This is not a Dark Knight Rises review

The Dark Knight Rises at 5am BST

There will be *no spoilers* in this micro-review for the dark knight rises. In actual fact this is more about my experience of waking up at 3am to head to the Odeon IMAX at 4am

Yes I did the whole 5am thing and actually really enjoyed it, somewhat more than the Tron Legacy 12:01am opening thing which had me wishing I had gone to bed instead (plus I wasn’t impressed with the film besides the 3D). However I got up at 3:05am, jumped in the shower and had breakfast. I didn’t leave the flat till 3:50am which had me rushing along the very wet but pretty quiet streets.

I decided if I saw a cab I would jump into it because it was really coming down (as it does too often in Manchester). Of course I didn’t see any cabs with there yellow lights on and I just kept walking. By the time I got through the Northern Quarter it was pointless getting a cab and I walked into the Printworks complex from the east side to find a massive queue of people waiting to get into the actual Odeon. This took me back because I was planning to be there about 4am but I had arrived about 4:15am. So much for getting a decent seat I thought. But then the line started the move as the doors opened and people walked in single file. Almost everyone ran towards the ticket pickup machines and box office while a few of us went straight up to the 1st floor to the IMAX.

I was expecting another queue but it was straight into the IMAX and I must have been about 50/60th in to the cinema meaning I could get the row just in front of the Premiere seating (row G). Generally I find row G, H and I are the sweet spots for most cinemas. Of course I didn’t get the centre but I got left of it then the couple I sat next to moved because they were actually booked in the premiere seats. Meaning I could move closer to the middle.

The Odeon staff were pretty good about the whole thing with loud atmospheric music from previous Nolan films playing. The Inception sound track got a massive smile from me. However when it came to the moment we waited for, there was a delay while they had to restart the IMAX projector. Not elegant but after 3mins we were away.

The dark knight rises takes place in a time after the dark knight when the cops of the city are pretty much use to keeping the peace and not much else. Of course the dark knight comes back however against Bane played by Tom Hardy he’s pretty much out of sorts. Bane’s presence on screen is amazing and you can really feel the bass in his breathing and speech. Other characters are also great including Catwoman… I read a review somewhere else saying it was an emotional end to a great series and there not wrong. The heart strings are pulled but not in a gimmicky way. Confidence, Self believe and wellbeing, all come into play. This will touch some and will float over the head of many others (so expect lots of disappointed people)


However before I start talking about the plot and spoil it for you all. I would like to say this film is the defining reason to watch it in the IMAX.

Containing over an hour of IMAX footage, the movie leaps up on the giant screen, absorbing and lush and practically enveloping the audience in its 70 mm celluloid. The most notable use of IMAX from The Dark Knight, the swooping overhead city shot at the beginning of the film, is repeated over and over again in The Dark Knight Rises, but it never loses its impact. We constantly see Gotham from above, and it fills the entire screen and our entire field of vision; just as Batman is committed fully to this city, we cannot escape it.

I swear my jaw was locked in place and chin on the floor for most of the later parts of the film. It was stunning and absorbing. The level of immersion was breathtaking. I’m so glad I got a chance to watch it in the IMAX first and I’m lucky enough to live close to a real IMAX. Unlike previous films by Nolan and others, its been clear when its the IMAX camera and not. Don’t get me wrong it was still clear but the difference this time is there was plenty of footage, enough to make it blur together.

For me the Dark Knight Rises was a masterpiece. I won’t be watching it as many times as Inception but Nolan once again has done himself and his audience proud with something which people thought couldn’t be reborn. He for me and others is the greatest director ever now. What ever he touches turns to gold… Dark Knight Rises was simply EPIC!

The dark knight rises should beat the avengers and set the world record for the biggest grossing weekend in current film history, specially with its 12 cert. But please spare a thought for those killed and injured in Colorado the same time I was glued to my seat watching the dark knight rises…

Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.