The Dark Knight Rises, dir Christopher Nolan, Christian Bale, Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine, Tom Hardy
Epic. It’s big and bold, with back-stories and narrative twists to keep you on the edge of your seat. Batman/Bruce Wayne are in reclusive mode, each battles with demons, made manifest through a physical debility – we first see Bruce Wayne with a stick – later he is straightened out as a stray vertebrae is clicked back into place. There is a countdown of sorts, as once on board, they work against a ticking bomb, which will blow not only Gotham City out of the water but the world as well. It is an apocalyptic vision in which Christopher Nolan produces all the metallic, heavy hardware he and the CGI and props guys can muster; and to great effect. With costume by Lindy Hemming, who worked on five Bond movies, there is a sense that the film is not just the conclusion to the trilogy but a homage to all screen heroes who live to rid the world of evil; there’s even a nod to Angels With Dirty Faces. Estranged from Alfred, Commissioner Gordon and Fox Wayne’s world is a lonely one. The spin here is that Wayne as much as Batman is on trial. Anne Hathaway is superb as Cat Women with a wonderful line in put-downs, leather outfits and killer stilettoes. And this under-cut, tongue-in-cheek saves the film from being too reverent with itself. While Tom Hardy as the evil Bane, who plots to subvert Gotham underground, is all beef, sinister mask, brute force with brute mentality….. Everyone is at the top of their game…..