Can The Dark Knight Rises Rise Above Its Predecessors?

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Can The Dark Knight Rises Rise Above Its Predecessors?

Does this town deserve a better class of criminal?

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Short answer: Yes, obviously.

Long answer: I predicted Catwoman long ago, because she'd give the film an interesting angle + we needed a new love interest following Rachel's death.
Plus Anne Hathaway got nominated for an Oscar a couple of years ago. Bear that in mind while you're slagging her off.
Bane, I'm not so sure. I never saw his episode in The Batman (my only previous experience with the mythos) and even then I think he was portrayed as dumb muscle. As Hardy's work with Nolan previously was in Inception (aka everyone on here's favourite film of 2010, it seems) I think we can have confidence in his portrayal.

Also, a fairly simple question: has Nolan let us down yet?

I've never really cared for Batman, I never liked him I always thought he was a pretty meh character.

The villains on the other hand...Holy hell.

Is it just me who is hoping to see Bane break the bats back? I can't be the only one, surely?

Batman Begins bored me. It's a tired re-hash in the name of REALISM, that that hack Frank Miller started without realising certain simple rules.

Superheroes aren't realistic.

There's been books written about how Bats can't do what he wants to, Spidey would tear his arm off, and Lois Lane definitely doesn't want Superman to have his wicked way with her.

But it's the 21st century and everything has to be real. REAL Transformers, REAL Batman, REAL Spiderman 3 and they all were crap.

Until The Dark Knight.

See, no-one expected this to be good. Even the Bat-fans weren't expecting it to be THIS good, because - for once - they caught the ball.

It's not about Batman. It never was. Nor is about Wolverine, Spiderman or Superman.

It's about Bruce vs Evil Bruce. Or Power vs. Responsibility. Or Saving the World vs. Dooming the World. or Wolverine vs. Wolverine...

Many a time, Hollywood relies on it's panel of movie-goers to judge how to make a film, and slaps in someone who knows about it to get the details right; but they forget the biggest detail of all.

It's not about the Heroes. The Heroes are some sort of Campbell/Freud/Jungian amalgam that lets the Hero show he's a Hero, and the Villain show he's a Villain.

And in Batman versus the Joker, it's always been Bats vs. Anti-Bats : which they got.

Now this time, you've already got two plots going.

Catwoman : Female Batman gone bad - Love Arc.
Bane: The man who broke the Bat - Hate Arc.

The only way this can resolve successfully (imho) is if the two villains go at each other to get Bats. One of them is going to have to kill the other one in front of Bats. Preferably in a twisted mirror of his parent's death.

But what's really going to happen?

Prediction: Bane is all HERP-DERP HULKBANE SMASH and Catwoman makes lots of jokes about her pussy before being offed so Bats can do the "KHAAAAAN" moment.

If it's any different, I will be more than pleased; but I honestly don't think that half the writers even understand what a superhero is.

Superheroes cannot be realistic. Because that just makes them heroes. And heroes don't need to dress up.

Doubt it'll receive as much praise as the Dark Knight. I hate to say it, but I doubt Dark Knight wouldn't have been so praised if Ledger didn't die.

Yes, the movie was great, yes it did deserve the praise, yes Ledger was great, but if he didn't die, it wouldn't have gotten all the "Ledger's final act" hype that helped propel it into the spotlight.

Still was a good movie though. Hopefully this one's good as well.

Bane is the villain who rendered Batman paraplegic after strategically wearing him out by busting out every inmate from Arkham. Catwoman shot Black Mask to the face.

Nolan has stayed true to the comics and delivered that and more. Hardy and Hathaway are unpredictable choices but really, who saw Heath Ledger as the Joker coming? Noone. We all know how that turned out.

Great read, except for the part about the penthouse. Nolan does not spoon-feed all the information to the viewers. What do you think the gangsters would've done if they stayed in the penthouse, waste time searching for Dent as the police start kicking their asses? Either way, it's even implied in the movie that Joker thought Batman was Dent, making further interruption to the party pointless, as evidenced by: "You know, for a while there, I really thought you were Dent. The way you threw yourself after her..."

Even if this weren't in the movie, that thing would be far from a plot-hole and even further from a gaping one.

As for Rises being better than the two before it, it's possible. Never say never when it comes to talented directors. However, I see it as ridiculously unlikely, especially with Heath Ledger's death screwing it up a little.

tomtom94:
Short answer: Yes, obviously.

