Sometime this morning, as bored high schoolers on vacation in North Carolina buy their tickets to see The Dark Knight a fourth time, Warner Bros.' Batman movie will pass Iron Man to become the 21st most lucrative film of all time, after only ten days in release. Driven by great marketing and greater word of mouth, The Dark Knight has quickly become a phenomenon, the kind of movie so ubiquitous that you're surprised when someone you know hasn't seen it. "What's your excuse?" we want to ask people like our boss. "Why the hell haven't you seen it?"
One might even say that seeing The Dark Knight is something that unites us all as Americans [cue strings], and in this summer of economic difficulty, as the Great Depression II threatens, it may well be that the economic stimulus provided by The Dark Knight's box-office triumph is just what our nation needs to get back on its feet. Think not only of yourself, or of Batman, or of long-lost Heath Ledger, but of the humble ushers, popcorn distributors, and enormous media conglomerates for whom your $10.50 plus $2 service charge could make all the difference.
We asked a select group of co-workers and friends why they have not yet done their patriotic duty and seen The Dark Knight. Their answers, in handy pie-chart form, after the jump.