Comic Book Movie Summer ends with The Dark Knight Rises

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dkr catwoman poster Comic Book Movie Summer ends with The Dark Knight Rises
So, I finally saw THE DARK KNIGHT RISES…yes, yes I know. In my defense, I tried seeing it twice and it was sold out and then I had a hard time finding three spare hours. And also…well, I’m not the biggest fan of the Nolan Batman trilogy. I get why it is so beloved and all, but the filmmaking is often sloppy to my tastes. (The horrible sound editing in DKR being one example.) Anyway, I did enjoy it, even though it was so lax in its storytelling. And I kept getting distracted by things. Like Catwoman’s high heels. As soon as she appeared, I wondered “How is she running in those high heels?” And as if to answer my question, some hapless gunsel asks the same question in the film and Catwoman shows that they are really fearsome weapons. Got it.

However, I was amused to note that whenever an action scene showed Anne Hathaway and/or her stuntwoman doing something with their feet showing (not very often) they were actually wearing more sensible footwear. The same thing happened with Watchmen and Silk Spectre, too. In this regard, I have to give the nod to Gwyneth Paltrow, because in IRON MAN I there is a scene where she is actually running for her life in high heels.

And as if by magic, Sarah Ditum in the Guardian wonders the same thing about Catwoman:

That does not happen, though. Because in fantasy comic book world, it’s not that high heels are universally useful, it’s just that all their hobbling effects have been cancelled out, making it possible for Catwoman to be both sexy and supertough – even though they make you stick your arse and tits out, making you look more vulnerable (but also powerful, if you consider waggling your secondary sexual characteristics to be a power). Look, it’s Batman, it’s just morally complicated.


I do realize this is a movie where Batman cures a damaged spine by hanging from a rope for a month, and a Bat-vehicle flies around with no actual form of propulsion…everyone has their own little reality checks. For Laura Hudson, it was the climbing scenes:

Also, Bruce somehow absorbs the force of the fall on a hemp rope tied around his waist without sustaining massive internal injuries, not once but twice.


As for the story…well, Carol Borden rounds up all the parallels with the French Revolution, and Bruce Wayne as Sydney Carton, got it.

 There’s a lot of the French Revolution in the film: the massive oubliette, built as an inverted panopticon tormenting prisoners with hope, in which Bane discards Batman, paralleling Les’ Misérables‘ Bagne and A Tale of Two Cities’ Bastille; the storming of Black Gate Prison and the storming of the Bastille; Gotham’s elite cowering as they await their fate à la The Scarlet Pimpernel; Bane posing as the leader of a popular uprising, which results in show trials right out of the Terror, presided over by theScarecrow, Jonathan Crane; and Bane reading an incriminating letter that denounces a hero just as Madame Defarge does in A Tale of Two Cities.  All the film needed was everyone addressed as, “Citizen,” Gotham’s calendar set to Year 1 and Madame Defarge, texting beside the frozen Gotham River as the condemned fall through the ice. We did get Commissioner Gordon eulogizing Batman as Sydney Carton and Alfred quoting A Tale of Two Cities over Bruce Wayne’s grave.


Like everyone else, I just didn’t get who we were rooting for: are rich people good because they support orphanages and design free, clean nuclear power? Is the government good because they hire brave policemen who sit in a cave for a month and still come out roaring to fight? Are the common people good because they go to football games? Of course, the reality is you have to root for Batman, because he’s Batman, but I think director Christopher Nolan was actually rooting for Joseph Gorden-Levitt, because he had all the best lines and scenes. And, having seen Inception, I also know Marie Cotillard is bad and any time you see her coming, run far, run fast.

In the end, I think we’re just going to have to wait for Todd Alcott to come along and explain it all for us.

Comments

  1. Sphinx Magoo says:

    I have waited a long time for your review and I was not disappointed. I have not seen it, but my daughter has and I think she would agree with all of your points. (Since she’s in AP History in her high school, she would have appreciated your comparisons to the French Revolution. Granted, most of those story beats were in the old KnightsEnd multi-title crossover, but this is her first exposure to them.) She kept hoping it would have taken more notes from the animated series since that’s what she’s been raised on. She was also surprised to see so little Batman for a Batman film.

