[My WSE TV Staff Note: We would like to offer our deepest condolences to the victims of the shooting that took place in the packed movie theater in Aurora, Colorado]
Director Christopher Nolan wrapped up the latest Batman trilogy with Dark Knight Rises in theaters this weekend. The movie concludes the current story arc of Batman’s origin in a today’s-world Gotham City. After foiling Scarecrow’s plot to contaminate Gotham’s water supply and stumping Joker’s villainous plans to turn Gotham into Arkham City, Batman (Christian Bale) is forced into hiding after taking the fall for Harvey “Two Face” Dent’s ‘murder’ making him Gotham City’s public enemy #1.
Dark Knight Rises takes place 8 years after the Dark Knight movie and peace has settled on Gotham but a new villain, Bane (Tom Hardy), looks to seize control of the city. After much denial by the Gotham Police Department of the impending danger, a vigilant rookie Gotham cadet convinces Batman that he is needed again.
In contrast to the Joker, Bane and Batman’s beef is based on brawn instead of brains. But make no mistake, it’s still a mental chess match that makes each character dig deep within himself for the fate of Gotham.
It was hard not to use Dark Knight – with the Joker as a benchmark for comparison to The Dark Knight Rises, but I did and The Dark Knight Rises barely falls short – barely. Despite not being as epic, The Dark Knight Rises is still a phenomenal movie because Batman has to develop his resolve further and conquer himself before he can face Bane for the final bout.
Like Dark Knight, Dark Knight Rises is not a typical action flick. It’s very much character-driven and tells a great story. Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) makes her debut appearance in Gotham City but to say any more will spoil the plot. One non-spoiling disappointment is that “The Bat”, Batman’s armored hovercraft, was not incorporated into the Tumbler like the Batpod. I cried 1 tear. Seriously. On the fan-boy side though, the movie pays homage to the comics as Bane being a master of disguise and uses elements from both of the previous films. (And Bane’s voice needs to be a Decepticon *cough* Unicron *cough* in the next Transformers movie!)
Whether or not this is the last time we see Christian Bale suit up as Batman remains to be seen, but the series ended with a not-so-subtle indication of Batman’s next chapter. Also, Director Christopher Nolan is critical of 3D so maybe non-coincidentally, Dark Knight Rises is only available in IMAX.
I won’t quantify this movie with a rating, but give it a very strong recommendation to go see. (Ok, 4.5/5 stars if you need a number that bad.) Last, but not least, here are my favorite quotes from the movie:
BANE, “He’s probably trying to figure out why someone would shoot him with a gun only to throw him out of a plane.” (Paraphrase)
BATMAN, “So that’s what that feels like…”
Steve is a MY WSE TV contributor. You can also catch him on SteveandJ.com for more blogs, reviews, and other shenanigans.