The Dark Knight Rises

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The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

This movie is the third and final (??) film in Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy.  It stars Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman.  Other familiar faces from the previous two movies also make their appearance.  I mean, what is Batman without Alfred, right?  It also introduces new characters to the franchise as well as a new foe.

I'm not very big into the DC Comics universe but I do love my share of Batman.  I loved the animated series growing up and I've read a couple of Batman comics in my day.  But apart from the basic Batman information, I'm practically foreign to the universe.  And over the years, there have been so many reincarnations of Batman that I didn't even bother to keep up.  In fact, I have not seen the first movie of this trilogy, Batman Begins.  I will... eventually.

This movie felt like it was 3 hours long.  Even with all the action sequences and mythology, it was so darn long.  And the Batman was in less than half of it.  At least, it felt like it.  It was a lot of flashbacks, expositions, walking and talking, and other non-Batman sequences.  I'm not saying I did not enjoy it though.  I did, very much.  I just find it weird that there was so little Batman in a Batman movie.

So basically what the "Rises" in the title stands for is for Batman to go out of retirement.  A new enemy comes into the picture, a man named Bane, hellbent to destroy Gotham City.  Bane is played by the amazing Tom Hardy.  When the Gotham Police Commissioner James Gordon (Gary Oldman) gets shot and lands in the hospital, police officer John Blake (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) goes to Bruce Wayne hinting that he knew what the billionaire was hiding and that Gotham needs Batman now more than ever.  Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway) aka Catwoman whose loyalties are for a price help Bane get Bruce Wayne's fingerprints to gain access to his accounts.  When Bane wrongs her, she goes to help Batman instead.  Bane and Batman face off with the latter losing and he then gets imprisoned.  Escape from that prison was believe to be impossible except for one, a small boy believed to be Bane, who climbed the walls and got out.  Recovering from a broken back, Bruce Wayne decided he will escape it too.  Once Wayne reaches Gotham City, he finds it in chaos.  Enlisting the help of Selina and Blake, he saves the city and "dies" a hero.

I heard people call it "Inception without Leonardo di Caprio".  And it is.  Apart from Hardy and Gordon-Levitt, Cillian Murphy and Marion Cotillard also make appearances as Dr. Jonathan Crane and Miranda Tate, respectively.  Not to mention the movie is directed by Christopher Nolan.  The cast is absolutely amazing.  I practically drooled when I first read the cast list about a year ago.  As I mentioned earlier, it is very action-packed and any Batman fan will appreciate the mythos they managed to put in.  Especially the ending.  Apart from that, my favorite part of the whole movie is Alfred.  Michael Caine IS Alfred Pennyworth.  The music is pretty epic also.

Source: All Star Batman and Robin #2, 2005

Tom Hardy is a great actor.  But I think his portrayal of Bane was meh.  Comparing to how I know Bane in the comics, he was wasted in this movie.  And the sound editing for his voice was not that good.  I had a hard time comprehending his lame speech before all hell broke loose.  Yes, I thought it was lame, partly because I couldn't understand any of it.  It sounded like Tyrion Lannister over the phone, only Tyrion had better things to say.  And I never really liked Christian Bale's Batman.  He was a good Bruce Wayne but his Batman voice is hilarious and overdone.  Plus, his mouth movements as Batman is hilarious, it bothers me.  It's sad that the two things I did not enjoy with this movie are the 2 main characters.  But I did enjoy Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Alfred, and Catwoman.

And oh, the ending?  A+.  I was sort of expecting it when I saw JGL in the cast list but it not any less awesome.