“The Dark Knight Rises” is the best comic book movie adaptation ever done, better but bleaker than the other films in the Batman series. It has a new super-villian, albeit no one will ever replace Heath Ledger as The Joker. The film has a somber scale of threat that is huge, befitting the film’s two-hour and forty-five minute running time. It even has a magnetic emotional draw that manages to maintain itself amidst a ludicrous storyline.
In “The Dark Knight Rises,” Bruce Wayne has been in seclusion in his mansion for the eight years since the death of Gotham’s District Attorney, Harvey Dent. Anti-crime legislation has been passed called The Dent Act which has helped get and keep the major bad guys off the streets of Gotham. Commissioner Gordon knows the truth about Bruce and his exile, and the fact that it was not Batman who killed Dent.
But the arrival of two new threats in Gotham force Bruce Wayne back into business. The first is the appearance of a sexy and deadly high line, high tech thief, played wonderfully by Anne Hathaway.
The second is a mysterious semi-masked character named Bane, played perfectly by Tom Hardy . His motives are a bit obscure, but he has legions of loyal minions who aren’t afraid to die in doing his bidding, and he has an atom bomb. His first appearance early in the film in a high-flying action sequence is something that would make 007 jealous.
Academy Award winner Marion Cotillard appears as a woman who comes to the front as a new ally of The Batman.
Michael Caine, Liam Neesen and Morgan Freeman all have their characters return. New faces in featured roles include Matthew Modine and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
Musical scoring is very effective in “The Dark Knight Rises.” While outlandish from a story standpoint, the movie does pose some interesting sociological and metaphorical questions. There are lots of things you won’t expect in this motion picture. You won’t be bored for a second. This is a first-class action movie with an imagination and visual style that is stunning.