The Dark Knight Rises takes place eight years after the events of The Dark Knight when Batman took the blame for the death of D.A. Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) a.k.a. Two-Face. Since that time, the Batman has disappeared but Gotham City has enforced the new Dent Act which helped to rid the city of organized crime. While Commissioner Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) is conflicted in revealing the truth about Harvey Dent, Gotham honors the anniversary of his death with "Harvey Dent Day". Bruce Wayne, having given-up being Batman, has now become a feeble recluse, injured and having to use a cane. With the arrival of the mercenary Bane, Bruce must face him as Batman once again in order to save Gotham from chaos and destruction. After his fall, now he must rise as Batman returns better than ever to confront his most dangerous and formidable adversary yet!
In The Dark knight Rises we are introduced to four new characters: one is Officer John Blake (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who at first seems like an ancillary character representing the new guard of Gotham's police force, but who later becomes an important figure in the plot. The new "love-interest" for Bruce Wayne is Miranda Tate (Marion Cotillard), a wealthy investor working on a clean energy project. The Dark Knight Rises marks the return of Batman's most popular femme fatale: Catwoman! Anne Hathaway plays Selina Kyle, a talented jewel thief, dubbed a "Cat" burglar in the news. Although she is never actually called "Catwoman" in the movie, her black cat-suit and cat-like mask makes it obvious. Catwoman previously appeared in Batman Returns (1992) played by Michelle Pfeiffer and also laughably by Halle Berry in Catwoman (2004). While Pfeiffer's Catwoman was a more supernaturally endowed, sultry/sexy Catwoman, Hathaway's Catwoman is much more subtle and realistic, but with a strong, independent, confidence.
|Tom Hardy as Bane|
|Anne Hathaway as Catwoman|
Personal Note: I was able to see The Dark Knight Rises at the midnight screening at one of my local theaters. It is always quite an experience to go to these events. Yes the theater is packed with people; it's crammed, hot and noisy. The roar of applause and the cheer from the fans with every epic moment "brings a smile to my face"! I enjoy seeing the die-hard fans dress up in costumes both store-bought, professionally made and even amateur/half-assed. As a fan, you feel comfort and acceptance knowing you are surrounded by your fellow fans. Never would I have considered that something so positive like this could bring so much fear and uncertainty. In response to the tragedy where Gunman killed 12 people at The Dark knight Rises screening in Aurora, Colorado, in our post Columbine or 9/11 world, where can we truly consider ourselves safe? It only takes one person who chooses to act in the form of violence to make us think and realize that we have to be vigilant and careful. Any number of things could have been done to prevent this but ultimately something like this is unpredictable and it will happen. It is a harsh reminder of our reality and while it is true that life imitates art or vice-versa art cannot be blamed entirely for someone’s actions. The fact that the media is blaming the violence in the film for this act is ridiculous and I think this TIME article says it best as "Nolan does not use violence in his movie gratuitously. His message is one of economic disparity and of desperate people driven to desperate acts." We wish that there were superheroes like Batman, and in these troubled times especially. We turn to escapism and fantasy during hard times, just as depression-era children turned to Batman in the first place. We must face the fact that we can never really escape reality. Instead we learn from heroes like Batman and his message and strive to make the world a better place.