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The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

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The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Sun Aug 05, 2012 3:56 am

Assuming, of course, that Seamaster finally got 'er done this weeked . . .
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  East on Sun Aug 05, 2012 7:33 pm

I am going to take this to mean no he didn't
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:28 pm

I saw the movie yesterday (in Imax -- it cost me $20 for the ticket) and I braved the nasty crowded theatre that I hate.

I have to run to do a presentation (another thing I dislike -- it's right up there with spiders), but I am happy to discuss whatever. Let er' rip. Loved the scene taken right from the end of Knightfall by the way.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Tue Aug 07, 2012 4:05 pm

Well, I do not have a ton of time right now either, but I can now safely tell you that the other story arc that they borrowed heavily from was Bane of the Demon, where Bane joins the League of Assassins and works for Ra's al Ghul because he has fallen for Talia. While we knew that Knightfall was going to be used in some capacity or another, and even the trailers for the film made it clear that No Man's Land was also an inspiration, I did not see that one coming. In fact, while much of the speculation regarding the casting suggested that Marion Cotilard was possibly playing Talia, they fooled me with the false reveal that Bane was actually Ra's offspring. Given the way that Nolan & Co. had played with Ra's mythology in Batman Begins (where Ra's is disguised as Henri Ducard, who in the books is a completely different character) it seemed to fit with how they play with comics continuity.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:41 am

I must confess that I have not come close to reading all of the Batman graphic novels available. Rather, I started with those you recommended and added a few from there (e.g., The Killing Joke). Bane of the Demon is not in my collection, so I did not clue into that story arc.

Of what I understand of Bane's character, I was a little disappointed with how he was disposed of at the end. Struck me as anticlimactic and was topped off with a cheesy one-liner to boot. But overall, that was fairly minor in the grand scheme of the story, which I was happy with, flaws and all. I generally enjoy darker movies and I appreciated that Nolan kept this comic universe somewhat rooted in the real world. Incidentally, there is supposed to be more to Bane's story, but Nolan was restricted to playtime length because of the Imax format. While I am not convinced the movie would have benefited from extra playtime, it will be interesting to see if we get extras on the Blu that explores Bane's background story in more depth.

Regarding Hardy: You're right that he is absolutely huge. But, I was wondering if some of that wasn't CGI. There were scenes where it looked like Bane's skin was festering or bubbling (next time you view, watch the scenes where Bane is under duress and you might see what I mean). I wonder if some clever CGI was used to enhance his bigger-than-life look, though I do not doubt that he packed on real muscle. Speaking of which, have you read this article, which outlines the workout Hardy used to get in shape for Warrior: .http://www.menshealth.co.uk/building-muscle/fast/tom-hardys-warrior-workout. I'm not sure what to make of the workout. On the one hand, I can see it work; on the other hand, it appears to be missing some key elements for the kind of bulk Hardy put on.

Hathaway did a fine job as Selena Kyle. I was pleased with her performance and thought she pulled off the role well. Nolan, too, did well as playing the broken bat. My only issue there was with the way the story progressed. He appeared to get over his injuries too easily, given the crippling effect his tired joints had at the beginning of the movie coupled with a dislodged vertebrae going into the third act.

Initially, I thought the ending was fairly straightforward, but I have since read that there is some debate around what the ending actually comprised and what it means. I took it literally for what it is, but some people believe the scene in Venice was actually Alfred dreaming. I'm not sure I buy that one and I will need to watch more closely during a second viewing.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Thu Aug 09, 2012 5:28 pm

Well, funny you should mention the ending, because when my father and I left the theatre he was clearly under the impression that Wayne survived, and I mentioned the earlier scene when Alfred talks about imagining that he saw Wayne married and happy (and while I would have to see it twice to double check, that imagined flashback is set in the same cafe as the end of the film.) My personal take is that he is dead, but I think that Nolan is deliberately playing games with the audience by planting conflicting clues so that you can interpret it as you will -- there is no definite answer. He did a similar thing with the ending of Inception, and not just because he cuts to credits while the top is still spinning; the top is actually irrelevant since DiCaprio states explicitly in an earlier scene that the top is NOT his own totem, but rather that of Cotillard's character. So if it spins or not it proves nothing. Nolan is often justifiably criticized for too much exposition, but he does like his ambiguities as well.

The more that I think about Hathaway the more that I like her. She plays the character in a way not too dissimilar to how Adrienne Barbeau played the animated Catwoman in Batman: TAS. Sure, I loved Pfeiffer, but this was a more grounded and believable version.

The recovery for Wayne is indeed one of the most often criticized elements in the film, but I am more than willing to forgive it. That is the kind of dramatic cheat that movies do which really does not hurt the story. If they had stretched it out longer, they would have had to stretch out the siege of Gotham longer, and three months or so is an acceptable compromise.

