Friday, 17 May 2013

The Dark Knight Rises synopsis (with heavy Spoilers)

NOTE: Because it's a trilogy, it uses plot elements from both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight to fuel its narrative, and makes the audience feel like this was always where we would continue the story and end up like here. Therefore, it is a requirement to watch the first two films before this film.

The movie starts with a brief footage taken from the end of The Dark Knight with Commissioner Gordon giving a speech in Harvey Dent’s funeral.

8 years after The Dark Knight until present day, 3 men are captured and given to a CIA agent looking for Bane. He takes them on his airplane, explaining that he will kill them if they don't tell him where Bane is, even though they all have hoods over their heads and he doesn't really kill them. One of them suddenly speaks up, questioning the agent's methods, and when the hood is removed, turns out to be Bane, who explains that he intended to get caught and that they are going to crash the plane. At the same time, another plane flies above, and four men jump out and onto the smaller plane in a mid-air assault that ends up dragging the plane almost upside-down in mid-air. Most of the passengers are killed, except Dr. Pavel , a physicist who had been approached by Bane with an “offer” but he rejected it. Dr. Pavel is connected with an IV to a corpse (for blood transfusion to ensure the authorities will think he’s dead in the plane crash) that they brought into the plane and ends up being abducted by Bane.

The movie cuts with Commissioner Gordon giving a speech after the mayor (Gordon still feels guilty about the cover-up of Harvey Dent's crimes and let Batman take the fall of his crimes. But he decides that the city is not ready to hear the truth, so he puts away a written speech which he had prepared to explain the actual events of the night Harvey Dent died) about Harvey Dent at “Dent Day”, hosted at Wayne Manor, where Bruce Wayne has retreated and become a bearded reclusive man with a cane. In the kitchen, Alfred the butler instructs one of the maids (Selina Kyle), to bring Bruce's food to him beyond a locked door to which he gives her the key. Selina drops off the food and sees a door open, and quickly gets into Bruce's safe and takes his mother's pearl necklace, which she is already seen wearing. Bruce shows up and tells her to return the necklace, but she knocks him down and escapes through a window, quickly changing her outfit and getting in the car with a congressman (who was initially flirting with her at the party) who was a guest at the party.

While on the rooftops with the old, broken Batsignal, Commissioner Gordon is approached by young cop John Blake, who mentioned that the congressman never made it home after the memorial event and comments on how Gordon has nearly eradicated violent and organized crime under powers granted by the Dent Act and the city is now in a state of peace. He's very intelligent and asks about the night of Harvey Dent's “murder”, which to him seemed odd and asking whether Gordon ever wonders about who the Batman really is. Commissioner Gordon doesn't speak much about it, but clearly is still guilt-ridden because of it.

The next morning, Alfred couldn’t find Bruce in his bedroom but inside the newly restructured Batcave beneath Wayne Manor (refer to Batman Begins). Alfred asks him what he's doing, and Bruce telling him he figured out who the thief was (he also managed to found out Selina’s location as well) and noticed that the manner in which she dusted his fingerprints to open the safe was odd, as he deduced that she had duplicated his fingerprints to take with her for a reason that he didn't know. Alfred and Bruce are then shown to be in a discussion about Bruce not living his life and didn’t move on after the events of The Dark Knight. Alfred also talks about how when Bruce was gone (during the events Batman Begins), he never wanted Bruce to come back, and sometimes he would go to Florence, Italy and hope to randomly see Bruce with a wife, possibly with some kids and acknowledge each other's presence without talking to show that Bruce had finally moved on, since Gotham had nothing but “pain and tragedy” for Bruce. Bruce said that there’s nothing out there for him and he had already “found someone” (Rachel), but lost her.

The movie then cuts to Blake’s investigation about the death of a kid at the end of the sewer drain. Blake recognizes the kid; he used to be from the same orphanage that Blake grew up in. He visits the orphanage to speak with a priest who takes care of the orphans and found out that the financial support from Wayne Enterprises had been cut, the orphanage is unable to take in kids who are over 16 due to lack of funding and they are forced to work for unknown underground construction projects to earn a living.

