Before you view:
The Batman franchise, in particular the newest Dark Knight Trilogy, sells itself with hyper masculinity to the point of ridiculousness. For this reason, I have decided to take two of the series’ most masculine characters, Bane (Tom Hardy) from The Dark Knight Rises and Batman (Christian Bale), and provide an alternative reading to their relationship by “shipping” them together. Also, as you watch, try to pay attention to the role Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) has in this vid.
The effectiveness of this vid relies heavily upon eyeline matching. Put differently, while making my project, I paid special attention to the implications Batman’s, Bane’s, and Catwoman’s gazes could have by cutting various scenes from The Dark Knight Rises and splicing them together. For instance, when the song goes into the guitar solo, I used that break to explore the various gazes Batman and Bane have with each other throughout the film. I also used shots that were out of context in the same fashion.
My choice in music also played a huge role in how I approached the vid. I used Florence + The Machine’s Kiss With a Fist. While Florence is indeed a woman, her voice and this song are by no means feminine. I used the violent lyrics of the song – for example the chorus begins with, “You hit me once/I hit you back/You gave a kick/I gave a slap” – to posit a queer reading of the Batman/Bane relationship in which the characters are trapped in an abusive yet passionate relationship. I thought that this song choice fit particularly well with the almost ludicrously masculine exchanges between Batman and Bane.
Most of all, I hope you enjoy the vid. If anything, my goal in creating it was to poke fun at a serious movie while at the same time creating a space for a different – and potentially more compelling – reading.