  2. likefunbutnot says:

    I really think the only good Nolan Batman film was the first one. By about halfway through this movie, I had stopped participating in the story being poorly told and moved on to cataloging the various plot issues and miracles of medicine and/or physics, such as the aforementioned rope jump or the lack of impact from the climactic explosion that ends the action of the movie.

    Not to mention that the plot essentially did not advance for months while Batman healed in the middle of the movie. Really? NO ONE ELSE could do anything about the situation except some guy with a spinal injury who was trapped in a deep hole half a world away? REALLY?

    I would probably care less, but Nolan went out of his way to ground his version of Batman in something closer than reality than other super hero movies have been. His efforts made the less realistic moments all the more difficult to ignore.

  3. Joe Lawler says:

    Wasn’t Gwenyth Paltrow running in high heels Ina grated walkway? That’s like a whole new super power.

  4. “a Bat-vehicle flies around with no actual form of propulsion”

    As is frequently the case small issues are missed and portrayed as missing. “The BAT” had a very clear form of propulsion. There was a helicopter like propeller under the back part of the vehicle along with additional forward propulsion in the back.

    I also feel that a lot of the other points are rather nit-picky. You could go back to TDK and question his ability to jump and glide from one building to another in Hong Kong when the wind sheer would likely make it impossible.

  5. OR rather than waste money on regurgitated superhero banality, there is Marjane Satrapi’s new movie; Chicken With Plums, which she directed.

    Way way more deserving of your $13

    http://www.npr.org/2012/08/18/158941794/marjane-satrapi-a-real-love-story-has-to-finish-bad

  6. Gooby Plz says:

    wot?

  7. Mavrik says:

    Seriously? It’s a movie. Fantasy. When someone is at a movie because they WANT to, the plot in TDKR works. Yes, you do ask yourself the occasional “How did…?” but all movies and TV shows have that. Your rtooting for the overall movie is what makes it work. But you asking yourself “Who am I rooting for? Rich people? Polititians, etc? ” Seriously??????? It’s a movie. Root for the good guys to beat the bad guys! You’re putting way to much real world thought into a movie about fantasy. To me it just sounds like you saw the movie because you felt you had to.

    Nolan openly admitted to using A Tail of Two Cities as a reference when writing this film along with other literature and story arcs directly from the Batman comics.

  8. “I really think the only good Nolan Batman film was the first one.” – Wow, really? I personally think that was the worst one. (But to each their own, obviously! :)

    It is what it is. I think nowadays every fanboy wants to nit-pick their fantasy movies, tv shows, etc. to insane degrees. It’s fantasy. It’s not reality. Enjoy it for what it is, or don’t go see it.

    With that said, I do think the movie was a bit long, the plot was lacking at points, etc. My biggest issue with the Nolan movies is how FREAKIN’ depressing, and downer debbie they are! :) Seriously, the second one was almost too much for me, and this one made the second look like a cake walk!

    WHO in their right mind would EVER live in Gotham?! WHO! LOL That’s the real nit-pick question. ;)

  9. Brian Spence says:

    I just saw it a week ago myself. I really enjoyed large parts of it, but like the other two Batman films, it went on a little too long. I was actually falling asleep, although that was mostly due to my being tired, not bored.

    I find it funny that you were so preoccupied with Catwoman’s shoes. I never noticed if she had heels or flats on. I didn’t really care since they weren’t really a plot point. If I were a stickler, I’d say Batman’s costume wouldn’t provide the ability to glide or protect him from bullets the way it does. Much more glaring than Catwoman’s shoes IMO, but I don’t care, it’s just a fun movie.

    I think a little too much was crammed into three hours (same complaint about the first two). It reminds me of True Blood right about now. My fiance tried to watch both after not seeing any prior movies/episodes and was completely lost. I tried to explain True Blood for a little while, then gave up. There’s just too much going on.

  10. For myself, this was I thought a really good breakdown of what it is about Nolan’s films that keeps them at arms length: http://htmlgiant.com/film/lets-watch-a-scene-from-drive-and-analyze-it/

  11. MBunge says:

    What do you think Return of the Jedi would have been like if Harrison Ford had died after Empire Strikes back? That’s what Nolan was facing with DKR and I think he’s not getting enough credit for largely overcoming such a tragic obstacle.