Long answer: I predicted Catwoman long ago, because she'd give the film an interesting angle + we needed a new love interest following Rachel's death.
Plus Anne Hathaway got nominated for an Oscar a couple of years ago. Bear that in mind while you're slagging her off.
Bane, I'm not so sure. I never saw his episode in The Batman (my only previous experience with the mythos) and even then I think he was portrayed as dumb muscle. As Hardy's work with Nolan previously was in Inception (aka everyone on here's favourite film of 2010, it seems) I think we can have confidence in his portrayal.

Also, a fairly simple question: has Nolan let us down yet?

Bane is usually presented as either the stupid musclehead, or a intelectual. I can never quite seem to get why, but it seems only some writers like him better when he's smart (but not as smart as Batman) and really strong. It kinda makes him a more dangerous enemy.

The_root_of_all_evil:

Spidey would tear his arm off

Even when you take his extra strength into account?

From my point of view, the Batman has always been a kind of bland character. He's always a moody rich misunderstood playboy. Begins bucked that trend a bit, and I liked it, but when it comes right down to it the color in Batman has always come from it's villains. Good villain, good movie.

Bane is an interesting choice for Nolan's final movie. There is a part of me that hopes Nolan ends the movie with Batman's back broken and Catwoman saving the day in some strange way. Wayne recovering from the broken back while crime starts to go on the rise again (Making people realize how much they miss Batman) would provide an unconventional backdrop to the inevitable 4th installment.

Anyway, my two cents from the peanut gallery.

I don't think there was anyone who actually thought that Phillip Seymour Hoffman was going to be the Penguin, mostly because Nolan had stated for years and years that the Penguin wouldn't even be in the films.

That said, it's a shame the at least for the moment Joe-Gordon Levitt isn't in the film. He's such an underrated and talented actor that it would be great to see him in more big profile films.

And how is Bane NOT a logical continuation of the storyline already set in the first two films? He's like the anti-Batman, who's lost both his parents at a young age and in his rage trained himself to an utmost limit of physical and mental strength. The difference is that he never had the moral guide of Alfred to help him from slipping into the dark.

He's also not only defined by The Venom that has given him the outlook in the comics, as other stories have shown, Bane has an entire life outside the drug and becomes even more humane and tormented when facing Gothman and Batman without superpowers - something that I feel Nolan will use in his take of the character.

Or how about Catwoman? The perfect and at the same time worst possible love interest for Batman. A person shown in the comics to be a potential rescue for Bats if he wouldn't be so broken and stuck to the independence and solitude that he's resigned to (especially now that Rachel is dead).

Considering the love professed in the column towards the previous films, it seems a bit odd that something as obvious as this could have been missed in it.

You know, I've always preferred Batman Begins over TDK but never been able to put my finger on why. I just find the story to be so much deeper. I've been a fan of Nolan ever since Following and am very much looking forward to seeing what he has to offer in the next sequel.

Am i the only person who's worried theres not a central threat in this?
Because as good as catwoman and bane are, they are accessories added to a storyline to improve it usually. There needs to be some driving recurring/leadership role villain. And i don't see it. I think their hiding one of their villains from us.

I don't know.. I'd prefer if it didn't need to go out on a bang... its the bookend to a triology.. I feel it should do what it needs to end that triology..

what would be awesome but would never happen is if it ends ala final crisis with dick grayson taking over grant morrison style.. it'll let them not oversaturate the bruce wayne character but still retain batman.. they could even take it in a whole different creative direction.. but alas this probably will not happen

actually Grant Morrisson's Batman and Robin got me thinking a lot of V for Vendetta's end with the whole V as a symbol.. the reference I'm making is the graphic novel which conveyed a different meaning than the movie...

I don't think that anyone will top Ledger's performance as 'The Joker' but both of these actors can turn in great performances! I look forward to it!

Well, I've seen in a Batman animated movie featuring Bane and Penguin and holy shit, Bane is a formiddable enemy.

The first time I met Bane was in the god awful Batman & Robin, lamest Bane I've ever seen, but in that animated movie I saw, not only he had an amazing strenght, he also had the wits and even surpassed Batman in a lot of things. He had his very own thugs to do the dirty job and obviously he ends up fighting the cape crusader himself and he even ALMOST broke his back, if it wasn't for... uhh... someone, I don't remember whom, rescued Batman at the very last moment. I think it was Batgirl... or Robin?.

