The Dark Knight Rises
Out Now On-Demand
The Legend Ends.
The third and final instalment in Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy sees the Dark Knight (Christian Bale) facing off against soulless terrorist Bane (Tom Hardy) and the enigmatic Catwoman (Anne Hathaway).
Taking place eight years after the events of The Dark Knight, Gotham City revels in some long-awaited peace. Yet Selina Kyle (Hathaway) whispers that this is merely the calm to a chaotic criminal storm. As terrorism and class warfare descend, Bruce Wayne (Bale) emerges from the seclusion of Wayne Manor. Still pinned for Harvey Dent’s crimes, Batman returns to the city as a wanted fugitive in order to prevent the fall of Gotham, as well as the rise of Bane.
Rating: M contains violence
In a similar manner to how Heath Ledger’s death cast a shadow over The Dark Knight, there’s an air of inevitability to this conclusion of Christopher Nolan’s batrilogy. You know you’re going to be in the theatre for quite a while, that Nolan will use massive scale and strong characterisation to awe you on multiple levels, that it will aspire to loftier heights than most blockbusters, but mostly that it is actually all going to end. For all its aspirations, The Dark Knight Rises leans heavily at times on convention – a ticking clock here, a betrayal there – but these prove more welcome than the earnest speechmaking that could so easily have sent off this great big-screen version of the caped crusader.
Nolan tries to replace Ledger’s magnetic performance with Tom Hardy’s imposing physicality, which impresses on the screen but isn’t hugely differentiated from the other macho brawling seen in this film or its predecessors except in terms of its massive scale. Bale excels as always as he goes on a journey that recalls both the previous two films, and so do his co-stars – Anne Hathaway proving not as out of her element as I’d anticipated.
Gotham’s plight comes close to Escape From New York territory in a big departure from what we normally get out of the toothless threats of super-villains and there are welcome nods to the Occupy movement and Arab Spring to help differentiate this from run-of-the-mill fare. Plus the action’s great and the IMAX stuff looks awesome, but most importantly The Dark Knight Rises wraps in satisfying fashion, even if it may take a little while to fully grab you. There are some bumps along the way - it’s by no means perfect, and doesn’t hit the same heights The Dark Knight did – but Nolan’s done good.
Chicago Sun-Times (Roger Ebert)
Total Film (UK)
Great. Just Great
After being a massive fan of the Dark Knight it was great to anticipate Christopher Nolan's follow up from that great classic superhero film. After wondering wether he could pull of a great follow up to that great film. I was staunch with anticipation to achieve the such things.
I walked in with hand's done with the biggest anticipation of any film in the summer. Was I pleased? Defiantly. Everything about was excellent.
The performance's of the leads was quite spectacular. With Christian Bale's and Anne Hathaway's performance of the two leads where amazing. Christian Bale's batman was excellent with his performance of "Batman on the edge" was defiantly quite compelling. Anne Hathaway's Selina Kyle or Catwoman dispelled all issues one would have when hearing about her casting. Also dispelling all misgivings of Halle Berry's Catwoman which was truly truly awful. Also the supporting cast of Michael Cain, Gary Oldman, Joseph Gordon-Levit and Marion Cotillard where all spectacular to watch.
Tom Hardy's villain of Bane could have been the hole in Christopher Nolan's film. After following Heath Ledgers Joker who was hands down the best superhero villain portrayal of all time. He could have cracked under pressure. Luckily although not as compelling as Ledger's Joker as (he was not meant to be) the plan of his had complete relevance to America today which was nice to see. Although I had some issues hearing him with his mask under him with it reminding me of Darth Vader in some places.
A perfect ending to a great film franchise. Which has just gotten better and better throughout the saga.
More Than A Comic
The moment has come at last. The speculation and rumour is finally redundant. THE DARK KNIGHT RISES has arrived, and it is indeed the epic final act to Christopher Nolan's Batman saga that many were clamouring for. It's a titanic film, dwarfing even the sizable scope of the series' previous chapter THE DARK KNIGHT, and while it does come dangerously close to capsizing under the weight of its own ambition, Nolan manages to right the ship in the second half and deliver a moving, exciting, and satisfying conclusion to his story.
