Iffy for 14+
Bale's final Batman is as gritty and dark as the first two.
What Parents Need to Know
Editor's Note: For tips on talking to your kids about the tragic shooting that took place in Colorado during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises, we hope our advice helps you manage this difficult situation.Parents need to know that The Dark Knight Rises is the final installment in director Christopher Nolan's dark, violent Batman trilogy. Like its predecessors, The Dark Knight Rises features ultra-violent scenes of torture and death that are too intense for younger kids used to the nearly comic, stylized action violence of other superhero films. A disturbingly high body count is achieved via massive explosions, kidnappings, neck breakings, shootings, and hand-to-hand combat. While there's not a lot of actual blood, there's tons of death and mass destruction. Bruce Wayne enjoys a few passionate kisses and one love scene that shows bare shoulders; swearing is very infrequent (the strongest words used are "bitch" and "damn"). The film's villain, Bane, is monstrously muscled and frighteningly sadistic, and his mask is very scary looking. Despite the violence, be prepared for kids to beg to see the much-hyped Caped Crusader's latest adventure.
- Families can talk about the amount of violence in The Dark Knight Rises. How does it compare to what you've seen in other superhero movies? How does the film differentiate between "good" and "bad" uses of violence?
- What distinguishes Batman from Bane? Both are angry and rely on violence to accomplish their goals; why is one a hero and one a villain? Is the rule of law more important than the rule of force?
- Bruce Wayne isn't the only orphan in the movie. How does orphanhood shape the three orphaned characters? While anger motivates each of them, why do some choose to do good and others evil?
- What does it take to maintain order in the face of those who try to create chaos? Does keeping the public safe from harm justifying curtailing their right to privacy?
- Would you like to see the story continue with a successor? Which of the trilogy is your favorite?
The good stuff
Messages: Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy explores many philosophical ideas about identity, responsibility, power, hope, despair, sacrifice, and justice. Revenge is also a key theme of The Dark Knight Rises, which is, at its core, a meditation on the duality of humanity -- for instance in how the memory of Harvey Dent contrasted with the reality of how he died affects all of Gotham. What does it mean to be good? The villain Bane questions whether police officers are instruments of justice or of oppression and whether Batman is a man of honor or a man who betrayed a code of honor.
Role models: Unlike almost every other superhero, Bruce Wayne/Batman isn't an alien or a mutant. He doesn't have superhuman strength; he's a rich man with some nifty gadgets and an extraordinary need to protect the citizens of Gotham -- as well as avenge the anger that drives him. Bruce isn't perfect, and he often makes mistakes (especially about whom to trust), but he summons his courage for the good of Gotham, even though it comes at considerable personal cost to him, both physically and emotionally. John Blake is an upstanding, responsible, loyal cop who always tries his best to do the right thing. Selina Kyle starts off as just a ruthless jewel thief, but her interactions with Batman/Bruce help her become less selfish and more helpful. Bruce's two mentors and friends, Alfred and Mr. Fox, are loyal and loving toward him. Bane is cruel and callous.
What to watch for
Violence: Like The Dark Knight, this movie has frequent, cringe-inducingly realistic violence on top of the standard, high-octane action violence that's so prevalent in superhero films. Some moments are horrifyingly up close and personal: neck breakings, stabbings, hand-to-hand combat, and there's also the enormous collateral damage of wide scale destruction: bombings, fireballs, massive explosions, building collapses, shootings, and more. Many, many people are trapped, held hostage, killed, tortured, and executed, and Bruce Wayne himself is injured in painful, nearly irreparable ways. Villain Bane is very scary-looking, with his mask and bulked-up aggression. The movie opens with a terrifying plane takeover/crash; weapons include guns, knives, bows and arrows, bombs, fists, and more. A dead teen boy's body is shown washed up outside a sewer grate. Batman and Selina are at odds over Batman's "no guns, no killing" rule.
Sex: While the romance isn't as central here as in The Dark Knight, Bruce Wayne/Batman kisses two different women. In one case, a passionate kiss leads to lovemaking, although the sex is off camera. Afterward, Bruce and his partner are shown (she's bare-shouldered, he's bare-chested) snuggling and kissing in front of a fireplace. In two other scenes, Bruce enjoys brief but passionate kisses with a woman.
Language: Language includes infrequent use of words including "damn," "bitch," "hell," and "sons of bitches," as well as "Jesus" (as an exclamation) and insults such as "idiot," "stupid," and "hag."
Consumerism: Part of a popular comic book franchise. No overt product placements, though some car brands are seen, and Bruce Wayne's black Lamborghini makes another appearance.
Drinking, drugs and smoking: Adults drink cocktails at Gotham's ritzy dinner parties and costume galas.
Fan Reviews provided by
The Dark Knight Rises .... Then Falls by Darkola
THE GOOD... Batman himself, again I enjoyed the parts of seeing him, Alfred as always, and the appearance of Catwoman, she was an added bonus to this movie, and the action sceenes.
THE BAD ... Pretty much everything else, the story was terrible, the bad guy "Bane" came nowhere even close to matching a character like The Joker, I know thats a hard act to follow, but this wasnt even close by any means. The BatPlane ... or whatever you want to call it, when it first appeared all I thought of was "Really, are you kidding ?" where and how that goofy thing made it into this movie is beyond me.
This was a movie I wanted to like alot, but came out so disappointed with it, especially for a movie that was going to wrap up Nolans version of Batman ... it just went wrong, from the plot of the story, to a villain that did nothing for me, to new gadgets that are to far fetched and just rediculous. The movie felt long, dragged on, and not enough of Batman, I'd give it 2 1/2 out of 4 stars.