I mean, Bane is an insane material to work with and I have my hopes in Nolan that he makes him the villain he deserves to be.

Also, I saw in another movie a vampire Joker working for Dracula, but that's a different story...

I don't see how this can't be as good as other Batman movies. Each film seems to be better than the last, so I think that this will surpass The Dark Knight

Dark Knight Rises MIGHT not hit the same highs as its predecessor, but I get the feeling that it would be because Nolan set the bar in ORBIT so it's going to be tough to top it. Still, he hasn't done a bad film yet and I fully trust his decisions

aside from the Riddler, these two are the BEST for Nolan's style of Batman.
Catwoman: on one hand, she's a burgler, on the other hand, Bruce loves her. plus she can actually FIGHT Batman. Nolan's Bman has ALWAYS been about the battle within
Bane: as long as he's hispanic, he'll do fine. the cartoon series (other than the 90's one) and movies don't do him justice. he ISN'T just pure dumb muscle. he's as intelligent as he is deadly. Bane more or less grew up inside a maximum security prison. while there, he built up his physique just so he could survive, but he also studied different languages and such in his spare time. he agreed to an experiment with Venom in hopes that it would lead to his freedom. he became a hulking monster and escaped. he began work as a mercinary and became interested in Bats. he watched him, studied him, and tortured both Batman and Bruce Wayne psychologically. then, when Batman was most broken, Bane finally revealed himself and LITERALLY broke Batman (over his knee). he put the Dark Knight out of commission for a while, and he didn't even fight him.

I don't think either of those Actors fit the roles they are going for honestly, but we'll see what happens, they could surprise me however.

I will say that I think the Batman movies are lionized a bit too much, as memories are short. "Batman Begins" had a LOT of criticism over the reboot desicians, while most said it was a good movie, I don't think the general audience and fan population embraced it quite as much as is let on. It's success was mostly "It's batman, and it doesn't suck".

"The Dark Knight" had the death of Heath Ledger behind it, which captured people's imaginations. While morbid, I think it's frequently overlooked what a big deal that was. What's more it's not like an actor like Heath Ledger who was a politically correct darling at the time was going to be panned after his death. He did play a really good version of "The Joker" but if he was still alive, and there wasn't the whole nerdboy "The Joker is the first comic book villain to kill someone in real life" thing given the rumors about what Heath's method of acting and role preparation might have done to him, would the moive have sold as well?

Don't get me wrong, I think this will be a good movie, but really after the newness of the first movie and the credit it got from being a decent Super Hero movie, this is Nolan's first real attempt to make a successful sequel as he's not likely to have the massive amount of press a famous death like that is going to cause, along with the automatic praise that actor was guaranteed after his death given the views on him at the time in the movie establishment.

I'm sure many people will disagree with me here, of course, but it's just my opinion. I think a pair of good movies are being lionized a bit more than they should be, especially the first one which seems to be being viewed more favorably after "Dark Knight" by the fan commnunity than it was at the time (but don't get me wrong, it was never badly received, just not shouted from the rooftops to this degree).

The_root_of_all_evil:
Batman Begins bored me. It's a tired re-hash in the name of REALISM, that that hack Frank Miller started without realising certain simple rules.

Superheroes aren't realistic.

There's been books written about how Bats can't do what he wants to, Spidey would tear his arm off, and Lois Lane definitely doesn't want Superman to have his wicked way with her.

But it's the 21st century and everything has to be real. REAL Transformers, REAL Batman, REAL Spiderman 3 and they all were crap.

Until The Dark Knight.

See, no-one expected this to be good. Even the Bat-fans weren't expecting it to be THIS good, because - for once - they caught the ball.

It's not about Batman. It never was. Nor is about Wolverine, Spiderman or Superman.

It's about Bruce vs Evil Bruce. Or Power vs. Responsibility. Or Saving the World vs. Dooming the World. or Wolverine vs. Wolverine...

Many a time, Hollywood relies on it's panel of movie-goers to judge how to make a film, and slaps in someone who knows about it to get the details right; but they forget the biggest detail of all.

It's not about the Heroes. The Heroes are some sort of Campbell/Freud/Jungian amalgam that lets the Hero show he's a Hero, and the Villain show he's a Villain.

And in Batman versus the Joker, it's always been Bats vs. Anti-Bats : which they got.

Now this time, you've already got two plots going.

Catwoman : Female Batman gone bad - Love Arc.
Bane: The man who broke the Bat - Hate Arc.