It's a rare occurrence that a film is this anticipated and discussed, even months before its release. Rewind one year ago, to the time when the first details of THE DARK KNIGHT RISES began to emerge, through Nolan's carefully calculated drip-feed of information. After Bane (Tom Hardy) was announced as the film's villain, many familiar with the comic book origins of the character began to ask a key question about Nolan's plans for Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale). Would the filmmaker, blessed with complete creative control, physically break Batman, as happened in the "Knightfall" comic book arc where Bane was introduced? After seeing trailers with brief shots of Bruce Wayne walking with the assistance of a cane, the evidence seemed to mount.
However, Nolan is a master of playing with audience expectations. Nobody seemed to consider that perhaps he would begin the film with Wayne already a broken man, both physically and spiritually. A near total recluse, crippled by his crime fighting days eight years earlier and emotionally eviscerated by the death of Rachel Dawes at the hands of the Joker. Wayne's life is fuelled by rage, yet the Gotham of THE DARK KNIGHT RISES is a relatively peaceful place, with no real need for a vigilante. It's smart storytelling, allowing Nolan to raise Wayne from his fall, a theme of the entire saga, but unfortunately, this is where the story takes a few mis-steps. The first half of THE DARK KNIGHT RISES under-utilises Wayne/Batman in favour of building the massive story and developing each supporting character and plot thread, understandable given the complexity of the narrative, but the closing chapter perhaps needed to be more Wayne's story. There's an overabundance of characters, and as good as Anne Hathaway and Joseph Gordon-Levitt are as Selina Kyle/Catwoman and John Blake, they do take valuable screen time away from Wayne, and his self-destructive determination is never quite established fully.
Thankfully, the second half brings the goods in terms of epic scale and excitement. Once Bane's plan is fully in motion, the film becomes a tense and brutal thrill-ride which pays off on the majority of the first act's seemingly unconnected plot meandering. There are several moments which could have come across as cheesy and ham-fisted (and indeed, on repeat viewings will probably begin to grate before long), but the dark and serious tone of the film keeps some of the sillier beats in check. THE DARK KNIGHT RISES is definitely the most comic book-like of the trilogy, and as such some of Nolan's insistence on realism suffers. It's also not as consistent as the previous two films, particularly THE DARK KNIGHT, and is unlikely to have the same rewatchability factor. But, even if it is the weakest of Nolan's saga, it's still a cut above the vast majority of comic book films that Hollywood produces. Hollywood history is littered with disappointing conclusions to trilogies, yet THE DARK KNIGHT RISES breaks the mould by bringing intelligent blockbuster filmmaking (which is becoming a Nolan speciality), and an unflinching, if not especially unpredictable, final chapter in one of the better film series' ever created.
So. Much. Epic!
I won't deny, I'm a self-professed Marvel fangirl. But GOSH. This. Film!! So much love. It really didn't feel like the staggering length of 2hrs 44mins, I was enjoying it far too much. Tom Hardy was magnificent as Bane - he managed to be imposing, playful and awe-inspiring while (impossibly!!) drawing my sympathies to him. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was another highlight for me - he was such a refreshing character, and that end revelation... HEAD SPINNING! :D The acting brilliance from Gary Oldman, Sir Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman was again top-notch, a real joy to watch. The best of the best, right there. And, even though I feel like I'm talking about all the characters being my favourite, I can't *not* mention Christian Bale and Anne Hathaway! Bale was, as always, fantastic at bringing Batman's emotions and struggles to life, and Hathaway was a really fun Catwoman - great mix of cunning and barely -vulnerable beneath the surface.
The storyline absorbed me right from the start, and I was delighted that I didn't see the plot twist coming - I love being surprised by films ;) I also have to mention Hans Zimmer's epic score, the music was undeniably *there* at the right places. In fact, the only negative thing I can say about this film is that while it is conclusive, it feels like it could be the beginning of so much *more*! Even though I know that he's said a definite no, I would LOVE to see Nolan create more films for his Gotham universe. There is so much territory that could be explored! AAHHHH. But I suppose that's the sign of a great filmmaker - always leaving the audience wanting more ;)
An OK film
Definitely the third best Batman movie I have seen.
Main positive was Joseph Gordon Levitt. Been a massive fan of his ever since I saw Brick and it is good that he is getting some good roles. Wasn't a huge fan of the final Anne Hathaway also looked good in the catsuit and seemed to be having fun but she was one of a few fairly underdeveloped characters.
