Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 45
  2. Negative: 2 out of 45
  1. Reviewed by: Todd Gilchrist
    Jul 23, 2012
    100
    A cinematic, cultural and personal triumph, The Dark Knight Rises is emotionally inspiring, aesthetically significant and critically important for America itself – as a mirror of both sober reflection and resilient hope.
  2. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    Jul 20, 2012
    85
    As you might expect from the creator of "Inception" and "Memento," there are surprises both in the story and in the storytelling. But the biggest surprise may just be how satisfying Nolan has made his farewell to a Dark Knight trilogy that many fans will wish he'd extend to a 10-part series, at least.
  3. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jul 19, 2012
    100
    The conclusion of Christopher Nolan's superhero trilogy is a hugely ambitious mix of eye candy and brain food. If it doesn't have the haunting aftertaste of the previous serving, that's only because Nolan couldn't clone Heath Ledger. But beefy substitute Tom Hardy is a hell of a villain.
  4. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Jul 18, 2012
    100
    If The Dark Knight Rises is a fascist film, it's a great fascist film, and arguably the biggest, darkest, most thrilling and disturbing and utterly balls-out spectacle ever created for the screen. It's an unfriendly masterpiece that shows you only a little circle of daylight, way up there at the top of our collective prison shaft - but a masterpiece nonetheless.
  5. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Jul 18, 2012
    100
    Potent, persuasive and hypnotic, The Dark Knight Rises has us at its mercy. A disturbing experience we live through as much as a film we watch, this dazzling conclusion to director Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy is more than an exceptional superhero movie, it is masterful filmmaking by any standard.
  6. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Jul 18, 2012
    88
    Nolan brings his Batman trilogy to a close with a majestic, almost completely satisfying crash. Everything feels epic about the film: the characters, the effects, the emotional stakes - even the missteps (and there are more than a few).
  7. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Jul 18, 2012
    91
    The miracle of Nolan's Batman trilogy is the way it imprints those myths with the dread-soaked tenor of the times.
  8. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Jul 18, 2012
    100
    This is not the sort of movie you can just leave behind in the theater. And like any true finale to a trilogy, the picture doesn't work nearly as well if you haven't seen the previous two installments: It's not designed to stand alone, and it pays off all that has come before with an exuberant, thrilling high.
  9. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Jul 18, 2012
    100
    Christopher Nolan's dramatically and emotionally satisfying wrap-up to the Dark Knight trilogy adroitly avoids clichés and gleefully subverts your expectations at every turn.
  10. Reviewed by: Brad Wheeler
    Jul 17, 2012
    88
    It's not only packed with high-toned classical and contemporary cultural allusions, but manages to wear its popcorn inspirations on its sleeve.
  11. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Jul 17, 2012
    88
    Most important, does The Dark Knight Rises achieve the impossible, which is to bring a cherished cinematic chapter to a close, yet manage to leave fans feeling not desolate but cheered? To that all-important question, the answer is an unequivocal yes.
  12. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Jul 17, 2012
    88
    The Dark Knight Rises ultimately justifies its length (in fact, a good argument could be made for a longer cut) and the last 45 minutes is nothing short of spectacular. From the point where the narrative takes a leap of faith, it never lets up.
  13. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Jul 16, 2012
    100
    "The Avengers" is kid stuff compared with this meditation on mortal loss and heroic frailty. For once a melodrama with pulp origins convinces viewers that it can be the modern equivalent to Greek myths or a Jonathan Swift satire. TDKR is that big, that bitter - a film of grand ambitions and epic achievement. The most eagerly anticipated movie of summer 2012 was worth waiting for.
  14. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Jul 16, 2012
    88
    The sheer scope of Nolan's vision – with emotion and spectacle thundering across the screen – is staggering. The Dark Knight Rises is the King Daddy of summer movie epics.
  15. Reviewed by: Nev Pierce
    Jul 16, 2012
    100
    With spectacle in abundance and sexiness in (supporting) parts, this is superhero filmmaking on an unprecedented scale. Rises may lack the surprise of Begins or the anarchy of Knight, but it makes up for that in pure emotion.
  16. Reviewed by: Matthew Leyland
    Jul 16, 2012
    100
    A smart, stirring spectacle that faces down impossible expectations to pull off a hugely satisfying end to business.
  17. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Jul 16, 2012
    100
    Makes everything in the rival Marvel universe look thoroughly silly and childish. Entirely enveloping and at times unnerving in a relevant way one would never have imagined, as a cohesive whole this ranks as the best of Nolan's trio, even if it lacks -- how could it not? -- an element as unique as Heath Ledger's immortal turn in The Dark Knight. It's a blockbuster by any standard.
  18. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Jul 16, 2012
    90
    While The Dark Knight Rises raises the dramatic stakes considerably, at least in terms of its potential body count, it doesn't have its predecessor's breathless sense of menace or its demonic showmanship, and with the exception of one audacious sleight-of-hand twist, the story can at times seem more complicated than intricate.
