THE DARK KNIGHT RISES…ABOVE EXPECTATIONS!
Christopher Nolan’s concluding vision of the legendary Caped Crusader may just possibly go down as one of the strongest closing chapters to any franchise in modern cinema. Not only is it one of the most entertaining blockbusters of the year, but it also expands upon the Batman saga in a way that keeps you both emotionally and intellectually invested until the very end. With its top-notch performances, breathless score, solidly engrossing storyline, and action-packed set pieces, “The Dark Knight Rises” ends the franchise on a satisfying high note, delivering one of the most powerfully engrossing climaxes in recent memory.
Taking place eight years after the events of “The Dark Knight”, the film follows Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) once more as he is forced to come out of self-imposed exile when a new evil rises in Gotham. This time around, the Caped Crusader must face off against his most dangerous enemy yet, a ruthless masked crime lord known as Bane (Tom Hardy), who will stop at nothing to bring chaos to the city. He must also deal with the arrival of a mysterious cat burglar named Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway), as well as his inner demons. He may have defeated the Joker, but does Batman even stand a chance against Bane?
The acting here, like in Nolan’s other Batman flicks, is nothing short of phenomenal. Hardy, while not quite as memorable as Heath Ledger’s Joker, gives the performance of his career as Bane. His haunting voice and intimidating muscular physique are only matched by his calmness toward the chaos he causes everywhere he strikes. As for Bale, he’s even more of a standout figure here than in any of the previous films, as we get to see his emotionally wrought character more mentally and physically bruised than ever before. Hathaway also deserves major props for her portrayal of the cunning Catwoman, who (in my opinion) is even more striking than Michelle Pfeiffer. I could go on and on about the other major players in the cast, especially Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Marion Cotillard, but I don’t wanna give any huge spoilers away for those who haven’t seen the movie yet, but trust me, they’re well worth the surprise.
Although “The Dark Knight Rises” never truly reaches the same groundbreaking heights as its predecessor, I loved every minute of it. The fantastic storytelling, the gritty visuals, the brilliant character development. There’s nothing here that isn’t worthy of praise in my book. Nolan truly capped off his one-of-a-kind superhero trilogy in a way that no other director could’ve accomplished. Sure, the narrative can get a bit messy at times, but when compared to everything else the film does right, it hardly matters. Honestly, I can’t recommend this movie enough. For any fan of dark, gritty, action-packed filmmaking, this is an absolute must-buy. You won’t regret it!
R.I.P. to all the victims of the Theater Massacre in Aurora, Colorado. They will be missed.
The Epic Conclusion to a Phenomenal Franchise!
The Christopher Nolan Batman saga will easily go down as one of the greatest cinematic trilogies of all time, and with “The Dark Knight Rises”, the final film in the franchise, it all comes to a thrilling and satisfying end. Filled with more action, suspense, and emotionally powerful drama than ever before, this movie went above and beyond my initial expectations and truly delivered for a one-of-a-kind experience I will never forget. The casting was excellent (Tom Hardy was the perfect choice to play Bane), the performances were flawless and felt effortlessly realistic, and the gritty, intense action sequences kept me on the edge of my seat until the very end. But it was the storytelling that really impressed me. With all its rapid twists and turns, there was no way I could’ve predicted the surprise reveals that ensued. I won’t give anything away, but let’s just say that you won’t see any of them coming. Honestly, I’m surprised by some of the negative reactions this film received. I’ll admit, it’s not as memorable or groundbreaking as the brilliant epic that preceded it, but as a stand-alone superhero blockbuster, it hardly disappoints. Out of every movie I’ve seen thus far in 2012, none have captivated me as much as “The Dark Knight Rises” has. Whether it’s Hans Zimmer’s adrenaline-pumping score, Nolan’s breathless direction, or the dark, gritty visuals that encapsulate nearly every scene, there’s something that everyone can take from this incredible masterpiece of a film. I know I sound like I’m over-exaggerating a little, but trust me when I say that this movie is well worth your time, especially for any longtime fan of the Caped Crusader. It’s the ultimate send-off to a series that forever changed the landscape of comic book filmmaking. Job well done, Nolan.
Have you ever cried at an action film?
Admittedly, I went in with very low expectations. I had those expectations lowered because of what The Dark Knight had done. I felt this was going to be the Return of the Jedi in this saga. But what Christopher Nolan did was beyond anything I had dreamed possible. He brought the story full circle and made connections to the first two films that were hinted at but not spelled out until the final act. Little moments that just wanted to make you stand back in awe of what had happened. I’m not going to give any spoilers, but I am going to say things never seemed to be exactly what they were and that made it very unpredictable.
As for the performances, Although Bale was better in this film than he had been in the previous two films, the standouts were once again Caine, Freeman and Oldman. Hardy brought something new to the film also, a truly menacing villain, someone who did not make you smile. Unlike Ledger’s Joker, Bane is really a villainous character. By playing the role with no wink and nod to the audience, he comes across as a terrorist. And terror is what he unleashes. Okay, admittedly, there was one little moment of humor from him but it actually fit his character. When you hear it, you’ll know it.
In summation, an epic conclusion to an epic story. Bringing bits and pieces fro the lore to the screen and weaving them cinematically, Nolan has managed to make a tour de force film equalled only to one other action film in my recollection – Terminator 2.