The Dark Knight Rises (dir. Christopher Nolan, 2012) – A new menace threatens to destroy long-standing peace in Gotham, necessitating the return of its silent protector.
Every great magic trick comprises three acts, the third its hardest. Though weaker than its predecessors, The Dark Knight Rises brings the trilogy to a fitting and satisfying conclusion.
Following the critical failure of Batman Forever and Batman & Robin, Darren Aronofsky’s Year One sounded like a promising fresh slate. If only the project had not fallen through. For years, the Gotham hero seemed destined to recede far beyond the depth of his Batcave.
Then it finally began, a little over seven years ago. Director Christopher Nolan shifts the superhero genre into the different direction it deserves. His darker take finds its place in the gritty corners of our real world. Veering away from the hero-versus-villain model, Batman Begins stems from a little-seen story of how Bruce Wayne came to don the cape.
We watch his ideals form, grounded by his traumatic childhood, vengeance-fuelled determination and the people who made him the man that he is. As writer David S. Goyer puts it, the delve into the vigilante’s origins gets the audience “to care about Bruce Wayne and not even care or not if he’s in the costume”.