What if it's not Dr. Manhattan, but really Geoff Johns keeping all the good continuity to himself?
Saturday, July 21, 2012
Thoughts on The Dark Knight Rises
***NOTE: There are no initial spoilers in this first part of the post, but be warned, after the jump, I'm not holding anything back.***
So, like any good Batman fan, I saw The Dark Knight Rises this weekend, and damn it, was it awesome. If there was one imperfection to it, I'd say that it was at its core, very predictable. If you know your shit, you can see a lot of what the movie does coming from a mile away. Take for instance Bane... if you know who the very core of the character is, and his claim to fame, you could probably make a few educated guesses about the movie. But, in my opinion, none of that matters. The sheer scope and spectacle of this movie, is what masks any sense of predictability. I don't think I've ever been as glued to a screen, as I was, watching this thing in IMAX. TDKR is why you go to the movie theaters, it is why, no matter how big of an HDTV you get, no matter how much you spend on the latest Bose system, you will never be able to fully experience and grasp how awesome this movie is, without experiencing it on the big screen.
That being said, before getting into spoilers, I have to say two things about the villains. I'll admit it when I'm wrong, I just couldn't see Anne Hathaway playing Selina Kyle... she killed it. Speaking of killing things, holy shit Bane. Voice aside, Bane was awesome, and made up completely for his past film adaptation. Those fights? Oh my god... even Jason Bourne would have winced.
Final note before the spoilers, see this in IMAX. If you have to drive a little extra, just do it, it is totally worth it.
Okay, I'm just going to run down some of my favorite moments, and how awesome they were.
First of all, I don't care how much of a hard ass you are, but if you weren't at least fighting back tears during Michael Caine's various scenes as Alfred, you're not human. Plain and simple as that. The "I failed you... You trusted me, and I failed you" to Thomas Wayne's grave? Christ, I almost lost it.
Let's go back to those fights between Batman and Bane? JESUS CHRIST! The first one was so god damn terrifying, simply for the fact that you could visibly see Bruce wasn't doing anything to Bane, and you knew what was coming... but the fight kept going on, and on. The sense of dread, knowing full well what the ending of the fight would be, every time Bruce got up, was so palpable, it got to the point where I was just thinking "Just do it! For the love of god, break his back already!" When Bane was just hammering Bruce's head, cracking the mask... man I couldn't take it.
Then that second fight? Epic. So, so very epic. There's that split second, when Bruce starts to get the upper hand, but Bane still fights back, right before he smashes his fists into the concrete, where he unleashes a bunch of rapid fire punches into Bruce's gut, that perfectly syncs up with Zimmer's score. The film school kid in me went like this at that very moment:
Like previously mentioned, I was so very, very wrong about Hathaway. The moment where she kicked away Bruce's cane, I thought "alright, she's won me over." Then her using the congressman's cellphone to alert the police, and how she acted when the police stormed in? Awesome, perfect Selina Kyle in my book. She really sold the sense of confliction well, especially when she sold Batman out. Her watching that fight, you just got that sense of "yeah, I fucked up bad." Overall, her interaction with Batman was great. I loved it in the trailer, and I still thought one of my favorite moments in the movie was "You don't owe these people anymore. You've given them everything." Then the redemption. Yeah, you could see it coming, but it's what you wanted.
Bane's sentencing judge? I completely forgot about hearing he'd be back... laughed at that.
Miranda Tate? Haha... hahahahaha... HAHAHAHAHA... Yeah, okay. Worst kept secret of the entire movie. I remember the second she was cast thinking "Yeah, she's totally Talia al Ghul."I will say, the one moment the movie did trick me, was with the spin on Talia's origin, and the one child who escaped the prison. I really thought that was Bane, simply because of his origin and all. I knew young Talia had been cast, and the actress had to shave her head, but for some reason it still didn't register in my mind the switch. When the reveal came, seeing that single tear from Bane? Very unexpected, and really throws you for a loop when you start to feel sorry for him in that brief moment, forgetting what a fucking monster he is.
Another one of my favorite moments was right before the end, when Batman tells Gordon that "Batman could be anyone" then makes reference to the scene in Batman Begins after his parents murder, when Gordon comforts him. That hit me in the gut.
Then the ending... you know, I really thought Nolan had killed Bruce, and I was very ready to accept that. It would have been alright by me, and I would have been content... but to see him in Florence, with Selina at that cafe Alfred always frequented, man that put a huge smile on my face.
Oh, and I don't care how far away I saw the truth behind "John Blake" coming, as soon as he told the estate lawyer to look under his "legal" name, I said "oh, shit" with out any concern about the people surrounding me.
"You should use your whole name, Robin... I like it."
Yeah, I think it would have been better if his name involved "Richard" or "Grayson" but, you have to think about it. Richard Blake is just pointless, and while someone would just go by their middle name, no one would just randomly change their last name like that. So, John's real first name being Robin is enough of a nod for me. Then that shot of him entering the cave... man, love it. I never, ever want to see that movie, just keep it at that, and let it be.