Review: The Dark Knight Rises

Right off the bat (no pun intended), let me tell you that The Dark Knight Rises, which I saw in the theater last night, wasn’t a film I would rate five stars out of five. If that is going to upset you, then stop reading now, please.

In short: absolutely formula, no depth to most of the characters (least of all, Mr. Wayne), incredibly predictable, totally overdone special effects. And last but not least: a scene completely and absolutely stolen from Dan Brown’s
Angels and Demons.

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I’m a Trekkie of the first hour (well, maybe the fourth hour) - in other words, I was exposed to Star Trek at an early age, when Captain Kirk and Spock roamed the universe. In a sense, the Star Trek of the 60’s is the baseline for me in regards to action and special effects.

Another series that is certainly highly influential on me in that regard (albeit at a somewhat later age) is Dr. Who with Tom Baker. if I try to discount the bias that forms in every human being through influence (positive or negative) in childhood, I think it is safe to say that both of these TV programs had a lot of thought and energy put into making this “right” - at least as right as was possible in the days before software-generated special effects.

And because those special effects were so awful (yet ingenious, such as zooming in on a glass plate on black velvet and sprinkled with salt to generate the famous “warp 10” of the Enterprise), the story could only succeed with, well, the story!

Imagine, if you will, The Dark Knight Rises with 60’s or 70’s special effects. The story would fall apart. What might have worked in a comic book format (using the imagination of the reader to generate all the moving frames between two printed ones) certainly only works in Film by replacing those imagined frames by celluloid (yea yea, I know, it’s digital now) ones, taking from the viewer the last remaining chore - imagining.

For anyone that prefers reading books with mostly text to comics and that expects a decent storyline in a movie, I really recommend you use the ticket money to pick up a decent novel.