By OperationPrometheus 15 Comments
I would like to start this blog off by saying even though I am attaching this to a forum, I know there are already topics on the Dark Knight Rises, but this is my Blog and one of the purposes to my account is I love to review films and this will be my first for this account. If you don't want to read or comment then don't, simple as that. And as a warning to those that read there will be spoilers in this review. I'm sorry, but its easier to explain my points when I can draw from specific examples. Feel free to leave comments below on what you thought, but no need to flame me for liking/hating certain parts of the film. This is my opinion after all and only my opinion. Now then, lets get to it.
The Dark Knight Rises was an absolutely brilliant film, and while it introduces many new characters and tries to blend a very hectic storyline together, it does so with very few missteps and with only a few scenes that dragged. I would like to say to start off that while it is completely ok to dislike the film, the people that say the movie was awful or an incoherent mess to me are crazy. Awful and incoherent are phrases that do not belong in the same sentence with Nolan's films. And while the film has has its flaws like all films, they are few and far between.
I came home this past weekend and saw the film with my family after the midnight premiere. I have seen the film twice and feel I can give it a fair judgement now. My father is the most stubborn movie critic I know. Whenever he comes out of a film, he at best will say it is ok. For this film, he walked out and said it was phenomenal and wanted me to take him again. High praise from him. What he said next is what stood out the most to me. He said that the reviewers that give this film a bad review are having to be pretty picky to say this film is not good. And while the movie has its flaws, I will point them out later in the review, they do not detract from its overall objective. I could take any movie out there and find flaws within them. No film is perfect. But the viewer will always see what they want to see in the film.
What I love most about Nolan is that other than his terrific storytelling, he is fantastic at casting. This film was no exception. It was filled with excellent performances, and one or two that in my opinion deserve an Oscar nomination, but not a win. There were several performances that stood out for me. The first was Anne Hathaway. Like Heath Ledger before her, many people were in an uproar when she was cast, but I knew I could trust in Nolan and that she would do a damn good job. And indeed she did. I knew she was perfect for the role from the moment she looked at Bruce and her face changes from shock to being sly and saying, "Oops, no one told me it was uncrackable." Her reaction to that was perfect and I knew we were in for a real treat. To me it was worthy of a nomination for Best Supporting Actress. I say Supporting because her and Marion Cotillard share around the same amount of screen time and neither of them seem to be a "lead" role.
The next performance that stood out was Tom Hardy. To be able to strike fear into someone using only your eyes is unreal. While his performance is not as astounding as Ledger's, what he did was still unreal. Two scenes that jump out to me were the scene in frontof the prison and the scene after Batman beats him down and his mask breaks. When he just is laying there during Talia's speech, he gives off so much emotion and pain through very slight flicks of the eyes. Purely amazing. The last performance that I would say is a standout was Bale. He finally nailed the voice. It was a great mixture of Batman Begins and the awful growl he had in The Dark Knight. But the best part was his Bruce Wayne. Absolutely incredible and he has always seemed like the perfect Bruce.
The ending was the perfect ending possible for this trilogy. The last 10 minutes or so of this film were some of the best in recent history. While Bane's death felt underwhelming, the final minutes were so beautiful that I was able to let it slide. The scene where Bruce climbs out of the prison without the rope gave me chills. The Deshi Basara chant and Zimmer's score in the background, combined with the moment where the bats coming soaring out of the wall to surround Bruce gave me chills.
Now for the technical aspects. The cinematography was excellent. Wally Pfister does another outstanding job. Several of the landscape shots over Gotham had my jaw dropping. The score was beautiful. it is the small touches that make Hans Zimmer so great. In Batman Begins the ending track has a choir boy with a note frozen in time as if to signify the pain Bruce is in and that he cannot let go of his parents death. As Bruce flies out over the sea with the bomb, the choir boy's tune flows and helps to show that Bruce is ready to move on. He has given Gotham everything he has, and the pain he feels of his parents death is gone. The film is not without flaws though and they come from the technical aspects. There were several times where Bane was impossible to understand. Hardy's lines are so genius that they need to be heard and I think at least 10 times there were phrases that were near unintelligible. And at times the score from Zimmer is so overpowering that the dialogue is drowned out. While, the story is quite hectic, I never felt it was rushed. Several scenes did drag but they were necessary to give us a breather from the extreme pace.
To close this is nothing but a fantastic film. It combines everything that makes Nolan's film so great. Terrific storytelling, breathtaking cinematography, beautiful score, and Oscar worthy performances. I always dreamed that Nolan would finally get the recognition from the academy that he so rightly deserves. It will be interesting to see how it is treated come Oscar season. The thing that has always gotten me, is the same types of films win the award every year and while they are wonderful films, I have never felt a seperation from the films the year before. To me, The Dark Knight trilogy is The Godfather trilogy of this generation. It is not often that a film series transcends its genre and is a film that almost any movie goer can enjoy. And that is truly special.