Originally Posted by jmc
Whilst Fellowship may have been a better movie the reward for Return of the King was for the entire trilogy. Lets face it The Dark Knight series isn't nearly as impressive an accomplishment as bringing to life the most famous and difficult to translate fantasy novel of all time.
It is an entirely different kind of an accomplishment but I'd say The Dark Knight is up there with LotR. For a Batman franchise to be a successful as this trilogy was after Batman Forever and Batman and Robin was remarkable. Yes the established Batman fanbase was there but there was no guarantee it would build up a new general audience.
It also came out in a time where comic book films and superhero films were dominiting the big screen so to be able to stand out from them was also a big achievement. This trilogy also undoubtabely influenced many other films (Amazing Spider-Man, Man of Steel, Skyfall) and will continue. They are big ambitious films all loved by fans and critics and earnt a ****load of money back.
Also an accomplishment in filmmaking with Nolan's big scale storytelling with practical effects and the biggest IMAX film in film history. The city brawl, stadium scene, 18 wheeler, hundreds of cop cars chase, the bat/truck chase is all massive practical old school storytelling.
From Day 1 Warner let the Director tell the story he wanted to (Quite rare with a big franchise) and let it go from there.
It may be for different reasons but I'd say The Dark Knight Trilogy is just as big an accomplishment as the Lord of the Rings trilogy.