There may be SPOILERS herein, so don't read any farther if you don't want to see anything you might not want to see...
We just finally watched "The Dark Knight". For me, it's a very unusual film, in that I can say I enjoyed it -- but JUST BARELY. I probably won't ever watch it again. It's far too dark -- much darker even than "Batman Begins", its predecessor.
Yes, I know, part of the modern trend is to emphasize that there are costs for what even heroes do, but in "The Dark Knight" the costs just get excessive. It's not bad enough that many people, good and bad, get killed. It's not bad enough that Harvey Dent, heroic crusader and honestly Damn Nice Guy With The Guts To Face The Mob ends up scarred, nuts, and then finally dead; no, we ALSO have to kill off the woman Bruce Wayne loves, AND we have to end it with him being hunted by the law for killing Dent, etc.
First of all, the last bit there is just wrong. That's SPIDER-MAN. He's the one who almost gets himself killed heroically fighting a psycho, and then takes the rap to protect the other guy's rep. The Bat lets people face the TRUTH about what's going on. Even if he has to beat the truth into them with brass knuckles.
Second, it's just Too Much. Batman's dark, but he's a hero, and a hero shouldn't have to trade one life for another -- especially not in a setup situation by someone like the Joker.
On the positive side, Heath Ledger's performance as The Joker was absolutely stellar. He had the terrible lunatic presence of Jack Nicholson looming behind him, threatening to overshadow anything he tried in the role, but he rose to the occasion and gave us a very different -- but at least as terrifying and deadly -- interpretation of that quintessential nutjob. He'll deserve any posthumous award they choose to confer on him.
(Freaky Side Note: I had a couple DVDs in front of me earlier, one was The Dark Knight and the other was the Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, and for a moment the way I viewed them made it look as though Christian Bale was one of the actors in Prince Caspian. Batman in Narnia. Now THERE is a freaky crossover idea.)
Naruto: I had caught pieces of early episodes of this and it was VERY not-impressive, filled with the kind of humor I have little patience for and with apparently little else to recommend it. However, my wife and I have been watching Naruto Shippuden (which is sort of the Dragonball Z to Naruto's Dragon Ball), and it's quite good -- vastly less stupidity and a lot more plot. Some of the villains are absolutely top-notch, too. Orochimaru, in fact, is providing considerable inspiration for how I can improve upon and tweak the capabilities of Lord Voldemort in my Harry Potter campaign.
My major gripe about Naruto Shippuden (and it applies to Naruto itself as well) is what the hell is WRONG with the producers of the show that they have to have a DOZEN openings and closings, AND ALL OF THEM SUCK? They span a range from "wussily mediocre J-pop crap" to SWEET HOLY MOTHER OF JEBUS MY EARS, MY EARS, THE HEADPHONES, THEY DO NOTHING!!!!
You'd think with multiple chances to have a listenable OP or ED, they'd manage ONE. Most of my favorite anime had ok-to-great themes for at least one season. Instead they seem to have held a competition to find the lamest bands in Japan and pick their worst songs to use.