By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood December 20, 2011 at 2:52AM
Yes, I did schlep out to Universal City on Sunday to see the IMAX "The Dark Knight Rises" prologue in front of "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol." And I highly recommend that you all do the same. For one thing the prologue was shot in IMAX high in the air on two small planes--- you get to see (if not understand) Tom Hardy as the villain Bane, and let's just say it's a memorable intro that takes full advantage of what IMAX can do. IMAX was behind the special break-out of the prologue in front of showings of "M:I4." It had nothing to do with Paramount.
As for that studio's "M:I4," it's exactly what you expect, only better. J.J. Abrams is a strong writer-producer, and Brad Bird is a gifted director--the opening credits are something only an animator could execute. Even with an old-fashioned nuclear threat plot, the movie shows an animator's imagination about where to put the camera and what you can do with space, from the vertiginous heights of the Dubai tower and Tom Cruise's crazy Spider-Man stunt to the second digital sand storm I've seen in a week (Tsui Hark has one in his IMAX 3-D "Flying Swords of Dragon Gate"). Cruise's age is an asset; it makes him more vulnerable; his team-- Simon Pegg, Jeremy Renner and Paula Patton-- do just fine, with Sweden's own Mikael Blomkvist as the villain.
As for "The Dark Knight Rises" trailer, the dread and menace, hissed into Bruce Wayne's ear at a high-end cocktail party by Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle: "There's a storm coming, Mr. Wayne, you and your friends better batten down the hatches 'cause when it hits, you'll wonder how you thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us." Not only does it look like Nolan is hitting the unsettling zeitgeist yet again, but the film reminds me of a modern day version of John Frankenheimer's "Black Sunday," with its Super Bowl plot.
Everyone and their mother is reviewing and commenting on the trailer. Here's EW's take. In cased you missed it, see below.