"Batman Begins" is one of my most favorite movies, partly because I really appreciate Christian Bale, but also because it was a wonderful Batman movie. Gritty without being overly heavy, emotional without being melodramatic, and the origin story is authentic and heartfelt. Plus I like Christian Bale. A lot. Remember what I said about him at the Oscars this year? Impressed by his recovered classiness and professionalism? Yep. I'm a fan.
Besides the darkness of the second film, I also found myself increasingly irritated by Bale's affected, gravelly voice whenever Bruce put on the mask, and as I recall, I felt like he was in costume more than not, which is fine, but I like to see Christian Bale, and I felt like there was too much mask.
I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. I was thrilled that though it's dark and violent and has some decided brutality, there is a lot more light. Joseph Gordon Levitt as Blake is a bright, fresh face, a great actor in his own right, and Anne Hathaway is a refreshing as Catwoman- she's funny, sexy and butt-kicking-awesome without being campy or too absurd. And there is a lot more Bruce Wayne out of the mask than in the last film, so I was happy on that count, as well.
Bane provides a very frightening villain, though the dialogue was hard to understand-- maybe I rely on being able to see lips moving to be able to really "hear" what's being said, but his character was a great nemesis for Batman.
There are a few surprises in the film that I won't give away, but the end was deeply satisfying and made it worth sticking with the franchise just for that. I loved this movie- it felt much more like "Batman Begins" than "Dark Knight", which was refreshing-- "Dark Knight" was completely right to set us up for this final film in the trilogy, though I would be fine only watching the first and third in the future... the second movie was very hard for me to watch.
I really wanted this blog entry to better thought out and executed, but I'm frightfully busy and feeling overwhelmed and I've had a broken-brain week, so this is all you get. Sorry it's not my best assessment of a movie. Short version: I liked it. Very much. Especially Christian Bale. Did I mention I kind of like him?