The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - Film -

lurk on the elec­tronic ether.

The ca­coph­ony of boor­ish an­ti­wom­an­muck kicked off again with the re­lease of The Avengers ear­lier this year. Over on Rot­ten To­ma­toes, the horde waited for the first re­views and pounced. Even be­fore the film was re­leased, dis­sent­ing fe­male crit­ics – on av­er­age no more neg­a­tive than the men – were be­ing lam­basted for fail­ing to recog­nise Joss Whe­don’s amus­ing romp as a cop­per-bot­tomed clas­sic.

Does all this mat­ter? Not much. The least-bal­anced and most in­tem­per­ate voices al­ways make the loud­est noise. The vast ma­jor­ity of en­thu­si­asts for The Dark Knight (or Spi­der-Man or Harry Pot­ter) are still ca­pa­ble of hold­ing civil con­ver­sa­tions with those who think dif­fer­ently. Crit­ics will surely hold their nerve and re­mem­ber that any de­cent re­view should con­tain a brief out­line of the plot. But many once-use­ful out­lets for rea­soned dis­cus­sion have been over­whelmed by anony­mous fa­nat­ics who re­gard dis­sent from their or­tho­doxy as a cause for pub­lic im­mo­la­tion. The bul­lies too of­ten boss the play­ground.

As I write, the early re­views of The Dark Knight Re­turns are com­ing in. Within a few hours of the first neg­a­tive notice ar­riv­ing – from brave Mar­shall Fine at Hol­ly­wood


Knight Rises.

Tom Hardy and

Chris­tian Bale square off in The Dark Knight Rises

This bet­ter stick: Sam Raimi’s Spi­der-Man

Cop­per-bot­tomed: The Avengers

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