Los Angeles Times

Ten years after it changed Hollywood, 'The Dark Knight' is back in theaters. Accept no substitutes

The first time we see Batman in "The Dark Knight," the second and greatest chapter of Christopher Nolan's film trilogy, he isn't really Batman. He's an impostor, one of several copycat vigilantes who have sprung up in the wake of the Caped Crusader's astonishing purge of Gotham City's mean streets.

Bruce Wayne (played to coolly brooding perfection by Christian Bale) may have once hoped that his masked alter ego would be a radical symbol of goodness, but now he must confront the uglier side of Batman's legacy: a bunch of cheap, violent knockoffs.

Did Nolan guess that "The Dark Knight" would inspire its own legions of inferior imitators? He probably did, not that it diminishes the impact of his achievement a decade later, much less the thrill of seeing it back on the big screen where it belongs. (The film begins playing Imax engagements Friday in Los Angels, New York, San Francisco and

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