Generally favorable reviews - based on 45 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 3188 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , , , , , ,
  • Summary: It has been eight years since Batman vanished into the night, turning, in that instant, from hero to fugitive. Assuming the blame for the death of D.A. Harvey Dent, the Dark Knight sacrificed everything for what he and Commissioner Gordon both hoped was the greater good. For a time the lie worked, as criminal activity in Gotham City was crushed under the weight of the anti-crime Dent Act. But everything will change with the arrival of a cunning cat burglar with a mysterious agenda. Far more dangerous, however, is the emergence of Bane, a masked terrorist whose ruthless plans for Gotham drive Bruce out of his self-imposed exile. But even if he dons the cape and cowl again, Batman may be no match for Bane. (Warner Bros. Pictures) Expand
  • Director: Christopher Nolan
  • Genre(s): Action, Adventure, Drama, Thriller, Crime
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Runtime: 165 min
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 45
  2. Negative: 2 out of 45
  1. Reviewed by: Todd Gilchrist
    Jul 23, 2012
    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: Lou Lumenick
    Jul 18, 2012
    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.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Jul 18, 2012
    The miracle of Nolan's Batman trilogy is the way it imprints those myths with the dread-soaked tenor of the times.
  4. Reviewed by: Xan Brooks
    Jul 16, 2012
    The Dark Knight Rises may be a hammy, portentous affair but Nolan directs it with aplomb. He takes these cod-heroic, costumed elements and whisks them into a tale of heavy-metal fury, full of pain and toil, surging uphill, across the flyovers, in search of a climax.
  5. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Jul 18, 2012
    While it's the most ambitious of the three films, it's not as mesmerizing as 2008's "The Dark Knight." The plot is occasionally murky, its archvillain lacks charismatic menace, and the last hour is belabored.
  6. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Jul 17, 2012
    Chaos reigns for much of The Dark Knight Rises, often in big, beautiful, IMAX-size scenes that only Nolan could have conceived. Yet when the apocalyptic dust literally settles on this concluding chapter, the character who lingers longest in memory is an average Gotham City cop named John Blake, wonderfully played with human-scale clarity by Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
  7. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Jul 18, 2012
    Halfheartedly, I give The Dark Knight Rises - the third and final Batflick in the Nolan trilogy - one star for eardrum-busting sound effects and glaucoma-inducing computerized images in blinding Imax, but talk about stretching things.