Bringing the “missing” congressman with her (though he is in regular clothes), Selina Kyle meets a man at a bar and gives him Bruce Wayne's fingerprints. However, they end up not offering what they had agreed to trade and decided to shoot her, but a fight breaks out when Selina reveals that the cops aren't far behind, since they are looking for the congressman (and likely traced his cell phone because the man had used the congressman’s phone to call Selina’s friend to deliver the missing thumb fingerprint). Selina disarms all of the men until police arrive, where she screams and pretends to be a helpless woman so she can slip past the police and escape. Looking for all leads, the police search through the bar and end up outside of the back exit, where they open a manhole to the sewer below and look for the criminals who they assume abducted the congressman. 

Once underground, many of the police officers, including Commissioner Gordon, are ambushed, and explosives go off and scare the other police officers from following, though John Blake wants to go after them, but his superior, Deputy Commissioner Foley tells him not to. Most of the officers underground get killed by armed men (League of shadows mercenaries) who only knock out Gordon but drag him further into the sewer (where it appears some construction is being done) where he is confronted by Bane, who immediately kills one of his own men out of discipline. Gordon's speech falls into the hands of the villain Bane, who discovers the truth about Dent. Sensing that his life is in danger, Gordon escapes by rolling into the sewer water, where he is flushed out but injured in the process. He is later found and rescued by Blake at the end of the sewer drain nearby, which he discovered during his investigation earlier in the morning. 

Shortly afterward, he visits Wayne Manor and speaks to Bruce in private, where he tells him about Gordon being in the hospital and gives some information away about Bane. He mentions indirectly (deduce) that he knows that Bruce Wayne is Batman while having some assumptions about the mystery surrounding Harvey Dent's death. Blake also talks about his own past, having had parents who were both killed when he was young (mirroring Bruce's own past) and having an understanding of the feelings in that situation and how it motivates him. As a result, he grew up in an orphanage sponsored by Wayne Enterprises. Blake wants The Batman to return because he still believes in him. Though Bruce neither admits nor denies any of it, but it is shown from Bruce’s expression about the pain he suffered in the past. Blake also talks about how the orphanage is going through financial troubles and cannot support as many youths as before since financial support had been cut, which Bruce was unaware of.

After Blake left Wayne Manor, Bruce later goes to the hospital (intentionally the same one where Gordon is) and sees a doctor, who points out numerous injuries (brain tissue concussion, no cartilage on the knees, etc) that Bruce has suffered while being Batman. Afterward, going through a window, he ends up at Gordon's bedside (with a mask on, like in Batman Begins) and asks about what happened. There, Gordon tells him about Bane and that Gotham will need Batman to take Bane down.

Later, Bruce is shown tracking Selina and ends up at a fundraiser hosted by Miranda Tate, who has been trying to meet with Bruce. They talk briefly about the scrapped project that they had worked on, mentioning that she wanted it to continue for its clean energy to “restore balance” (refer to Batman Begins). Bruce then runs into Selina Kyle and dances with her, while taking his mother's pearl necklace back (which she had been wearing) while conversing about how what she is doing is wrong, though Selina's approach is that Gotham's wealthy thrive off of its less fortunate (anti-capitalism, class inequality), assuming Bruce is the same greedy and corrupt wealthy businessman as the rest, while saying that it would all end soon. She kisses him and leaves, while Bruce later realizes that Selina had stolen his ticket for his car and is seen driving off in his Lamborghini Aventador. Bruce eventually had to call Alfred to fetch him home.

The next morning, Bruce goes to Wayne Enterprises and asks Lucius Fox why funding was cut for the orphanage, and Fox explains that it was generally paid for with profits generated by the company, though the company had been operating with a deficit for quite some time due to Bruce's investing a great deal of money in a clean energy nuclear fusion project (to harness clean nuclear fusion power) with Miranda Tate, a high-ranking board member of Wayne Enterprises and an investor herself, that he decided to scrap the project after learning that the core could be modified into a nuclear fusion bomb from a research paper published by Dr.Pavel. At the same time, Fox takes him into the secret entrance to a storage facility, where other duplicates of the Tumbler and numerous high-tech weaponries. Fox explained that he’s been trying to shut down 14 different defense subsidiary companies for years and consolidating all the weapon prototypes under one roof (top secret Applied Science division).  He also showed Bruce the Bat, somewhat of a jet-helicopter hybrid. It's almost done but not quite perfected, as Fox says that it needs someone who is “less busy” than he is to fix certain issues, such as the autopilot feature.