The only way this can resolve successfully (imho) is if the two villains go at each other to get Bats. One of them is going to have to kill the other one in front of Bats. Preferably in a twisted mirror of his parent's death.

But what's really going to happen?

Prediction: Bane is all HERP-DERP HULKBANE SMASH and Catwoman makes lots of jokes about her pussy before being offed so Bats can do the "KHAAAAAN" moment.

If it's any different, I will be more than pleased; but I honestly don't think that half the writers even understand what a superhero is.

Superheroes cannot be realistic. Because that just makes them heroes. And heroes don't need to dress up.

It's obvious that Batman Begins bored you, because you don't remember the line when Bruce Wayne is all like, "Bruce Wayne is just a man, he can be ignored, but if I become a symbol, then I can become something else entirely", that's why he 'dresses up'.

I remember John Cleese during an interview, where he was asked as to why he didn't do a third series of Fawlty Towers. His answer was simple after a bit of a search for words:

"I could not win."

Similarly, I remember everyone going to Christopher Nolan after The Dark Knight and him making a good comment in that same kind of vein. "Eh...how many really awesome third parts of a trilogy can you really name?" I immediately picked up on that and quite frankly...I wouldn't have blamed him if he decided to turn down every offer to make the 3rd movie.

But he's obviously decided to go for it full force. He certainly does have the talent for it, no doubt whatsoever for that, as well as the drive and savvy to make the right choices. But as with all things...nothing's certain and everyone will see what they'll want to see.

I guess it's the same kind of tredipitation with which I look forward to it as I do when thinking about Mass Effect 3. Sure, Bioware made a great start in my mind with the first game, and they utterly blew me away with the second. But by now...I'm just afraid they don't either stumble upon their own hubris...or that they quite simply go batshit from the stress. :)

But back to the topic, I think there's every chance of the third Batman being genuinely awesome. But as always...the devil lies in the details. And when you're under tremendous amounts of pressure, a few details always escape your notice. The only question is will they be significant enough to make the audience go "This sucks compared to the last one." or will they be overshadowed by all the good so that, in the end, people will regard it as a good movie?

We'll see I guess.

Also Nolan said he was only going to make 3 films so i wonder if he will end the film with Batman getting his back broken? Bane seems a weird choice as as a character he sucks and was only famous for breaking the bat. Well the film will be amazing whatever happens.

I think he should have called it quits after TDK.

I'm not a Nolan fan. Begins bores me and I think TDK is an average movie made great by a couple of scenes and one outstanding performance (hint: it wasn't Bale's)

That aside - The Terminator, Alien, Superman and The Godfather all had great first and second instalments and an inferior third. However this goes it's unlikely to hit the heights of public and critical approval that TDK reached, so the only way is down really.

Really I don't think it needs to do exceed The Dark Knight to be worth seeing. I think most people have all this wrong, it can still be an awesome movie, and not be as good as TDK.

Elizabeth, you seem to forget how Bane "broke the Bat", during this article. When I heard the news I assumed that this would not be the vast film you were referring to the other two as. It would, in my mind, be more of a psychological film and look more closely at Batman, his motivations, and such. Bane being here could lead to a very interesting set up, as a newly bedridden Batman has to find a way to continue to fight injustice against a man who knows everything about him, including his greatest weaknesses. It'd be a perfect way to bring Robin into the series, if you ask me. And I don't mean "Holy Heisenberg, Batman!" Robin, I mean one that will actually bring some depth to Batman's character as the perfect foil.

Honestly, I don't think Catwoman is going to be in this movie.

In the press release they describe Christian Bale as "Bruce Wayne/Batman" and Tom Hardy as Bane. They only refer to Anna Hathaway as Selina Kyle, not as Catwoman. My guess is that we'll see glimpses of the origin of Catwoman in this film but that's it. We'll see a relationship start to grow in this film that is tested in the next when Kyle takes on the Catwoman persona. The press release also mentions Bane being re-imagined for the film, similarly to the description given to the Joker in the press release announcing Ledger in the role.

So far Nolan has done a great job in taking over-the-top villains and making them work in a more realistic universe (no murderous laughing gas that makes people look like Joker or giant Two-Face coins meant to crush Batman). I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

this will disappoint everybody, no matter how good it actually is.

Vault Citizen:

The_root_of_all_evil:

Spidey would tear his arm off

Even when you take his extra strength into account?

