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The Dark Knight Rises premiered at midnight on Friday, after four years of waiting since the release of it’s predecessor. Batman Begins showed us that Batman films could be done well, and pseudo-realistically. Its sequel, The Dark Knight, was an epic film, clouded by the untimely loss of Heath Ledger, but nevertheless a critical and commercial success. Now we have part three to director Christopher Nolan’s grand work.

The Dark Knight Rises is set eight years after the events of the first film, and Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) has been living in the shadows, though this time without his cape and cowl. Batman is retired, and has been for most of the eight year timeskip. He’s become a recluse, choosing to hide away as criminals are put into Blackgate Prison by the Gotham City Police Department. The public remains convinced that former Gotham City DA Harvey Dent was killed by Batman during the events of The Dark Knight, and so Dent is a celebrated martyr in the war against organized crime and the truth remains hidden by both Bruce Wayne and his chief ally, Commissioner Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman).

Bruce is under pressure from the Wayne Industry board of directors. A planned clean energy project had been funded and then canceled, costing Wayne nearly half of his fortune and prompting his board to ask for him for his resignation. Luckily for Bruce, new love interest Miranda Tate (Marion Cotillard) arrives to provide financial backing and take over operation of the company. Meanwhile, Batman is forced back into action by the combined efforts of cat burglar Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway) and genius bruiser Bane (Tom Hardy).

Bane quickly establishes himself as a major threat to Batman, both physically and intellectually, finally being portrayed in accordance with his comic book origin. Tom Hardy is nowhere as difficult to understand as many critics feared, and his mask only serves to enhance to sense of terror and unknown that his victims must feel when he arrives. His face is as inscrutable as his motives, as he appears to be a fierce mercenary with a hidden agenda for Gotham City. As Batman’s most deadly foe to date, Bane will leave you wondering if Batman can ever survive their final confrontation. In Gotham, after all, nothing is what it seems.

Nolan’s final foray into the world of Batman does not disappoint. Everything about this movie felt right, from the phenomenal cast to Hans Zimmer’s elegant score. The plot is complex, but not overly so. The cinematography and effects are everything that we love about Christopher Nolan’s filmmaking techniques. I’ve never seen a conclusion to a trilogy leave me feeling so satisfied and still so hungry for more. Thank you, Christopher Nolan, and all of the cast and crew, for giving us three unbelievable Batman films over the last seven years. I could not ask for more than what you gave us with The Dark Knight Rises.

P.S.

This guy was at my theatre in Colorado Springs. Epic Bane costume. He was generous/friendly enough to let me take a photo of him before the movie started.

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3 Comments

  1. Thanks for giving me an idea what to expect without spoiling, Philip. Now I can’t wait to see it even more, even in the face of tragedy. Also, mad props for that guy’s epic Bane cosplay.

  2. ZOMG! The movie was much better than I anticipated! I liked the first two, but I must admit that they did not blow my mind; the third movie did it for me though. I especially loved the juxtaposition of Bane’s appearance and his voice. Great review, and kudos without giving any spoilers away.

    • I loved the trilogy, and thought that “Rises” was a fantastic capstone. I can’t wait to see what Christopher Nolan decides to craft for us next.


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