At the Batcave, Bruce is shown wearing a mechanical leg brace for his left leg. Alfred supplies more information to Bruce about Bane, who supposedly had done some dirty work as hired muscle for a corrupt wealthy businessman named John Daggett (who, through the “unknown man” at the bar who is his assistant named Stryver, hired Selina Kyle to get Bruce's fingerprints) in the past while being known to have been a mercenary with ties to the League of Shadows and trained by Ra’s al Ghul, Bruce’s master (refer to Batman Begins). Bruce and Alfred begin to have conflicting views on Bruce returning as Batman along with his motivation to do so.

Meanwhile, at the orders of Daggett, Bane and his men (who are first disguised as food delivery people, shoe shiners, etc.) infiltrate the Gotham Stock Exchange and take it over, halting all activity other than their own from a tablet device linked to the stock exchange. The police and SWAT team arrive, though before they can breach, hostages walk out, followed by Bane and his men on motorbikes but with hostages riding with them to prevent them from being shot. For the first time, Batman shows up (on the Batpod) and fires an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) device that shuts off anything electronic, including the underground lights and motorbikes, which allows him to free most of the hostages and subdue Bane's men. Batman is chasing Bane and one other henchman, though since Bane had released his hostage earlier, Batman chases the other person with a hostage. In the process, the whole Gotham police chase Batman, under the orders of Deputy Commissioner Foley (since he is still wanted for murder, even though Blake, also in pursuit, preferred to go after Bane) and seemingly traps him in an alley until he turns on the Bat and flies away.

Selina Kyle (in her Catwoman outfit) shows up at Daggett's place and subdues most of his men, eventually abducting him. It is revealed that she wants a computer program that his company supposedly had created, one that able to completely remove someone's history from all searchable databases, thus giving her a clean slate to start over (which Bruce had thought about, mentioning earlier in the charity that he knew that Selina lived in a modest apartment and was likely saving up her stolen prizes for “retirement” or running away from someone powerful), but Daggett states that the program never existed in the first place. Daggett's men, Bane, and his own men show up, and Selina threatens to kill Daggett, but Batman intervenes and helps Selina fight off the men and escape in the Bat. When safely distant, Batman tells Selina that he is friends with Bruce Wayne and asks why she needed his fingerprints. She says Daggett paid her, but she didn't know why he needed them, then she eventually disappears, and Batman says, “So that's what that feels like.” (Refer to Batman Begins & The Dark Knight)

Bruce and Alfred later shown to have a fight about Bruce's devotion to being Batman, where he explains that Bruce cannot beat Bane, watching the security camera footage of Bane, witnessing both his strength and speed. Alfred thinks Bruce is searching for death, after losing Rachel, his only hope for a normal life. (Refer to Batman Begins & The Dark Knight) He further tells Bruce that he intends to leave since he does not want to see Bruce die. Alfred finally admits that Rachel had moved on from Bruce and chosen Harvey Dent, though at first Bruce thinks Alfred is lying in order to persuade him out of being Batman, though he later believes Alfred when he mentions having burned the letter in order to spare Bruce the pain. Alfred leaves Wayne Manor.

The next day, Bruce finds out that he is bankrupt, as his fingerprints were used to authenticate certain future stock option trades that resulted huge losses, which would ultimately lead to him being relieved of involvement with Wayne Enterprises. The Applied Sciences division would be on lockdown and off the books, though, wanting to protect the nuclear fusion energy device out of wrong hands (Bruce suspected Daggett employed Bane to take control of his company), Bruce and Fox decided to have Miranda Tate take over and control the fate of the device itself by showing her the device (Fox later explains to Miranda that it is hidden in another secret location but is set up to be flooded and rendered useless in an emergency, only if needed). Bruce says that if he really wanted to, he could've destroyed it at any time, but he was entrusting it to Tate.

