Nolan's going out with a bang
When Christopher Nolan took up the reins of the Batman franchise back in 2005, no one could have predicted that his grounded and darker take on the series would become such a massive success. And while Batman Begins earned itself many fans, it was 2008s The Dark Knight which confirmed the filmmaker’s reputation, earning more than a billion dollars worldwide.Nolan returns for The Dark Knight Rises, with a story that sees Batman still on the run after taking the fall for the crimes of Harvey Dent in the second film. The main plot brings us to eight years after the events of The Dark Knight, with Batman returning to Gotham to find the city on the brink of chaos as a new foe emerges in the form of Bane.
The surviving cast all make a return in The Dark Knight Rises, including Christian Bale as Batman, Michael Caine as Alfred, Morgan Freeman and the marvellous Gary Oldman finally taking up the mantle of Commissioner Gordon. New additions include Tom Hardy as Bane (who put on 30 pounds of muscle for his role as the vicious villain) and Anne Hathaway as the leather bound Catwoman while Click favourite Joseph Gordon-Levitt takes on a mysterious role.
I must admit, I wasn’t a fan of Batman Begins – I found its action dull and uninteresting and the attempt at realism laughable, especially the moment when the tumbler disappeared! But The Dark Knight was a revelation, delving into the very construction of archetypes like hero and villain and interrogating the history of the character while also delivering a gripping narrative. And it didn’t hurt that Heath Ledger was there, being generally awesome, as The Joker.The Dark Knight Rises rounds out that trilogy and with the confirmation that neither Nolan nor Bale will be returning to the series, it’s bound to end with a bang. The decision to set the events nearly a decade on from the last film is significant – this is a beaten down Bat who might just have to sacrifice everything to keep Gotham safe. And Bane is an interesting villain, one who can match Batman physically but lacks our heroes disinclination for killing, while also sporting a finely honed mind. Hardy has shown dramatic and musculature chops before, so maybe himself and Nolan can conjure up some character magic again in Bane.The Dark Knight Rises is bound to be one of the blockbuster events of the summer and Nolan and co have upped the ante again by shooting nearly half the film in screen-filling IMAX. We’ve also just heard that the final running time is an impressive two hours and 45 minutes, meaning this conclusion to the Batman trilogy is set to be nothing less than epic.The Dark Knight Rises is in cinemas from the 20th of July. Why not read our feature - where Jack hopes that the action in Nolan's latest measures up. Christian Bale as Batman in The Dark Knight Rises Enlarge