This movie is exactly what fans demanded after watching TDK; it's exactly the gritty, grim tale that you wanted to see once again. Whether or not that's actually a good thing is another story. First off, there's a lot of repetitive elements here: A psychopath, hellbent on destroying Gotham For The Evulz, normal people standing up to the bad guys in the climax, and a Twist Ending with the revelation of a new villain. Which, unfortunately, anyone familiar with Batman/Ra's Al Ghul mythos can see coming from a mile away. They've tried to build up on the previous film, which works, but only to some extent. My biggest issue with the story was that, somewhere along the way, it stopped being about Bane and became all about Ra's. Which is a pity, because Bane just steals the show every single time he's on screen. There's not many actors who can say lines like "Ohhh you think DARKNESS is your ally?" and "The shadows betray you because they belong to ME!" and pull it off in a reality-grounded film series like this. I don't know if the actor mimicked the voice himself or if it was digitally altered (possibly both), but anyway, nicely done. Similar great performances by the rest of the supporting cast, as well as the behind-the-scenes crew: cinematography, camera, art, etc. etc. The music was great but a bit too loud; combined with the length of the film I left the theater with a headache. They've tried to adapt the No Mans Land event here, but I feel like they didn't go all the way with it and it just comes off feeling rushed. It would've been great if they'd actually adapted it all the way through, because NML is a rare bat-event favourite of mine. Instead, once again, it became all about Ra's and The League Of Shadows. The prison scenes were unnecessary and just campy. Just because its a hole in the ground it's supposed to be some hell on earth? There aren't any gangs among the prisoners; there seems to be no shortage of food or water; there are no guards at all, and the inmates live in harmony and cheer each other during escape attempts. This is the worst prison in the world? Not TDK-level but its a great popcorn movie; view it was a Summer Blockbuster and try to have fun. Overall 7/10.
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