Alfred, that is a lot of silly things
(Thanks is due to many co-hecklers in the production of this heckle.)
Nolan’s Batman saga is like a coin.
The first side features breathless cause-and-effect (Batman Skyhook-extradites a businessman because that businessman eloped with crime boss money because Batman/Bruce Wayne bookends are too good at what they do because Batman.)
The second side features wild coincidence (in a besieged city of 12 million, Bruce Wayne encounters Selina Kyle on a bridge) and wild oversight (Batman never investigates how to mess up the thing that lets Bane, you know, breathe.)
The first side offers great lines (“And you want to blackmail this person?”) and moments of humanity (“Bats are nocturnal!”)
The second side offers extended lectures about what characters want (“I’m Gotham’s reckoning.”) without actually explaining what they want (Reckoning for what?).
The first side has Michael Caine.
The second side has one-armed bicep curling a Liam Neeson.
Bring him a ruby the soize… of a tangewine.
This installment leans heavily toward the second side.
I didn’t have a problem with Bane’s Sean-Connery-doing-a-Bill-Cosby-impression voice (try it!) I thought Anne Hathaway did a fine job even if her character was confusing. But I think close-up fistfights are silly and on-the-nose dialogue is silly and vague pan-Asian torture spirituality is silly so I thought a lot of this movie was silly.
Here are the top twenty-three silly things in The Dark Knight Rises (SPOILERS AHEAD).
– Batman AND Bruce Wayne go on hiatus for eight years. Does anyone make the connection? No, until…
I put the Bat-suit on ice… LI-TE-RA-LEEEEE!
– John Blake (Joseph Gordon Levitt) intuits that Bruce Wayne is Batman because they had similar orphan upbringings and John Blake relates to Batman a whole bunch. Bruce Wayne makes no effort to deny this. The ease with which Blake figures it out and Wayne concedes it makes Commissioner Gordon look really, really dumb.
– Miranda (Marion Cotillard) and Bruce show up to abandoned Wayne Manor at the same time. I missed why. Because it is raining, they make out. Maybe this is because Miranda just picked up Bruce’s framed publicity still of Rachel Dawes, which reminds him what a great idea it is to get romantic.
– Speaking of figuring out who is who, Bane drops a bombshell on Gotham by revealing Harvey Dent killed two people eight years ago. However it’s hard to understand who in Gotham gives a rat butt about this since they are UNDER THREAT OF NUCLEAR ANNIHILATION and locked in their homes like I Am Legend and probably dead because I don’t know how they’re getting food into the city with all the bridges blown up.
This is a thing you still care about, right?
– Also, Bane thinks the Harvey Dent news is big, but when he finds out he doesn’t announce WHO BATMAN IS.
– I don’t know what Bane wants or why his death-willing followers are so loyal. It is probably some vague pan-Asian torture spirituality thing, but it is unclear.
– Gotham PD responds to a bomb threat by sending three thousand cops into stadium tunnels. WORST PD EVER.
– When these cops get trapped, a radio dispatcher tells new Detective Blake “every cop in the city is trapped in there!” Then Blake says, “Not every one!” And then there is a cliche singularity and Brett Ratner becomes self-aware.
What am I doing? My job!
– There’s a nuclear bomb that, according to Designated Science Guy, will go unstable and detonate in 5 months. That five months turns out to be about 90 days (according to TV-screen countdowns).
– Batman needs to recuperate because Bane beat him in a fistfight. Batman got into the fistfight because he was tricked, which is like Spiderman getting sneaked up on. He has the fistfight because he must have left his Bat-everything in his other Bat-pants. He uses no strategy or implements whatsoever against topless, breathing-impaired Bane, but maybe there was a reason and I missed it because I zoned out during this part so hard.
– Batman recuperates in a super death prison… somewhere… deserty. Somebody is running it for some purpose and feeding this prisoners a lot of protein. Also it gets electricity and satellite TV. Also a heueueueuuge amount of backstory gets delivered at this place, about two hours into the movie, plus a Liam Neeson cameo and Christian Bale re-enacting every platformer video game.
– Bruce Wayne climbs out of super death prison and there’s no guard or nanny-cam at the top. If there was ever a time for a nanny-cam, it is when you have Batman in super death prison.
– Bane’s regime forces the condemned to walk across a frozen bay. Nobody gets on their bellies and does the walrus. I woulda got on my belly and done the walrus.
– I’m not going to get into how crazy cold it would have to be for Gotham’s body of water to freeze and how in the non-bay scenes it looks like September, but that is a thing.
– Wayne Enterprises has a code repository for its Bat-Heli-Harrier, and Bruce Wayne commits code to that respository, and his username is “Bruce Wayne.” Also, that is not a terribly active project, because nobody noticed for six months. Also, depending on whether you believe Bane has been in charge for 5 months or 90 days, Bruce Wayne may have committed that code before he knew the Bat-Heli-Harrier existed. WHOA.
– Did the mayor die? Did Bane? I assume so.
I’m the Bat Manuel
– Miranda has the most snerkable death scene since Queen Amidala died of ennui.
– The ensuing here-I-go-to-die chit-chat with Selina Kyle and Commissioner Gordon are the most snerkable here-I-go-to-die chit-chat since ever. There is a nuke about to detonate. If ever there were a time for meaningful glances and a removed mask, THAT TIME IS NOW.
– Former-Detective John Blake throws his badge in the bay. That seems… frowned upon. Also, that bay is frozen, so that seems… ineffective.
– Three minutes later, Commissioner Gordon asks Blake, “I can’t change your mind? About leaving the force?” Which is a pretty great example of the IS THIS CLEAR ENOUGH? dialogue in this movie.
– Speaking of, someone outs John Blake’s real name as “Robin.” First, OW MY NOSE. Second, NONE OF THE ROBINS IS ACTUALLY NAMED ROBIN. Third, IF THAT WERE YOUR REAL NAME WHY WOULD YOU PICK IT AS YOUR ALTER EGO NAME?
– There is one more OW MY NOSE and it is Alfred’s cathartic cafe scene. You have been set up to know exactly what this scene means, so it would have worked better like Monsters Inc to have Alfred look up, smile, and cut to black. BUT NO.
It got all sneefy in here all of a sudden
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