By now most will have had the opportunity to see The Dark Knight Rises, Christopher Nolan’s conclusion to his Batman trilogy. Nolan likes to keep audiences guessing, so here’s a discussion of the film’s concluding moments (spoilers included), and what people liked or didn’t like about The Dark Knight Rises ending.
Christopher Nolan was saying just last week that The Dark Knight Rises would be his final Batman film, but from how The Dark Knight Rises ended it is clear there could be future films made by Warner Bros. that are set within the Batman universe he created.
Batman Survived – The climax of the film involved Batman flying out to sea with a nuclear bomb to ensure it doesn’t blow up Gotham and kill everyone in the city. The bomb goes off, and Hans Zimmer’s booming, triumphant score blasts on, however Batman didn’t die. In the following scenes Lucius Fox discovers that Bruce Wayne had previously fixed the auto-pilot on the Bat, meaning he could have jumped out before the bomb exploded (although there will be questions about how he could have actually survived the explosion aftermath and radiation).
In a concluding scene Alfred is sitting at a cafe in Florence, and is seen giving the nod to Bruce Wayne who is accompanied by Selina Kyle. This is proof Wayne survived. There are no totems here (although could a grief-stricken Alfred have deluded himself into seeing an event he wanted so much for Bruce?)
Blake takes over – After going through the whole film by the name ‘Blake’, it is eventually revealed that Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character is actually called Robin. After following coordinates left to him, Robin makes his way to the Batcave and the platform rises. If there are going to be future films within Nolan’s universe, it’s with this character. The only question is whether Gotham’s new guardian will be Batman 2.0 with Levitt’s character, or an entirely new hero (some have speculated Nightwing).
My bet is he’ll take on the mantle of Batman, which gives Warner Bros. the option of having a new Batman, but set within the same universe. Audiences won’t be fond of a reboot, but they’ll be more accepting of a continuation.
What do you think about The Dark Knight Rises ending? Should future films be made, or should this be the end of this Batman universe?