It is revealed that Daggett employed both Bane and Selina Kyle to force Wayne Enterprises into bankruptcy and allow Daggett to take over the company. This is done by Selina stealing copies of Bruce's fingerprints and Bane crashing Gotham's stock market. Daggett attempts to kill Selina after she retrieves the prints to cover up the plan, but she escapes his men twice (the second time with Batman’s assistance). 

Daggett is disappointed at Miranda having been voted as the new chairperson (which he was expecting to become, based on their plans) and asks for Bane, who is already in his office. Daggett, who thinks he is running the show, scolded Bane, who physically intimidates Daggett and explains that he is in charge while eventually killing him with his bare hands.

Walking outside Wayne Enterprises, Blake offered Bruce a ride since he’s broke and his other Lamborghini car being towed away. Both of them had a brief discussion in the car that Batman was meant to be a symbol to inspire good and Batman could be anyone. Bruce shows up at Selina's apartment and tells him that Batman wants her to bring him to meet Bane in exchange of the clean slate software, and she says that she'll think about it, though her views on Bruce had started to change, particularly because he is now bankrupt but seemingly not a bad guy, contrasting to the attitudes of most of Gotham's wealthy. 

While in the hospital, Gordon is with Foley and greeted by Blake, who delivers information to Gordon regarding the death of John Daggett and his various underground construction projects all over Gotham, though it clearly upsets Foley as it shows his incompetence regarding the investigation of Bane’s whereabouts. Gordon praises Blake for his work and promotes him to be detective.
When returning to Wayne Manor by taxi, Miranda shows up to see Bruce, sparks fly and they sleep together. At Bruce's surprise, Miranda reveals that she was not always wealthy and started out from poor beginnings and worked her way up.

Batman later meets Selina, who takes him through the sewers and a few mercenaries, but suddenly locks the door behind him, explaining that Bane forced her to do that and to prevent Bane from killing her. There, Bane addresses Batman as “Mr. Wayne” (much to Selina's shock). Both fight against each other, though Batman's attacks are useless as Bane walks through his punches and pummels Batman, who tries numerous tricks from the League of Shadows, all of which Bane knows, admitting that he not only was part of the League of Shadows but now leads them and is continuing to complete Ra's Al Ghul's work. (refer to Batman Begins) He repeatedly punches Batman's mask, eventually breaking it, while picking him up and dropping him on his knee (the infamous “Knightfall” scene in the comics where he broke Batman’s back), severely damaging Batman's back, to Selina's dismay and in tears, not just realizing the harm that she had inflicted upon Batman, but also at her own concern of Bruce Wayne and Batman being the same person, realizing that not all of Gotham's wealthy are ignorant of those in need. At the same time, the underground construction is complete, and explosives go off, and it was revealed that Bane was using Daggett's construction firms to stage a heist on Wayne Enterprises’ Applied Science Division.

The next scene shows that Selina is trying to leave the city but is apprehended at the airport by John Blake in connection with her crimes. Blake interrogates her, where he realizes that she is running from Bane, who seems like an unstoppable force. He asks her about Bruce (with both of them seeming to understand that they know that he is Batman), though she states she is not sure about what happened to him. Selina is sent to Blackgate prison under Dent’s Act.

