Review: The Dark Knight Rises

Christian Bale as Batman in The Dark Knight Rises. Photo by Ron Phillips/WarnerBros.

BY MARK SINDONI

Christopher Nolan rebooted and re-imagined Batman in a modern world with his 2005 film, Batman Begins. This allowed audiences into the past of the caped crusader, and explained what drives him to stop criminals in Gotham City. The 2008 blockbuster The Dark Knight was the follow-up to the 2005 release.  Mentally tested, Batman must overcome his toughest opponent yet, a villain known only as The Joker, brilliantly portrayed by Oscar winner and Australia’s own, the late actor Heath Ledger. The Joker said: “I had a vision of a world without Batman!” And this is exactly where The Dark Knight Rises picks up the story.

The caped crusader has been in exile for the past eight years because the Gotham City crime rate has dropped due to the Dent initiative. Gotham is finally at peace and Batman, the city’s vigilante protector, is not needed any more. Bruce Wayne has not been seen in public for years, and everything is fine in Gotham … but not for long. A mercenary known as Bane has a plan to turn Gotham into the city it once was. Bruce Wayne must return as the Batman and will face a physical and mental challenge that he may not overcome. There’s more to Bane’s plan than just to cause havoc. An old allegiance is brought up which Bruce Wayne knows all about.

Director of photography Wally Pfister once again rejoins his close friend and director Christopher Nolan for the filming of The Dark Knight Rises. With the cinematography for this film Pfister is at his best. The most memorable scene is the first fight in the sewer between Batman and Bane, with the use of the focus and the shots selected. A movie’s music is a big part of what makes it enjoyable or good to watch, and composer Hans Zimmer once again returns to score this film. The shots used, combined with the score, draw the audience in, and this is a major factor in certain scenes. Together Pfister and Zimmer have created a masterpiece and the audience certainly feels what’s on the screen.

This 165-minute epic features an all-star cast with brilliant performances from all. Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine all reprise their roles, with newcomers Tom Hardy as Bane, Joseph Gordan-Levitt as rookie cop John Blake, Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle and Marion Cotillard as Miranda Tate.

The Dark Knight Rises is the film of the year and shouldn’t be missed. Once again, director Christopher Nolan has produced an outstanding film and an excellent addition to his Batman collection. The trilogy will go down in history as among the best trilogies made and deserves all the recognition and praise it gets.  For me, Batman will always be a hero and an icon I can look up to and trust to do what’s right and necessary to benefit the lives of other people. But he isn’t just my hero, he’s everyone’s hero. Batman is – and always will be – “a silent guardian, a watchful protector. A dark knight.”

 

Director: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Tom Hardy, Joseph Gordan-Levitt, Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard.
Theatre Release: July 2012
Studio: Warner Bros.
Rating: M

Adam Enoch:The Abstract City

 

Until the age of 25, I had spent my entire life living in a country town. Infrequent journeys to Sydney were a great source of enjoyment, but it was time spent in London, cramped and bustling, where I realised how much I enjoyed being in the city. The inescapable closeness, the constant, droning commotion provided a sense of connectedness, and equally, the opportunity to remain anonymous in a crowd of unfamiliar faces.

A city is defined in three dimensions, by its skyline as much anything, and the feelings evoked by buildings towering above are a confusion of insignificance and awe. Admiration at the ingenuity and resourcefulness to overcome gravity and create the impossibly complex system we take for granted; multitudinous levels of glass and steel casting reflection and shadow; the juxtaposition of old and new; the entanglement of streets and walkways and railways; the rigid lines and angles that are created nowhere in nature but abound in man-made construction. And throughout, the thought that someone, somewhere, designed all this.

This series of pictures looks at the more abstract nature of city architecture, focusing on the curves and angles, the patterns and textures, and occasionally, the colour that enlivens the cityscape that surrounds us.

Images were shot with whichever camera was readily to hand; the black and white frames on B&W film with an Olympus OM-4 SLR , and the colour with a Sony WSC-70 compact digital point and shoot.

