans. I saw him as Capt. Amer. but I am no @ChrisEvans. I gave HERO Wilson a metal Captain America shield & I told him that he is my HERO. Kindness is free. pic.twitter.com/M4WoB69b8N
— Officer Damon Cole (@HeroesandCops) November 23, 2018
While I was the Hulk at HERO Jacob’s funeral, I got to see one of my other HEROES, Super Benji. I had the honor & pleasure to met HERO Benji 2 years ago as Batman. I was so happy to see how good Benji is doing now. I know HERO Benji will continue to kick cancer’s butt. pic.twitter.com/yJeayZAy2l
— Officer Damon Cole (@HeroesandCops) November 19, 2018
And, of course, this had to happen!
— Officer Damon Cole (@HeroesandCops) November 13, 2018