Dark Knight Rises - A review based on seeing it 4 times - SPOILERS
To sum up my previous review, I said I liked the film based on it not being a "Batman" film. There were many things I liked and despite hating the look and many other aspects of "Bane", I felt very positive about the movie.
I wrote a fairly positive review of this film when it first came out. Having seen it 3 more times since then, I feel more qualified to discuss it in a new review.
I wasn't sure how I felt about the ending. I was pretty sure the whole thing of Alfred seeing Bruce and Selina was his imagination. Seeing the movie again, I noticed (not so subtle) clues to show it was really them. And I hated the Robin thing. Even more so each other time I saw it. Why? Because Batman is grooming him to become the next Batman - not Robin. This is one of many times in the film where something is completely made impotent.
The moment Talia is revealed, Bane becomes a puppet. He loses his personality, presence and whatever threat he previously posed. (This one is for you, Tea.) At the climax, he suddenly becomes horribly impotent and the moment is killed.
And Talia... she's completely pointless. Her death ranks among the worst death scenes ever in film history. In my opinion. Each time I saw it, I winced and cringed even more.
And then there's Bruce himself. For 8 years he gave up being Batman because Rachel died and he feels bad about it, and of course what happened with Harvey. Garbage. This part of the film I have so much trouble with. Even if this isn't "really" a Batman film, the idea is annoying. It's not Batman.
Others have complained about the various plot holes and inconsistencies. I don't want to retread on what they've said. I will say that despite myself, I got caught up in the hype of the film and it blinded me to little things that I didn't realize were bothering me even during that first time I watched it.
One thing I must mention. It's just so... NOT Batman. Somehow, over the 8 year hibernation, Bruce lost his ability to do anything more than throw punches. His fights with Bane are decent, but Batman isn't just a brawler. Worse, in the first fight he punches Bane in the mask exclusively. In the second fight, one well-placed elbow and Bane's mask is damaged.
A few things.
1. Punching a guy in his metal mask. Genius.
2. The mask is invincible in the first fight. Easily damaged in the second. Okay...
3. Wouldn't punching the mask dislodge it, even slightly?
Catwoman. I liked her at first. Maybe it was a hormone thing. But in repeated viewings, I found her to be kind of useless. What did she add to the movie? Would the movie have been the same without her? I think so. She added some charm, perhaps. But nothing memorable. Nothing that the film NEEDED. I'm all for chicks in spandex. But next time, just give her a movie of her own.
I won't comment on Bruce recovering from a terrible back injury. I get that they had to put the back breaking in the film, but it wasn't done right here. I think it would have been cool if Batman came back broken and weary from the injury - using technology to put him "back in the game". Instead, he heals completely from all past wounds and returns to Gotham despite being broke and on the other side of the planet.
The movie is not bad. I'm reacting to all the undeserved praise it's getting. You can't compare it to Avengers. It's like comparing Citizen Kane to American Reunion. One is meant to be enjoyable. The other is a long journey about a fallen hero who rises. This is not the best of the series by far. I would personally rank it as the weakest of the bunch.
I would give this movie a 3/5. It's too long. It's pretentious. There are too many inconsistencies. Those 99 issues with the film that someone else posted about? I agree with most of them. This is not a 5/5 film. Not even close.
It's the end of this trilogy. I'm glad it's over. I hope the reboot will be done properly and that Batman will actually be in it.
I have to say this. Michael Keaton's Batman would bitch-slap Bale's Batman just for his 8 years of crying.
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