    Mike

  12. “What do you think Return of the Jedi would have been like if Harrison Ford had died after Empire Strikes back? That’s what Nolan was facing with DKR and I think he’s not getting enough credit for largely overcoming such a tragic obstacle.”

    You recast. I mean, they didn’t write Dumbledore out of the Harry Potter movies just because Richard Harris died. Yes, it’s a tragedy, but you move on. You don’t wallow in it.

  13. I doubt it was ever Nolan’s plan to focus the entire third movie on The Joker. No doubt he would have bene in the story though…and if there’s one thing THE DARK KNIGHT RISES needs it’s another complicated character.

  14. Thomas Baumbidell says:

    Much like INCEPTIOON and TDK, it was a big, dumb action movie masquerading as a heady think-piece.

    These movies are stupid as the dickens, but they can be fun, when they’re not being ponderous and overwrought and depressing. Bane was a fun villain and the bat-helicopter was stupidly awesome.

    It’s a perfectly good diversion, too long, but with fun moments. Is it a great movie? Of course not. But that’s okay.

  15. RDaggle says:

    DKR was pretentious as hell. It wanted to get drama and importance from raising questions about money, politics, and class without doing the hard work of figuring out how to integrate the ideas into the story. That’s why the audience is sitting there wondering who to root for.

    And nitpicking small things like highheels, etc. — 90 days trapped underground? Those cops looked pretty healthy — means we are bored and uninvolved.

  16. I am so totally with you on the “who’s side should i be on” thing, though maybe Nolan’s message is “everyone is bad.” If that’s the case, even better.

    But wait… is that really the last of the big releases to come? I hadn’t really thought about it. I guess you are right. I am crushed.

  17. Apollo9000 says:

    My takeaway from the DKR is that it is the most comic booky of Nolan’s Bat films. I found Bane ( and his voice) interesting for number of reasons. I think the character sums up most if not all terrorists- master bs artists. Some people have asked what was the point of trying to blow up Gotham. That was the point- there was none. “Some people just want to watch the world burn” indeed. Another point of interest about Bane is that he pretty much is a Bond villain. Between the Bat films and Inception, it’s clear as day that Nolan would love to make a Bond film.

    Some critics complained that there disappointment with the film stems from Bruce and Alfred acting “out of character” by pretty much quitting. To me, that criticism comes off as being a little petty as opposed to raising an eye brow at Bruce’s seemingly superhuman recovery capabilities from a broken back when the prior films looked to ground that aspect of the story.

    It’s easy to see how some will think that the film has a bog statement to make in regards to the current economic climate. In truth, only one scene really addresses that – at the Gotham Stock Exchange when the trader says that Bane can’t steal money leading to Bane’s response, “Then why are you here”.

    All in all, really interesting film.

  18. MBunge says:

    “if there’s one thing THE DARK KNIGHT RISES needs it’s another complicated character.”

    My point is that if Nolan had Ledger’s Joker to work with, he almost certainly comes up with a different story for the 3rd film.

    Mike

  19. What-Ev says:

    It’s a great movie! Similar to people who believed The Matrix to have been complicated, I think you were not paying attention. I don’t really know the answers, but I’ll offer my take on your issues.

    The spine injury–herniated disc, I believe? It’s a serious injury where the spine is out of alignment. To solve this, they used the pull of gravity on the lower half of his body while supporting the upper half to elongate the spine and stretch the undoubtedly tense muscles surrounding the spine. Eventually, it is possible that it could slide back into place. It makes sense as a solution, but I am unsure about the medical accuracy. If I were writing a script, I’d have asked that question of a chiropractor. Maybe Nolan did.

    The falls–I don’t think he fell very far. And I don’t think the rope was specifically around his waist. I’m not in the business of complaining about stuff the way bloggers are, so I wasn’t looking. So, I’ll just say that I don’t think he fell very far but it looked that way for dramatic effect…because it’s a movie. It’s called “realistic” not “real.”

    The french revolution–why is this a problem? Our actual economic and social environment is starting to mirror the french revolution, so why is it a problem for a movie to do it?

