Warner Bros. has released a new trailer for The Dark Knight Rises that reveals more of the plot as well as shining a new light on characters once barely seen in previous trailers. After watching this trailer for a good long while (I've watched it over a million times, isolating every pixel and analyzing every frame of footage) I have decided to accumulate what I've learned from the previous trailers in order to get a sort of sense of how this movie will go. By no means am I spoiling the story since this is all simple conjecture on my part.
So to begin this speculation let's start with how this film will begin, which everyone knows by now (for those who don't this is the only piece of SPOILERS in this and should just skip to the next paragraph to avoid it), begins with the introduction of Bane, our new villain. Bane and some of his lackeys are willingly captured by CIA agent Littlefinger and brought aboard his private jet as they take Doctor Pavel (the same doctor from the viral marketing campaign) back to the states. When it's revealed that Bane is one of the masked men the CIA has captured he tells the agents he intends to crash the plane and kidnap Pavel for his own nefarious plans. From what we know of Dr. Pavel he is an expert on nuclear fuel cell technology who has been missing for some time. The reason why Bane wants a nuclear fuel cell specialist is still obscured in mystery, but unnerving to say the least. Does Bane want him to build him a bomb? Perhaps the fuel cells are needed to power some sort of superweapon capable of wiping out Gotham? I believe it could be anything at this point, however, from what I've devised to be the "plot" I believe these fuel cells are to keep power running within the city, I'll explain why later. Needless to say, the prologue is action packed and quickly establishes Bane as a total badass.
After that we will no doubt be taken to Gotham where we see how the city has recovered after The Joker's reign of terror 8 years prior. Batman is nowhere to be found as he is being hunted by police for his connection to a series of murders actually committed by Harvey Dent in The Dark Knight. Bruce Wayne is probably enjoying some much needed rest after his ordeals and is beginning to believe that the time when Gotham no longer needs Batman is finally here. Meanwhile, Commissioner Gordon and the rest of Gotham's finest are also enjoying the peace that has come since a majority of the mob is now in jail thanks to Harvey Dent and Batman. We will no doubt be introduced to Joseph Gordon Leavitt's GPD officer John Blake who may be a reluctant member of the special unit charged with apprehending Batman. No doubt Gordon is reluctant to hunt down Batman since he knows the truth about Harvey Dent. In either case things will probably be very mellow as the movie slowly unfolds and reveals what's been going on since The Dark Knight.
We will then see the arrival of Selina Kyle/Catwoman as well as some chilling scenes with Bane as they put their plans into motion. We also see Marion Cotillard's Miranda Tate, a new board member at Wayne Enterprises whom Bruce Wayne grows fond of. And from what we've seen in the trailers there will be some sort of party or benefit where it is revealed that the mayor of Gotham plans to relieve Gordon of his position as Commissioner since "this is peacetime." During this benefit Selina Kyle will probably approach Bruce (knowing full well who he really is since it is looking like she and Bane are somehow related to the League of Shadows from Batman Begins) and give him the warning of an "oncoming storm." Bruce is unnerved by this, fearing the peace he has fought to attain for Gotham is being threatened.
Skipping ahead to the infamous football scene from the trailers where Bane blows up the field as the game is being played. He addresses the citizens of Gotham in a big reveal and then proceeds to wreak havoc. It is then that Bruce must take up the cowl once again in order to combat Bane and Catwoman. We may then see some attempts to apprehend Bane, Catwoman, and yes even Batman that fail miserably as the situation worsens. This ultimately comes to a head when Bane and Batman fight one on one with a significantly weakened Batman (I assume he's been inactive for the 8 years of peacetime so he's lost his edge somewhat) easily beaten by Bane. He removes Batman's mask to reveal Bruce Wayne and shows his true face to the rest of Gotham. However, Bane doesn't kill him, believing his punishment must be more severe. He then has Bruce cast into the bowels of some dark League of Shadows prison outside of Gotham where he will rot while Gotham gets destroyed. After this happens, Bane will probably release all the prisoners in Arkham and whatnot and recruit them for his army. While this happens, the government (seeing as they've become involved as per the prologue) decides to put the city under martial law and isolates it by blowing up the bridges that lead into and out of the city. JGL, Gordon, and the others are trapped in Gotham as Bane continues to establish a military presence within the city. (SPOILERS: This would explain why Bane needed Pavel, to make a nuclear reactor capable of powering the city when the government cut it from the grid.)
As Bruce is rotting in the gulag, JGL (who I assume is the onlooker we see in the teaser trailer when we see a tired Batman fighting Bane) goes to see Selina Kyle and asks her if Bruce Wayne is still alive, she claims she doesn't know and is clearly conflicted in her decision to help Bane (she does so mostly out of fear). JGL, Gordon, and the rest of the Gotham police are trying their best to stop Bane but what they're doing isn't enough and it eventually puts Gordon in the hospital. Meanwhile, Bruce has been training in his cell in order to get back into shape and escape. With the help of another inmate Bruce is able to coax the League guards down into a riot which allows him to escape. He makes his way back to Gotham and finds it under siege. He confides in Alfred, who is worried that taking on Bane will mean the death of Bruce, and then plans on finding a way back into Gotham. After he manages to sneak back into the city Bruce visits an ailing Gordon who pleads for the Batman to return in this darkest of hours. Bruce is reluctant, wondering if "he (batman) even exists anymore." "He must," pleads Gordon, "He must." This prompts Bruce to take on the Cowl once more as he begins to rally support with the help of JGL, Fox (Morgan Freeman), Miranda Tate, and even Catwoman, who does a heel face turn after being encouraged by Batman to stand up to Bane, in order to gather fighters to take back Gotham.
JGL encourages the rest of the Gotham Police to stand up to Bane's forces and they begin to revolt (all the massive fight scenes we've seen from spy footage and in the trailers suggests this) while Batman and Catwoman track down Bane. There are some awesome chase scenes featuring Batman's new flying vehicle (bluntly called "The Bat" in concept shots) until the final battle where it's an all out brawl in the streets of Gotham. Bane and Batman duke it out in the crowd and...
That's about as far as my speculation goes. Considering the fact that I simply can't know how this movie will end it would be silly of me to even speculate on how this will end. Needless to say, I'm pumped for this movie, and can't wait to see how it actually turns out because anything I've put down would never be as good as what the brothers Nolan and David S. Goyer have come up with.
Needless to day, June 20th can't get here soon enough!