 

LINKS:
Adam’s blog: http://adamenoch.wordpress.com/

 

Jess Davoren:Deceptive Innocence

Deceptive Innocence: The Adventure of childhood.

de·cep·tive/diˈseptiv/’– Giving an appearance or impression different from the true one; misleading
in·no·cence/ˈinəsəns/– The state, quality, or virtue of being innocent

These definitions are the meaning behind my theme Deceptive Innocence, The Adventure of Childhood. The subject of my photographs is my nephew, Ethan James Davoren.

The featured photographs show a few of the many adventures of a child, innocent at heart but with the world on his fingertips. They have a certain amount of mystery to them as all children have.

My intended audience is the child in everyone. I believe everyone can relate to these photographs, as everyone was once a child. Photographs have the power to bring back childhood memories. The joy for life and adventure that a child has is a wonder of life and these photos capture that.

The majority of the photographs are captured in colour, to ensure that every aspect of the image was captured and emotion was conveyed, this is also present in the black and white photographs.

LINKS:
Jess’s blog: http://jessdavoren.wordpress.com/

 

Shardae Ewart:Vivid 2012

 

Walking through Circular Quay during Vivid I couldn’t help feeling like a child. The combination of winter cold, late hour, water, lights and crowds of people made my senses come alive. There were so many things to see, familiar, yet new, I felt like I couldn’t open my eyes wide enough to take it all in. Some of the interactive installations were a giant game of Tic Tac Toe, a light that opens when you speak to it, a multicoloured cube on a spinning wheel and Xbox Kinect projected onto the Museum of Contemporary Art. Each installation made the night come alive, they were waiting in the dark to be discovered and enjoyed, transforming Circular Quay into a playground for young and old.

LINKS:
Shardae’s blog: http://shardaeewart.wordpress.com/

 

Claudia Rusman:The Village

Sulit Air, West Sumatra Indonesia
The final photos of The Village were taken during my trip to Indonesia. Sulit Air is a small village located in West Sumatra. It is known for its beautiful scenery and its sense of community. The portfolio is for people who enjoy discovering different cultures and places. The purpose for this assessment is to build a photography portfolio of my own interest in travel, people and culture. Through my final photos, I hope to capture the attention of my audience. As the saying goes,  “a picture is worth a thousand words”.

LINKS:
Claudia’s blog: http://claudiarusman.wordpress.com/

 

Adele Houston:Body Art

 

The Purpose of this portfolio is to exhibit a small chapter of some of the many different ideas that go into tattooing. With the photos I collected I wanted to give insight into the stories of how and why these tattoos came to be, and what they mean to their owners.

Anyone with a tattoo I’m sure, at some stage has been posed the questions: “So, what made you decide to get it done?” and “Do you regret it?”

I wanted to explore this. Do the stigmas and people’s perceptions of tattooing affect the individual? Are all tattoos created in a passion of self expression, portraying a story of the soul? Are tattoos merely by association a fun and rebellious way to annoy your parents? What drives people to not only stick needles into their body to create art, but to make the final decision as to what the picture is?

To sum it up: this portfolio aims to be a perfect starting point for anyone considering taking the plunge and getting a permanent ink design on their skin, and for anyone who has – or know someone who has a tattoo.

I want to tell my story in an almost catalogue style. Imagine perhaps you’re in a tattoo parlour and flipping through the tattoo artist’s book of work to get ideas.

Either white or black background for the photos were required – as is appropriate for tattoo industry so as not to distract from colour schemes. Disclaimer: I am pro-tattooing, so this portfolio will indulge a more positive attitude.

My question:

“What does your tattoo mean to you?”

Replies:

Jess: “Mine is a swallow. I got it in London, It represents travel and freedom to me. When I researched it I found out that sailors used to get swallow tattoos when they had travelled a certain distance away from home.”

Annie: “ I got mine on schoolies. I wanted to half show I was a tough bitch to my friends, but I also like the idea that a woman doesn’t need to be rich to have a diamond.”

Amy: “I have never kept a diary, but my tattoos are my own version of a diary. Each one means something different and I can always call on them (the tattoos) to remind me of different times and emotions in my life.”

 

LINKS:
Adele’s blog: http://adelehouston.wordpress.com/