Welcome dear readers to the brand new B95 Movie Hive! As you can see we have very cool looking new websites with all kinds of new content. Well I cannot think of a better way to kick off the new Movie Hive than with one of the best and biggest films of the year, The Dark Knight Rises?! The final Batman film in Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy arrived on Blu-Ray and DVD this week and you can read my review of the film below. It is, however, a rather slow weekend at the theater. There is only one new wide release this weekend and it's called Playing for Keeps starring Gerard Butler and Jessica Biel. I suspect this will be another strong weekend for some of the holdovers including Breaking Dawn Part 2, Lincoln and Skyfall. Check out all of this and more below.
Star Trek Into Darkness Gets a Trailer
As 2012 begins to wind down (there are still alot of great movies set to release before the ball drops) studios are anxious to start promoting their big 2013 summer tentpole films. One of those big movies is Star Trek Into Darkness the follow up to J.J. Abrams re-energized (sorry couldn't help myself) take on the original crew of the starship Enterprise. The trailer is dark, brooding, and the effects work looks to be beyond stellar. Who is the new villain? I have no idea other than he is played by the wonderful Benedict Cumberbatch (War Horse) and knowing Abrams we're not likely to find out anytime soon. I'm OK with that because a lot of films during the marketing process reveal just about every secret they have so a little mystery is fine by me. Take a peek at the new trailer and let me know what you think in the comments below.
Opening This Weekend
Playing for Keeps - Rated PG-13 - Starring Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Dennis Quaid
A former sports star who's fallen on hard times starts coaching his son's soccer team as a way to get his life together. His attempts to become an adult are met with challenges from the attractive soccer moms who pursue him at every turn.
Blu-Ray/DVD Pick of the Week - The Dark Knight Rises
I'm going to start out this review by saying Christopher Nolan absolutely knocks the finale of his Dark Knight trilogy out of the park. Unlike many past series of films in this genre Nolan did not stumble when it came to the third film. This will and should go down as one of the greatest super hero trilogies of all time, but enough praise let's get to actually talking about the film.
The Dark Knight Rises picks up eight years after the tragic end to The Dark Knight and Bruce Wayne finds himself in a very dark and dismal place. He has secluded himself in his mansion and no one has seen or heard from him in those years. Gotham however has flourished as the new Dent Act has done away with organized crime and the streets are clean, but a new enemy has emerged and threatens to bring Gotham to its ultimate destruction. Bane, a ruthless terrorist, has stolen a nuclear device, cut off Gotham from the rest of the world and declared martial law. Bruce must return from his self imposed exile to once again dawn the cape and cowl to protect the people of his fair city.
Unlike The Dark Knight where Heath Ledger stole the show as The Joker this movie belongs to Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne. He gives a haunting performance as a man who has lost everything and now finds himself in a world he cannot see himself in thus the self imposed exile. Bruce is a broken man, literally and figuratively, who would give any shrink nightmares. What's also fascinating about The Dark Knight Rises is Batman is barely in it which is also one of the reasons why I love this series so much. Nolan has always been more interested in exploring the man who becomes Batman. Batman Begins flushed out the origins of Bruce’s transformation into the Batman, while The Dark Knight Rises explores the repercussions of that decision. To reiterate, most of the Dark Knight dealt with the idea that Bruce was looking to leave the persona of the Batman behind and become a normal, functioning member of society. He would marry the love of his life, Rachel, and leave Harvey Dent to clean up the streets of Gotham. The Joker changed all that by destroying Harvey and murdering Rachel. Just like the Joker said “you can never go back, you’ve changed things forever.” When Bruce put on the mask he was no longer Bruce Wayne, he was Batman. Batman was now his persona and Bruce Wayne was just a facade.
Kudos must also be paid to the wonderful supporting cast (it's really hard to call them that when you look at the names involved) especially Tom Hardy and Anne Hathaway. Tom Hardy is one of the brightest young talents in Hollywood right now and makes Bane one of the most interesting villains Batman has had to tango with. Even though Hardy has to spend the entire film with a muzzle on his face, which makes for some rather awkward scenes because you can’t understand a word that is coming out of his mouth, what he does with his eyes and body language is astonishing. However, when you can understand him his delivery mixed with his brute strength is enough to make you want to scamper out of the room with your tail between your legs. He just commands the screen when he is up there and in IMAX you do feel yourself sliding down into your seat a bit when he arrives. Anne Hathaway is also just outstanding as the new Catwoman. She has all the sass that Michelle Pfeiffer did in Batman Returns just minus the mental breakdown, but also brings a wit and charm that makes her irresistible. There's also fine work done by Michael Caine as Bruce's most trusted ally and friend Alfred, Morgan Freeman as Lucius, and Gary Oldman as Commissioner Gordon.
I won't say The Dark Knight Rises is perfect, despite my glowing review thus far, it does have some problems. I already mentioned one of them being Bane's face mask the other is plot holes. These plot holes you just cannot get around while watching. I will say this though it is a testament to Mr. Nolan that even with these plot holes staring you straight in the face you don't have time to mull over them because the epic scope and grandeur of his film makes them seem rather small in comparison.
The Dark Knight Rises at times is a very bleak movie, but like the title suggests our characters rise above the shadows and into the light. The ending is everything and more that I could have hoped for and leaves us on an emotional high. I applaud the work that was done by the entire cast and crew and though it is sad to see this story end it is one that I and many others will cherish through the years to come. Well done Mr. Nolan, well done.