After a second viewing and now the online fires have calmed, I thought I would share some thoughts on The Dark Knight Rises. I couldn’t decide whether I liked it the first time so I felt a second viewing was essential to determine what I thought its level of merit actually is. So, here we go, 5 thoughts (facts):
1. The Alfred scenes are definitely to0 gushy and feel as if they have been crow-barred into the narrative. These Batman films deliver their excitement through the music, the action set-pieces, even the little one-liners from the good and bad guys alike etc. But not speeches…apart from Gordon of course. He’s allowed. But only him.
2. “Now is not the time for fear” – I just had to write that down once. Love it!
3. I understand that Nolan wanted to exceed, or at least try to match the scope and epic nature of The Dark Knight, but one of the ways in which he attempted this backfired – by trying to make the story bigger than Gotham City. The most notable examples were when the American President was mentioned, when the bomb was taken out to sea, and when Alfred notices Wayne in a cafe in Florence. All of these sequences detracted from the ‘world of Gotham’ and put a temporary hole in the fourth wall.
I appreciated attempts to give the material as much realism as possible, but trying to merge Gotham with the real world is a mistake. Yes, in the films and graphic novels it is part of America but only as a point of reference. Gotham doesn’t play by the same rules as the real world, so the made up place should stay just that – made up. Make sense? Thought not.
4. Bane is a very good (film) character and although I think Tom Hardy is incredible and the voice makes me quiver with joy, he is not the Joker and the character and performance do not match up to Heath Ledger’s villain. I’m not saying Hardy wasn’t great; he just didn’t have the opportunity to fully express himself as he had a big metal restrictive crab on his mush.
Okay Luke, I’ll settle for this: Bane may, may be a better character than the Joker, but Heath Ledger’s performance is superior (oh, for all the rest of you, Luke is a friend of mine who will definitely disagree with the above comment… I’m not just suddenly calling everyone Luke.)
5. The Dark Knight is better than The Dark Knight Rises
6. All of that “dadadum, dadadum, dadadum, dadadum, dadadum, daaaaaaaaaa, daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa” – and the – “da…da…da, da, da” stuff…I still bloody love all of that.