Trailer premieres in the US...
Alex Winehouse

14:07 9th December 2011

The Dark Knight Rises prologue was screened for the first time in the US last night (Dec 8), but Tom Hardy has been criticised for being "unintelligible" in the role of Bane.

The British actor plays the villain in director Christopher Nolan's third and final Batman film, with Christian Bale once again playing the caped crusader.

Writing for the Hollywood Reporter, Borys Kit said: "It may be early in the sound mixing process, but a lot of key dialogue, particularly that of Bane, who speaks via a mask, was unintelligible.

"The sequence was grand in scope, expanding the Batman world outside of Gotham City, and it was filled with a lot of tension and dread. The impact was strong, not only from the images on screen but from the score, which was reminiscent of Nolan's The Dark Knight and Inception."

SuperHeroHype's Silas Lesnicksaid: "Though the response from the crowd was overwhelmingly positive, there was much discussion about Bane's voice.

'Muffled by his mask and featuring a British accent, it's difficult to fully understand exactly what he is saying (but likely intentionally)."

Empire's James White, however, was enraptured, saying: "The prologue features some stunning camera work (clearly Nolan felt like applying some of the tricks and style he mastered on Inception) and the opening sequence, which gives us our first look at Bane (Tom Hardy), comes off like a cross between a Bond movie and everything we’ve come to love about Nolan’s Bat-universe.

'Highlights include one very confused CIA agent, a truly clever attack, superb stuntwork, some threatening words from Mr Bane himself and a lot of clues about his links to the bigger story."

Nolan himself introduced the six-minute short to the assembled audience.

The prologue will run before IMAX screenings of Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol.

The Dark Knight Rises is released on July 20, 2012.

The greatest super villains...

  • Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) - Superman The Movie (1978)

  • General Zod (Terence Stamp) - Superman II (1980)

  • Joker (Jack Nicholson) - Batman (1989)

  • Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer) - Batman Returns (1992)

  • Magneto (Ian McKellen) - X Men (2000)

  • Mystique (Rebecca Romijn) - X Men 2 (2003)

  • Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina) - Spiderman 2 (2004)

  • Yellow Bastard (Nick Stahl) - Sin City (2005)

  • Ra's al Ghul (Liam Neeson) - Batman Begins (2005)

  • Joker (Heath Ledger) - The Dark Knight (2008)

Issue Four of the Gigwise Print magazine is on pre-order now! Order here.