The Dark Knight Rises Movie Review

The end of an era has arrived. Christopher Nolan has completed his Batman trilogy with the latest film “The Dark Knight Rises”. With this film, he has created undoubtedly the best comic book trilogy of all time. It began with “Batman Begins” which gave us a new perspective on the origin story and told us of how Bruce Wayne became the Batman by training with Ra’s Al Ghul. This was followed by “The Dark Knight” where Batman is introduced to his greatest foe in the Joker and is faced with the consequences of his being the caped crusader by being helpless to save the one he loves. The story comes full circle in “The Dark Knight Rises” when Bruce is thought to have given up everything to achieve peace in his city only to be confronted with Bane and forced to show just how far he will go to keep the peace, no matter the cost. Thus ends the story Mr. Nolan began years ago and Batman will never be looked at again in the same way, and we are all lucky to have witnessed it.
I’ve seen “The Dark Knight Rises” twice now and I must say that I liked it even more the second time. Of course the second viewing was at the IMAX (which, by the way, is THE way to see this movie), but it really hit me just how expansive and epic this film really is. It is set 8 years after the events of the previous film and Gotham is experiencing the closest thing to peace it has ever witnessed. Bruce Wayne has retired from donning the cowl because he took the blame for Harvey Dent’s actions and thus helped to create new laws that made organized crime a thing of the past. All of this changes however when Bane comes into town and creates panic, fear, mayhem and destruction that plunges the city into despair and makes Bruce realize that the Batman is needed once more. To go further into the plot would deny you the pleasure of watching it unfold, but just know that Bruce if facing his toughest opponent and he’ll be lucky to survive the battle.
Words aren’t enough to say how awesome Christian Bale has been as Batman/Bruce Wayne. Without question he has been the best person to wear the cape and whoever gets to play him in future films will have incredibly large shoes to fill. His commitment and immersion to these films are one of the primary reasons they are as great as they are. The other part of this equation is Christopher Nolan. His vision of this character and world are as close to perfect as I ever could have hope for. For him, the story must be the focus, because without that all you have is mindless action. So, the story in each film is carefully considered and they all connect to one another and even come full circle. His ability to pick the most perfect cast possible has also been part of the success of this franchise. For instance, Anne Hathaway steals every scene that she is in as Selina Kyle. It might not have been as revelatory as Heath Ledger’s Joker, but her Catwoman is as close to perfect as you can imagine. Tom Hardy as Bane also steals a number of scenes, and despite his face mask being on for the whole movie, the expression he gives with his eyes allows you to see into the depths of Bane’s soul.
After the tragedy on opening night in Colorado, we should all remember what it is that Batman stands for. After his parents’ murder, Bruce Wayne envisioned a world in which the same thing wouldn’t happen to other children. He was willing to do anything and everything to rid his city of evil and bring criminals to justice. We shouldn’t let the events in Colorado stop us from living our lives. If you do, then evil wins and your life will never be truly happy. Instead, try to stand up for your beliefs, help others when you are able, fight injustice when you can, and strive to be an example to others of what a hero should be. I’ll miss this Batman series greatly, but I look forward to the next adventure Mr. Nolan creates for us to experience and I thank him for showing the world what Batman is really all about.

J.Chandler A

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