    The Bat–this has already been covered by another commenter. It had propulsion and directional propellers. It at least tried to use a practical design unlike the batwing in Burton’s Batman which would never fly.

    Who to root for–really? “Rich people” didn’t support orphanages and free energy… Bruce Wayne did. The other rich guy was supporting Bane so he could get richer. It’s not so difficult. You support Batman and Bruce Wayne and by doing so you support the people of Gotham because that’s what Batman and Bruce Wayne do. It sounds like you’re sitting there moaning about a movie that gives realistic complexity to its characters and even its extras when all you want is someone to blow something up. I’d prefer the complexity, thanks. That’s why Dark Knight Rises is the best film of the summer.

    complaints of commenters:

    “Not to mention that the plot essentially did not advance for months while Batman healed in the middle of the movie. Really? NO ONE ELSE could do anything about the situation except some guy with a spinal injury who was trapped in a deep hole half a world away? REALLY?”

    What movie were YOU watching? All kinds of stuff happened! LOTS of people did something about the situation, but they were thwarted…and when Batman did return, he wasn’t the only one that did anything about the situation. He had a shitload of help. He were only the catalyst for the uprising. Haters gonna hate.

    Too long?–not long enough.

    batsuit protection–it has kevlar plating. you know… the same stuff cops and soldiers use.

    missing Joker–He would’ve been the judge, but they used Scarecrow instead. You can’t recast that one. Richard Harris died after the second of a 7 (8!) movie series. Recasting him was unavoidable.

    Inception was awesome! Best movie of that summer.

    healthy cops–they were being fed or did you miss that part because you were too busy composing complaints in your head? Also, I’m pretty sure it wasn’t 90 days.

    and finally…the running in heels–as stated, it happens. It’s even supported by pointing out Gweneth did it, and she’s not a superhero (yet?). I am not supporting the wisdom of clothing your superheroes in impractical outfits (like high heels), but if you’re in them and you have to run, then it certainly is possible as evidenced by the many that have done so. As a writer, there are 1000 justifications for putting Catwoman in heels while being fully cognizant of the impractical nature of that choice in footwear…first among them is the fact that real people often make impractial and ridiculous choices all the time, and a character in a story isn’t required to exist according to everyone else’s rules but merely their own. But yes, some kind of military style boot would have been a better choice, I guess.

    BEST movie of the summer, and I always like to save the best for last. Prometheus is a close second. Avengers is last. Bring on The Hobbit!

  20. What-Ev: My dislike of running in heels goes back to a wedding a few years back where I had to run in moderate heels to catch the last ferry home. I made it…but I also broke my foot.

  21. Thomas Baumbidell says:

    It wasn’t complicated because people weren’t paying attention… It made no sense because the script was a mess.

    It can still be fun and entertaining, but let’s not kid ourselves that it was anything more than silly schlock. And hey… silly schlock can be awesome!

  22. likefunbutnot says:

    @What-Ev:

    “What movie were YOU watching? All kinds of stuff happened! LOTS of people did something about the situation, but they were thwarted…and when Batman did return, he wasn’t the only one that did anything about the situation. He had a shitload of help. He were only the catalyst for the uprising. Haters gonna hate.”

    I was watching a movie where absolutely the only effectual human being in all of the Nolan Universe was stuck in a hole while a bunch of idiots did nothing to impact the situation except suck and die. There’s probably a pretty good movie plot underneath “terrorists hold a major city hostage with a nuke for four months” but that movie wasn’t Dark Knight Rises.

  23. george says:

    I had a hard time believing the US government would just write off Gotham/New York, and forget about it. It also wasn’t believable that Catwoman would end up with Wayne at the end.

    My favorite Nolan movies are ones that don’t involve Batman: Memento, Insomnia, The Prestige, and Inception.

  24. For me, the movie was okay. It didn’t raise any bar for me. It did pretty much everything by the numbers. It crossed all the *T*s and dotted all the *i*s, and still I walked away unsatisfied.

    For me, (personally speaking because some of the Dark Knight apologists demand that the film is perfect) I think Nolan was trying to ride a fine line of making this a gritty reality style film while making this a superhero film. He wants his cake and eat it, too.

