Critical Breakdown: Film Grammar, Jim Emerson, and Joseph Kahn

Philip Noyce does indeed outdirect Nolan with Salt.
There's a bit of a back-and-forth going on these days between music video director Joseph Kahn and film critic Jim Emerson.  Before diving into the fray, I offer some context of what exactly is going on.
When The Dark Knight was released in 2008, Jim Emerson was one of the more vocal critics of the film, drawing largely on his assertions that Nolan and his cinematographer and editor (Wally Pfister and Lee Smith, respectively) don't seem to know how to piece together a coherent action sequence.  While this may or may not be true, it's a subjective opinion, and one that Emerson has backed-up.  Repeatedly.  For the record, I think some of his assertions about Nolan's capabilities, and certainly those of Pfister, ring a bit false, but that doesn't stop the fact that I agree that Nolan's films are all about exposition and actually show very little in the way of action, and that little bit is by and large not particularly interesting or dynamic visually, nor coherent upon second look.