Exclusive: The Dark Knight Rises Preview!
well...the first 6 minutes anyway!
We may be on a much needed break at the moment, but I just had to tell you guys about a 6 minute preview of the next Batman movie that we just saw!
The Dark Knight Rises (TDKR), the last of Nolan's Batman trilogy, is easily the most anticipated movie of next year. But not to take things easy, Warner Bros. has kicked off its viral campaign with a series of clues that faithful fans deciphered to find a link to "operationearlybird.com" - which in turn lead to an ominous countdown - which in turn revealed that a 6 minute preview of the film will be showcased in selected cinemas across the world. One such location was at the BFI Imax in London, and thanks to Planvine.com we managed to score some tickets!
These viral campaigns have become synonymous with Nolan's batman films, but they normally lead to some screenshots, behind the scenes footage or materials that hint at the backstory. Often, the campaign rather than the "revelations", is the real attraction. In fact, I try to avoid these "revelations" as it often renders me unable to suspend my disbelief and at the very least, takes away the element of surprise.
A 6 minute preview however, would provide a real insight into the movie without damaging the overall experience [relatively speaking that is]. So, was this preview a perfect exmaple of this and more? First, let's talk about the event...
BFI Imax is UK's largest screen and seats approx 500 people. Needless to say, the entire theatre was sold out, filled with an eclectic group of fans that ranged from different ages, races and genders. Security was pretty tight as they checked everyone's bags and took away any recording devices. Plus, the security staff looked like they worked at MiB with their black suits and black ties!
But that did't stop me from taking my camera, iphone, or blackberry into the screen. I hid them under my dirty gym clothes in my duffel bag and the staff were too ready to believe me when I said all I had was one phone - probably because I too was wearing a suit as I had just come from work. Also, my gym clothes smelt like sh*t so the staff were probably not too keen to rummage through my bag. Anyway, it worked. But I was curious if I had the balls to use them!
After an hour wait, we were guided into the theatre and managed to score seats right bang in the middle. I hadn't been to one of these events before, so I had no ideas what to expect. Would there be trailers? Would a cast member make a surprise entrance? Would a movie prop appear - like the Batwing? - Which would then crash into the screen and make Spiderman The Musical jealous??!
Unfortunately, all we got was this teenager who was going through puberty before our eyes make an announcement that we will be watched via night vision camera/ Sam Fisher and that severe action will be taken if anyone is caught with a recording device....As it turned out, I didn't have the balls to whip out any of the devices. But by that point, in didn't matter, as the preview began...
The best 6 minutes a guy can have...
The preview starts with Commissioner Gordon (Gary Oldman) giving his eulogy at Harvey Dent's funeral and then the scene changes to a 4x4 driving through very long grass with a bunch of passengers with hoods on their heads. They stop to meet a CIA agent, Aidan Gillen (The Wire, Game of Thrones), who agrees to provide asylum to one of the men, Dr. Leonid Pavel- a character revealed last week and one that has dumbfounded many fans. It seems that the good Doctor is seeking asylum from an international terrorist, Bane (Tom Hardy). In return, he helped track down the other prisoners in the car who maybe able to locate Bane and his organisation. Although the prisoners are hooded, you immediately notice that one of them is in fact Bane, in what is the first illustration of Bane's stature and presence. It was clear that this was Nolan's intention.
They then board a flight where Gillen's character proceeds to interrogate each prisoner to gather information on Bane and why he wears his trademark mask. Soon, Bane reveals himself in an extremely calm and calculated way, and adds that removing the mask will cause significant pain...."to everyone else".
Bane then reveals that he wanted to get caught, so as to capture Dr Leonid Pavel. Soon after, commandos rappel down from another plane, (yes, you read that right) commandeer the CIA's plane, kill the CIA agents, hook the plane to the other plane - thereby rendering it useless, capture the good doctor and then release the plane leaving it to free fall to its pitiful demise......all the while the whole thing is captured in incredible jaw dropping and cinematic shots!
This was then followed by a series of shots of all the characters, including the Batwing in action(yes, this is a character to me) which looked absolutely amazing!! And before I was able to catch my breath, it was over ( hmmm....de ja vu?).
The preview gave a real insight into the tone of the movie whilst maintaining a real air of mystery. One thing that really stood out was yet another reminder of how this franchise does not feel like a comic book movie. This particular sneak peak felt like an espionage action thriller, much like The Dark Knight was a tragic crime thriller. The cinematography is really integral to this, as it was incredibly visceral.
Having said that, I didn't necessarily walk away from the preview overly satisfied. One thing that reaaaally bugged me (and judging by the conversation of a number of people), was Bane's voice. For the most part I had no idea what he was saying. It was completely inaudible, made worse by the loud background noises (planes being breached etc).
Bane's accent was also bizarre. Now I like Batman's "I'm Batman" voice, but Bane's voice made him sound like a 50's gangster. I was just waiting for him to say "I'm gonna get you see, yah".
All in all, his voice was incredibly distracting to the point where we were unable to fully appreciate how calculating, methodical and intimidating Bane is, especially in scene that showcased exactly that. It was a real shame and I sincerely hope they address this before the movie's release.
Other than this, Batman reassuringly looks very promising - as was expected. The preview was well marketed and gave us all an idea of what to expect without giving too much away. I still have no idea what the movie is about and how Bane is involved exactly - which is good.
One thing that was given away however, was a free T-shirt (you have no idea how much time I spent on the perfect segue for this). Check out a photo for the T Shirt and more below!
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