    And honestly, it’s not entirely his fault. Batman, who is simply a vigilante in a bat suit has been raised to near-god status. A person who *with enough prep time can beat Galactus*. Look, I don’t mind if Bruce Wayne was beaten with a broken back and came back – I’d expect that of my superhero films. But Nolan wants to paint this in a gritty semi-reality on one side and superhuman on the other. Since I didn’t accept that fine line I was left unsatisfied at the end. Basically, I wasn’t in the tent.

  25. What-Ev says:

    The Beat

    08/20/2012 at 5:08 pm

    What-Ev: My dislike of running in heels goes back to a wedding a few years back where I had to run in moderate heels to catch the last ferry home. I made it…but I also broke my foot.

    –Ouch. I can’t imagine that doing anything in heels is enjoyable. My girlfriend doesn’t wear them at all.

    Thomas Baumbidell

    08/20/2012 at 5:11 pm

    It wasn’t complicated because people weren’t paying attention… It made no sense because the script was a mess.

    –I disagree. Made sense to me.

    likefunbutnot

    08/20/2012 at 5:18 pm

    @What-Ev:

    “I was watching a movie where absolutely the only effectual human being in all of the Nolan Universe was stuck in a hole while a bunch of idiots did nothing to impact the situation except suck and die”

    –Sounds like a terrible movie. You should’ve watched Dark Knight Rises instead.

    george

    08/20/2012 at 6:58 pm

    I had a hard time believing the US government would just write off Gotham/New York, and forget about it. It also wasn’t believable that Catwoman would end up with Wayne at the end.

    –They didn’t forget. Again, people seem to have watched a different movie. They were going to nuke it if they noticed any attempt by outsiders to cross into Gotham so every effort had to be subtle. They also didn’t know there was a countdown to it happening anyway, so they weren’t in any hurry. Also, it’s not only believable that Bruce ends up with Selina it’s the only thing that makes sense. It might not make sense to people that read those comics every month, but it makes absolute sense when you treat the Nolan films as a standalone trilogy. It’s the end, and it ends perfectly.

    Jimmy–Nolan can have as many cakes and eat them as he wants because he earned it. The trilogy was fantastic. Bar none.

  26. Put me in the camp as one who thought it was too long. There’s a lot to like in the movie but also parts where I was left thinking, ‘why did Nolan do it that way?’. Like matthew modine’s character. He was useless and not deserving of his own arc.

    That aside, I think that I would’ve enjoyed the movie a lot more if bane and talia’s fates were different and that they were defeated by, oh I don’t know, batman. Having the two main villains being defeated by a gunshot from out of the blue and a car crash left me cold. There was no catharsis. No bane v. Batman round 2. Bane was batman’s clubber lang and I wanted to see that TKO.

  27. Damn now that I know Marie Cotillard is in the film I have too see it. I wouldn’t run away even if I was wearing high heels.

  28. When I first saw this movie I really did not like it. All the little matters of convenience really annoyed me… they just seemed to gather up more and more as the story progressed to the point I almost wanted to walk out. My biggest ire was 99% of Gotham’s PD suddenly trapped underground at the precise moment Bane sets off his bombs without Bane really doing much to lure them in there at all.

    I saw it a second time a few weeks after, thinking maybe I had been too harsh on it, and I just kept noticing even more things! Why did John Blake even attempt to take a busload of kids across the bridge that was still being blocked by the police/army and when he knew there was a definite opening in the tunnel? He was just going to tell the police that plans changed and they were to believe him?

    I have no problem setting aside belief at the movies (I love Xanadu for crying out loud), but it’s when the script and characters are written so haphazardly that it’s almost painful to watch. This is all summed up for me when Batman utters Bane’s original “then you have my permission to die” line back at him after previously chiding Catwoman about killing.

  29. horatio weisfeld says:

    “..And also…well, I’m not the biggest fan of the Nolan Batman trilogy. I get why it is so beloved and all, but the filmmaking is often sloppy to my ..”
    >>

    @The Beat:

    Yeah.. this pretentious trash sucks.

    Where is Joel Schumacher, now that we really need him?

  30. What-Ev says:

    Shags,

    -Bane lured them down there by terrorizing the city and amassing an army underground. Sorry he didn’t go the 60’s tv show route and send a clever note or something.