Strength won't matter given the G-Forces he'd be under on a normal swing. Especially as it's attached to a needle thin point on his wrist, or wrapped around his gloved hands.

gamezombieghgh:

It's obvious that Batman Begins bored you, because you don't remember the line when Bruce Wayne is all like, "Bruce Wayne is just a man, he can be ignored, but if I become a symbol, then I can become something else entirely", that's why he 'dresses up'.

I remember it, but then he ignores it and acts like a man beating up criminals.

Batman is so much more than a costume, as are all Superheroes. (And he is because he has the two most common super-powers: Sculpted Physique and Dramatic Immunity)
Batman, like Zorro - who he's based on, can do things that men can't do. And that includes things like disappearing into thin air (though it's really a shadow), striking fear into the hearts of criminals (charisma) and still having time to sleep.

What he's not is a dirty fighter, which is what BB made him. Batman is a symbol. And the film forgot that and made him an everyman.

The Dark Knight made him a symbol. And Joker. That's why it worked.

Realistically, I expect that it will be a great movie that doesn't quite reach TDK heights. As a general rule, I value story, writing, and plot above all other concerns, and can usually deal with pretty bad acting. But in TDK, Ledgers acting was all I could think about. I don't think that that will be topped.

But it is still Nolan, and he doesn't appear to have gone insane. Nolan seems to be following his working approach. take the most believable, human bad guys, and look at there craziness in depth. Between the 2 films, the only thing that is even remotely, "Wacky" is scarecrows toxin, but even that is handled with an air of believability. Now we have Catwoman (probably), who is not only not a wacky character, but also a bit of an Anti-Hero at times. Good opportunity for a juxtoposition of an anti-hero thief and a, "Villain" Batman, to rub the salt of Batman's sacrificing his image for the greater good into his wounds a little more (Probably made even more tense by a love interest, conveniently timed). Bane is a character that is amazing in competent hands, horribly stupid in others. I think it will be interesting to have Batman deal with a villain who is as cold and calculating as Ra's, yet as focused on Batman as The Joker. In keeping with the more down to earth tone, the effect of Venom on the individual will likely be a good measure of how good the movie will be. If it causes crazy mutations and noticeable changes in size, the movie will probably be a mess. But if it is downplayed, focusing more on Banes intelligence and cunning, the movie will be much better.

All I will say is that I have learned to trust in Nolan.

I remember when I first heard that Heath Ledger would be playing the Joker. I laughed, no... I guffawed. I thought it was the most horrendous mistake EVER.

Obviously, I got served a huge plate of humble pie. I will never doubt the man again, mark my words. Nolan knows his craft.

You seem to ignore the ending to the Dark Knight in the article and what it actually entails in your conclusion (though you do touch on it slightly before that). Batman is now a 'criminal' after taking the blame for the Two-Face problem. To Gotham this is basically a fall from grace, their perfect crusader knight suddenly negating their trust. So this next movie, like the first two, will probably deal with elements similar to fear and chaos, possibly involving the perception of people towards Batman. I'm guessing it'll have to do with Batman regaining the trust of the population somehow.

Nolan obviously had plans for the joker in the 3rd movie, but because of what happened to ledger, I really think they should simply leave the series alone after the dark knight. I thought the ending of the dark knight was fine, and doesnt really need a sequel.

I think it has a chance to break the box office records set by TDK, simply by being it's sequel. A high profile blockbuster that EVERYONE in the world will know about whether they want to or not. Many people who liked TDK will go see it simply for that reason.

As for quality wise, it could easily be just as good, if not better. Let's get one thing out there right now: TDK was NOT a 10/10 film, not even a 9/10. Was a good film? Undeniably. Should it be the 11th highest rated film or all time right now? Hell no. It was a popcorn film. An exceptionally good one, but it's hardly a timeless classic.

The reason it exploded the way it did, sadly, was Heath Ledger's death. That was the films unintended marketing device. He turned out a spectacular performance, and I was fully in support of him winning the Oscar for it, but that was the only truly spectacular thing about the film (direction is arguable, because Chris Nolan is really, really good at what he does).

In short, it will probably be an incredibly entertaining film that will make serious bank by riding the coattails of its predecessor for the first few weeks, and more serious bank on its own merits.

Meh. Any skepticism I had about Nolan's ability to make the Batman franchise work was destroyed by TDK. He's already got my money for at least one viewing and if it's good, I'll give him more than that. Until it comes out and I see it, I'm not going to make predictions.

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