I was familiar enough with Bane going into the film that I never really felt the need for more backstory. We saw enough for me. The anticlimactic finish for him and the one liner did not bother me so much as Kyle's appearance being a pretty obvious deus ex machina, but even that did not bother me too much. Like I said, I am sure that I can enumerate dozens of flaws, but none of them bothered me enough to reduce my enjoyment of the film in the slightest. (Well, on a first viewing, anyway.) Incidentally, I completely missed the Bane of the Demon angle since I just plain forgot about that story, and it was only afterward that the light bulb went off. With Ra's al Ghul being the villain in the first one and Bane in this one, that should have been a major "duh" moment.

But that brings me to what I loved the most about the film, and the entire trilogy. I am simply astonished, flaws notwithstanding, on how both Nolans and David Goyer managed to bring everything together. Not one of the films is based on any one comic, yet each of them draws elements from a variety of different ones, yet manages to combine them into a coherent whole. Not only is that true of each individual film, but it is true of the overall arc of the trilogy. (I am SO glad that I watched the first two films before seeing this one!) The number of arcs that they draw from include The Long Halloween, Batman: Year One, The Dark Knight Returns, The Killing Joke, No Man's Land, Knightfall, Bane of the Demon, and many others, and somehow they pull all of that into a successful narrative arc for the entire trilogy. That feat is even more amazing when you consider that Batman Begins was really a one-shot at the time; Warner Brothers certainly hoped for a successful reboot, but there was no specific plans for sequels at the time, and no guarantee Nolan & Co. would return if there were any. Compare that to the Star Wars series, even the original trilogy, where Lucas had to cheat to cover story continuity issues (such as Ben's rather pathetic dialoge in Jedi covering the plot hole with his story about Darth Vader killing Anakin in Star Wars.) The flaws in each of the three movies in Nolan's Batman films pale next to the staggering achievement of pulling this all together.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:07 pm

I get what you're saying about the ending and it can definitely be taken both ways. On the one hand, how the hell did Batman escape the Bat? On the other, Alfred never saw Bruce and Selena together as a couple; why would he picture them together in his dream?

Nolan and co. have done a fine job of integrating the three movies into one whole. I don't want to defend Lucas, but the one advantage Nolan and co. had is that they could draw their story from the Batman universe and the many comics already produced. In a sense, it is easier to tie everything together because the foundation already exists. Nevertheless, still a fine feat and they should be applauded for developing one of the best trilogies to hit the big screen (in some ways the really big screen, if you think Imax).

My point about Bane is that Nolan almost makes him a sympathetic character. We're teased with that back story and I think a few more minutes dedicated to Bane before he arrived in Gotham would have been entertaining.

Did you get a chance to check out the Hardy workout I linked to?
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:02 am

I definitely believe that Nolan purposefully left contradictory clues in the ending. Interpret it as you will. Most people, including reviewers, seem to take it at face value that he lived. I do not, but theirs is still a valid interpretation.

The point with comparing Nolan to Lucas was that Nolan really was in the same position as Lucas in that the first film was not made with the intention of continuing the story as a trilogy; the later films were written to fit into the framework of the first. I am sure that Nolan and Goyer had some ideas where they would like to go if they did more movies, but the movies themselves were written later. But they managed to make it all fit without any obvious contradictions or glaring inconsistencies, unlike Lucas who continually cheated even in the original trilogy, let alone the prequels. All the more impressive in that they were all original stories, even if inspired by multiple sources -- unlike, say, The Lord of the Rings which worked beautifully as a trilogy, but was based on a pre-existing trilogy that already had the story arc laid out (even if Jackson did shuffle a few events like Shelob's Lair, he still largely followed the existing narrative structure.)

I did look at the workout, and it is very interesting. I doubt that the actual routine provided is an exact copy of Hardy's routine, as it cerrtainly leaves some things out, and it was clearly designed to do without any gym equipment, while I am sure that was not the case with Hardy's training. But I like the notion of more limited sets all throughout the day; the trainer is trying to use the idea of getting caught in a rut as a positive, rather than a negative, which is an interesting notion. But Hardy definitely did the core exercises such as the progressively harder bridges, as the featurette on the Bronson Blu-Ray shows him doing the exact same thing. It would be interesting to try something like that, but my schedule definitely would not permit it.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:04 pm

My schedule also would not allow. I could maybe do it twice a day, perhaps even three times a day, but definitely not four. The bridges are tough. I remember doing those in wrestling and I can see how Hardy got those massive traps if he were doing the higher-level bridge exercises up to four times a day.

That said, I still think he was hitting weights, even if just for core exercises like bench, squats, rows and deadlifts.

