Today in history: Melissa McBride of The Mist and Carol of The Walking Dead turns 48 today. Happy birthday!
Grade C: I haven’t been a huge fan of Christopher Nolan’s Batman film series. I felt that Batman Begins (2005) took too long to get going and that if The Dark Knight (2008) were about 45 minutes shorter I’d have considered it a masterpiece. But those 45 minutes…
And while I didn’t enjoy the Nolan Batman films as much as I had some of the more recent Marvel superhero movies, or even Batman (1989), I did enjoy the two Nolan Batman films enough to see the latest The Dark Knight Rises opening night.
Unfortunately, I liked The Dark Knight Rises even less than the other two Nolan Batman outings.
It seems to me that a movie that advertises itself as featuring Batman would feature said character. And while Batman is certainly a presence at the end of the movie and in an amazing chase scene at the middle, the character feels mostly absent from The Dark Knight Rises. We instead get a haggard and beaten Howard Hughes-esque Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) and Gotham cop trying to do good John Blake (Joseph Gorden-Levitt) in his place for much of the movie.
I think what gets me so much about not having Batman around is just how good the movie is when he’s in it; from the above mentioned chase scene, to Batman vs. Bane (twice!) or even the complicated relationship Batman has with Selena Kyle/Catwoman. When Batman is around The Dark Knight Rises is interesting and fun. When he’s not the movie is like a long drink of molasses.
Batman Begins – 2.5/4 Stars
The Dark Knight – 3/4 Stars
Here’s a weird little poster for the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises movie. Weird in that since the angle on the buildings is almost straight up, the only way to see Batman like he is here would be if he were falling forward.
I always find that the best way to beat the mid-winter blues is to think about the upcoming slate of Summer movies. First up next summer is The Avengers, out May 4. The Avengers is a sort of super-group of super-heroes with Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), The Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) teaming together to fight some gigantic evil no one hero can defeat alone.
Wow! This trailer is pretty amazing! (Though, am I the only one getting a Fight Club vibe from Bane?)