Meanwhile, Bruce is shown to be taken to a prison at the very bottom of a pit, where Bane explains to him that he once was there and had learned about fear, despair and hope. His plan is to fulfill Ra’s al Ghul wishes to destroy Gotham but to leave Bruce alive in the pit prison to watch it happen from a TV set in his cell, since Bruce's fear is not death, but Gotham suffering. Bane intends to destroy the city by giving its inhabitants false hope, only to lose it and eventually die in a nuclear explosion. He wants Bruce to feel despair as now he can only watch his city burns and is hopeless to do anything about it. There, he is approached by a caretaker who nurses him (as requested by Bane) and another man who had served as the prison's doctor. The two of them explain how prisoners regularly try to climb their way up the well to escape (since there are no guards), but it is virtually impossible, though one child who was born in the prison had once managed to escape -- Bruce believes it to be Bane, knowing he was once an inmate. He also learns that the child was born there when a mercenary working for a warlord ended up sleeping with the warlord's daughter and impregnating her. The warlord originally imprisoned the mercenary, but his daughter arranged for the mercenary's freedom at her expense, taking on his sentence instead. The warlord's daughter (and her child who was later born) was kept in a separate cell from the other inmates, though one day, her cell was accidentally left unlocked by the prison doctor, and the inmates attacked, but a respected “protector” among the prisoners saved the child from attack, though unfortunately the child's mother could not be saved.
Later on, Bane then proceeds to locate and acquire the nuclear fusion reactor to change the core of the reactor to a fusion bomb with the help of Dr.Pavel (the reason why he was kidnapped earlier in the film). It is revealed that Bane and his men have been setting up numerous explosives throughout the city, which are set off during a Gotham Ravens football game in which the field is destroyed, the mayor was killed in an explosion, along with many other structures and all bridges leading in and out of Gotham except one (to be barricaded and guarded but used specifically for food to be delivered to the city), turning Gotham into an isolated city state. It is done strategically at the same time when thousands of Gotham police officers (roughly 3,000) are ordered by Gordon and Foley to go into the sewers to apprehend Bane due to him holding the board members of Wayne Enterprises as hostages, though they end up getting trapped in the rubble but are still given food and water from above.
Blake found out about the plan but it’s too late. He proceeds to go to Gotham general hospital, worry that Bane is sending some mercenaries to kill Gordon. But Gordon realizes what had happened and manages to handle the mercenaries himself before Blake reaches the hospital.

Bane and his men go out onto what is left of the field, taking a microphone and explaining to Gotham that he now has a nuclear bomb (Dr. Pavel, who is brought out, explains to the crowd that it is indeed a nuclear bomb, with a 6-mile blast radius and that he is the only person capable of disarming it, and is then killed by Bane) that will be triggered by an unknown citizen if any of them try to leave Gotham, though they do not know that the bomb is going to explode anyway due to radioactive decay of the atoms in roughly 5 months since it is no longer in its housing (back in the secret location where Bruce and Fox placed it).

Since Bane and the League of Shadows mercenaries had taken 12 million Gotham citizens as hostage by using the nuclear fusion bomb, the US government was forced to hold back the army and prevent the citizens from leaving Gotham due to the bomb threat.

Bane and his men take the Tumblers obtained in Wayne Enterprises’ Applied Science Division to the front of the courthouse and numerous news cameras, where he talks about Harvey Dent having murdered police officers, as proven by Commissioner Gordon's handwritten speech. He deems all criminals imprisoned because of the Dent’s Act innocent as they are imprisoned without trial and denied for parole for 8 years, and uses the Tumblers (with heavy artillery) to blast open the walls of Blackgate Prison, where Bane's men rush inside, attack the correctional officers, free the prisoners, arm them with assault rifles and eventually recruit them while encouraging Gotham's inhabitants to take the city back from the wealthy. Gordon, who watched the televised speech from Blake's apartment, is questioned by Blake about why he covered up the truth and is ashamed of Gordon’s decision to hide the truth.

Chaos breaks out, as the wealthy and powerful are removed from their homes and tried in an improvised court headed by Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow (refer to Batman Begins), who gives people the choice of exile or death. (financial and social collapse, class inequality and warfare themes) When exiled, the “guilty” are forced to leave the city by walking onto the frozen lake under the bridge, though everyone ends up falling through thin ice. (Stryver, Daggett’s assistant is shown to suffer the same fate) Gordon, Blake, and Foley assemble various Gotham police officers still remaining to create a resistance, as they have found a way to communicate with the trapped police officers by sending notes tied with string through sewer drains as mobile communication signals from devices are unable to reach underground. They realize that the bomb is housed in one of three trucks in lead (two of which are decoys) that are always in motion in Gotham, to protect it from radioactive detection devices. Miranda offers her help, since she is also with everyone else. The US government sent a few Special Forces officers to infiltrate the city to make contact with the remaining policemen in the city to deal with the situation, but ended up being found and executed by Bane.

