I was also bugged by Joker leaving the party (I didn't get the sense that he was losing) and disliked the look of Gotham City.
Hirogen Alpha wrote:
what really gets me is the ending. Batman taking the rap for those murders doesn't do any good. For a while, yes, the criminals might be extra cautious, fearing Batman now uses lethal force. But after a while, they'll realize that he won't, because Batman doesn't use lethal force. And the whole ruse will be for naught. Worse, the police will remain after Batman, and pissed at Batman, for a long, long time.
For instance I didn't buy that a city like Gotham-- which is supposed to be the crime capital of the world-- would be in a complete state of panic because of a few assassinations and the destruction of an empty hospital. Or that there would be a rush of people hunting down that dweeby lawyer guy. And the whole ferry sequence was the most contrived of all.
Indeed, those elements and others (Gordon deciding it was so dangerous he had to fake his death, Bruce & Lucius deciding to be unethical this once, Bruce thinking he had a pretty-forthcoming chance to quit and then feeling he had to, Batman & Gordon deciding to lie to protect the reputation of this one particular public servant, and the real-life hype about the themes) made the drama feel way overblown but unconvincing; these issues should have been dealt with in Bats' year offscreen, and will almost certainly happen in the future, so treating the underwhelming events of the film (I was impressed by the hospital explosion, maybe the attack on the mayor and the Joker's messages to the city, there could have been more of those) as exceptional was annoying.