Friday 27 July 2012

Recent film release: 'The Dark Knight Rises'.

(NOTE: The following contains 'spoilers'!)

I'd been expecting to find this more enjoyable than  'Spider-Man'. Sadly, it was not thus - by quite a margin.

So what can be said that hasn't already been stated?
I'd have appreciated subtitles. Nearly all the film was very loud, unnecessarily so, often masking the dialogue which, considering that the story-line was so convoluted, ought to have been regarded as important to put over clearly.
When you know a film is going to be over two and a half hours long one hopes that one will be grabbed by something very special and that these 'rabbits' continue to be pulled out, giving an air of expectation - and fun, a feature of which this film was devoid.
The over-earnestness in attempting to rationalise the characters' motivations I found self-defeating and a waste of time as, frankly, I just couldn't have cared. 
It would be difficult to imagine anything that is as far removed from the original spirit of the Batman comics, (which I recall from the 1950s), as this is. It's also the bleakest of all the films since the character appeared through the 1989 Michael Keaton portrayal, which itself was, for me, only worth seeing for Jack Nicholson's magnificently nasty mischief-maker of a Joker.
    Trying hard not to repeat what others have said I must also point out the relationship between Bruce Wain and Alfred, who has here completely shed all the gentlemanly deference of the original wise, old background figure who knows when to keep his mouth shut. Michael Caine, jarring in his unrestrained cockney, has now become quasi-patriarch, almost a godfather! Wain was perfectly correct in shutting this insufferably uppity butler out of his life.
I found it a shame that Tom Hardy (exceptional a few years back in the scary titular lead of 'Bronson') had to appear permanently masked so that he was only able to act with muffled voice, some gymnastics and with bone-shattering blows, kicks and grips.
One thing in the film which I did like was Marion Cotillard who convinced me completely in her two-faced role - though one, of course, suspected that her 'good' side was just too good to be true. But she really is a fine actress.
My general dissatisfaction about the film was not helped at all by a scene very near the end where a nuclear explosion takes place miles out to sea and we are shown, as we always are, the sound of it reaching the witnesses at precisely the same moment as the sight of the explosion when it really ought to have been a good half-minute later or more. Oh well - a minor quibble perhaps, but it set the seal on my thumbs-down verdict.

When I see that on the IMDb site nearly 60% of people scoring this film gave it a perfect 10 (a rating I've yet to give to any film), then I've got to recognise that I'm so far removed from the target audience that my own views are of little consequence.
Undaunted, however, and repeating a reminder that my own score reflects the degree of enjoyment I personally derived from the film rather than a judgment on whether it was efficiently made in all its aspects, I award 'The Dark Knight Rises' a.........3/10.


  1. I won't see this; I am tired of violence as entertainment.

    1. I don't think you'll be missing much, Dr Spo, though I think there are quite a number who would disagree.

    2. I did see it afterall; I found it more depressing than violent, which was even worse.

    3. You are right, Dr Spo. It didn't exactly leave one feeling uplifted, but I suppose that was a consequence of taking itself over-seriously and taking the Batman character over-reverentially. In my opinion a few sparks of humour would have improved it considerably.

  2. I'd disagree! :-p

    But then, you knew that anyway!

    Besides, I don't think it's a particuarly violent film.

    1. Yes, I realised from your own blog that your opinion had been considerably more favourable, but that's the way it goes. Still, I don't regret having seen it - and, yes, I've seen hundreds and hundreds of FAR more violent films,