By Connoronnor Comments
Well, it's the morning after and, once again, my positioning in New Zealand gave me almost 24 hours head start on a major Summer Blockbuster than any other country. I've had time to toss it around in my mind and let all of it sink in and I have a lot of opinions, so let's get started. To clarify, I'm not going to include any major spoilers, but I may mention some things that some people may prefer not to know. Proceed with caution.
Okay. The first thing everyone is going to want to know is, of course, is it better than The Dark Knight? Well, that's a harder question to answer I first thought. While this movie certainly raises the stake and tops the action, it sometimes loses the sinister sense of foreboding and maliciousness that made The Dark Knight so thrilling. The Joker was just a perfect villain, and it's impossible to top him, and so Bane, while still awesome, just doesn't carry that same insanity that Joker had, and therefore the emotional investment is reduced. So, in some ways, Rises is better than The Dark Knight. It looks awesome and it's never boring, but because Dark Knight raised the expectations so high, you can't help but settle for anything less than perfection, which this is not.
That said, The Dark Knight Rises is still a hell of fun. The slow beginning quickly gives way to increasingly awesome explosions, battles and chase scenes, which all climaxes in an exciting, if maybe a bit disappointing, finale. I can assure you, you'll never be bored for all 2 hours and 45 minutes. One scene in particular stays in my mind: the destruction of an entire football field, players and all. Preceded by a dread-inspiring montage of city wide destruction, this sequence, though brief, was just plain awesome, especially on a big screen.
My major gripe with this film is the costumed characters themselves. While people did criticize the constant fast cutting and close ups in the previous two films, it did work to Nolan's advantage because the camera never lingered on one character for too long. In this, he addresses the complaint, but in exchange we get a long, steady look at Batman, Bane and Catwoman, and it really does detract from the suspension of disbelief. This is the most "comic-book-y" of the three, and it really clashes with the gritty, realistic tone of the movie.
In summary, this movie is great. It has it's flaws, and there is some extra cheese (not to mention an almost face-palmingly awkward sequel set up at the end, you'll know what I mean), but it is never enough to prevent you from getting completely lost in the amazing world Nolan has created. It is a fitting conclusion, and I love it. It's debatable whether it tops the Dark Knight, but does that really matter? Just go ahead and watch it already!