I was reflecting on Nolan's trilogy and the other villains that could have been introduced. I'm glad he went with those that he did, as they're essentially normal people, just deranged in someway he. Nolan stayed away from the more supernatural villains, although I did notice the mention of Killer Croc in The Dark Knight Rises. That said, it might have been nice to see Deadshot as a secondary villain.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Fri Aug 17, 2012 3:53 am

Well, of course Zsasz was physically present in the movies, and they certainly could have done more with him later as he would have been a fitting villain for the Nolanverse, but that would probably be pusing his luck with the recognizability factor. Everyone wanted The Joker, Catwoman, The Riddler and The Penguin, and that is not surprising since those are the most easily recognizable villains to anyone not familiar with the comics. Ultimately he gave everyone two out of those four, while pushing things a bit with Ra's al Ghul and Bane (plus Scarecrow, Talia, Falconi and Maroni.) Mind you, it certainly does not hurt that al Ghul and Bane are two of MY favorite members of the Rogue's Gallery! But I will guarantee you that Warner Brothers was pushing him hard for "the big four" villains and he likely had to sell them pretty hard on his choices.

There are other passing references in the films, of course, not just the joke about alligators in the sewers. Most of them are just that, references, with no intention (in my opinion) of ever using them. Of course, the joke about the armor in The Dark Knight being able to stop a cat DID ultimately pay off, but most others did not (and would not, even if there were more movies.) You could argue the "cryo sleep" comment from Fox was an indirect reference to Mr. Freeze. I think people have made way, way too much of the reveal that John Blake's given name was Robin. Of course, no version of Robin in the comics was actually NAMED Robin (Dick Greyson, Tim Drake, Jason Todd, Carrie Kelley, etc.) and Nolan & Bale made it clear that they did not want Robin in their films, so I firmly believe that was nothing more than a joking reference. The most interesting one was John Daggett, which shows how far Nolan trolled through the Batman universe. Roland Daggett was a corrupt industrialist in the Batman: The Animated Series universe, and when John Daggett is simply referred to as Mr. Daggett the reference was clear. Not sure why his first name was changed to John, though the character was killed off pretty quickly while Roland Daggett was a running character, so this John could have been a relative.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:03 am

If The Riddler was done well (as he is portrayed in Hush), I would have been okay with him making an appearance in Nolan's trilogy. Despite the problems Hush faces, The Riddler is given adequate respect, turning him into a worthy opponent for Batman. However, when we get The Riddler that purposely leaves clues so that he can be caught, well, that just gets silly.

The Penguin, for some reason, doesn't interest me and I even liked Devito's performance. That said, The Penguin we get in BTAS isn't too bad. Still, I'm glad Nolan held his ground and explored some of the lesser known villains.

Incidentally, I agree with you regarding Blake. A lot of people in the audience let out a chuckle or knowing sigh when name, Robin, was spoken. I, too, saw it as nothing more than an inside joke. Certainly, Blake's character shares many traits with the Robin characters (Grayson, Todd and Drake), but that does not mean Nolan meant for him to be Robin. And, regardless of the ending's meaning, I think it is well defined that Batman and Wayne have moved on (whether dead or retired). Blake is set up to be the next Batman or protector or Gotham (maybe both) -- a plot progression that is in line with the storyline of Knightfall.

I need to revisit my Batman graphic novel collection. I am sorely missing examples exploring the stories of Ra's al Ghul. I should do something about that, but I will need to do some research to focus in on the best stories first.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Mon Aug 20, 2012 5:06 pm

Start with Tales of the Demon as that collects the original stories introducing him from the Seventies. Then maybe Birth of the Demon, Son of the Demon and Bride of the Demon. Plus maybe Bane of the Demon if you are curious about what they borrowed (and altered) for Dark Knight Rises.

I do like DeVito's version of The Penguin, and Batman Returns is my favorite of the non-Nolan Batman movies. That said, I prefer the version in the Animated Series, at least after the first season when they were still struggling with Warner Brother's insistance on aligning with the character from Batman Returns. The series actually followed the comics in that Penguin eventually semi-reforms and becomes a (semi) legitimate night club owner. I also think that the animated series handled The Riddler the best of anyplace outside of Hush. It did not hurt that he was voiced spectacularly by John Glover. But I have freely admitted my complete bias towards most of the versions of most of the characters from the Animated Series.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:12 pm

Thanks for that list. I had gathered that I should start with Tales of the Demon and Son of the Demon, but I will be sure to check out the others you mention. Do you suggest reading in the order you have them listed?
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:59 am

