The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

The Dark Knight Rises is one of the worst films I have seen in a long, long time. And certainly the worst film to be so praised by critics. Christian Bale as Batman is a cruel parody of himself as Batman in earlier films, even darker and sulkier and his "Batman voice" even more ludicrously forced. A panoply of plot holes, each large enough to drive several batmobiles through, abound and proliferate in dizzying array. Nothing the villains do makes sense in any way, from their overall plan to the numerous nonsensical pieces of it.

For example, it is not much of a plot spoiler to point out here that while the villains are intent upon nuking Gotham City and its 12 million inhabitants at all costs, for no apparent reason they give Batman five months to try to stop them, despite the fact that they have the bomb ready to go and the trigger set up from the start. In another scene, thousands of unarmed Gotham policemen make a heroic suicide charge against a mercenary army outfitted with tanks and assault rifles, but we have no idea why they need to do this.

The pacing is bizarre, with long boring digressions pointlessly drawn out while crucial action sequences are edited so choppily that it's hard to know what even happened. Main bad guy Bane's mechanical voice might have been genuinely menacing if it were not simply incomprehensible half of the time. And the film's one great asset, the stunningly sly and sexy Catwoman played with surprising depth and admirable aplomb by Anne Hathaway, goes criminally underused, reduced to the occasional sideshow. I could go on and on about the horrible dialogue as well but I won't.

Suffice to say, I can't recommend this movie in any way to anyone. It was bad enough that it constantly ripped me out of the moment with ridiculous and unexplained turns of events that seemed to have been inserted into the story solely because it might make an unusual action set piece. But the film's greatest crime of all was that it was constantly boring for 3 long hours.


Director: Christopher Nolan
Screenplay: Jonathan Nolan, Christopher Nolan
Story: Christopher Nolan, David Goyer
Original Score: Hans Zimmer
Cinematography: Wally Pfister


Christian Bale - Batman/Bruce Wayne
Anne Hathaway - Catwoman/Selina Kyle
Gary Oldman - Commissioner Gordon
Joseph Gordon Levitt - John Blake
Tom Hardy - Bane
Marion Cotillard - Miranda Tate
Michael Caine - Alfred Pennyworth
Morgan Freeman - Lucius Fox

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