In the underground pit prison after 84 days of Bane’s hostile takeover, Bruce's back heals after being painfully readjusted by his caretaker, though he had a hallucination or dream where Ra's Al Ghul appears and reminds him that he is “immortal,” though, during the dream, Bruce realizes that Ra's was the mercenary who impregnated the warlord's daughter and deduces that the child who escaped was Bane. Bruce continues to retrains himself physically to return to peak form but fails to escape (like every other inmate), eventually missing a jump onto a protruding ledge to the top, only to be dangling by a rope and hitting the walls on the way down twice. The prison doctor talks about how the child managed to escape, as the child's guardian ended up getting attacked, which forced the child to climb up the wall with no rope but managed to make the jump due to being driven by fear and necessity. He also talks about how Bane was once attacked and needs the mask to breathe a gas that helps soothe pains from that attack. Bruce decides to try to escape the prison without a rope, and before making the jump, bats fly out of a hole, which brings his fear back, and he makes the jump and ultimately escapes, to the prisoners' delight.

Elsewhere in the city, Gordon's team is growing smaller due to the hunting down of cops by Bane’s new prison mercenary army, to the point where Foley withdrew and decided to stay at home with his family out of fear and he believes if they cooperate the bomb won't be detonated. Miranda is shown to offer her help in place of Foley.

Selina, freed from jail, but disapproving of Bane's ideals (as she wanted the wealthy to lose their possessions only and give them to the poor but Bane physically tortures or kills them), saves a child from Bane's men, though she is surprised to hear Bruce's voice from the shadows, as he has returned to Gotham. He hopes to recruit her to help him restore order by telling her that getting by in Gotham isn't enough since the bomb is going to explode in a few days. He offers her a “clean slate,” as he revealed to her that the program that she was looking for to delete her files, which Wayne Enterprises had acquired at some point in the past to keep out of the wrong hands. He needs to meet with Lucius Fox, and Selina brings him to Bane's men as a prisoner, but the two of them attack the men so he can reach Fox, who is being held with most other wealthy people (but not harmed due to their involvement with Wayne Enterprises), in order to discuss how to stop the bomb trigger by using an EMP device found in the Bat, to prepare the nuclear housing for reattaching the nuclear fusion device to stabilize it and access another secret location with a reserve including a Batsuit and other weapons.
Gordon and a few police officers are eventually apprehended by Bane's men and tried in court. They choose death, but it is death by exile (though Bane asks for Miranda to be brought to him) and they are brought to the thin ice, though Batman appears and takes out Bane's men and, with Gordon's help, lights a fire that continues onto the bridge to light a batsign for all to see, to restore hope to everyone, Foley included. Bane sees the sign and is surprised; now wanting to keep “her” (Miranda) close to him as Batman will come looking for her.

Blake is caught by Bane's men for trying to free all the police in the underground and is about to be executed until Batman shows up, and the two of them take all of the men down. Using the Bat (which had been parked on a rooftop), he blasts the rubble, which allows for the trapped police officers to finally escape, now giving Batman an army to fight Bane's men. Blake wants to help, but Batman said he has already helped by giving him an army, and he asks him to help people begin to escape. Batman finds Selina and had her agree to shoot down a barrier composed of stacked cars by using the Batpod in order for people to escape, though she mentioned she’ll only be doing that then leaving to escape, as well. Batman continues to say that she needs her help and thinks that she is capable of doing good, while she disagrees and asks Batman to leave with her, saying that he had given Gotham “everything” and he don’t owe them anything anymore, to which Batman says “not everything, not yet,” and realizes his dedication to the city, which moves her almost to tears.

Batman and the whole Gotham police force plan to attack Bane head-on at City Hall, which has become their headquarters. The large police force, now including Foley in full police attire, approaches a similarly large army on Bane's side, flanked by Tumblers with weapons pointing at them. Batman shows up in the Bat and blasts one of the Tumblers; this provides courage for the police army to fight head-on. Selina is seen on the other side blasting the cars, and has cleared a path. Batman and Bane eventually find each other and fight with the brawl being much more even than before, though Bane still has a slight edge and a stronger opponent.

