Batman 3 Didn’t Do It For Me

The latest Batman film really let me down. There were some really beautiful scenes and I appreciated a few of the special effects, but overall I wasn’t impressed with The Dark Knight Rises.

My first criticism is Bane. He is the villain of the film and quite frankly, he was portrayed so much better in the animated series. He didn’t scare me as much as he should have. I also didn’t like his voice. He talked through a mask that gave a weird electronic kind of echo. There were lines that were pretty much inaudible because of it.

The film dragged on too. It was slow. The pacing of it wasn’t great. There was a lady sitting two rows behind me who even yawned loudly, twice.

But my major concerns with this movie come down to the basic story (Spoiler Alert.)

In the comics, Bane breaks Batman’s back and I was expecting that to happen in this film as well. It did, but Bruce Wayne seemed to recover very quickly from this crippling injury and he goes back to battle Bane once again, this time successfully. It just didn’t feel right to me in this movie universe.

In the comic book Batman actually dies. I think he should have in this film. Batman doesn’t need a happy ending. He gets one in this film. It’s warm and fuzzy and seems completely out of character.

There was a battle for the cowl in the comic since the late Bruce Wayne would have wanted The Batman to carry on. In fact, in the movie he mentions several times that Batman was supposed to be a symbol. “He could have been anyone, and that’s the point,” he says to Commissioner Gordon.

And in the movie, someone figures out Batman’s true identity. He coaxes Batman out of his retirement and then heroically fights for justice as a beat cop. Commissioner Gordon even promotes him to Detective. I think this could be a nod to Detective Comics, where Batman first appeared in that comic book series. It shows that this cop is worthy of being a detective and definitely worthy of wearing the cape and cowl.

At the end of the film, this detective throws away his badge. Batman had already saved the day but I think it would have been so much better for Bruce Wayne to have remained broken, for him to have passed the mantle of the bat onto this deserving lad. He remained fearless throughout all of the tragedy in the film. He protected the city just as much, if not more, than Batman did. He would have been the perfect new Batman, but instead we get a joke at the end of the film that his actual name is Robin. Ha ha.

This film was supposed to be an epic last chapter to the Batman trilogy. It hit a few of the notes the story arc demanded but overall it was a let down. The film was too long. Catwoman was essentially a hero, Bane wasn’t scary, the story didn’t make a lot of sense, the ending was off and uncharacteristic of the Batman mythos that the series had been developing, and it was boring.

That being said, I wouldn’t mind seeing a fourth movie in the franchise. I liked the cop character and would love to see him take up the role of Batman in his own film, or better yet, a solo Robin film. Robin does have his own comic title. It wouldn’t be such a stretch.

2 responses to “Batman 3 Didn’t Do It For Me”

  1. Hey Chase,

    Interesting thoughts. I personally felt it was a great film when taken as a piece of the larger trilogy, but I've encountered a lot of people who disliked it as a stand alone viewing.

    Undoubtedly it was an exhausting film, the heaviest of the three in terms of story. In fact I'm sure Batman's (not Bruce Wayne's) total screen time couldn't have been longer than 20 minutes. This was in part due to him being very reliant on vehicles which ultimately was a little disappointing for me. I understand it was more a film about Bruce Wayne though, so I didn't really mind. In fact my favourite of the three is probably the first, just because I love how Nolan directs the story of Bruce Wayne. Like you said the arc is satisfied in this.

    I actually found Bane to be effectively menacing and think Tom Hardy deserves props for pulling it off with the limited usage of facial expressions (that can't be easy for any actor). I would have liked some more exposition on him though (apparently a deleted scene provides this). Also I was happy with the way Catwoman was handled. When I saw inital production shots I was dubious and almost ready to write it all off; I just couldn't see her character complying with Nolan's vision of the Batman universe given that he's carefully selected the characters to include in it. But to my surprise, I think it was done well. I think it helped that she wasn't overtly referred to as "Catwoman" at all, but was simply just a cat burglar.

    I did have issues with Bruce Wayne's recovery in general, and one particular scene where the police decide to run unarmed at a small army of rifle-wielding goons – but there was enough good things about it for me to negate them. I've personally been thoroughly dismayed by the recent crop of superhero films in the last few years, and am glad that this trilogy as a whole is as good as it is. Certainly, I wouldn't wanna be the next director to take on Batman after Nolan!

  2. Hi Hardeep,

    I wonder how long it will take before we get another Batman movie. Maybe this will be it for a while.

    I would like to see a live action Wonder Woman. I think she is a great character and the animated films have been great. A live action one could be amazing.

    Overall, I wasn't that impressed with this trilogy as a whole. The first film was okay. Heath's Joker totally stole the show in the second film. That was a really good movie. This last one just didn't do it for me.

    Anyway, I appreciate the comment. Thanks!