The Dark Knight Rises: "I Do Fear Death. I Fear Dying In Here, While My City Burns, And There's No One There To Save It",

Director: Christopher Nolan
Writer:    Christopher Nolan
               David S Goyer
Starring: Christian Bale
               Tom Hardy
               Anne Hathaway
               Joseph Gordon-Levitt
               Gary Oldman
               Michael Caine
               Marion Cotillard
               Morgan Freeman
               Matthew Modine
               Juno Temple
               Liam Neeson
               Cillian Murphy
Rating:    *****

Release Date: Out Now 

Let me start off by letting you all in to a little secret...this is the first entry into the Dark Knight Trilogy that I have actually seen. I know it is outrageous and most of you will probably be unable to understand why, but after seeing The Dark Knight Rises I can honestly say that I will be watching the first 2 films in the next few days. The almost 3 hour long blockbuster is a spectacle that is not to be missed, it is filled with action, drama, laughter, heartfelt emotion and everything else that you could ever want when going to the cinema. I also find Nolan's decision not to film this, or convert this, film in 3D rather inspiring; recently, I get the impression that film makers are forced into using it by the bigwigs in order to pull in bigger audiences and make more money, however most of the time it does ruin the experience, so for Nolan to avoid it is the best thing he could've done.

Christian Bale
The story begins eight years after the events that took place in The Dark Knight, Bruce Wayne (Bale), still suffering from his ill-fated injuries, is now a recluse in his mansion where he is trying his hardest to shut out the real world. Due to the apparently flawless Harvey Dent Act, most of Gotham's crime is deteriorating, meaning the streets are safe; rendering Wayne's alter-ego, Batman, unnecessary.

Unluckily for the slightly harmonious city, this peace is about to come to an explosive halt. A terrifying, masked terrorist named Bane (Hardy) makes it his mission to destroy the city and destroy thousands of lives. With the city's destruction imminent, and fear building throughout the homes of families, there is only one question of everybodies lips; will Batman return to save Gotham City's residents.

Anne Hathaway
Of course after fighting his physical issues, conscience, and caring butler Alfred (Caine), Wayne does indeed revive Batman. Unfortunately for him, Bane will be harder to stop than first anticipated, so Batman calls on the help from accomplices old and new. Commissioner of the Gotham Police Department James Gordon (Oldman); trustworthy friend Lucius Fox (Freeman); kind, yet powerful business woman Miranda Tate (Cotillard); determined police officer John Blake (Gordon-Levitt); and sexy, sultry cat burglar Selina Kyle (Hathaway).

The cast are terrific and each adds their own unique and special spark to their characters and the story. They all come together with ease, and make themselves feel real, natural and believable. The stand out performances for me however are from two of my favourite actors. Hathaway and Hardy are two of the newbies t the franchise, yet they fit themselves in perfectly like two missing puzzle pieces. Hathaway pulls on every bit of sex appeal she has and injects it into her confident and kick-ass portrayal of Catwoman. Hardy in the other hand, is genuinely intimidating, imposing and really rather frightening; in fact he really should go down as one of the greatest cinematic villains in history.

Tom Hardy
Nolan's direction is so beautifully constructed, emotive and put together, that he definitely deserves an Oscar nod this coming award season. He mixes intense action, slick fight sequences, and gritty drama and emotion astoundingly well. I was actually really surpised at how emotional the film was, a surprise that I was more than willing to welcome.

At almost 3 hours long, you'd think that at some point you would get fidgety and bored; but there is so much happening and it rarely really lets up, that you find yourself on the edge of your seat fom start to finish. I personally thought that there couldn't possibly be a superhero film that would be able to compete with The Amazing Spider-Man this summer, but The Dark Knight Rises has massively achieved that. It is much darker than Spidey's adventures admittedly, but it is much more exciting and breathtaking all at the same time.

 The Dark Knight Rises - Trailer

(L-R) Marion Cotillard, Tom Hardy, Matthew Modine, Gary Oldman, Liam Neeson, Christian Bale,
Michael Caine, Anne Hathaway, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy & Joseph Gordon-Levitt