The biggest letdown was definitely Bane. I really like Tom Hardy and he was certainly physically impressive but the voice was so off putting. A weird blend of Sean Connery and Darth Vader with the accent changing constantly through the film. Also the final few minutes that he was in the film were really anticlimatic and made a little bit of mockery of the pre film claims that he was going to be a physical and mental challenge to Batman. Totally lacked the presence of the Joker as a true arch villain.
All that said, Nolan is like Tarantino in the sense that he is incapable of making a film that is not interesting and I did enjoy it as a solid action film. Just wasn't in the class of his other recent efforts
I walked into the cinema with a few reservations as i am sure many did.
The Dark Night was amazing, it would take something special from Mr Nolan to top that movie. Thankfully he once again outdid himself. The Dark Night Rises was fantastic, i was completely blown away with the whole movie. I was so amazed with Tom Hardys portrayal of Bane, who gives Heath Ledgers Joker performance a run for his money. Im not an Anne Hathaway fan and thought she was the wrong choice for catwoman. However i was pleseantly suprised with her performance, not completely convinced but she wasnt bad. The whole movie was executed perfectly, back up from strong emotional performances from the entire cast.
Mr Nolan once again you have outdone yourself, and have ended your fantastic trilogy with a powerful and thoughtful ending.
A great way to finish
I am still coming to terms with how I really felt about this movie. The story was great and the cinematography was excellent, it never ceases to amaze me. I had my reservations beforehand about the casting of Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle but I thought she was phenomenal. My personal opinion was that it was not quite as epic as 'The Dark Knight' as without Heath Ledger it just can't be as good. Overall 'The Dark Knight Rises' is a great watch. Christopher Nolan's trilogy will be hard to beat.
This won't be popular but...
...I came out of The Dark Knight Rises with, well, a shrug. An all around feeling of "meh". Which has only been amplified by my recent re-watching of The Dark Knight (which is far from a perfect film itself).
I'll be brief and try to keep things as spoiler-free as possible, but nothing really made a whole lot of sense to me with Rises. Not Batman's leave of absence, not the villains or their ridiculous plan, and certainly not the end.
With his previous Bat-films Nolan has at least seemed like he's been engaging with larger themes but with Rises there's just no clear sense of any larger idea behind it all. The story is also, once again, a bit of a mess and really overly-complicated.
I'm still sorting through my own thoughts on the film but the best I can say at the moment? It wasn't bad.
Great End to a fantastic Triolgy
Christopher Nolan has made a fantastic triolgy and this 3rd movie was no exception, This just amazed me and had a great ending just tied it up nicley and it was nice to see the cast back again and some new cast members from Inception Nolans other movie. 5 stars
A truly majestic, epic, flawed and satisfying conclusion.
The legend comes to an end in spectacular fashion and although it has its fair share of faults and issues, it still delivers in spades. Christopher Nolan has stayed true to his promise of standing alongside these characters and delivering a beautiful conclusion to wrap up the trilogies characters and their stories and emotional arcs, even if some of the new characters don't quite get the same treatment. The first half of the film is clockwork and introduces new characters, some unnecessary, some not and decides not to introduce major plot points until Bane turns up in major fashion about 45 minutes in. For some this will grind the experience wanting the film to be air tight like TDK but I found it to be necessary points, but it could have been swifter. Christopher Nolan really assures us that he is a director in control and not only manages to shock and twist us and deliver gorgeous and truly exciting spectacle, but really balance a story of emotion and modern society in a frightening and realistic way. The screenplay is bloated and overflowing with ideas and could have done with a lot of tweaking and taken a bit more time on certain things, but it always remembers what is important and strives to finish exceptionally...and it does. What is notably strong is an array of actors across the board delivering truly astonishing performances. Christian Bale pains us with such vulnerability and heartache behind his eyes, Anne Hathaway really sells both Selina Kyle and Catwoman beyond words and is truly sexy, swift and spellbinding, Joseph Gordon-Levitt shows strong will and delivers a very important character so well and Tom Hardy does so much with his facial restriction and has such a chilling delivery behind those brooding eyes that show such force and his physical delivery is brutal. The voice has many moments of greatness with just a few questionable points. Unfortunately the prologue voice is now much worse, but it improves. But who was most striking in the film was a easy best supporting actor turn from Michael Caine. He bought the emotion and really tore deep. The Dark Knight Rises is really quite an astonishing and majestic spectacle that really delivers a wonderful and wholly satisfying conclusion. Just be sure to not try and focus on the
many issues and not to compare it to its predecessor.