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The follow-up to the action hit "Batman Begins," "The Dark Knight" reunites director Christopher Nolan and star Christian Bale, who reprises the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman.

With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and the committed new District Attorney, Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to destroy organized crime in Gotham City for good. The triumvirate initially proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a rising criminal mastermind known as The Joker, who thrusts Gotham into anarchy and forces The Dark Knight ever closer to crossing the fine line between hero and vigilante.

Academy Award nominee Heath Ledger ("Brokeback Mountain") portrays arch-villain The Joker, and Aaron Eckhart plays District Attorney Harvey Dent. Maggie Gyllenhaal joins the cast in the role of Rachel Dawes. Returning from "Batman Begins" are Gary Oldman as Lieutenant Jim Gordon; Oscar winner Michael Caine ("The Cider House Rules") as Alfred; and Oscar winner Morgan Freeman ("Million Dollar Baby") as Lucius Fox.

Warner Bros. Pictures presents, in association with Legendary Pictures, a Syncopy Production, a Christopher Nolan film, "The Dark Knight." Nolan directed the film from a screenplay written by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan, story by Christopher Nolan & David S. Goyer. Charles Roven, Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan are the producers, with Benjamin Melniker, Michael E. Uslan, Kevin De La Noy and Thomas Tull serving as executive producers. "The Dark Knight" is based upon characters appearing in comic books published by DC Comics. Batman was created by Bob Kane.

The behind-the-scenes creative team includes two-time Oscar-nominated director of photography Wally Pfister ("The Prestige," "Batman Begins"), Oscar-nominated production designer Nathan Crowley ("The Prestige"), Oscar-nominated editor Lee Smith ("Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World") and Oscar-winning costume designer Lindy Hemming ("Topsy-Turvy"). The music is by Oscar winner and multiple Oscar nominee Hans Zimmer ("The Lion King," "Gladiator") and seven-time Oscar nominee James Newton Howard ("Michael Clayton," "The Fugitive"), who previously collaborated on the score for "Batman Begins."

Six sequences of "The Dark Knight" were filmed with IMAX(R) cameras, including the opening six minutes. This marks the first time ever that a major feature film has been even partially shot using IMAX cameras, marking a revolutionary integration of the two film formats. The IMAX Experience(R) will appear in IMAX DMR (letterbox), while scenes shot with IMAX cameras on 15/70mm film will expand vertically to fill the entire IMAX screen, which can be up to eight stories tall, for an all-encompassing moviegoing experience.

The cast and crew of Batman Begins return for another shot at the early years of Bruce Wayne and the Dark Knight. Everyone that wasn’t dead at the end of the last movie returns for Batman’s first face off with his most notable nemesis The Joker. Can Christopher Nolan do it again? Or perhaps more impotantly, can he keeping doing what he did right, and fix all the things he did wrong?

Nolan’s no action director, and while Begins captured the style and tone Bat-fans were looking for it wasn’t much to look at as an action movie. Give the guy a break, he was used to movies about memory loss, not films about karate kicking men in leather pants. My hope is that he’ll have learned a thing or two during his Begins experience, and wise-up enough to toss out the shaky cam and give us some decent action sequences mixed in with all that gritty atmosphere. If The Dark Knight does that (and kills off Katie Holmes), it’ll top its predecessor.

There’s too much going right with this franchise to believe it’ll go horribly wrong. Second superhero movies are almost always good. Superman 2, Spider-Man 2, X-Men 2, even Batman Returns. It’s the third where things fall apart.

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