I saw The Dark Knight Rises this month and I have to admit this trilogy is stellar. Out of any trilogy I have ever seen (that said I have to watch the original Star Wars again) the movies were clearly shown as what they were: an informative beginning, a climactic middle and an impressive ending. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a trilogy stick to this format and succeed (The Matrix flopped in the third one, never mind that no one understood what was going on from the beginning anyway.)
I need to start this off by saying that I love the audio track for the third one. The voice overs and the use of silence really added to the story being told. And while I wasn’t impressed with the romance scene bewteen Bruce and Miranda Tate, I was impressed that scene subtly moved the story along while not giving into today’s obsession with sex.
I was really impressed that Nolan showed havoc in a fictional city, a havoc which originated from real issues that our world is facing today. Bane’s plans for Gotham have loud voices towards the Occupy movements occurring in the world today (whether it was on purpose or not, I think most of us can agree that it was there in some shape or form)
Some points on the above paragraph:
- The only thing about Bane’s plans that resemble Occupy – the idea that the rich and the poor be treated as equals
- Selena Kyle (Anne Hathaway) has a more Robin Hood & His Merry Men approach in that she steals from the rich and gives to the poor.
And also, I was so happy to see nods toward No Man’s Land (the gangland wars), Knightfall (the battle between Batman and Bane) and The Dark Knight Returns (Bruce Wayne dons the mantle of the bat after having retired for a number of years and is met with opposition from the Gotham Police Department).
I think we’ve all come to love this cast in their roles regardless of how we feel about them: Michael Caine is superb with everything he does; Morgan Freeman is possibly the most versatile actor that I’ve come across; Gary Oldman is a personal favourite; Christian Bale never came into my radar before except for his part in Little Women, I didn’t see him in The Prestige until I was familiar with him as Bruce Wayne and I was not impressed with Terminator: Salvation as a whole, not just Bale, but I was pleased with his performance in this trilogy.
But what about the new cast? Let us take a look…
In recent months (I watched The Devil Wears Prada again) Anne Hathaway has grown on me and while I had my doubts about her as Selena Kyle (because, as far as I’m concerned, Michelle Pfeiffer set the bar pretty high on that role, maybe?) But honestly, I was pleased. I want to watch more of her work and see just how good she can be. Hathaway plays cat burglar, Selena Kyle, who, as I mentioned above, has a Robin Hood approach. Her scenes with Bale were so good: the undertones of a budding romance were there without stealing the show.
Which leads me to Marion Cotilard, a member of the Wayne Enterprises Board, and a potential love interest of Bruce Wayne and a woman with a hidden agenda. I was so pleased when I watched her in this role. She/the role was brilliant (maybe it was more the character than the actress since I am not too familiar with her work). Her story was so good, so wonderfully told that you could not help but feel for her and her loved ones.
Did anyone else see the part at the end with John Blake coming or was that just me? Being honest, I was happy to see him take on that role and that the final scenes of this movie were added. Blake is a young police office/ detective – to – be who has a somewhat naive/ idealistic view of the police force. He looks up to Jim Gordon and helps him when it seems everyone else has given up on him, Batman, and is succumbing to the wills of Bane. I love Joseph Gordon Levitt and I was happy to see him in this role (so much different to those in 10 Things I Hate About You and 500 Days Of Summer) and I was glad to see that previous speculations about him playing The Riddler were false – I can’t see him in that role. Ever. (I think I need to watch Hersher. Will that prove me wrong?)
Bane! For those of you who have read Knightfall, you will know exactly what happens. But if you are anything like me, you too will have been holding your breath right before it happened, hoping you were wrong. I just want to say WOW! Tom Hardy, you are astounding! Bane was originally a member of the League of Shadows, and is now a mercenary who starts a social revolution in Gotham City. Hands down, this was a much better Bane than the Bane in Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin (though I think anything was better than that
And finally, seeriouslynerdy’s award for Best MINOR Role in The Dark Knight Rises goes to…
Josh Stewart. Everytime he came on screen, I was silently screaming, it’s Will! Oh my god, it’s Will! Will, what are you doing? It’s Will! (fans of Criminal Minds? Yes? No?) (It’s the eyes.) But, yeah, I was impressed with him. He makes a shockingly believable villain, he’s a bad boy in this which, apparently, us women love. So, yeah. That’s why he wins. (I can’t really say much about him because his role was just SO minor.) I will say this: since I watched the movie once a few weeks ago so my memory is pretty foggy but I – for some strange reason – felt a resounding loyalty from him to Bane. It might have just been in my head but if anyone else got that please let me know.
There is so much that I want to say without giving anything away for anyone that has yet to see the movie so I will leave you with these:
- The battle outside city hall
- Selena Kyle and the Bat Pod
- Batman, Selena and Bane on the rooftop
- End scenes with John Blake
- Every scene in the Lazarus Pit
- Every scene with Josh Stewart
- That there was no reference to The Joker AT ALL out of respect to Heath Ledger
No. This is not as good/better than The Dark Knight. But it is still brilliant in it’s own right. Now this is just my opinion. As with any movie you will get people saying that it was shite. So experience it for yourself and if you feel like you wasted nearly 3 hours of your life, at least you know. Right?
(Is that last part really optimistic of me?)