Documentary Review: The Fire Rises: The Creation and Impact of the Dark Knight Trilogy

Details: You can watch this for free on YouTube. More information can be found at

Score: 6.3/10

The Fire Rises is a look at Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy of films. It goes behind the scenes and interviews producers, writers and various people connected to the Batman franchise in relation to Nolan’s Batman films. It doesn’t go very in depth and mostly serves as marketing material for the films, but it is nice to get some behind the scenes opinions if you’re a fan of the films.

Nolan’s Batman movies changed a lot of what people thought about superhero films and they did this simply by being great films. While these films had humor, they were primarily dramas. In the past, superhero movies required a certain amount of jokiness and flamboyance in order to be believable to fans. Nolan’s Batman movies got rid of a lot of that flamboyance and successfully portrayed a much more realistic, believable superhero story.

In watching this drama, it becomes clear just how much new ground they broke with these films. Batman Begins was a franchise reboot, something that had not yet been done for superhero movies. I remember that at the time Batman Begins was released, I had no interest in watching it. The prior few Batman movies were so cringeworthy and out there that I just gave up on the idea of watching another Batman movie. To my surprise, all my friends who had seen it loved it. So I watched it and to my surprise, I found a story that somehow successfully told a fairly realistic, believable superhero story.

But Batman Begins was an origin story. The Dark Knight was a true Batman story. I remember I was hyped about this film until I heard that Heath Ledger was cast as the Joker. That was incredibly confusing because at the time, Heath had only been in roles as a teenage heartthrob. I’d never seen him in anything more serious or not romantic. Plus, I and everyone else anticipating this movie could not imagine how the Joker would be portrayed. Jack Nicholson had left his mark on the character and anyone else doing the role was hard to imagine. Suffice it to say, I and everyone else who watched it were blown away by Heath’s performance. It was a gritty, realistic, yet entertaining take on the character that no one had yet seen. Heath stole the show and elevated that film to the superhero classic that it is today.

They don’t talk that much about Dark Knight Rises and rightfully so. That wasn’t that great of a film.

Overall, this was a nice walk through memory lane. It’s not in depth, it doesn’t have any big reveals about scandals that went on behind the scenes. It was just a nice chat about some of what went into the films behind the scenes and the thought processes behind many creative decisions.

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