Thomas Leitch poses the question: When films self-consciously raise questions about their own status as adaptation, what general implications do they offer adaptation studies?
I would like to alter the question and ask: When films accidentally raise questions about their own status as adaptation, what general implications do they offer adaptation studies?
This question came to me after watching the entertainingly obnoxious shot-by-shot analysis of the chase scene from The Dark Knight. I found the video analysis to be captivating because I simply never noticed all of the inconsistencies that were pointed out, and I truly consider myself to be one of those annoying people who expose little mistakes in films. It made me wonder who was responsible for catching all of these errors before the film was released, and why did the whole filmmaker crew not think it was important enough to focus on catching all of these mistakes? However, on the other hand, I also thought the shot-by-shot analysis was obnoxious because it reminded me of some literary critics that cross the line and analyze every little detail of each sentence in each paragraph on each page of a novel. Why is it so important to critique the fact that Harvey Dent falls to the left when he should have fallen to the right? Does that really change the overall experience of the film?
Thinking about all of these questions cause frustration because I do believe that these inconsistencies were accidental, but they raise questions about the type of film adaptation created from comic book ideas. Since the ‘comic book’ film is based loosely on multiple comic strips, little inconsistencies that occur in the chase scene are not interrupting the faithfulness or authenticity of the film. In terms of film adaptation criticism, why is this important? If anything, this analysis raises questions against filmmaking in general – it does not work against adaptations.