I would definitely start with Tales of the Demon as collects the original stories from the Seventies -- obviously, as with all comics, the mythology has changed a bit over the years. I believe the the actual publication order of the graphic novels was Son, Bride and Birth. The latter actually is set hundreds of years earlier and tells the origin story for Ra's, but it still may make the most sense to save it for last. It has been a long time since I read them, but I did read them in publication order rather than chronological order. I do not think that Bane of the Demon has ever been released in a standalone collection, though a quick look at Amazon shows that it may be included in the collection Batman vs. Bane (though some of the customer comments seem to imply that it may not be complete.) I ordered it to check it out:

http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Versus-Bane-Chuck-Dixon/dp/1401233775/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345744495&sr=8-1&keywords=bane+of+the+demon
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:27 am

For the price, you can't go wrong. I did read the comment where someone claims that the second story, (Bane of the Demon, isn't concluded. That's too bad. I guess you will find out soon enough.

I was also interested to read that the new releases of Knightfall includes Vengeance of Bane. My copy does not, and that would have been cool to have. Oh well. If you think Batman vs. Bane is worth checking out, let me know. For now, I will start with what you've suggested.

Although unrelated, I also want to check out Gotham after Midnight, The Black Mirror and The Cult. Have you read any of those?

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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:16 am

Nope, those are on my "get to eventually" list. One that I have wanted to pick up for a long time is A Lonely Place of Dying, which tells Tim Drake's origin story. That one is definitely out of print, though various Amazon used vendors have a copy. I have to admit that I have also never read the No Man's Land arc, though post-Dark Knight Rises I should probably get it done eventually. That one covers several volumes. (By the way, my copies of Knightfall do not have Vengeance of Bane, either.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Sat Aug 25, 2012 10:37 pm

I'm going to hit a book store or two this week and I will see what I can find. If I have no luck, I will look online.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Mon Aug 27, 2012 6:59 am

Vengeance shipped so I should have it this week. (I also ordered the Blu-Ray for Ralph Bakshi's Wizards at the same time.) I am debating starting from scratch with Tales of the Demon, et. al, plus Knightfall before settling in with Vengeance. Might be fun to take them all in order.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:25 am

Got it yesterday. I have not had time to read it yet, but I believe Bane of the Demon was a four-part arc, and it appears to have all four.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Fri Aug 31, 2012 6:53 pm

I checked out the largest bookstore in Portland and had no luck with any of the Demon stories. Dammit. I did pick up a copy of Bane versus Batman, though, so that's a start.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Sat Sep 01, 2012 3:29 pm

I finished the volume, and in a way both comments about it were correct. It DOES collect the full four-part Vengeance of Bane arc, but the catch is that the rest of the story is finished in the overal Contaigon and Legacy arcs, which span multiple books including Detective Comics, Shadow of the Bat, Catwoman, and Robin. Legacy appears out of print, though Contagion is still out there.

In any event, Batman vs. Bane is well worth picking up. Vengeance of Bane is not the most interesting narrative, but it does fill in all of the gaps in Bane's background, which makes it worth the purchase price. Bane of the Demon actually fills in a few more gaps, including a couple of nods to Knightfall, though it does leave one really big question open, presumably answered in the various following books. (And all of that, especially if you include Cataclysm, sets up No Man's Land. Whew!)

Here is the Wikipedia page on the whole arc:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Batman:_Legacy


Last edited by Iago on Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  El Mago on Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:33 pm

Anyone else seen tha movie, other than these two? Guess will wait till it comes out on cable. I am waiting for The Hobbit
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Tue Sep 04, 2012 4:52 pm

Cable?!!!
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Iago on Wed Sep 05, 2012 3:35 am

Oh, never fear, he will end up watching a torrent instead. He is not THAT low tech.

And if you are waiting for The Hobbit, Magus, keep waiting: it is now going to be a trilogy. Nice to see that Jackson has streamlined his movie-making!
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

Post  Seamaster on Wed Sep 05, 2012 9:35 am

Yep, Internet stories about that have been quite funny, with headlines like, "It’s Official: 300 Page Children’s Book To Be A Trilogy."

Of course, there isn't enough material for a trilogy, but I believe Jackson is pulling from the Lord of the Rings appendices to continue Bilbo's tales. A stretch, for sure, and I wish he had stuck to the original Hobbit material, as it is told as a story, but I guess we can judge once the films come out. And, to Jackson's defense, what he accomplished with the Lord of the Rings was a trilogy that brought detail to Tolkien's narrative, which was otherwise dry, bland and long-winded. Tolkien told a good story, but he didn't tell a richly detailed story, with battles and other important details merely glossed over at times. So, there might be some hope, but I am concerned. At the end of the day, it seems like a money grab.
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Re: The spoiler-filled, enter at your own risk, we mean it now, Dark Knight Rises thread

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