Batman managed to land a few strong hits on Bane's mask, which detach a few of the tubes and slow down the gas that relieves his pain. He is clearly affected by it but continues to fight Batman, who eventually overpowers him and knocks him through the glass doors of City Hall, where Miranda is located. Batman continuously attacks Bane, hoping to force him to reveal who has the trigger to the bomb. Bane remains silent due to his agony, but Miranda stabs Batman in his side, to his surprise, which also subdues him being under such pain, as she slowly twists her knife.

Miranda finally reveals that she is actually Talia al Ghul, Ra's only child, and that it was she (and not Bane, as Bruce originally thought) who was born in prison and had escaped, and Bane was her guardian. She plans to complete her father's work by destroying Gotham and avenging his death at Wayne's hands. The day that she escaped, it was because Bane was being attacked by the other inmates, who left his face partially disfigured and severely wounded. When Talia escaped, she returned to the prison with her father (who was already in charge of the League of Shadows) and his men and killed all of them, except for Bane (who was spared for helping Talia when she was in prison) and the prison doctor. Both Talia and Bane were admitted into the League of Shadows but were somewhat estranged from Ra's after he had expelled Bane due to his affection for Talia and reminding Ra’s the death of his wife, which brings an injured Bane to tears as she tells the story while fixing his mask's tubes, which had been damaged. Talia talks about having been patient and working her way up to infiltrate Wayne Enterprises for the right moment, but when she hits the bomb trigger, it does not detonate since Gordon managed to activate the EMP device next to the bomb in time. It did not bother her, since the bomb would explode in minutes anyway, so she leaves to ride in a Tumbler to guard the bomb (still in motion in a truck and Gordon was still in), killing a few policemen along the way, including Foley. Bane begins to strangle Batman with a rope until Selina appears suddenly in a Batpod and blasts Bane, killing him instantly.

Blake has rounded up a school bus full of orphans (followed by other vehicles with Gotham's innocent residents), but they are stopped at the bridge on the side controlled by the National Guard, who says that they cannot let anyone pass, still in fear of the bomb threats, even though Blake tells them that it has been handled, as Fox came up with a plan to disable the trigger using the EMP device from the Bat once it is attached to the bomb, as Gordon is tracking the trucks to find out which one has the bomb, though the first one they find does not have it. The National Guard does not shoot Blake, but they shoot at his feet to try to hold him back, and when he gets too close, out of fear, they set off explosives that separate the bridge, preventing anyone from crossing, which deeply angered Blake.

Batman (in the Bat) and Selina (in the Batpod) chase the truck guarded by 3 Tumblers. They attack the Tumblers, though one fire a series of guided missiles that follow the Bat as it navigates between buildings, slowly taking out one missile at a time as it hits other objects as the Bat makes sharp maneuvers around the city. Selina managed to hit 2 Tumblers with missiles from the Batpod. Batman guides one of the last missiles into the last Tumbler, though Miranda had already jumped into the truck with the bomb. Fox is communicating with Batman, saying that he needs to force them to take the bomb to where the bomb's housing was located to stabilize it so it won't explode. Eventually, the truck carrying the bomb goes through too much of an attack from both Batman and Selina to the point where it falls through an opening to a street on a lower level and crashes. Batman, Selina and Gordon get out and plan to attach the bomb with a cable to take it to its housing, but a dying Talia (injured from the crash) explains that her back-up plan is in force, which sets off the security measures of the room where the bomb housing is located. The entire room floods (which forces Fox to leave), which gives Batman no choice but to haul the bomb away from the city with the Bat. Selina kisses him passionately (contrasting to their first kiss) before he gets into the Bat. Gordon approaches him and asks who he is. Without saying who he is, he basically says that a hero could be anyone, even as simple as someone “putting a coat on a young boy’s shoulders to let the boy know that the world hadn’t ended” before leaving with the bomb. (refer to Batman Begins) As Gordon backs off, he is reminded of when he put his coat on Bruce after his parents were murdered and realizes that Bruce Wayne is Batman.

The Bat lifts off with the bomb and speeds away with less than two minutes left. A building explodes, which Blake (on the bridge) thinks is the bomb, but the kids see that it is the Bat blasting through the building to fly through it. Its jet engine is used to accelerate more quickly over the ocean, where the bomb goes off, but is far enough to have saved everyone in Gotham.

