The Dark Knight Rises—A ReviewJuly 22, 2012
After watching The Dark Knight four years ago, I immediately wondered how Nolan could top it. Inception came two years later and showed me that we were in for a treat with the third Batman movie. Naturally, with a film this hotly anticipated, reviews were bound to come in thick and fast. Being Nolan, everyone was expecting near flawless reviews, but that didn’t happen. While the ratings have been very high, it just hasn’t seemed high enough for a film we all hoped would be better than the Dark Knight.
The film begins with a magnificent mid-air set piece that will literally leave your jaw on the ground. It is even more amazing when you discover that CGI was not used, but rather, real stunts men. Right at that moment, you realise that you’re in for a treat.
When the focus shifts to Gotham, we witness a city at peace, one where the police literally have nothing to do. Bruce Wayne is a recluse who never ventures from the confines of his mansion, even when hosting a party. But things change very quickly after he encounters a cunning cat burglar who intrigues him.
This movie had a lot to live up to in regards to villains. Heath Ledger’s role was one of the most sinister performances in a super hero film. In Bane, however, we have a completely different kind of nemesis for Batman. The Joker was a sociopath with no reason for his obsession with anarchy. He answered to no one and just wanted to see the world burn.
Bane, however, has a deeper reasoning for his desire to spread carnage across Gotham, one you will enjoy discovering during the course of the movie. While his performance is more about body language and expressions than pure acting, he is mesmerising. You really feel genuine fear for Batman when he comes up against this behemoth of a man. It’s a fascinating duel of brawn in contrast to the duel of the mind between the Dark Knight and the Joker.
The Dark Knight Rises is not your typical super hero affair. It is rather bleak in comparison to the more upbeat alternatives. While watching Bane carry out his diabolical plans for Gotham, it’s surprising just how far the film allows him to go. At one point, I thought Gotham would actually get destroyed.
It’s easy to see that this was Nolan’s biggest budget, for the action is at times, breathtakingly relentless. The movie erupts into scenes of carnage when approaching its conclusion; I for one was on the edge of my seat. When the movie wrapped, I immediately realised why some have been critical, it is quite different from the previous film, but it had to be.
The Dark Knight was to the trilogy, what The Empire Strike Back was to Star Wars—the setting for the grandstand finish—and this movie rounds it off quite spectacularly. Emotional, thought-provoking and utterly unforgettable, The Dark Knight Rises concludes possibly the best super-hero trilogy of all time. Absolutely Brilliant.