See all 45 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 81 out of 784
  1. Jul 30, 2012
    This movie was absolutely great. It made me feel all good inside. OMG it was so good!!! Many parts were great in the movie giving an epic feel to the overall movie including the moment batman comes out once more and the final fight scene with bane and all the police. I also enjoyed the fact that in the end you are given a little awesome boost with robin!!! Expand
  2. Jul 22, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I saw this film midnight on July 19th as part of the Dark Knight marathon, showing all three films in a row. I can honestly say this made the experience even better because it let me in on the fact that the Dark Knight trilogy is the "Star Wars" trilogy of this generation. In my eyes, a trilogy should end with no more questions, everything answered and wrapped up, with only your imagination with "what happened" next when it's all said and done, and this trilogy did just that. I only wish that the Hollywood system would produce more stories like this onto the thousands of screens across the world. Time to break down my favorite aspects of the Dark Knight Rises film. First off, the ending. Batman (Christian Bale) latches onto a nuke and starts up The Bat to take it out of Gotham before it blows, but before he does, he gives a small hint to Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) that reveals just who Batman is to Jim, who says to himself in a chilling moment "Bruce Wayne?". Then, as Batman has the bomb safely away from the city, it blows up. In such an emotional moment of the film, you can't help by get that feeling in your throat as the Dark Knight sacrifices himself to save the city that was almost doomed. That feeling becomes stronger as Alfred (Michael Caine) stands over the grave of Bruce Wayne, and weaps. Almost in tears with what happens, your heart begins to beat a bit faster when Jim Gorden discovers a new Bat signal, as you get a small bit of confusion, a feeling takes over you...that feeling is Hope. Alfred sits down in a cafe in Italy, the same as the dream he explained earlier in the film, and looks up and smiles, you know exactly what's coming next and you cannot help but smile as it reveals Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle, happy as can be. I had cold chills throughout this ending and I couldn't control the emotion driving through my body. There could not have been a better ending to this film. Film is all about feeling something, and being almost in tears for a sad reason one minute, and then smiling and crying like a small child the next, is an indescribably feeling. It will be a long time until I feel this about a film again. Michael Caine needs to be recognized for this film. Alfred has a larger role in this film that he has in any other of the films, and it's incredible to watch. Alfred has always been the one and only person that can stand up to Bruce/Batman and get away with it. He's the voice of reason throughout the series, and the caring father figure that Bruce needed. In this film, Alfred reaches a new low in his life, having a heavy fear that Bruce will become Batman again, and end up in a grave, leaving Alfred completely alone and taking away the last person he cares about. Caine was the stand out emotional performance in this film, and when Alfred leaves Bruce in the middle of the film, an emptiness is felt until you see the familiar face again. It's been reported that Christian Bale told Christopher Nolan that he would be Batman, as long as Robin wasn't in the films. I agreed with this because it would have taken away from the main story of Bruce Wayne/Batman in the films. Or so I thought. John Blake (Joseph Gorden-Levitt) is a Gotham cop, who knows the identity of Batman and gives Bruce Wayne the push to come back. He also helps in the fight against Bane's army to save Gotham. In short, the John Blake character was a very rewarding character. But the most interesting and awesome information about John Blake is revealed in the last moments of the film, when it's revealed his legal name is Robin John Blake. I didn't think a Robin could be done right in a "real" and "gritty" film series like the Dark Knight trilogy, but I was wrong. Alright, so I'm running out of characters in this review so this is going to be a speed round of what else I liked about the film. Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle was great. Many people thought she was a poor choice for the character, but it's done so well and she brought it to life. Bane is also such a physical force on screen. What Tom Hardy is able to do with limited facial expressions is phenomenal, especially when tears fall from his eyes when it's revealed he was a protector of Talia Al Ghul. The cameo appearance of Cillian Murphy as Scarecrow was subtle but perfect. It was such a nice little touch to a film that wrapped up the full story of Batman Begins. My hat if off to you Mr. Nolan. You were able to bring the art of story telling to a new height in a system that seems to forget about it way too often. I'm excited to see what is next in the Nolan film world. I'll always remember the first time I saw this film, the last film, and the first film. This was and is the perfect trilogy. Thank you to those who told this amazing story Expand
  3. Jul 20, 2012
    The 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
  4. Aug 10, 2012
    Its a really good movie and just what I expect from Christopher Nolan.its just like any other movies that Christopher Nolan makes it has a great plot and a good ending, but officer Blake should've been the kid that Bruce Wayne/batman gave one of his 'gadgets' to from batman:begins. Bruce Wayne has hidden his identity from the whole citizens of Gotham and for a mere kid to know he's batman is just impossible. Expand
  5. Jul 21, 2012
    A wonderful end to the finest superhero-themed trilogy one has ever seen. Every character is developed fantastically, from the villainous Bane to the ever loyal Alfred, the hardened Commissioner Gordon and finally the Caped Crusader himself. A must see for anyone who wants more than their admission ticket's worth. Expand
  6. Aug 10, 2012
    Very well done conclusion to the trilogy with enough plot to have easily made up two movies and taken up over four hours. As it stands, the plot was squeezed and rushed through an already long time frame, but the movie comes out aces due to great performances from Caine, Bale, and Hathaway. Expand
  7. Jul 21, 2012
    It's not only the sequel we need, it's the sequel we deserve!

    I came out of the cinema having been taken on an emotional rollercoaster. No
    one can follow that, no reboot can touch Nolans trilogy.

    I did not think it possible that I would enjoy a movie more than Avengers this year, I was wrong.

See all 784 User Reviews


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