First off, this review will be SPOILER FREE, because I hate spoilers and I would not want the movie ruined for me, so I will not ruin it for you. The Dark Knight Rises is the finale of Christopher Nolan's Batman Trilogy and it ends the series with a BANG! Like I posted last week, it is a must to see Batman Begins and The Dark Knight before you see this, so make sure you do.
This story is great. It takes place 8 years after The Dark Knight ended and Bruce Wayne is a broken man. He has given up being Batman, but a new villain named Bane comes to Gotham, which forces him to put back on the cape and cowl. Christian Bale does an amazing job as Bruce Wayne/Batman as always, but this could be his best performance of the three films. Tom Hardy plays Bane and he also gives a great performance. Director Christopher Nolan did a great job in making Bane this film's villain, because we all know it was going to be hard to follow Heath Ledger's Oscar winning performance as the Joker and choosing Bane as the villain and Hardy's performance worked out very well. Bane is nothing like the Joker. He is all about strength and a goal, and that goal is to destroy Gotham City.
Other additons to the cast include Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle/Catwoman and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Police Officer, John Blake. Both do a great job as most do in the film. Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine continue their roles in nice ways too. The film has a few flaws, but not enough to really bother you. It also has one of the most intense endings of all time, so be prepared and focus. It has taken me a few viewings to fully catch everything, since it flies by so fast. Speaking of that, the movie is 2 hours, 45 minutes long, but goes by very fast.
I have seen the movie in IMAX and in regular theaters and I think it does not matter which format you choose. IMAX is massive and the sound is great, but either way you see it will be fine.
Obviously I am a big Batman fan, so my review of the film could be partial, but I think it is a great movie. Not sure I would take my kids to it. It is PG-13 for a reason, so I would say 13 makes sense. Also, it is not your normal super hero movie, as it is very serious and adult-themed. Not to say that there is no action, there is more action in Rises than in the first 2 movies of the trilogy.
All in all, a great movie. I give The Dark Knight Rises an A. I'll leave it at that but there are many surprises and plot twists I don't want to discuss or give away so go see it for yourself! Won't see a better movie for a long time!
Thanks Christopher Nolan!