The Dark Knight Rises - review

(L-r) TOM HARDY as Bane and CHRISTIAN BALE as Batman in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' action thriller 'THE DARK KNIGHT RISES,' a Warner Bros. Pictures release. TM and � DC Comics
(L-r) TOM HARDY as Bane and CHRISTIAN BALE as Batman in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' action thriller 'THE DARK KNIGHT RISES,' a Warner Bros. Pictures release. TM and � DC Comics

THE final part of Christopher Nolan’s interpretation of the iconic Batman character had a lot to live up to.

THE final part of Christopher Nolan’s interpretation of the iconic Batman character had a lot to live up to.

The Dark Knight, the second in the acclaimed director’s trilogy, was a massive hit both critically and at the box office, thanks in part to Heath Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker, which earned the Australian a posthumous Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

In Ledger’s place in this film is Tom Hardy, who plays an entirely different type of villain. His Bane character is a physical phenomenon more powerful than the Batman, again played as Bruce Wayne and his superhero alter-ego by Christian Bale.

If Ledger’s performance was the highlight of the first film, Hardy was never going to match that and it is something he cannot be criticised for.

However at times it is difficult to tell what he is saying as he snarls through a Hannibal Lecter style mask, something that will surely be rectified when the movie moves to DVD.

If Batman’s nemesis is something of a let down, this film does several other things very, very well, and is ultimately a triumph.

There are excellent supporting turns from other members of the cast including Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a policeman who believes in the caped crusader, cast as a villain by Gotham City at the end of the previous film.

Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman is more than just easy on the eye and shares good on-screen chemistry with Bale.

The film’s special effects, best displayed in its fight and chase scenes, are breathtaking in a movie that does not feel overly long even though it clocks in at nearly three hours.

But perhaps what the film does best of all is tie up the storylines from all three films coherently.

Bat fans will be left feeling satisfied with at the conclusion of the pulsating final instalment of Nolan’s trilogy, with a few twists and turns along the way.

ADAM LORD