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The Dark Knight Rises
Special Effects (1)
Length & Pace (1)
Cast: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt
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Points: 1610 (Level 3)
Length & Pace:
The most anticipated movie of the year has arrived, and I’m sorry to say, but at least for this moviegoer, it disappoints. The Dark Knight Rises is such an overly ambitious film that it tries to pack in way more than it can handle. I know I am in the minority here, but by the final hour of the movie all that I really felt was overkill.
This is the capper in Christopher Nolan’s trilogy which re-booted the franchise and did indeed make it more respected than it was after the last few Batman films of the 90’s. This series has a much darker tone which I always preferred over the lighter fare of other superhero movies like the Spider-Man ones. The dark tone still works well here, but it’s hindered by the blown-up storyline. Just as many people observed with Spider-Man 3, there’s just too much going on here. It’s not that the new characters of Bane and another Catwoman are what bring the film down; it’s just that everything is so dragged out in scene after scene. In fact, the re-introduction of Catwoman was one of the things that worked best. I’ve never been much of a fan of Anne Hathaway, but her scenes were often the best ones. This is a much smarter and slicker Catwoman than we’ve ever seen before. And that’s exactly what you should expect of a character of that name. Maybe a little more of her and less of some other characters would have served the movie well.
Aside from a drawn-out plot about Batman (Christian Bale) being gone for 8 years and Bruce Wayne trying to get his alter-ego mojo back, it seems like the movie tries a little too hard to give ample screen time to all of the other actors as well. It wants to make sure that returning veterans like Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Gary Oldman are properly accounted for along with all the new guys played by Tom Hardy, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Matthew Modine, and Anne Hathaway. This results in many unnecessary scenes in my opinion. There’s also a little surprise about one of the characters at the end of the film, but it was something I had already figured out at the beginning. And while the primary villain Bane (played by Tom Hardy) is menacing in his physical appearance, it is a little odd that they chose to give him a voice that sounds like an old geezer from England.
All in all, The Dark Knight Rises was just a bit of a letdown for me. It’s not that the expectations were so high that they were hard to live up to, but I actually found this Batman film to be the worst in the trilogy. I have noticed that each one of them has a prolonged climax at the end, but this one seemed 3 times as long and I found myself zoning out while trying to stay interested. At 2 hours and 45 minutes, it really just became a movie loaded with a lot of filler. I mean Malcolm X was 35 minutes longer, yet didn’t feel nearly as long as this. There’s nothing wrong with a lengthy film as long as each of the scenes are interesting or important to the story. In this case, they were not.
Recommendations: The Shawshank Redemption (1994), Se7en , 25th Hour
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