Midnight showing was worth it! And the wheels on that 'cycle....CRAZY! by msross27
"The Dark Knight Rises": YES HE DID!!! This movie is FRICKIN' AWESOME 8) Major props for not giving away ANYTHING in the trailers (fantastic surprises), as well as keeping the audience's attention w/that much "story" in relation to the action (in some ways this film seemed more a "drama" than an "action" flick, but in a very positive way and I'm an action gal). Bane was a little hard to understand at times but his role was phenomenally played- I'd hate to meet him in a dark or bright alley! I actually think I heard people crying towards the end of the movie lol. IDK...this may be my favorite film of 2011 considering The Avengers was fantastic and I enjoyed the new Spider-man...this one is a winner!
Oh yeah...I can't recall Batman in this much daylight (in this series) in the previous 2 films and he and Bane looked great, and not fake. So rise from darkness he did. If they choose to do anything, "in any direction" in the future, I'm all in.
WOW by aj8560
That has to be one of the best endings to a movie I have ever seen. It was easily worth the money spent and I can almost promise that I will see this again in theatres before it comes out on DVD. MUST SEE!
Simply brilliant! by Biggie21
It is the perfect end to an amazing trilogy. Your emotions will go on a serious roller coaster. Not only is the entire movie a perfect way to end the series. But the ending to the movie was just a stroke of great story telling. Now I gotta see it in IMAX!
A solid ending. by paintsniper01
"The Dark Knight Rises" was an excellent ending to the series that (without spoilers) I felt effectively ended this particular series while leaving room for expansion in this Batman universe.
Anne Hathaway did an excellent job of bringing the Catwoman character to life in a way that didn't feel forced, and the returning characters did not disappoint. Beyond the actors, the fight scenes were excellently done, the special effects budget had to have been astounding, and the new toys were all most appreciated.
The movie only falls short of "Must GO" because of a couple things. The Bane in the movie was a believably foil for the Dark Knight, but his story was a very sharp departure from the original comic book character. Additionally, while I wasn't looking for a 100% bulletproof plot (this is a superhero movie after all), a few gaping things stuck out. I just can't picture Batman sitting in a police car and chatting about his secret identity when everything is being recorded.
It's a must go......even Blue-Ray will not duplicate the theater viewing. by Nacho Baggo
The film is huge and the story is too big for one movie, but it wraps up perfectly despite the challenges of a compressed & hugely faceted story and the difficulty to follow time. Days went by? A lot of dialogue is garbled, too.
The BAT urban copter was a great CGI achievement. Very well done.
Anne Hathaway was a good Catwoman.
Michael Kane poured out his heart and soul for a very heart warming performance.
It is a must go to see the end of this trilogy and the new characters to follow.
Worth ful price.
An unexpected ending for another future perhaps... by tt_232010
I was pleased with the film, yet, just like Time and other critics, I wanted more. This Batman was different, flawed and showed a behavior more common with cowards than vigilantes. Perhaps Nolan wanted a story to succeed off a hair string? A story so practical that it is believable. The character Bane was rich in substance and almost as mystique as the batman himself. There was rich, rich dialogue-somewhat esoteric-in the film. I knew going in that Nolan had huge shoes to fill. The choreography of combat was typical, nothing that batman can only do. The methods of control, subjugation and counterattack are genius. The cast was handpicked from everywhere. They even had the Steelers runnerback in this movie. Catwoman was Catwoman- A diva of her craft and ally for the Bat. I cant say that I was mesmerize like the 2008 Dark Knight. This is due partly because I knew the style Nolan would take in directing this film. But this is a Blockbuster for sure
A perfect yet bittersweet send off to this Batman trilogy. by reyka_reykjavik
As before, Nolan has done his homework on the Batman storyline. He and crew have creatively put their own twist on it without crossing any lines; only blurring them to achieve great cinematic effect.
Great action for those type of fans who don't know much of the Batman story; great story for those of us who do. Indie art house fans who wont budge for anything remotely this big, this is not for you, or your judgement. I can confidently say you have less than ZERO input!
It's a bittersweet fulfillment to watch this empire say farewell, but the bar has been raised so high, one would doubt that it can be matched or outdone for that matter. However, with that said, the potential for reboots and/or continuations could be astonishing.
On a side note, my heart goes out to the families and friends of the victims in Colorado.
Is this Batman by kevnic
Christopher Nolan's last installment of Dark Knight was disappointing as an action film and as a follow up to The Dark Knight. The Plot suffers as in order for the plan of the antagonist to work poor decisions have to be made by key figures. The movie is also slow and therefore long with parts that make you think "Really" (eg. Major back surgery needed,resolve just crack my back and I'll do some pushups). I like watching movies when the vilans plans are ingenious, I like the champions rise to be greater and that is what makes them better than us all. Plus all fans of Batman should be disappointed as batman's identity seems to be known by just about everyone also Bain is way to intelligent and well spoken to be simply his alter ego a thug. What the film does well is great acting by almost every character even the almost intellectual bain whose voice is something impressive. Spoiler alert. There is a plot twist at the end that makes me really wonder why Bain had to have as much dialogue
Amazing! (Spoilers) by kevjam79
This movie put the final touch on Christian Bale's Batman. However, is it over? Can Batman truly end at this? Will John Blake become Robin or Nightwing?
I really enjoyed the Catwoman and Batman interaction. The Bane back brake was perfect. Again where does this leave Batman? No more Wayne Enterprises.... The film was perfect in every way. Christopher Nolan is a genius!
Enjoy the flick folks! It is amazing!