"The Dark Knight Rises" movie poster Courtesy; Warner Bros. Pictures (India)
"The Dark Knight Rises" has been the most hotly anticipated blockbuster film of the summer, but its opening weekend was marred by a horrific shooting spree at a movie theater that left 12 dead and 58 injured in Aurora, Colo. While Warner Bros. executives have chosen to delay releasing financial information about the new release until Monday in the wake of the tragedy, industry insiders agree "The Dark Knight Rises" has earned at least $160 million.Warner Bros. Pictures (India)

The final installment to the Batman franchise by Christopher Nolan, "The Dark Knight Rises", which was released on July 20, garnered mixed reactions from film critics and the reviews are already out online. 

Given that "The Dark Knight Rises" will conclude Nolan's Batman trilogy, audiences are eagerly waiting to see whether the movie will give a fitting end to the legend. The big question is if the director measured up to the high expectations raised by worldwide Batman audience? Several reviewers wrote that it certainly did well to some extent, while pointing out some gaps in the movie, and opined that the director could have pushed for some more improvements.

Reviews of "The Dark Knight Rises":

Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian Post, wrote, "The Dark Knight Rises" certainly confirms the weapons that Christopher Nolan can wield as a director: this is a big, brash, plausible movie on a self-consciously epic scale, a deafening superhero Bayreuth, taking place in a gloomy, almost physical smog of testosterone. It will certainly be a commercial smash, and you have to admire the confidence with which Christopher Nolan insists on the seriousness of the Batman mythology; he has thoroughly reinvented it, reauthored it and thought it through, in a way no other director has done with any other summer franchise. But I wish there was more yin and yang in the movie, rather than yin and more yin."

Christian Bale reviewing for The New York Times wrote, "After repeatedly sending Batman down Gotham's mean streets, Mr. Nolan ends by taking him somewhere new. That's precisely the point of a late sequence in which he shifts between a multitude of characters and as many locations without losing you, his narrative thread or momentum. His playfulness with the scenes-within-scenes in his last movie, "Inception," has paid off here. The action interludes are more visually coherent than in his previous Batman films and, as in "Inception," the controlled fragmentation works on a pleasurable, purely cinematic level."

"But it also serves Mr. Nolan's larger meaning in "The Dark Knight Rises" and becomes his final say on superheroes and their uses because, as Gotham rages and all seems lost, the action shifts from a lone figure to a group, and hope springs not from one but many," said Bale.

Paul Byrnes, film critic of Sydney Morning Herald, opined that the final conclusion to the Batman saga is "flabby".

"I agree that Nolan's Batman is the best yet: more dramatic, more soulful, more realistic. Nolan is a much better director than the character has had before, and the trilogy fits together as a whole, but this final instalment is flabby, and some might wonder at the sensitivity of its metaphors," wrote Byrnes.

"Even in literary terms, Batman is not Lear, nor even Sydney Carton heading to the guillotine, no matter how seriously Nolan treats him. He's a 1930s-era response to the Depression, with a cape and a nice car. His retirement was overdue," concluded the reviewer.

"The Dark Knight Rises" flirts with potentially fantastic ideas, but shies away from taking them to the next level," wrote Raja Sen Raja Sen for Rediff website.

"A lot of this one is too coldly efficient to be spontaneously joyous. It does have its moments, of course. Mega moments of jawdropping wonder and finely-tuned cinematic circusry. The first time we see Batman in the suit. The fiery logo signalling his return. The immaculate last shot of the film, which leaves no room for a post-credits nudge.  Cinematographer Wally Pfister ought be hailed and celebrated for making the film look wondrous even when the narrative tone fluctuates wildly," said Sen.

"Despite taking himself -- and his version of the character -- far, far too gravely, Christopher Nolan gives us a sloppy double-decked hamburger of a film, with too much meat to fit one burger right, but a treat without question for those already in love with the Batman. A meal, then, for the cinematic 99%. If only he hadn't made the rest of us expect steak," added Sen. .