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Batman is why we go to the movies

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Posted: Sunday, July 22, 2012 7:45 am

It is with great sadness that I write this — there will be no more new Christopher Nolan Batman movies.


It is a harsh reality to accept. What became not only the greatest collection of superhero movies, but the best trilogy of all time (yes, that’s right), Nolan’s Batman series concluded at midnight Thursday in theaters around the country. And it concluded the trilogy beautifully.

It didn’t have a Heath Ledger performance or benefit from the initial of being a different, darker type of superhero movie that was “Batman Begins,” but “The Dark Knight Rises” provided what moviegoers wanted — great performances, a solid story, and the ability to make the watcher feel the chaos and helplessness that was happening to the characters on screen. The music (and in one scene, the lack of music) is incredible. It builds the tension and wraps you up in the action.

So yes, “The Dark Knight Rises” lived up to the hype.

When the first teaser trailer was released a year ago, it seemed like it would never actually come out. Like it was the vacation you always plan on taking but never actually book the flight. It was like a mirage in the desert of reboots, remakes, animated films, adaptations, and Adam Sandler movies.

And of course, it wasn’t a perfect movie. It went a little over the top with allusion to the “We Are the 99%” movement and there were some slow parts and a couple bad one-liners, but throughout the whole experience, you get the feeling that this was the vision of Nolan, who directed, produced and co-wrote the script. I heard it from someone and I think it is a great comparison. The Dark Knight trilogy is like the first Star Wars trilogy in that when you think of them, you think of one over-arching story. But individually, they are great standalone films.

That’s why when you watch films like “The Dark Knight Rises,” it is a reminder of why we go to the theater in the first place. We want to be swept up into the world the director has envisioned. We want to be entertained, we want to love some characters and hate others. We want the hero to fall against the villain, just so we can cheer them on as they do the seemingly impossible.

When I watch something like the recent “Dark Shadows” or “Madagascar 3,” I laugh a few times and enjoy the ride for what it is. But then I see a film like this and it makes me realize the potential that a director has when he begins a new project.

Good films have the ability to give us chills and goose bumps on our arms, to make us cry or laugh as we live vicariously through the characters on screen.

“The Dark Knight Rises” did what other filmmakers hope their creations do — as an audience member, it sucked me in and didn’t want out.

All three of the Batman movies did this and there (probably) won’t be another.

And I think I’m OK with that.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or

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