    -I don’t think any police force would commit 99% of their personnel to one pursuit. It was probably just a lot of them leaving the rest ineffective at preventing Bane from doing what he wanted to do.

    -Kids on a bus…it’s called running away from a nuclear bomb. The tunnel was for foot traffic, and there’s no way every citizen could have made it through there before the bomb went off. He was attempting to give them the best shot at surviving…hoping they wouldn’t shoot a bunch of kids. Didn’t work, but it was a reasonable attempt.

    -having permission to die is not the same as killing someone. Comparing that line to a lecture about not killing people is way off base. Sounds like you’re just looking for reasons to not like it.

    -the script and characters are expertly written. They’re just obviously not written to your liking.

  31. When Nolan said “Bane”, he really meant “Anarky”.

  32. likefunbutnot says:

    What color is the sky in your world, @What-Ev?

  33. The cast and characterization were great, but the plot sucked royally. It pretty much reminded me why I dropped all superhero books and now stick to reading independent books of different genres.

    There was just too much bull**** to suspend my disbelief. It’s one thing to do so every now and then, but to do it almost every five minutes just means this is a really bad story.

    I’ll point a few things out…

    Batman and Catwoman are surrounded by highly-trained criminals with guns, and yet these highly-trained criminals don’t even use them? Instead they opt to run up to Batman and Catwoman to beat them up? Bull****! They would have turned them both to swiss cheese. There’s enough body exposure that “highly-trained criminals” would have been able to hit. Batman’s chin, Catwoman’s face to name two.

    Batman’s knees are so shot he can’t walk but yet he can climb up a wall and even jump across a ledge to escape prison. Bull****! He wasn’t wearing his special brace while in prison, so how is that possible? Oh yeah, that’s right! Bad writing!

    There wasn’t a single member of special forces from the U.S. government that can sneak into Gotham but Batman somehow did it all by himself… and without showing us how he actually did it. How is this? Oh, and “he’s Batman, he’s awesome,” does not fly. I believe this part of the story is called “contrived.”

    Oh, and speaking of returning to Gotham… how exactly did he do this? He escaped that prison which was in another country with nothing but rags. What did he do? Walk up to the first town he came across and said, “Hi, I’m Bruce Wayne and I need the first plane out of here”? Or are we to assume he just waltzed into one of his company’s establishments? Why wasn’t this shown? Hm, I believe “contrived” rears its ugly head once again.

    That stab wound he got by Talia from a knife that size? It would have killed him… period!

    His “vertebrae” sticking out like it was mentioned would never have allowed him to do anything without risking paralysis. I know someone who’s a medical doctor and they stated it’s flat-out “bull****!”

    One last thing… how did he survive that nuclear explosion with the six mile radius? Oh, and let’s not forget that mortal stab wound in his ribs. Did he swim that fast? I highly doubt it!

    Like I said, too much stuff to suspend my disbelief. This is the big problem with superheroes, especially Batman. They made him out to be Bat-God and that really put me off about the character. “Prep time” has become the lamest cop-out of an excuse clouded Bat-fans use to make it sound like it was a good story.

    While I feel the Nolan trilogy is leagues better than what came before, it’s still ultimately a superhero story full of contrived and unbelievable elements.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’m going to read the latest issue of THIEF OF THIEVES. :)

  34. Synsidar says:

    Eventually, it is possible that it could slide back into place. It makes sense as a solution, but I am unsure about the medical accuracy. If I were writing a script, I’d have asked that question of a chiropractor. Maybe Nolan did.

    A fellow with both medical and chiropractic licenses addresses Batman’s back injury:

    Movies sell fantasy and fantasy is exactly what you describe. “Bending” a person over a knee through the spine hyperextends the spine. [. . .]

    Let us suspend judgment and assume however that the disc is herniated through this maneuver. A disc tear is required to allow a herniation to occur. This disc tear never heals because the disc is avascular (no blood supply). You cannot reduce a disc herniation back to the center of the disc as the mechanics do not allow this to happen.

    That plot point can’t sink the storyline by itself. If a viewer has to mentally edit events to work around the mishandling of the back injury, that’s doable.

    SRS

  35. @What-Ev:

    “-Bane lured them down there by terrorizing the city and amassing an army underground.”

