Before you read any further, I trust that if you haven't seen the movie, go do so immediately and read no further in anything I write here. I don't want to spoil the movie for anyone, but being a life-long Batman fan, and for as much love as I give this movie and the trilogy as a whole, I felt I needed to sit down and bring up several things about the movie, good and bad, that need to be addressed.
Over the last several days I've read a lot of fan reactions to the movie, and the response has, for the most part, been overwhelmingly positive. But there have been a few people that can't grasp some of things that occur in this movie, and for that I felt someone has to take charge and write something, and thus, that's what I'm doing.
The Dark Knight Rises borrows heavily from four major storylines in the Batman mythos: The Dark Knight Returns, Knightfall, Batman Vs. Bane, and No Man's Land. While I use the term "borrows", that's what they do. They aren't exactly replicating any part of these storylines, rather, using them as jumping off points into Nolan's own vision for Batman. And it works wonderfully, but there were a few things about the movie that I gotta throw out there as, well, small gripes I guess.
1. Michael Caine 's Alfred is heavily underused in this film. Some of this franchise most impact-full and fulfilling moments are delivered through Alfred, and while they are once again in this film, the whole plot idea of shipping him away felt rather cheap. I don't want to say that I felt cheated at all, I mean he was in the film, but he then just disappears, only to reappear at the end of the film. Regardless of that, he still delivers some of the most important dialogue in the movie.
2. Bane's second speech. While I love Tom Hardy to death here and I want nothing more then to shake the hand of the man that brought a true version of Bane to life in this film, his second speech came off to me as a little "Batman Forever" like. The noticeably cringe-worthy line is when he says "The Batman" when he is reading Gordon's lost speech. It just comes off very cartoonish and corny, and for a brief second took me out of the realism of the movie. Not to say anything else bad about his performance because, man, his dialogue during the back-breaking scene is top notch.
3.Daggett. Many people have made the mistake of connecting this character to the infamous Clayface from the comics, however, in the Batman mythos, the character of Daggett is nothing more than a corrupt business man. So that part of the movie makes more sense. You're welcome to go look at one of the many Clayfaces that there have been: Basil Karlo, Matt Hagen, Preston Payne, Sondra Fuller, Cassius Payne, Dr. Peter Malley, Todd Russell, and Johnny Williams. Notice not one of them is named Daggett? Get your facts straight, people.
4. The ending: and I will warn again before talking about it, *MAJOR SPOILERS HERE PEOPLE*, I can't say that I have the answer to the future of this franchise, but here's how I read into what the ending means for the future, and what I would like to see as a Batman fan. The character of "Robin John Blake" as I believe his full name would be pronounced, is a mixture of Dick Grayson and Tim Drake (John Blake, Tim Drake, get it?). We get an almost identical story to Drake's story, as someone who witnessed his father die thanks to a gambling debt, and Drake was the only person at a time who straight up figured out who Batman/Bruce Wayne was, much like the character in this movie. However, rather then having him become Robin, or even, Nightwing, I interrupt the end of this film as simply, he will continue the legacy Bruce Wayne created as being the new Batman. I only amplify why I believe this is the case because at the end of the film the Bat-signal is shown as rebuilt, and obviously he's exploring the cave, so why wouldn't he continue the legacy? If they were gonna make him Robin or Nightwing, obviously the signal would have been different. With that being said, I would like to see a Batman Beyond like storyline, with, if possible, Christian Bale reprising his role as Bruce Wayne and training Blake into becoming the new Batman. I dunno if it will happen, but I wouldn't be surprised if it did, and it makes much more sense to continue an established franchise that people love, rather then tear down what they love and rebuild something that will be merely ok (because let's be honest, no one is going to be ready for a new Bruce Wayne Batman for at least a decade now). I can even see someone like Nolan coming back as a producer. Anyways that's all speculation, but that's the way I interpreted the ending, until it is proven otherwise.
With all that said, what did everyone else think of Nolan's final Batman film? Pretty damn amazing, right?