The Dark Knight Rises is arguably the most anticipated film in the past four years, and rightfully so. It brings to life one of the most cherished superheroes of all time, and it also concludes one of the most successful film trilogies in history. But for reasons I can't even to begin to fathom, people have been labeling this a masterpiece. Really? Sure, the action set pieces are visually astonishing, and Hans Zimmer's score is fantastic, but this is hardly a masterfully done piece of cinema. Like The Dark Knight before it, there's a ton of inconsistencies, plot holes and horrible cuts and transitions between scenes.
Obviously, this post CONTAINS TONS OF MAJOR SPOILERS. PLEASE DO NOT READ AHEAD IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN THE MOVIE YET !!!
Here are some of the big frustrations I had...
- I'm going to start this off with my biggest WTF in the entire movie: John Blake figuring out the Bruce Wayne was the Batman. I mean, really? He knew that Bruce was Batman from simply looking at his face? Gazing into his eyes and a fucking smile gave away his identity? And what's even more frustrating is how Bruce doesn't do anything to deny it.
- My second biggest WTF moment was when Bruce's back got fixed. Now, his back wasn't shown on screen, but if I remember correctly, the man who fixed it said that there were two bones protruding out of his flesh (uh... ouch?). So what does the man do? He punches them back in. Yeah. Seems legit. Then, in just about three months, Bruce is able to walk around again...
- ... and that brings me to my next point! He tries climbing out of this prison pit, only to fail multiple times. Now, this isn't just a three foot fall. I'd say, it was roughly thirty/fifty plus. You would think, when plummeting down, the rope tied around his waist would snap his tender, still healing back. But nooooo, it doesn't. Batman was able to have a fully restored spine without any kind of medical treatment. All it took was a jab to the lower back and couple of days of standing upright while unconscious.
- HOW THE FUCK DOES BRUCE GET BACK INTO GOTHAM? He has no money, no forms of identification, he's in the middle of nowhere (it looks like he's in Middle East Asia somewhere), he just recovered from near paralysis, and he has no way in communicating to the outside world. So yeah, how does he get back? And not only that, how the hell did he get into the city? The bridges are all down, there are military guards on each passageway, Bane's henchmen are all over the island, and the water surrounding the city is completely frozen.
- And that brings me to my final frustration: Gotham City is about to get blown into bits, thousands of innocent lives are about to get turned into ashes, and what does Batman do? He decides to to show Gotham his artistic side, and create this HUGE Bat signal made of gasoline and flames. Good job Batman, now all the bad guys know you're back in the city.
And now... for a bunch of other stuff I disliked/noticed...
- The very opening sequence: don't you find it hard to believe that the CIA would just let people on their plane without any kind of verification to who they are? Yeah, same here.
- You would also think, a plane being used by the CIA would be able to detect an incoming, non-stealth aircraft hovering over them. Boy, doesn't Bane have it easy. He was also lucky he wasn't shot at first.
- So, it's been eight years since the events of The Dark Knight. What has Bruce Wayne been doing all this time? Greving over Rachel's death? For almost a whole decade? I mean, Bruce is so sad, apparently he doesn't even bother going out, AT ALL. And because Bruce turns into this unsociable hermit, he loses some functionality to his legs, and needs to use a cane to walk. I found that kind of pathetic.
- Oh, and after locking himself away for nearly a decade, he decides to finally go out because of a burglary. Not too long after that (give or take, a couple of days), he decides to be Batman and fight crime again. Too sudden of a transition, specially with his condition.
- Where the hell did Bane and his goons get those motorcycles from the Stock Exchange heist? And was I the only one who noticed that it went from daylight to darkness in just couple of minutes? That must have been a really long tunnel.
- Bane just just broke into the Gotham City Stock Exchange building, fired some shots, hacked into their database, took some hostages and probably injured a couple of people in the process. Then, as he gets chased down by the cops, here comes Batman! After eight years of absence, he finally returns! "Hey, I think we should totally forget about chasing Bane and his men! Instead, let's get the Batman, because you know, he's totally relevant right now." Really?
- Bruce's relationship with Miranda Tate seemed forced and unbelievable. I mean, they met a couple of times, and they start boning each other not too long afterwards. Sure, that's characteristic of Bruce, seeing how he's this billionaire playboy, but the whole relationship thing? Nah...
- Where the fuck is this "hell of Earth" prison Bane sends Batman to? Apparently, it's somewhere really far away from Gotham. So then, why does Bane take his time to drop him off personally? To make him feel like shit? To rub it in his face that he has lost, and the Gotham is going to get destroyed? For a guy who really organized and coordinated, I expected him to just get his goons to drop him off.
- "Oh, sure Bane! Let me transform this source of clean, sustainable energy into an atomic bomb. Gimme like, three minutes."
- Apparently the Gotham City Police Department thought it would be smart to send their entire force into the tunnels to look for Bane. Yeah, smart.
- Miranda Tata later reveals herself as Talia Al Ghul, the real mastermind behind all this chaos. Now, was it just me, or did that completely diminish the bad-ass, fearsome, terrifying Bane we were first introduced to from the beginning of the movie? After the Talia revelation, Bane ended up looking like this pathetic pet of the Al Ghul's, and that ruined the character for me.
- Also, does Batman have Wolverine's healing ability? Because not only does he heal from a fractured spine with ancient forms of medical practice (a punch), but he quickly recovers from Talia's stabbing.
- Batman knew about the bomb, which should be his main priority in saving Gotham and its citizens. But what does he do first (besides creating this awesome looking Bat symbol in the sky)? He decides to confront Bane. I mean, if he went to look for that bomb first, he wouldn't have to have "sacrificed" his life, as well as many of the policemen who did during that street war.
- Bane beat the shit out Batman just a couple of months ago, and he left him nearly paralyzed. He has two vertebre healing. So... he decides to go toe to toe with Bane again? Hand to hand? Batman, you're supposed to be smart. Use your utility belt! Or kick! Kick someone, dammit!
- I'm not entirely sure what happened to Bane? Did he die? I mean, this point shouldn't bug me, but it seemed like once Talia Al Ghul was introduced, Bane just felt thrown away.
- Not only does the public think Batman sacrificed his life to save Gotham, but Bruce Wayne is also pronounced "dead." So, why is Bruce eating lunch in public? I mean, he's Bruce Wayne, one of the richest, most familiar faces on the planet. Someone is bound to recognize him. Sure, with the clean slate thing, he could've just erased his past, but really? He stepped out of the car in one of the earlier scenes, and everyone instantly knew it was Bruce, even after eight years of confinement. I'm sure someone would know his face in whatever European city he was in at the end.
Now, you're probably thinking "man, you must have really hated this movie!" No, that's not true. I gave this film a strong 7.7 out of 10 score in my review (but of course, while I was writing this, I wish I gave it a lower one). So why did I give this a pass? Well, as dark as this movie is supposed to be, I thought it was fairly entertaining, and the action sequences were phenomenal. And in IMAX, oh man, this film was an amazing spectacle. Also, I thought the movie concluded the whole trilogy really well, as it revisited older plot points from the previous films and what not. Sure, while this movie had a lot of problems script and storytelling wise, Nolan definitely has a keen eye in terms of visual artistry, and he ended his Batman story at an epic scale. So with everything said, I did enjoy The Dark Knight Rises, but this isn't the masterpiece everyone is calling it out to be.
AND HERE IS MY DARK KNIGHT RISES REVIEW.
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