By Renee’ Collins

Rating: 4 out of 5 Reels

I went into this film with higher expectations that usual because I truly enjoyed the last two installments, THE DARK KNIGHT and BATMAN BEGINS.  This film draws its story from both of the previous films.  Eight years on, Bane, takes over Gotham’s finest, the Dark Knight resurfaces to protect the city that has branded him an enemy.

Christian Bale returns in his role of Batman, but this time he actually isn’t on the screen as much as in previous films.  Anne Hathaway appears as Selina Kyle/Catwoman looking rather slim in her costume.  Hathaway’s acting ability has surprised me in the past and I believe she does a rather convincing job here as well.  The usual other likeable supporting characters are back as well, Alfred (Michael Caine), Bruce Wayne’s butler; Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman), Wayne enterprises director; and Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman), police commissioner.  All are outstanding character actors who deserve their recurring roles.  New to the fray is John Blake (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a police officer turned detective to help the cause.  Gordon-Levitt is a wonderful addition to the group and I truly enjoyed his performance in this film.

To say the special effects are outstanding is a bit of an understatement.  As usual, no expense was spared, especially for the Batman’s transportation.  Not only does he have the tankesque ride and bad ass motorcycle, but now he has a small flying craft; awesome.  Thankfully, I was able to see this film at the Bob Bullock IMAX Theater which made this film even better.  And, THANK GOD IT WASN’T IN 3D.  I am really sick and tired of 3D, when it is not needed, and it is not needed here.

The plot and character development of this film are well written, but I found slow moving in some places, it being a two hour forty minute film.  It also has some huge holes in basic continuity as well.  Batman suffers spine ligament displacement which someone snaps (with a slug to the spine) back into place for him and after some sit ups he is ready for action again; what?  I don’t mind suspending belief in many cases but sometime they take it a bit too far for my taste. 

All in all, this film delivers, but I don’t feel it is as good as THE DARK KNIGHT and BATMAN BEGINS.  The plot is not as intricate and the villains are a bit lacking in my opinion.  It is still worth a look for the coolness factor alone.

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