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The Dark Knight Rises  : He Rises Indeed, But Not As High As Expectations
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Friday, July 20, 2012
Action - Thriller
Christopher Nolan
Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Anne Hathaway, Liam Neeson, Tom Hardy, Marion Cottilard, Morgan Freeman
There are a few movies that whip up hype on announcement of their release dates. The Dark Knight Trilogy is one such set that has not only met expectations but has made people crave for more. Alas,   everything good has to end and The Dark Knight series is no different. With the third and final instalment, an earth-shattering, nerve-wracking end was promised and although it does make quite a mark, it is not make a convincing ‘epic conclusion’.

The Plot: It is a peaceful, organized crime-free Gotham city. But nothing comes for free. Sacrifices must be made for the greater good and Batman Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) and Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) have compromised truth in exchange for the anti-crime Dent Act that has managed to almost demolish organized crime. But how long can a lie last?

Batman, in self-imposed exile, is faced with an unusual situation. The Catwoman aka Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway) has stolen his mother’s pearl necklace and his fingerprints. Wait, fingerprints? What on earth for? Well, what seems like a simple theft for Selina, turns out to be a recipe for disaster. Hidden beneath the masquerade of peace is an underground revolutionary-cum-terrorist activity trying to raise its ugly head out there in public. Bane (Tom Hardy), the masked-revolutionary, disrupts city life, takes total control, traps as many as 3000 police officers, kills, holds hostages and claims that all this is for the good of the citizens. What’s more, Batman might not be a good enough match for him. Will Bane succeed in his mission to annihilate the city or will Batman rise to the occasion? Cross your fingers, chew your nails   and hope for the best.

The Good: The best part of the movie, without a doubt, is the anxiety build-up that director Christopher Nolan creates right up to the last minute. You finish the nails on one hand and move to the next when you see your beloved Batman being beaten to a pulp by the vicious Bane.  Batman, an ordinary man with extraordinary weapons, who swaggers with the message ‘Anyone can be a Batman’, is as amusing as always and his weapons are magical. His awesome bike or Bat-mobile, those crazy chases, the speed and the husky, robotic voice reassure you that Batman is back indeed. Anne Hathaway makes for an extremely sexy cat (travel back to Halle Berry’s Catwoman). Joseph Gordon Levitt as John Blake does a pretty decent job. Micha Bostrom and Peter Driscoll have managed to create one of the best animation effects of the year so far. The moment the film draws towards the end, the blowing up of bridges, the obliteration of the football stadium, the street destruction and so on stand out as memorable effects. The class war and the real people’s rule are some really chilling concepts.

The Bad: Director Nolan seems to be so overwhelmed by his idea of dark, sinister and evil that The Dark Knight Rises is bloodier and far more ghastly than its predecessors. The build-up to the climax is tantalising but after a point so much anxiety seems more torture and less viewing pleasure. Hans Zimmer’s music doesn’t help much; in fact, it really is too loud and putting-off at times. The biggest glitch where the movie loses points is Bane’s voice. He probably has the maximum amount of dialogues but beneath his mask, the heavily-accented, robotic voice is absolutely incomprehensible. The dialogues are also very unimpressive. Writers David Goyer, Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan and Bob Kane have definitely put a lot of effort in creating hoards of new characters that are introduced in the beginning but Batman himself is given such little screen-time that you wonder whether the film is about Batman or Bane. And Bane is although cruel, he can’t hold a match to the menacing Joker. Again, the climax is a letdown (the unimpressively done nuclear explosion with the melodrama that follows) and it unnecessarily takes a sequel-ish twist. The running time of almost 2 hours 44 minutes doesn’t help the defense.

Overall: Considering the fact that this is the final installment of the Trilogy, a lot more was expected, probably a Big Bang. The Dark Knight definitely rises but is swiftly followed by a fall.

– Priyanka Ketkar
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