I wasn't going to post what I think, but I'll copy what I told someone else. If viewers of this thread don't agree, I don't care. You all have your opinions and I have mine. I'll state my viewpoint and then leave it at that. Thank you and thank you.
I liked Batman Begins
. I liked The Dark Knight
The Dark Knight Rises
is a whole other story.
It left a strong impression on me when I left the theater. The problem was, I hadn't processed that impression yet. I thought (past tense) maybe it *might* be the best Batman movie. I didn't feel that strongly about the other two movies, so why was this movie so different? I couldn't figure it out and it wasn't just because it was the end of a trilogy. Then I thought about it, thought about it some more, and realized they took things too far. After the strong impression finally sank in, I realized in its own way, it's as over the top as "Batman & Robin"; just in the opposite extreme. At least "Batman & Robin" has MST3K value.
Never, in 30 years, has my opinion of a movie ever dropped so far so fast. Christopher Nolan should've gone with his instincts and stopped with two. I think they could've gotten a lot of mileage of out this incarnation of Batman, underneath someone else. But Nolan had to have a trilogy and went for broke. It even impacts what I think of "Batman Begins" and "The Dark Knight" now that I know where they're heading.
It didn't bother me that they combined Dick, Jason and Tim into one character since no live-action Batman will ever get far enough to include all three... but John Blake should've been in costume at some point, whether it was as Robin or Nightwing.
"The Dark Knight Returns" angle didn't work at all. Eight years was way too long of a gap. And Bruce can't move passed Rachel even after all that time? My father never forgot my mother but, after the first three years, he did move on and in three more years he was in a stable relationship with someone else. And Bruce would never retire as Batman even if the police were after him. The mission always comes first, for the real Batman.
It's probably just as well this version of the character never took on a Robin. Who'd want a minor under the care of someone who throws up his hands and gives up everything six months into his career, right after "The Dark Knight"? So we went from one of the best origin stories ever for a hero to a story about a man who turned his back on everything after the first speed bump. Then he pretends to sacrafice himself so he can escape to an island and live with a thief while totally broke. Who the Hell is this guy? I've never seen him before. That's what made it depressing instead of dramatic. It's like the anti-Bruce Wayne. All of Alfred's scenes and most of Lucius Fox's scenes are wasted on Anti-Bruce.
Having "Knightfall" fused together with "No Man's Land" and against the backdrop of "The Dark Knight Returns" wasn't dramatic either, it was melodramatic. It was too much. Then introducing Talia, Catwoman, and a three-for-one Robin who's not Robin on top of it? It was over-plotted, overblown, and overdone.