The Dark Knight Rises is good. In fact it's very good, but not great. I preferred The Dark Knight to any other in this trilogy or any Batman film prior and now sense. This most recent installment was facing some tough obstacles right out of the gate. The main villain in the film, Bane, is some what limited. He talks through a mask with a funny accent, making him difficult to understand at times. Bane made his comics debut in 1993, that's more than 50 years after Batman was introduced and certainly long after many of his most infamous counterparts hit the big time (Joker, Penguin, Catwoman, etc.)
That is not my main complaint, as "newer" villains can certainly be very complex, entertaining and all of that. (In fact, I wish Harley Quinn was somehow included in The Dark Knight along with the Joker). But Banes story, although interesting in its own right, could never live up to The Joker, or even Two-Face, The Riddler (if done the right way) and others. Tom Hardy did a great job playing Bane, Christopher Nolan utilized Bane probably as well as you could, and still its a far cry from The Joker (Heath Ledger's performance, combined with the history of the character, his standing amongst all-time super villains, and that incredible relationship between Batman and him.).
So going into the movie, I knew that the best Bane could only go so far, and I was proven right. My other complaint going in was the decision to cast Anne Hathaway as Catwoman.
Don't get me wrong, she is a great actress, probably a better actress than any in the age bracket for this Catwoman. But she's not hot. I don't see it. Mila Kunia, Natalie Portman, Megan Fox (after 10 years worth of acting lessons... ok then she's out), would have been better. But the truth is, Hathway was fine.
I thought they could have explained Catwoman and Bane's stories a little bit more, that might have helped with both of them for me. No spoilers here, but the film takes place 8 years after the last, and these two new characters seem to be thrown in a bit.
I understand that The Dark Knight Rises is meant as a conclusion to the trilogy. With that said, I felt it served as a pretty good wrap up. It's a very solid film both for the Batman die hards and the comic book novices out there. I recommend it, but don't think there is any way to compare it to the Ledger driven Dark Knight.
(Batman Begins probably gets an 8/10, I'll have to see Rises again to really break the tie and determine which is better. The Dark Knight is definitely 10/10.)