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 3208 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 81 out of 786
  1. Jul 20, 2012
    10
    The Dark Knight Rises was gloriously the best moment of my life in a movie theatre. It stands alone, peerless in the pantheon of superheroThe Dark Knight Rises was gloriously the best moment of my life in a movie theatre. It stands alone, peerless in the pantheon of superhero movies. There will be no spoilers here and if the impulse to spoil yourself before watching the film is too excruciating to bear, remember this, it'll be the equivalent of Selina Kyle robbing you blind. When Batman Begins came out, I was very sceptical about watching another one of those Batman flicks, such is the enduring traumatic impression Joel Schumacher's films left me. Thank goodness I did and from that point on there's no turning back. Christopher Nolan's finale made all the recently released superhero movies look like child's play to be honest, it is the appetizer to the main course that is the final chapter of The Dark Knight trilogy. The typical critique of Chris Nolan's movies is that it might be too cerebral for the casual moviegoer, no it's not. His films are universal, it's so well-layered, directed towards everyone. If you're more of the "intellectual genre" you'll notice the political undertones and social commentaries and what have you, but even if it goes over your head, it doesn't detract your experience from the film. Fanatic fans of the Batman comics will love all the little nods and references, even the major ones from the comic books thoughtfully implemented throughout the film.
    Christian Bale is just magnificent, as he puts it he plays three characters, the billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne, the true persona of Bruce Wayne still grieving the lost of his parents and the Batman. He's the defining actor of The Dark Knight, his portrayal of all these characters are just perfect and even though he's a man dressing up at night as a bat beating criminals to a pulp with his bare hands, we empathise with him. Returning inhabitants of Gotham and Bruce's fundamental foundation of his lifestyle is Gary Oldman's aged and weary morally-strayed Commissioner Jim Gordon, the Q to Batman's James Bond, Lucius Fox and possibly a Best Supporting Actor nominee perhaps, the closest thing to a father figure Bruce can get, his moral compass, oozing with words of wisdom, Michael Caine's Alfred Pennyworth. Scenes between the trio are so poignant, beautifully crafted and presented, it's so hard to watch without getting a lump in your throat, to describe it as tear-jerking ia an understatement. One of the newcomers is Joseph Gordon-Levitt's solid portrayal of beat cop John Blake and Marion Cotillard's enviromentalist Miranda Tate. The chief antagonist is Tom Hardy's full time terrorist Bane, He's frightening to watch, Tom embodies and embraces the sheer brutality and monstrosity of "the mercenary" flawlessly with half his face covered up, the way he conveys his emotions with only his eyes is amazing. Anne Hathaway's morally ambiguous Selina Kyle is a wild card, it's really fun to watch the development and chemistry between Bruce/Selina and Batman/the cat burglar. The 2 hours and 44 minutes running time didn't feel long at all, the story flows seamlessly as it comes full circle with flashbacks from Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, it's all beautifully balanced between the intimate moments of character development that's unusual in a summer blockbuster film and the really elaborate and simply put awesome all-out war action sequences and the choreography of the brawls between Batman and Bane is much improved than the previous films. The most important element of The Dark Knight Rises however and what makes it a gem is that it manages to amp up the suspense and anxiety to incredible heights knowing that every single character is dispensable including the Batman. When was the last time you watched a superhero film and feel a genuine concern that our hero is not going to come out alive? Exactly.
    Thank you Christopher Nolan for not giving in to the public and I'm assuming studio demands to continue this magnificent 7-year journey we have all been through together, to truly end this great vision of the legend with integrity, to give this great story a great and true conclusion to let the Batman ride off into the sunset if you will. It was the ending this iconic character deserved. And to anyone who thinks the Rises in The Dark Knight Rises is just a convenient way to name the film, it makes complete sense, it
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 25, 2012
    5
    I liked this movie. But the problem is I really wanted to LOVE this movie. There were just so many small plot holes and inconsistenciesI liked this movie. But the problem is I really wanted to LOVE this movie. There were just so many small plot holes and inconsistencies throughout the film that kept creeping in and jarring me out of the experience as well as several secondary characters that really served no purpose at all. I would list them out but I won't to avoid spoilers. All in all, this felt kind of sloppy for a Christopher Nolan movie. Full Review »
  3. Jul 23, 2012
    3
    It is not our own fault, as a collective audience, that the third film in the trilogy is often so pressurised into being a fantastic, ugly andIt is not our own fault, as a collective audience, that the third film in the trilogy is often so pressurised into being a fantastic, ugly and plot-less mess. We get overexcited and speculate endlessly and wildly about the plot and twists of the film to the extent where the creators are left with no option but to go hell for leather and overload, over-complicate and overextend themselves when it comes to actually making the damned thing! Nolan has in the past provided massively entertaining well written, scripted and directed works of cinema, (TDK, Inception and YES prestige) I do not doubt his talent.

    TDKR was not one of them, the dialogue lacked the wit and pithy impact of the previous film to the point where everything felt rushed and miscued. The plot 'twists' were obvious, unnecessary and entirely un-intriguing. The action scenes were fine, a little drab although I appreciate the 'broken Batman' concept. Bane was good and would have appeared better if the rest of the plot had stood well around him. A suitably frightening bad guy I loved the voice and the interactions between him and his army (although why they are so willing to die at his command is never fully explained). The prison scene could have worked in another film, similar to Batman Begins for example, but were an irritating and contrived side plot, especially the whole rock climbing bit (was this the key scene? Not sure). Give a director enough budget and he will drop your expectations through a trapdoor.
    Full Review »