The Dark Knight Rises.


The Masked Crusader.


Its unusual for me not to be bowled over by movies based on comic books, or as there know known graphic novels, and I have especially enjoyed Christopher Nolan’s interpretation of the Batman story in the first two films of his trilogy. Batman Begins(2005) explored the origins of the crime fighter including the death of his parents, how he travels the world seeking the means to fight injustice and how he unleashes his alto ego the masked crusader with the help of his trusty butler Alfred. In the second film, The Dark Knight (2008), Batman continues his fight against organised crime in Gotham City that falters when he has to pit his strength and intellect against the criminal mastermind known as The Joker.

Catwoman in all but name.

The final part of the trilogy The Dark Knight Rises(2012) is a spectacular looking movie with the production designers along with Nolan’s regular Director of Photography Wally Pfister on top of their form. But what undermines this film is its lack of humour and a sense of fun, which are essential to carry this style of movie. The only character that gets anywhere near this requirement is Anne Hathaway’s red lipped Selina Kyle, a version of Catwoman in every thing but name. Also we seem to have a somewhat baffling and unnecessarily complicated narrative with characters that are hard to empathise with, even Christian Bale’s Bruce Wayne/Batman, proves quite difficult. 

Bane.

The main villain this time is a character called Bane (a barely recognisable Tom Hardy) who wears a sinister facial leather mask and is a giant of a man who leads a gang of mercenaries with the usual intention of ruling Gotham City. Two problems, the mask makes his speech a little unclear and I’m afraid we have been spoilt by Heath Ledgers ultimate villain The Joker, who too my mind is probable the best comic book screen antihero.  A small niggle I know but the wonderful Juno Temple (Killer Joe 2012) who plays Jen, a friend and accomplice of Selina Kyle, is woefully under used. With out meaning to give anything away, are we really introduced to Robin at the end of the movie? Therefore is this indeed the end of the franchise?

The woefully underused Juno Temple.