Speculation invokes so many emotions. I read a piece on this site by a certain editor I am following. He brought up the questions of whether or not we are ruining superhero movies for ourselves. I think we are. Case in point? The massive amount of information we seem to be presented with daily about The Dark Knight Rises. After the fantastic marketing campaign of The Dark Knight and all of the secrecy around the film otherwise, the “leaks” we are seeing is daunting to say the least.
I have heard friends jump to conclusions about these pictures. Questions and accusations are spat out with their knee-jerk reactions. That doesn’t look like Bane! That mask looks like a Mortal Kombat character! Why did Nolan cast Hardy? Bane is supposed to be bigger! Now, with the Catwoman pictures released, we have people flipping out and saying that they have lost all faith in Nolan as a director. Faith? Whatever happened to just waiting to see how a movie turns out? I’ll be the first to judge a film, but after I have seen it. Unless, of course, it is an obvious travesty (Smurfs, Battleships, Spider-Man 3).
When we saw the first image released from the film, people were up in arms. They thought Tom Hardy was going to do the role justice. He had the size. Which was a few steps up from his size in the amazing film, Bronson. And he certainly had the acting chops to pull off a violent, yet calculating man like Bane. By they by, Bane isn’t the same character you saw in Batman and Robin. Look him up. He is a cold, super-strong strategist. He is the only villain to quite literally break both Gotham and the Bat. With that said, that still kept certain people from accepting him as the villain. They thought he was a terrible choice. They didn’t want him, yet they still had a problem with the mask. Really? His mask? It is obvious from the picture that the Venom (the extremely addictive drug he uses in the comics to give him strength) would be some sort of super-steroid that would be inhaled as opposed to injected straight into his brain stem via surgically implanted tubes. I have no problem with this. It simply adds to the realism of the universe Nolan has created.
From the moment the teaser dropped, people were skeptical. They hated the lack of things shown, and they hated the amount of things show. They disliked the amount of Dark Knight footage that was shown, and they were up in arms about the final quick scene. The scene was a fight between Batman and Bane. Not only did people think that it was Catwoman fighting Bane, but that Bane wasn’t big enough. Now, how could you tell by a 3 second scene that Bane wasn’t big enough? And how, from that same scene, could you say that it was Catwoman? It was obviously Batman. He was the character featured the longest. As for poor Bane? Well, he certainly looks large enough for me. Then again, the camera angle was in his favor, and he was walking up what looked to be stairs. Either way, who cares? I mean, it is a teaser. It is meant to get people talking. To stir up the pot. Hell, we see Gordon in the hospital talking to Bruce Wayne about Batman. It leads us to believe he put two and two together. Which is a great premise.
As a matter of fact, this led me to a few theories of my own. As some of you can guess by now, I am a bit of a comic book geek. Well, screw that, I am a total comic book geek. My thoughts on the series? From what we have seen so far in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight and from what anyone who reads the comics knows, we can make a few assumptions about where this film is going to go. If my initial statement after seeing The Dark Knight is true, Talia Al Ghul will come back into the fold to bring it full circle. If you don’t know who any of the people in this extremely condensed thesis are, just Google them.
The movie opens with Wayne focusing on charities and doing good as Wayne. He has given up being Batman after the events of TDK. He sees nightly on the news that there are more and more crimes and criminals essentially forget about Batman. Which is where Catwoman comes in. Working class vigilante that pays the bills from stealing “evidence.” Wayne sees reports of her on the news and this goes even further to ease his fears that Batman will be needed again. Someone else has taken up the fight. One night there is an attack on GCPD by a masked villain (Bane) it puts Gordon in the hospital and destroys the Special Crimes Unit. We find out that Gordon knows that Wayne is Batman and asks him to come back. We also find out that Bane is working with the League of Shadows (Talia Al Ghul). He was “rescued” from his prison by them in an effort to fill the void that was left by Wayne when he left in the first film. They fund him as their “cleanser” of Gotham in place of Wayne. The third act begins with Batman coming back as Wayne realizes that Batman is needed. A Necessity that will ensure Gotham always has a protector from the likes of Bane and Talia. Batman defeats Bane and the last scene of the film is Talia in a cave in India talking to someone, the camera reveals that it is Ra’s Al Ghul stepping out of a Lazarus pit saying that the “Detective” must be watched.
I would love that to be true. It would be a great ending. From what we know so far it would fit. But, like I said initially that is me ruining the film for myself through speculation. Regardless of how cool we both think it was. Admit it. Since the trailer a few more images have been released. Both of Bane and Batman fighting and now of Catwoman herself. Though, I am happy to see Nolan has gone with the modern look of Catwoman, I am anxious to see her cat-cowl. I’ve looked at a few of those pictures, but I stopped myself. Nolan’s lackluster job of keeping a tight grip on this shoot is making it extremely hard to stay in the dark on this film. Couple that with the fact that I seem to have to calm all of my slack jawed bib-enthusiast friends down every time they release a new photo. Which causes them all go on an all expense paid trip to idiocy island. I am a bit hard on them, I know, but their ability to jump to conclusions is just as hard on me.
I’ve found myself having to calm them down and go over what exactly we know about the film so far. Bane and Batman were fighting in the snow. This would explain why Bane is wearing something that looks to be a militant style of dress similar to what was worn by Bruce in Batman Begins when he was searching for the League of Shadows. It looks like something that would keep him warm in the cold urban winters. Bane seems big, but not big enough according to some.
So, what can we gather from these pictures? Bane can be testing Batman in a fight early on in the film. Toying with him to gauge his technique? Maybe. Or, it is probably the beginning of a fight and Bane hasn’t used the Venom yet. Which is why his shirt is still on instead of being ripped/torn off.
Seems as though it could be fitting in with what I predicted. Maybe not. I is more than likely a completely different direction. Maybe Bane is an independent party not working for the League, but rather for himself. Coming to Gotham just like he did in the comics?
Either way, there is only one thing we can solidify from the responses to these photos. A lot of the people (my friends included) need to sit back and think about what you are seeing. These pictures are all out of context and do not reflect the finished film. Take the photos for what they are. Spy pictures and teaser images/scenes taken out of context on a film that won’t be released for another year. Until you get concrete evidence, don’t jump to conclusions about something as stupid as Bane wearing warm clothing in the winter. Especially if said clothes (Coat, cargo pants) can be purchased inexpensively from a Salvation Army/Thrift Store/Army-Navy Surplus. Perfect for a man who either just escaped a South American prison, or got into the country from the Eastern Bloc.
I understand this blog post was longer than most you have read in the past. I congratulate you on getting through the whole thing. You have put in more effort in reading this than most of the people did who when they posted comments on the leaked info on The Dark Knight Rises.
It can be fun to speculate. That is half of the reason the photos are being released. To cause excitement and buzz. But it is frustrating to go online and read, or walk into a store and hear, what some of these people are saying about the film that is a year off from release. The people that are saying that is looks like crap and they are boycotting it, and the people who are praising it as the best film ever made. Both extremes are tiresome and frustrating to hear/read as a SANE fan. I’ll be there for the midnight release. Popcorn in hand, and open-mind and a child-like sense of wonder and excitement. Regardless of what I have said, how cool would it be for Nolan to say “fuck it” and have Bane break Batman’s back leaving his trilogy on a downer?