    He didn’t lure anyone. The Gotham PD decided not to believe Gordon when he got shot and only sent a few patrolmen at first. (Another thing – their police commissioner gets SHOT and they just laugh him off as hysterical?) It wasn’t until Bane kidnapped the Wayne executives that they launched a full on assault underground to find him. He in no way lured anyone to the precise spot and time. It was way too convenient to the story. If Bane had had a hunchman on a rooftop watching them all go in, and given Bane the word about when to set it off, I could believe that. Instead he just sets them off and assumes they’re all down there?

    “-I don’t think any police force would commit 99% of their personnel to one pursuit. It was probably just a lot of them leaving the rest ineffective at preventing Bane from doing what he wanted to do.”

    Actually they clearly mention that there’s 3,000 of them trapped underground and only a dozen or two dozen above ground. Math says that’s less than 1% above ground. Matthew Modine’s character even says something to the effect of “that’s all of my men down there!”

    “-Kids on a bus…it’s called running away from a nuclear bomb.”

    Running away from a nuclear bomb and straight into an army of guns that have been given orders not to let anyone cross? Using kids as a shield? That makes sense to you over not using the tunnel which was a guarantee?

    “The tunnel was for foot traffic, and there’s no way every citizen could have made it through there before the bomb went off.”

    Said who? I saw the movie twice and don’t recall anyone saying this. That hole looked way bigger than the one-way section of the bridge.

    “-having permission to die is not the same as killing someone. Comparing that line to a lecture about not killing people is way off base.”

    I didn’t say it’s the same as killing someone. But it doesn’t fit in with Batman’s own personal “mission statement” that he said before.

    “-the script and characters are expertly written. They’re just obviously not written to your liking.”

    If I was the ONLY person with complaints about this movie, I could maybe agree with you on this. But I’m not. To say it’s expertly written when many others are pointing out obvious flaws is a bit delusional. You liked it – great! I’m glad. I wanted to like it. I loved The Dark Knight. I want comic book movies to do well, even if they’re not the best, if simply to move the genre ahead.

  36. I’m surprised, given the amount of fannish indignation over things like Michael Keaton’s chin-size, that nobody gives a crap about Nolan messing with Catwoman’s character.

    Yeah, I know it’s an “Elseworlds Catwoman.” But in what universe does it make sense for a reasonably smart lady thief to betray the hero– a guy who claims that he can give her what she wants– to the villain who already betrayed on a previous occasion and whose promises to let her go don’t amount to the proverbial hill of bat-guano?

  37. I enjoyed DKR while having a lot of the same complaints, not so much about the physics but the story structure, motivations, etc. Not only did the plot not advance while Batman healed for months but it was never clear why Bane/Talia wanted to put Gotham through this anyway. Their goal was to destroy Gotham, period. Why wait? Why dress it up with a claim that they were giving the city back to the people when putting them under martial law and sealing the exits made that claim so obviously false?

    Bruce falling so quickly for Talia was too convenient and unconvincing, as was the idea that Rachel’s death would cause him to shut down for seven years. Catwoman seemed like a solo operator (aside from her girlfriend), or at least smart enough not to keep working for Bane when she could see how crazy they were. I liked her generally, and she was good with Batman, though yes, Gordon-Levitt was as much the lead as Bale.

    Wrong crowd, I know, but I liked the NFL cameos. All the action stuff was entertaining–that’s what Nolan does best, spectacle. The ideas were thin.

    However, I did really like Jim Gordon having to take accountability. The one good idea buried in DKR, and carried over from TDK, is that lies or abuses committed for good reasons are still lies and abuses, and there’s a price to be paid for them eventually. You could say that Wayne paid not the ultimate price (the scene at the end with Alfred was so telegraphed it was mostly annoying), but at least a physical and emotional toll over several years, not just for Rachel but for the invasion of citizen’s privacy to try to catch the Joker, but Gordon was corrupted and basically ruined by his shining lie. At least Nolan got a good chunk of his 9/11 stuff explored satisfactorily there, even if the vague Occupy stuff from Catwoman was weak, the actual Gotham occupation pointless, and stuff like Batman curing Catwoman’s lesbianism with a kiss frustrating.

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