Cinema-goers and critics were looking forward to watching Nolan’s new movie wondering whether it would be really, in its essence, a superhero film.
All the necessary ingredients are on a superficial level, but the movie director has mixed and synthesized them in a new way.
The Dark Knight Rises, the third and emphatically final film in his Batman trilogy for the most part is a superhero film without a superhero.
As The Telegraph’s critic Robbie Collin writes, “Batman here is less a character than a symbol, then a cipher, and later an icon, and swathes of the film pass without its notional hero appearing on screen in full, Caped Crusading regalia.”
The soon-to-be-released Nolan’s finale will definitely raise Batman trilogy to the peak of big-screen comic book adaptations.
“This last installment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy makes everything in the rival Marvel universe look thoroughly silly and childish.…It’s a blockbuster by any standard,” Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter.
Variety’s critic, Kustin Chang, said of the movie: “Running an exhilarating, exhausting 164 minutes, Nolan’s trilogy-capping epic sends Batman to a literal pit of despair, restoring him to the core of a legend that questions, and powerfully affirms, the need for heroism in a fallen world.”
He went on: “If it never quite matches the brilliance of 2008′s ‘The Dark Knight,’ this hugely ambitious action-drama nonetheless retains the moral urgency and serious-minded pulp instincts that have made the Warners franchise a beacon of integrity in an increasingly comicbook-driven Hollywood universe.”
As for the Daily Mail opinion, the paper branded the movie, released in the UK on 20 July, “humourless” and “overlong”.
However, The Dark Knight Rises received just two stars, as, according to paper, “new baddie Bane, played by Tom Hardy, was practically inaudible” because of the character’s facemask worn throughout.
There are those who praised Nolan’s directing skills, as well as Anne Hathaway’s performance of cat burglar Selina Kyle.
“Nonetheless, this final installment in director Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy is the first of the series not to smoothly execute its grand aspirations,” said of the movie Tim Grierson over at Screen Daily.
“The film suffers a bit from a glut of new characters, but is helped along by Nolan’s continued insistence on emotional resonance over mindless spectacle,” he added.
Meanwile, Matthew Leyland from Total Film magazine voiced his impression with the action film’s more tender moments.
“Gruff, gritty and gothic though it is, TDKR may bring a lump to your throat that isn’t popcorn-related,” writes Leyland.
The critic also described Christian Bale’s performance as “never more vulnerable, likeable or willing to get his gloves dirty, pushing to new emotional depths for his final Gotham go-around”.
“I suspect that the reaction to the film will be hotly divided, but I’m firmly on the side that this is a triumph, a victor for all involved,” concluded Drew McWeeny of HitFlix.
“Whoever Warner Bros hires to reboot the Batman films a few years from now, I wish you luck. The bar is as high as it could possibly be.”