July 22, 2012

The Dark Knight Rises

The Dark Knight Rises, 2012. A big crazy guy gets himself a nuclear bomb.

Directed by Christopher Nolan. Written by Jonathan & Christopher Nolan; story by Christopher Nolan & David S. Goyer, based on characters by Bob Kane. Starring Christian Bale & Tom Hardy.

Concept: 4/4 (Great)
Story: 2/4 (Indifferent). Why do we need to have hours of convoluted twists and mystery when the entire plot is Bad Guy Has A Bomb. If you're going to stretch that out, why not do it by, oh, I don't know, adding some content?  Instead of acting like someone in Gotham City having a bomb is somehow a big deal? This is Gotham City we're talking about. The one potentially good twist, which they save for near the end, is mostly just frustrating because saving it for so late means that a potentially great character is wasted.
Characters: 2/4 (Indifferent). I understand that Bruce Wayne has never been the most emotionally stable person in the world, but damn, what were they thinking? It's like the first couple acts of the movie exist purely for the purpose of making us not give a fuck about him.
Dialog: 2/4 (Indifferent). The entire series has had its fair share of wincing moments when it comes to dialog. This one goes overboard.
Pacing: 2/4 (Indifferent). I expect I would feel worse about the pacing on a re-watch, knowing that so little of the enormous amounts of set-up is necessary.
Cinematography: 3/4 (Good)
Special effects/design: 3/4 (Good). Great effects, of course.
Acting: 2/4 (Indifferent). Silly Voices Theater.
Music: 2/4 (Indifferent)
Subjective Rating: 6/10 (Okay, 2/4). I can't think of a single moment in the entire movie that provoked a "This is awesome!" response. For a Batman movie, coming from me, that is pretty bad. Although, if I hadn't seen the first two movies, I probably would have thought this one was great. But it doesn't manage to do anything that Nolan hasn't already done much better. And it's a shining example of why comic book movies shouldn't try to imitate The Dark Knight. Comic book characters are simple and naturally campy. If you take them seriously, but don't have a brilliantly intelligent script that warrants being taken seriously, the result will be... not so good. If Christopher Nolan himself can only get it right 2/3 times, the Zack Snyders and Marc Webbs of the world are doomed to failure.
Objective Rating (Average): 2.4/4 (Okay)

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