Title: The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Director: Christopher Nolan
Written By: Christopher and Jonathan Nolan
Cast: Christian Bale, Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard, Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Matthew Modine, Cillian Murphy
The Dark Knight Rises is an event movie, the kind that comes along rarely, not only because of the excitement behind seeing this final installment of the film, but also because of the tragic events that surrounded the premiere of the film. As most of the world already knows, On July 20, 2012 in a Century 16 Cinema in Aurora Colorado, a psycho by the name of James Eagan Holmes entered a theater during the premiere of the film and while wearing a gas mask, threw a smoke bomb into the theater and started shooting randomly at people who where there simply to enjoy the latest installment of the Batman franchise. He managed to kill 12, and injure 58 others. What was he trying to say by doing this? What was his purpose? Did he hate movies or people going to see them in droves? Whatever was running around that guys head, he was seriously disturbed. Did he feel he was one of the villains in the Batman films? Did he not learn to differentiate between reality and fiction? Between entertainment and real life? Whatever the case, this disturbed individual probably had a half-baked idea of what he wanted to say swimming around his brains; all villains do.
James Eagan Holmes; getting what's coming to him
You see in films, the villain is commonly used as a way of pointing towards something that is seriously wrong in the world we live in, and the results that this ailment can bring upon society. Take for example ‘The Joker’ in Nolan’s The Dark Knight (2008). In that film the character was angry at the importance that the world gives to money, and how the society we live in revolves around it. One scene has the joker burning a mountain of money simply to show how little he cares for it; and he burns it with gasoline, just to be poetic and comment on how oil and money are entwined in the world we live in. The Joker pitted people of
Gotham against each
other just to show that humanity is selfish, that in the end, all we really care
about is ourselves. Villanous? Sure, but you have to admit the character is
making a point. This guy who killed 12 people in the theater, what point was he
trying to make? By telling the police he was The Joker, he’s saying that he saw
himself as a villain trying to make a point. Was he commenting on societies
obsession with movies and entertainment? Was he saying films blind us from
reality? That we are not living our lives and instead we are wasting it in a movie
If that was his point, then he was wrong. Sure
Hollywood can be shallow and
is often times filled with empty spectacles, but The Dark Knight Rises was not
one of those films. This film had a lot to say, it is in my humble opinion a
very important film. Same as The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises says a lot
about the way the world is NOW. Thematically speaking, The Dark Knight Rises
is all about the class war, a very heated topic these days, considering how
middle class in the world is quickly fading away. Currently, you are either ridiculously rich or obscenely poor and that’s the way the
powerful like it. Through the dynamics between Batman and Bane the film speaks
about the struggles of the working class, the oppressed and the ever going
hatred for the dudes running Wall Street. The status quo of the world today shows
us that it’s true, a part of humanity is selfish instead of giving. It thinks
only of itself and not of the needy, the less fortunate. Sadly, the rich and
powerful are not currently thinking about making this world a better place for
everyone, they think about making it a better place for them, and how those who
have less then them can serve them. These are the themes that The Dark Knight
Rises tackles with great precision and assuredness. This film knows what it
wants to talk about, and it says it very clearly, through its villain, Bane. So
this isn’t just any stupid little comic book film, nope, this film is
bombastic, epic; a mesmerizing film that has important issues to adress.
Christopher Nolan in my opinion has made his best film to date with The Dark Knight Rises. Technically speaking, his films have always been top notch and this one is no exception, but what I loved the most about The Dark Knight Rises is how fleshed out the characters are. I was missing the time when great villains dominated a film, Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger are good examples of the kind of performance I like to see from a villain in a film; and I have to thank Nolan for making that special effort to build these memorable villains. Case in point: Tom Hardy’s Bane can now proudly stand next all those great villains of cinematic history. We hardly see Tom Hardy’s face in this film, save for a small flashback scene, his face remains hidden behind a mask for 99% of the films running time, yet Hardy’s performance shines through none the less. The character itself is extremely fleshed out, his back story is a very satisfying one. As a comic book fan, I was particularly thrilled to see moments from the storylines Knightfall, Knights End and No Mans Land on the screen.
DC Comics Batman # 497, one of the comics that inspired the storyline for The Dark Knight Rises.
This is the third time Christian Bale has played Batman, I enjoyed how this time around he is a beaten, reclusive character, hiding away from the world in his mansion, like Mr. Kane in Orson Welle’s Citizen Kane (1941), the rich old guy who doesn’t want to answer to the world outside. It was great of the filmmakers to use the Bruce Wayne character to criticize the rich and powerful. If you have so much power, so much money, why not do something worthwhile with it, something that will improve humanity and the world we live in? Loved it how the movie tackled those themes through Bruce Wayne. It was a very intelligent move on the filmmaker’s side to comment on classist issues with the character, considering how the rich are viewed by the working class that’s struggling to get by on a day to day basis in this greedy world we live in. Anne Hathaway as Catwoman was somewhere between sexy and deadly, but nothing as overtly sexualized as Michelle Pfeiffer’s take on the character in Batman Returns (1992). The rest of the amazing cast does an amazing job, Michael Caine turns in an emotional performance on this one.
On the fun side of things the film delivers in spades. It was great to see a film that balanced action set pieces with story development so well; this really is a well though out picture, Mr. Nolan went up a couple of notches in my book with this one. Where the first two Nolan Bat films seemed a little on the talky side, this one balances fleshing out its characters and wowing us with amazing action and visual effects to perfection; kudos to Nolan for achieving that so well. So that’s it ladies and gents, I say don’t let the whole shooting thing scare you from seeing this one. It truly is a great film that touches up on important themes. This is an event picture, the kind you want to go to the theater to celebrate the fun of watching movies; don’t let the isolated incident with the crazy kook scare you out of that my friends! There was a special kind of electricity in the theater before and after the film started, people were genuinely excited to see this one. From what I can gather and from the resounding round of applause that I heard after the film was over, this one has won audience approval. The momentum these films have captured since the first film premiered has exploded on the screen with The Dark Knight Rises, the final film in Christopher Nolan’s Bat Saga; don’t let what that psycho did in
Colorado scare you away
from enjoying this awesome film.
Rating: 5 out of 5