I've seen it twice and I have a more firm opinion of the film. I love it. I still felt the full brunt of all the emotional aspects of the film. I still think it was shot and paced well. And I just don't have the problems with the plot that some seem to. Spoilers from here on.
I won't summarize the whole plot. I'll just talk about the highlights for me. The end of the first act is the first confrontation between Bane and Batman. It was as brutal and awesome as I was expecting. They both just pound the hell out of each other. And Bane talks shit the whole time. As I said when the prologue came out, Bane is supposed to be the physical equal, if not superior, to Batman. The Joker was a great villain. But he wouldn't last long in a straight up first fight with Batman. Bane and Tom Hardy completely delivered on giving Batman an equal foe, which for me made the fight scenes more entertaining and dramatic.
This of course leads to Bane breaking Batman's back and throwing him into the prison Bane was from, supposedly. I liked the time in the prison because it showed one of my favorite aspects of the Batman mythology, overcoming obstacles. Not only does Bruce have to recover physically, he has to look inward and find something he hasn't had in a while and something he had to overcome in the first movie, fear.
After escaping the prison, Bruce goes back to Gotham to once again become Batman and try to stop the city from being destroyed. And this leads to the second confrontation with Bane, this time amidst a big battle between the cops and mercenaries. Once again it was a fantastically brutal fight. Even when Bane's mask is broken he really takes it to Batman. But this time Batman gets the best of him. That only lasts about a minute before we get the big twist of the movie, when Talia al-Guhl stabs Batman.
I was genuinely surprised when it happened, both because Cotillard and the rest of the Nolan team denied it from the beginning and because I thought that was going to be the death of Batman. Technically that wasn't where he died, but it lead to him sacrificing himself for Gotham. It turns out that Bruce didn't actually die, which is kind of having it both ways. But I don't care. I love it and the entire ending. Bruce finally seems at peace with himself and gets to be with Selina (who I really enjoyed). Gotham finally gets the hero it needs and deserves. And in case Gotham still needs help, John Blake gets to take over as Batman.
I love the ending and the movie as a whole because even though he suffered greatly and made mistakes, Bruce achieved what he set out to achieve in becoming Batman. He made the criminals of Gotham afraid and he inspired the citizens of Gotham to stand up to those criminals and make their city better. He showed why Batman is so awesome and why we love him, which is that he overcomes his human limitations to become a symbol that stands for the best in all of us and inspires us to follow his example.