In the aftermath, Gotham recognizes Batman as its true hero, having erected a statue in his memory, while Bruce Wayne is assumed to have been one of the casualties of Bane's assault on Gotham's wealthy or presumed killed during the police force attack on Gotham’s city hall. At his funeral (where Bruce's tombstone is placed outside of Wayne Manor next to his parents’ graves), the four men who knew Batman's identity (Gordon, Alfred, Blake, and Fox) are gathered while Gordon reads a passage. They leave, but Alfred stays behind and weeps in front of the graves of Bruce's parents, saying that he had “failed”. After Bruce's funeral, Blake wants to reveal Batman's identity to the world as a tribute to Bruce, but Gordon reminds him that it is best left as a mystery to the uninformed. Blake quits from being a police.

Wayne's estate and fortune is split up, with certain things going to creditors to cover any debts, though in accordance with certain requests that had been made (presumably by Bruce), Wayne Manor was to become a home for orphans while Alfred inherits ownership of the rest. John Blake asks if anything was left for him, and a woman helping with the process says no, but then he mentions that it may be under his “legal name” and hands her an ID card, which she acknowledges and hands him a bag, while saying that she likes the sound of his legal name - ROBIN. However, the executor of the estate mentions that they are almost done, but they still haven't tracked down Bruce's mother's pearl necklace.

At Wayne Enterprises’ applied sciences division, Lucius Fox and other employees are examining the remains of the Bat, though the engineers mention that the Bat had been ‘fixed’ (which would include the completion of the autopilot feature), much to Fox's surprise. He asks who had completed it, and their computer systems show that it had last been accessed by Bruce Wayne, making Fox realize that Bruce may have used the autopilot feature when transporting the bomb (rather than having died in its blast) and therefore may be still be alive. Elsewhere, Alfred is in Florence, Italy at a cafe, looks around, smiles and nods, and Bruce is at another table with a woman, who turns to the side and is revealed to be Selina (wearing Bruce's mother's pearl necklace), fulfilling Alfred's wish for Bruce to move on from Gotham while also realizing that he is alive. Commissioner Gordon is on the rooftop of the police station and finds that the Batsignal has been repaired. Blake's bag has certain coordinates, which lead him to the side entrance of the Batcave through the waterfall. It looks empty, but he walks over the shallow pool of water, it becomes a rising platform that houses the Batsuit, hinting that Blake is to become Bruce's successor.

In short:

  • ·         Miranda Tate is Talia al-Ghul, Ra's al-Ghul's (refer to Batman Begins) daughter, the mastermind and current leader of The League of Shadows. Bane was her protector as a child and her right-hand man in the organization and responsible for executing the plan to destroy Gotham. Their goal is to continue Ra's plan to destroy Gotham City, using a nuclear fusion device Wayne Enterprises developed with Tate that Bane, with Dr.Pavel’s assistance had reverse engineered into a nuclear bomb.
  • ·         By using Gordon’s speech note, Bane reveals to Gotham the truth about Harvey Dent/Two-Face, clearing Batman of Harvey Dent's crimes/murder.
  • ·         During the final battle, Selina Kyle/Catwoman kills Bane via missiles from the Batpod. Batman ‘sacrifices’ his life by transporting the bomb away from Gotham via his flying vehicle, seemingly dying in the ensuing nuclear blast.
  • ·         Gotham City erects a statue in Batman's honor, and Commissioner Gordon finds a rebuilt Batsignal.
  • ·         Alfred, while on his annual vacation in Florence, Italy, goes to the restaurant he previously mentioned to Bruce.  There, he sees Bruce sitting with Selina (Hathaway), seemingly waiting on Alfred as a way to let Alfred know Bruce is alive and has moved on from Batman.
  • ·         Back in Gotham, Wayne Manor has been made into an orphanage in the name of Bruce's parents.
  • ·         John Blake's full name is revealed to be ‘Robin John Blake’. He is given coordinates to the waterfall entrance to the Batcave by Bruce, the film ends with him discovering Batman's armory and becomes the Batman’s successor.
  • ·         It is further established that Batman is not just a symbol of hope and justice, but a beacon of promise and perseverance amidst a fallen world.

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