A rousing summer blockbuster

The Dark Knight Rises Warner Bros. Rating: 14A 164 minutes

This series of Batman movies is much better than the last with Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and now The Dark Knight Rises.

Eight years have passed since the last film and Christian Bale plays Batman as a brooding recluse. But crime is on the rise again and a nasty villain is taking over Gotham. Tom Hardy plays the villain but, hidden under a Darth Vader like mask which also distorts a lot of what he says, he is only a nasty, but faceless villain. And it is no surprise that Batman will rise to his challenge.

Michael Caine is more appealing than ever as the faithful butler Alfred, while Morgan Freeman is back as the genius inventor. Anne Hathaway as a jewel thief/Catwoman is probably the best thing in the picture. Joseph Gordon-Levitt has a good role as a conscientious policeman and Gary Oldman is still solid as Commissioner Gordon.

There are some terrific action scenes and some nice special effects. But it is too loud (sometimes the music and sound effects obscure the dialogue) and too long. However, director and co-writer Christopher Nolan ends his Batman trilogy well. He packs a lot into it, tying up a lot of loose ends. However, he also sets the stage for another installment, as the public will no doubt demand.

The Dark Knight Rises is a well put together summer blockbuster, but the reality is that this movie will always be associated with last week’s tragedy in Aurora.

Rating: three deer out of five

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Alf Cryderman is a Red Deer freelance writer and old movie buff.