Why ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Deserves A Nearly Three-Hour Runtime

Final Batman film will be two hours and 45 minutes long, making it the longest movie in the series.

If you caught the amazing never-before-seen footage from “The Dark Knight Rises” Sunday night (June 3) at the MTV Movie Awards, you may be getting that all-too familiar sinking feeling that you have seen too much of something you’re really looking forward to. Perhaps it was one too many trailers or an overly revealing TV spot, but you start to wonder if there’s anything you haven’t seen already.

Luckily for Batman fans, that does not seem likely. The theater chain AMC recently updated its listing for Christopher Nolan’s final Batman movie and included a runtime of two hours and 45 minutes, making it the longest film in the series by nearly 15 minutes.

If a nearly three-hour runtime seems too long to you, consider the following:

As a point of reference, 165 minutes is longer than a “Harry Potter” movie and shorter than a “Lord of the Rings” movie, or as Goldilocks put it, “Just right.”

Taking in all that we’ve seen so far from trailers and what we know from the character list, this film will be sufficiently packed. Batman’s struggles with Bane alone could constitute its own movie, but he also has Selina Kyle and (supposedly) Talia Al Ghul to deal with. The last thing we want from the long-awaited conclusion to the series would be an over-stuffed, rushed mess of a film.

Most importantly, Nolan is pitching this as the most fitting conclusion he could think of to the Batman story he is telling. That is no short order. “Batman Begins” was undoubtedly the first movie worthy of the Caped Crusader’s legacy, and “The Dark Knight” built upon that and turned even the most casual viewer into die-hard fanboys and Nolan defenders. Anything short of an expansive, epic cinematic experience would feel anticlimactic. Nolan, especially with his use of IMAX footage, has been a proponent of old-fashioned spectacle. “The Dark Knight Rises” will be a movie event with the runtime to match.

And if you’re feeling up for a challenge, AMC is offering what they’re calling “The Dark Knight Marathon.” It’s not clear yet whether this will include both “The Dark Knight” and “Batman Begins” before leading to a midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” à la the Marvel Movie Marathon for “The Avengers,” but tickets go on sale June 11 at 12 p.m. ET if you’re interested.

Jaw-dropping, heart-pounding, gut-busting moments galore. See what just happened at the 21st annual MTV Movie Awards!