On The Wayne
♦Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk comes out in cinemas today Friday 21 July and so we at Tripwire have decided to rewatch and assess the nine films he has released prior to this just like we did with Quentin Tarantino and the Coen Bros. Next up is The Dark Knight Rises, Nolan’s eighth film, which was released back in 2012
The Dark Knight Rises
Director: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard
The Dark Knight Rises, the third film in Nolan’s Batman trilogy was released four years after The Dark Knight and a staggering seven years after Batman Begins. Batman has not been seen since he allegedly killed Harvey Dent and so the city is ripe for a villainous takeover. And Bane (Tom Hardy) is that villain. We are introduced to Selina Kyle aka Catwoman, a costumed thief who plays both sides and Miranda (Marion Cotillard back from Inception) as a wealthy woman who happens to have a very dark secret. We also get to meet Blake (Joseph Gordon-Leavitt), a young policeman who Gordon takes under his wing when he feels that he has few figures he can truly trust. Bruce Wayne is now a shadow of who he was, as he hasn’t put the Batsuit on in years and he spends his days in Wayne Manor like a superheroic version of Howard Hughes.
The Dark Knight Rises is at its core a serious of bigger and grander logistical exercises. It kicks off with a very impressive plane stunt where we are first introduced to Bane and it continues to up the ante as the film progresses.
There are some great moments here especially the retaking of Gotham from Bane, Gordon-Leavitt adds a little something extra to the mix and Hathaway makes for an intriguing Catwoman. But it suffers from an overlong running time, Bane is just a stupid and poorly executed villain and it has a number of glaring plot and logic holes in it especially the idea that Batman could survive direct exposure to a nuclear bomb explosion.
The Dark Knight Rises is a decent conclusion to the Batman trilogy but it does feel like it’s just too huge a task for Nolan to pull off totally successfully and so what we are left with is a bloated and flabby summer blockbuster with a few well-directed moments. Visually it is still very strong thanks to director of photography Wally Pfister and production designers Nathan Crowley and Kevin Kavanaugh. It is ambitious but its reach exceeds its grasp. Ironically probably the best scene in the whole film is the postscript where they leave things open for a direct followup that we shall obviously never see now with the reboot for Batman.
If you have watched Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, then you should watch The Dark Knight Rises. But expect to be disappointed.