Sooo … How Much Longer?

The Dark Knight Rises – IMAX Prologue (December 18, 2011)     4.5/5

Directed by Christopher Nolan

It is hard to believe how the prologue to Christopher Nolan’s conclusion to his Batman trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises, could be any less of a visceral thrill. We open with the first six minutes of the film, bookmarked by a glimpse of unseen clips, including those of Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman and moments of riot-like action on Gotham’s streets. The prologue is played before specified screenings of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol in IMAX, and utilizes the format more thrillingly than I have ever seen, other than the feature film it precedes (see below). Most of the sequence takes place in the air, and it is surely a mindblowing, sensory experience, only made more exciting as the first chords of Hans Zimmer’s familiar score begin to blast in the final seconds.

Like The Dark Knight‘s opening sequence, what we have is a suspenseful, undeniably intense action scene, although this one is arguably on a much larger scale (the other was a bank robbery). And like Heath Ledger’s Joker was revealed, we also get our first extended moments with Tom Hardy’s Bane. He obviously looks great; sinister and compelling in equal measure. Only one problem – you can’t understand nearly anything he says. Hardy has a heavy British accent, and when it is altered by the weird mask-thing Bane wears, it’s nearly incomprehensible. But luckily, we do catch a few badass lines. When Bane is asked if he would die without his mask, the villain responds – “It would be extremely painful … for you.” Due to critical reaction, I think Nolan plans to revise Bane’s “dialect” in post-production. I mean, that thing needs ADR to the max. If you saw the prologue and want to understand Bane’s dialogue, or have not witnessed the scene and eagerly want somebody to spoil it for you, I found the script for the prologue online, on What Would Tyler Durden Do? – the link is directly below.

http://www.wwtdd.com/enlargedimage/?back_to=/2011/12/script-pages-from-the-dark-knight-rises-have-leaked/dkrs_1/&postid=948022

Sound issues aside, Nolan has simply crafted a triumph of the IMAX format, his larger-than-life, Hollywood filmmaking trumping 3D any day. Although what Nolan wanted to showcase was the nature of how he shot such scenes, he has also succeeded in making us want a lot more. July 20 couldn’t come soon enough.

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