If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Okay, look. I know that almost every single one of you are going to say that I'm going to give this movie a negative review "just to be different", or because of the history of my views on The Dark Knight. The truth is, this movie purely relied on "fanboys" to love it that they got lazy with the movie in general.
Let me start off with what I liked about the movie.
Michael Caine as Alfred. I actually liked the direction that they took with this character and the way that Michael Caine carried it off. Instead of being an enabler or mere "assistant", Alfred turned into a more "Father-figure" whose biggest fear was the fact that Bruce was going to die. It was a big step forward for the character in general, and provided a much bigger emotional impact when you look back over his relationship with Bruce. It explained why there was so much trust and concern between the two without having to go into huge exposition.
I also liked the way that the character Blake (Joshep Gordon Levitt) had a deeper connection to the people of Gotham than the city itself. Bruce saw Gotham as an icon, but Blake was the one who was more concerned about the people inside that city than the city itself. It should also be said, that I liked Levitt's performance more than almost anyone else's. Mostly because I think that his character was actually more fleshed out and thought-through than the rest of the cast.
I liked the use of Liam Neeson and Cillian Murphy with the way they reappeared in the story. Both were handled quite well, and in a very logical manner. Both were used to tie in Batman Begins to the Dark Knight by using one (Neeson) as means of Bruce Wayne's ability to piece the parts together and how they interconnect (Although slightly off), and the other (Murphy) as a sign of how out of control and insane the whole "Gotham Freedom" concept turned into. Both provided a bit of glee and satisfaction to those who've been following the whole "Nolan Trilogy" closely.
I also like the way that Batman informs Gordon (finally) as to his true identity. How just reminding Gordon how the smallest acts of kindness between people can lead to the biggest ramifications for the city as a whole. It also provided Gordon himself with a bit of "closure" into the whole Batman identity dilemma. Knowing that Batman is really Bruce Wayne, answers so many questions for Gordon (Who, how able to get all the equipment, why, where does his determination and sense of right/wrong come into play) just by reminding him of the night that Bruce's parent's died. It takes Gordon all of 2 seconds to answer almost every question he has regarding Batman without having to take the time out of the movie to go over all those questions.
I also liked the interaction between Gordon and Blake when Bane was reading Gordon's speech. It was about time that someone pointed out one of my biggest issues with Gordon throughout the "Nolan Trilogy". Just because Gordon was using his power and position to help Batman, doesn't excuse the fact that he was just as corrupt as all the other cops who were working for the mob in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. For once, someone calls Gordon out for being having "dirty hands" by still breaking the rules in one way or another. Instead of trying to establish Dent's criminal pass and elevating Batman's involvement as the "truth and acting for justice". Gordon was just as "dirty" as the other cops by being involved in a "cover-up" and "framing the wrong guy". It's about time someone pointed out just how "crooked" Gordon was, even if it was trying to help the city, and the price it costs him personally. (Gordon's family, and respect of young officers that looked up to him).
Ah, now we get to the part that has to be covered. How fucking stupid does Nolan think the audience really is? Or does he just not give a shit at all, and assume that everyone will just "go along" and ignore gaping plot-holes and stupidity?
Let's start off with the very first scene of the movie. We are to believe that the CIA is going to allow a Nuclear physicist that is under their protection to ride in the same vehicle that 3 known "mercenaries" are traveling in? Sorry, but no matter how much they may want to know about Bane and his organization, they aren't going to put these two types of people together. Not out of any "security concerns"... but because the CIA is going to have different people involved in the "debriefing" of the Doctor and the Mercenaries. They would have kept them apart, just because the CIA personnel would have been under two different sections with two different fields of expertize.
So, let's just say that the CIA is "stuck" and have to put everyone inside of one plane. So, the CIA can't afford to keep the "anti-collision" radar warning system that EVERY AIRPLANE is equipped with that goes off like a banshee if two airplanes are within 500ft-1mile of each other? That when being buffered by turbulence from the bigger plane's "backwash", the pilot/co-pilot aren't looking to get OUT of the turbulence from the larger plane? So, the smaller (And much more agile/quicker) airplane is going to be "under assault" and continue to fly in a STRAIGHT LINE without at least attempting to turn ONCE? Not to mention the whole concept of "physics" involved in that whole scene. The turbulence is enough to rip off the wings of the plane, and yet the structural strength of the plane is strong enough to stay together for ROPES to hold it in place?
Look, this movie is filled REPEATEDLY with stupidity. "We have a radiation spike"... "It's nuclear".... Well, NO FUCKING SHIT. If it's radiation..it's nuclear, I don't need you to tell me that. Because if it's a "chemical reaction", I'm not thinking of some nuclear bomb? And uh, isn't the ONLY type of radiation alarm you going to get is due to something being NUCLEAR to begin with? And that whole concept of "using the river to flood the chamber in case of emergency"? Uh, wow.. holy fucking shit does Nolan expect you to put your brain away and go with it. No matter how much water you dump on a nuclear device, it's still going to have a MELTDOWN or EXPLOSION. You need additional CONTROL RODS to slow down (or hopefully stop) the nuclear reaction to begin with, not WATER. Not to mention, what sort of controls are in place in Gotham? No wonder the city is a shit-heap, if anyone can build a NUCLEAR DEVICE UNDER THE CITY?
