Review: The Dark Knight Rises
I finally made it out to see The Dark Knight Rises. I have to say it was not what I was expecting, but it did entertain. For the final installment of the Christopher Nolan vision of Batman, I can’t say that I was overly impressed. I also can’t say that I was unsatisfied or that I didn’t like the movie. This movie certainly had its bit of history some of which I’m familiar with, some of which I’m not. This is what makes this review so difficult is that the movie wasn’t spectacularly awesome and wasn’t bad; it was somewhere in between and identifying the parts that you like and dislike are much more difficult when they’re not glaring.
This movie starts off with Batman being gone for the last eight years. From what I can put together he was over with Ra’s al Ghul training, and somehow that ended poorly. He had to fight with him and ended up killing him. Apparently he had returned just recently in the last year, and Alfred was none too happy with it. Alfred not being happy is strictly based on the fact that he wanted Bruce Wayne to move on with his life, get over what happened, and start living again.
This, however, would not be his fate right yet. He is slowly and surely tempted by the crumbling control that has been maintained over the last eight years. This control is been based strictly on the Dent law that was passed after the last Batman movie took place. This law is much stricter on criminals and allowed the police force to jail over 1000 mobsters, gang members, and other general bad guys. When Bane comes to town, he performs illegal stock trades with the help of Catwoman and what remains of Wayne industries. It forces Batman to rise from the dark recesses of his own mind. Bane forces his hand when he takes control of the city in the name of freedom from corruption, and he orchestrates a coup to prevent Bruce Wayne from having any controlling power over his previous fortune or Wayne industries.
This third movie in the trilogy did seem to have a lighter or not so dark and edgy feel to it. I think this was mostly based on Batman being gone for eight years, the police force had cleaned up all the criminals, and they wanted to give a feel of a cleaner, more normal state to the city of Gotham. This feeling was accomplished very well in my mind. Although I don’t think that after Bane had released the criminals and gang members, that the city took on that feeling again, that classic Gotham City darkness.
Let’s talk a little bit about Anne Hathaway as her role of Catwoman. I did not have much and expectations for Anne Hathaway to perform this role strongly. I am very pleased to say that not only was her acting sensational, but that she performed the role and that the casting was correct. She had just the right balance of “hell no I’m a bad girl” and “holy crap what have I done” that she left me with a wholly positive experience.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt playing Blake also performed well. He seemed to have just enough to the edge and wit to give you the impression that he is exactly what the Dark Knight needs in a partner. His detective skills are highlighted multiple times throughout the flick, and his ability to take charge and see things that others had missed really reinforced what he could become in the future. My favorite part had nothing to do with the plot of the actual movie and more to do with the geo-caching that apparently took place, with the Batcave being the cache.
One good point to make is Batman mentions multiple times that guns are not something that should be used on people, and that killing is out of the question. At the same time the military surplus vehicles that are at his disposal are armed to the hilt. These weapons are used, but at no time did I get the impression he was using them to do harm, but more for the disabling of vehicles.
I cannot go much further without a lot of real big spoilers, so I’ll stop here. Although this movie was not my favorite of the three in the trilogy, I think it still should score about a 7 on a scale 1-10. Overall it was enjoyable, had a good pace to it, and did not have too many flaws in the plot line. The special effects were good, nothing that I remember that stood out as super awesome, keeping in mind that this is 2012, and special effects are expected. It’s not like 1977 when you’re creating everything that you’re putting into the movies.
PS> Guys with the cell phone sitting two seats down from me … YOU SUCK!