The Dark Knight Rises Review – Should your kids watch it?
As one of the most exciting films of the summer and one of the most anticipated films of all time, fans have already flocked to the cinema to see the 12A rated film – but should children twelve and under be allowed to watch too? Without giving away any spoilers, we take a look...
It might have all the trappings of your usual superhero film, but don’t be fooled by the usual villains, heroes and action – The Dark Knight Rises is not your average popcorn movie. The villains do more than just look menacing - monstrous Bane is a skull-cracking, neck-snapping brute and whilst other caped crusaders might jump rooftops and get the girl: Bruce Wayne’s Batman is almost an anti-hero: broken, battered and on the verge of giving up.
What you need to know:
The Dark Knight Rises picks up eight years after 2008's The Dark Knight and shows us a very different Gotham. With the streets relatively crime-free, Bruce Wayne has now hung up his cape and transformed into a grieving, even angrier-recluse, still not able to move on from the deaths of Harvey Dent and his lover Rachel.
But as we all know – things can’t stay peaceful for long and soon Gotham is faced with a threat it can’t possibly handle: Bane. Tom Hardy’s masked villain is a far cry from Heath Ledger’s Joker, yet just as terrifying: whilst the Joker was chaotic, frantic and firmly without a plan, Bane is calculated, menacing and has cooked up a plot to destroy Gotham and settle a score with both Bruce and Batman.
Is it suitable?
Swearing: Now without giving away any more of the plot – The Dark Knight Rises has all the usual fighting you would expect for an action movie, yet refrains from usingbad language except for one or two instances, which shouldn’t cause any problems for most children.
Fighting/Violence: The things we would worry about is some of the more graphic content. Whilst you don’t see any blood or gore, you do practically see necks being snapped in a grisly fashion several times, which shocked us – not just the younger viewers.
Dark Themes: The other main worry is just how dark the film is. If kids have seen The Dark Knight or Batman Begins, you should have no problem, but if you think you’re going to get a film more like Spiderman or The Avengers or a smiling Batman from days gone by – think again. The film is very dark, with themes of loss, death, class issues and terrorist plots, which at times can be quite upsetting, no matter how old you are.
Overall we’d say it shouldn’t present too many problems for children aged 12 plus or even mature ten - eleven year olds, unless they’re very sensitive or prone to nightmares. It obviously depends on just how well you think your child will cope, even if they are old enough to technically watch it.
Real Life Similarities: Also – many parents will be wary of taking their child to see the film in light of the tragic shooting at the screening in America, as there are obvious similarities between the gunman and Bane’s masked villain.
Attention span: At almost three hours and with a great balance of action to actual plot, it will certainly not be everyone’s cup of tea and some children (and adults!) may get restless.
Our summary: For fans of the franchise, The Dark Knight Rises is a fitting end to the Christopher Nolan series and lives up to the hype as being one of the best movies of the year. Despite being the opposite of a family film in many ways, it's enjoyable and will appeal to both parents and their children, without causing too much of a problem for families wanting to enjoy together.
Will you be letting your child watch the film? If you have any questions you want to know before you watch just let us know!