Dark Knight Rises

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We were invited to a premiere of the latest and eargerly anticipated Batman film, Dark Knight Rises, at Nottingham Cineworld in the Cornerhouse on Wednesday night a full two days (count them) before general release.  Without giving away the film's plot or reviewing it in its entirety here's a few things to look out for when you go and watch it at Cineworld.

The Dark Knight Rises follows the storyline 8 years on from its prequel.  Bruce Wayne has become a recluse, Wayne Enterprises is suffering and Batman is no more.  The people of Gotham have enjoyed 8 years free from serious crime and have not needed The Batman.  Until now.

Tom Hardy showcases his flexibility playing Bain, it was always going to be a hard role to live up to after Heath Ledger's stunning interpretation of the Joker but those characters are so far apart no comparison can really be made.

The physique change from Warrior is mind blowing. At times the voice of the character can be hard to understand, the mask preventing viewers from seeing any lip movements teamed with the vocal effects is a bad combination and there were a few times I wanted to turn to my neighbour to ask what he said!

Anne Hathaway takes on the role of Catwoman with a light hearted mischievous approach, which is refreshing compared to the heavy emotional aspects of the other main characters.  She most definitely pulls off the cat suit (not literally), which will undoubtedly please some viewers.

The old Wayne Manor is back which is a relief after it being out of The Dark Knight; the breathtaking backdrop of Wollaton Hall adds some much needed period charm to the otherwise concrete jungle of Gotham City.

The story takes us on a rollercoaster ride of extremes in genre, one minute you're watching Wayne deal with the complex emotions surrounding the fall of Batman and the loss of his lifelong love, Rachel, and the next is a visually mind blowing action sequence.  It is a welcome addition to see the emotional side of Bruce Wayne and nice development of the character which moves him away from his previous playboy image. There are some highly charged scenes between Alfred (Michael Cain) which stretches the Butler/Boss relationship beyond what was hinted at previously.

The moments when Bain brings Gotham to its knees provide some worryingly realistic special effects that spark thoughts back to real terrorism and devastation witnessed on 9/11, touching on the threat to economy and financial crisis this part of the story offers viewers food for thought.

This is easily one of the most anticipated films this year and it does not fail to disappoint.  It is a shame to see the back of the Batman trilogy but all good things must come to an end and it does not leave any stone unturned.  Viewers will come away completely satisfied yet still waiting in anticipation but saying anything further would spoil the surprise!

Be prepared with refreshments and toilet visits; at 2 hrs 45 minutes it's longer than expected.