I saw it last night and at this stage can just say WOW! It was just brilliant. I was actually prepared to disappointed - the long running time did not bode well (while I loved TDK, I thought it could have done with shortening) and some of my friends (including big Batman fans) were so-so about it. I was certain that I'd come out thinking that while it was good, it didn't match The Avengers.
But, nope I wasn't at all disappointed and I didn't feel the time running in. For all the talkiness, the multiple characters, the sub-plots about Wayne Enterprises etc, it still felt like a taut tense movie to me. The cast never felt cluttered or the movie too busy.
Tom Hardy was just incredible as Bane and I may even have preferred him to heath Ledger's Joker. Loved Anne Hathaway's Selina - the way she was able to convincingly play the nervous or hysterical woman one minute (in Wayne manor and in the shootout) then become a total hardass was brilliant. I think the naysayers have a lot of backtracking to do.
I totally saw the Miranda/ Talia twist coming (even my friend with me knew that she was the traitor who was leaking info to Bane, and he knew nothing about Ra's having a daughter). The constant references to 'the child' as oppose to 'the boy' gave me the nod, while the way that the young man at the pit fought was so reminiscent of Bane.
Nolan found a great way of concluding his story of Batman, without doing the unthinkable and killing him off; he's left it so that they could do a straight sequel to this, focussing on Robin Blake, though I rather suspect that WB will just do a new take on Bruce Wayne as Batman (without going as far as Sony's Spider-man reboot). The ending was not unlike that of Inception but less ambiguous, as far as I could see. I think Bruce was definitely supposed to be alive.
Incidentally, was anyone else surprised to hear Matthew Modine's character called 'Foley'? Remember when he was announced to be playing someone called 'Nixon' and we all assumed he'd be corrupt?
Nice also to see Nolan continuing his run of excellent tv actors in support roles. Aiden Gillen from The Wire, Wade Williams from Prison Break (and as a prison officer no less!), Robert Wisdom (from, er The Wire and Prison Break!), William Devane (playing the POTUS for the nth time in his career) and his fellow Stargate actor Chris Judge.