While browsing through the internet, I came across a review about the recently released movie of the Batman series, Batman: The Dark Knight Rises. Movies or films are a form of art. Art is the product or process of deliberately arranging items (often with symbolic significance) in a way that influences and affects one or more of the senses, emotions, and intellect. Just like any other art form, movies play an important role in the development of civilization and the rational aspects of an individual. Also, like any other art form, a movie can be made well — and rationally — or it can be a debauched piece of art.
The review for The Dark Knight Rises is written by Zach Foster and it is a great piece of writing. It explains almost all the symbolic elements used by the producer and director of this movie in an appropriate manner, and in doing so it helps to propagate the message of the movie. The review mentions the significant difference between various other Hollywood movies and the Batman movies. The reviewer mentions the difference between the regular Hollywood movies propagating leftist propaganda, and the positive aspects of Batman, the hero who is wealthy and proud of it. He also mentions that the film actually provides an excellent example of what can be achieved through the private sector. The article excellently describes the character of Batman and other symbolic elements of the movie, as well as many aspects of other Batman movies. Yet, the writer fails to mention some very significant aspects of this movie which are worth noticing.
It is very easy to realize that this article has been written by an Ayn Rand fan who is inclined to be a minarchist.
1) It is beautifully written.
2) It is well explained and leaves you to think about the symbolic elements used in the movie, in the context which the writer wants you to grasp.
3) It misses some crucial symbolic elements of the movie because the writer himself doesn’t believe in the message offered by those elements.
The message was pretty simple to understand and it was very significant.
Obviously, The Dark Knight Returns is a good movie, especially because it uses a lot of symbolic elements that can be used to express the futility of government and the way to Anarcho-capitalism.
The very first such symbolic element of the Batman movies is Batman himself. An eight year old boy who witnesses his parents being murdered by a mugger, who realizes that neither can criminals be traced nor can crime be controlled by the government, who realizes that the Police of Gotham is in fact a gang of organized criminals. And what does he do?
He creates a platform for private defense services for the citizens of Gotham. He is continuously opposed and hunted by the police, who certainly want to maintain their monopoly over defense. After the attack on the Stock Exchange, instead of trying to catch Bane, the police start following Batman and the police officer declares that he intends to arrest Batman, who was actually the victim as he was robbed by Bane. Self defense is a bigger crime than robbery or terrorism. Zach Foster completely missed this.
Now think about this episode of Batman, The Dark Knight Rises, too. It starts with the crime report of Two-Face (Harvey Dent), and how the ‘system’ hides it while collaborating with criminals. At the start of the movie, it expresses that there can be honest people in government in an authoritarian system, like James Gordon. But hey, they will always be forced to bend their ways to help and provide a hide out for criminals in one way or another.
And how does the movie end? It ends with Robin John Blake deciding to resign as a police officer and contemplating starting a new private defense line, as he inherits the Batcave. However, among all these salient symbolic elements, the most important element that has been used in this movie to express the futility of government while espousing the idea of anarcho-capitalism is the ROPE which was completely ignored by Zach Foster while writing that review.
When Bane imprisons Batman in that well to torture him, he knows that just like every other person, Batman will try to use that ROPE to get out of the situation.
What is that ROPE?
And does that rope really help Batman to get out of that well?
No; rather, that ROPE is the exact tool of torture. That ROPE is the monopoly of government over force, over acquittal, over torture, over escape.
Batman remains a failure until he understands this simple message. He then learns that to be able to free himself, he needs to avoid binding himself with that ROPE.
That ROPE is the security that he will remain safe and won’t hurt himself even if he falls back in the well.
It takes a lot of time for him to get rid of the desire for that security, that desire to have some external power to save him from the failure of his attempts.
Until and unless these Rand fans realize that to be free, they need to get rid of the desire for that ROPE, that monopoly of force called government, they won’t succeed in really understanding the message, and they will keep claiming that —–
“While I’m philosophically far less inclined to anarchy than I am to localized, limited constitutional government…”
Haha! Philosophically far less inclined to Galt’s Gulch than a government?
Such symbolic elements have been used in many Hollywood movies. This movie is perfectly anarcho-capitalist in nature, and although a lot of symbolic elements have been mentioned in the review by Zach Foster, he still tried to hide the seemingly obvious anarcho-capitalist stream of Batman: The Dark Knight Rises.
And well, this is just my personal taste, I do not like Batman and I don’t like Christian Bale either. I like Iron Man and Wolverine.