But then again, Gotham must be built out of nuclear explosion resistant material. After all, they have one of the most advanced and resilient electrical and water systems on earth. I mean, if Bane is going to blast several large sections of the city's sewer systems, then it's only natural to assume that all the underground water supply pipes and electrical systems and phone-line systems are going to be blown to hell too. Only of course, people are still running power and water. People still seems to be able to have working stoplights and TV shows, not to mention of course all kinds of opened "sewer lines" and yet not one single worry about disease or human wastes building up. Okay, maybe they didn't need to go into that aspect to advance the movie. Yet, the concept of placing explosives and blasting the city to hell in order to "free" the city? Uh, no... you haven't "Freed" the city, you've blasted it back into the stone-age and totally fucked over all the "freedoms" that people would want to begin with by cutting them off from the things they want to be free to use/enjoy.
And okay, sure the "Bat" looked cool and was used effectively. Except of course the design almost insured that it would NEVER ACTUALLY FLY. Sorry, but the "rotor blades" had that huge covering over them.... You know, the same huge cover that would prevent the AIR FROM BEING ABLE TO FLOW THROUGH TO ROTOR BLADES. Someone on the "design staff" who put that together completely forgot about the laws of physics with flight. In order for the rotor blades to provide enough "lift" it would need to be able to "intake" a huge amount of air in order to push down to provide that "lift". Something that it wouldn't do if there's a huge cowl over the rotors preventing the air from flowing to begin with. At BEST, all you have is a machine that has a large FAN... but not enough "air-flow" to provide any kind of lift. And I can hear people saying that it worked more like a "harrier jet" than a "Helicopter". Okay, maybe it DID work more like a harrier jet... then why the FUCK did it need that huge ass rotor blade attached to the rear to begin with? The rotor blade that if one "landing strut" failed would crash horribly and violently whenever it tried to land? Again, cool idea... just completely and totally fucked over by the laws of physics and general concepts of flight. Not to mention that it's been parked on the roof-top unprotected from people finding it for at least 5 months while the city goes into chaos. Or the fact that the auto-pilot is fixed by a PATCH of all things. Nope, not "reprogrammed" or even "replaced"... but a fucking PATCH fixes something that Fox (the supposed smartest man in the company) couldn't fix in years?
But the biggest and worst aspect of this movie, is the fact that there is absolutely no consistency with space, time or geography. Gotham has to be the only city ever designed around a ring of islands. I mean, if you go by the "city" as it is supposed to be, you have an island (as seen in Batman Begins, when the bridges are raised to block off the "Narrows") that is surrounded by another island (As seen in The Dark Knight Rises, as Bane cuts the city itself off from the rest of the state/nation). Sorry, but wait there's more to the confusion.... There's also a "bay" to keep in mind... .So it's really an island surrounded by a peninsula that has a "bay" near by? Uh, anyone else confused because this makes no fucking sense since it has one of the largest sewer systems ever created... all of which would be under "sea level" and subject to flooding both naturally and by man-made waste.... one of the WORST places to create a "hideout" to begin with. Not to mention, what sort of fucking temperate zone is this city in? If it's cold enough to freeze the "river" (or salt-water bay as seen by the fact that Batman flies over it), then it's going to be too fucking cold to be outside without wearing some better cold-weather gear than any character is seen with. Not to mention of course, the "frozen river" is supposed to be fragile enough people walking over it will fall through, but yet somehow strong enough for a group of people CLUMPED TOGETHER to stand on without falling through? But again, it's just yet another example of how stupid the film-makers has to believe the audience is to overlook basic "logic".
But let's forget the geography, it's still the 'space/time' issue that comes in play. Within a 24hr period (maybe 48hr, it was too fucking vague to tell).... Someone falsifies purchases of Bruce Wayne's holdings, causes him to go bankrupt, tows his car, kills his power to his manor and empties his bank account? So, Gotham runs it's power company on a day to day basis? Wouldn't his "power bill" be good till at least the end of the month? Who has the power to call the Electric company to have his power turned off if they are NOT the legal residence or name on the power-bill? Clearly, someone other than Bruce Wayne himself, so then why the fuck is he even in the manor if someone else is the "legal resident" to begin with? WHY was his car being towed to begin with? Wasn't that the same car that Seline had stolen just the night before?(I will admit that I may be slightly confused on that point as you don't get a good view of the car being towed in general.... but it sure as hell looked like the same car) Plus, why is his car being towed to begin with? Is it being repo'ed or something? I mean, didn't Bruce already PAY FOR and BUY that car at least a few years back... meaning that it's already paid for and shouldn't be repo'ed or towed to begin with? I'm sorry, but uh... someone explain to me how Bruce Wayne's BANK-ACCOUNT got emptied out as well as all his "business holdings"? I'm sorry, it was a good idea to financially bankrupt Bruce Wayne. But it's a process that takes WEEKS/MONTHS, not less than just 24hrs. Of course ,this wouldn't have bothered me at all if it wasn't for the fact that somehow or another Bruce Wayne has to go GLOBE-TROTTING to get out of the Pitt and back to Gotham to begin with.... all while being flat-broke and no indication what country the "Pitt" itself was in. But doing all of this while having the city itself under siege and blocked off by the US military/state police? Sorry, but he's able to do all of his "recovery" inside the Pitt and back to Gotham just in time to "save the day"? Well, okay it's a movie and "miracle timing" is to be expected but still, it makes no fucking sense at all. Where are all these "resources" that Bruce is able to find/use when his own bank account is emptied out and his business holdings are no longer around? Did he call someone collect to pick him up or something?
Now comes to the biggest "stupid fucking audience will believe anything" moment of the entire movie. Bane breaks Batman's back... and it's "fixed" by popping a vertebrate back into place? Except there are a few problems with that whole concept. The way Bane "broke his back"... would have made any vertebrate that was out of place sticking INWARD.. NOT OUTWARD. Not to mention of course, the doctor is going to "repair it" by smacking it? What about nerve damage? What about spinal column damage? What about the fact that if "smacking back into place" (Again, from the wrong direction) is all that it took... then why wasn't it "put back into place" when Bruce was lying on his back for so many days? And just how is "smacking a vertabrate back into place" (Again, from the WRONG DIRECTION) and hanging Bruce up to "stand on his own" going to fucking work to begin with? Sorry, I can let go of a lot of reality.... but this one was purely a bullshit "quick fix" just to give all you "fanboys" the joy of seeing Bane break Batman's back. Not to mention the whole weeks/months/years of physical therapy to recover mobility is overlooked just to give "Fans what they want". Sorry, but illogical plot-holes should never be used in order to "appease fanboys"..... if nothing else, either present it as it should be... Batman/Bruce going through a lot of physical therapy as Bane takes over step by step... or leave it out completely.
I can go on and on about how stupid this movie assumes the audience is. Or worse, how illogical and filled with plot-holes that are breezed over with "quick-fix" writing, but I just don't have the time or patience to go over the entire movie right now. There were a lot of things that just turned you off if you paid any attention to this movie as a movie, or as part of the "Batman universe". Bane's voice was clearly re-dubbed and sounded like an old 50's cartoon character. Batman spent all of The Dark Knight explaining why he's not going to kill someone, but doesn't give a second's thought when Catwoman kills Bane, even though they established the whole "no guns" concept earlier. All so that Catwoman can make a "joke" about using guns and killing? Or the fact that Blake figures out Batman's identity as a kid all from a "look", but no one else can except for Bane? Or the fact that Fox is with the "nuclear control" area that is getting flooded... and yet somehow gets out? Wasn't that place supposed to be entirely FLOODED? Or that Bane's henchmen apparently went to the same school as GI Joe, Cobra and Star Wars stormtroopers? Because clearly a mob armed with multiple machine guns are going to fire into a PARADE OF POLICE on the city street and not be able to kill/wound hundreds of them before having to get into hand-to-hand combat?
The movie, at best, is entertaining and enjoyable to watch. At worst, it's literally insulting and poorly written. One plot-hole and illogical aspect after another. The writing just assumes you aren't going to question pacing, physics, medical or scientific aspect, NOR are you going to question established character traits from the previous two films. And even those who are asking "What did you expect from a comic-book movie?", you have to also keep in mind that Nolan has a better track-record than this. While I might not have been expecting the next greatest movie going into the theater, I was at least expecting a better WRITTEN movie that didn't rely on too many convenient "quick-fix" scenarios.
See it in theaters to hopefully get the "buzz" off the fanboys and enjoy it. It can be enjoyable, just don't expect a lot from it other than some action scenes. (Which I have a problem with, because I still don't think that Nolan is a good "action director" in general. Not saying that he's "bad" by using quick-cuts and 1sec frames... Just that "action" isn't one of his strong departments as a director in general... Getting better, but still has a way to go). With a few good emotional scenes of character development and performances.
Mostly based on the level of disappointment I had with the writing and lack of logic. Some people might actually get a better experience watching the movie with a bigger audience. Sadly, I don't see this one having the same appeal for "additional screenings" as both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight had. So the longer this movie is in theaters, the less likely you'll have to see it with a bigger audience. Overall, I have to say very Low Matinee. I want to say rental, but there are aspects that keep it from going that low. Good performances from the actors. Nice special effects (even if illogical). Some touching "human moments" between characters and scenarios. Some pretty good character development in general.... but all countered by aspects that just stick out like a turd in a punch bowl. Bane wasn't really that impressive overall, "Jokes" that felt forced, plot-holes and lack of logic, "quick-fix" writing for the sake of convenience and pacing, the whole "Blake/Robin" thing at the end felt completely useless, and worst of all were the few aspects that were there in order to "please the fanboys" that could have been tightened up or at least better presented.