Why do we fall? So we can learn to pick ourselves up.” We’re a week away from the epic conclusion of the Dark Knight Trilogy and Thomas Wayne’s sage advice to his young son couldn’t be more appropriate. Bruce Wayne has his work cut out for him in The Dark Knight Rises.

No doubt many Batfans will be preparing for Christopher Nolan’s final Caped Crusader installment by rewatching Batman Begins and The Dark Knight; however, in a summer packed with blockbuster movie releases (not to mention record-breaking long lines at Comic-Con 2012), who has the time to rewatch older films? To save our readers some time we’ve put together a Batman mash-up that tells the story of Nolan’s trilogy thus far – as well as foreshadows where prior events are set to payoff in The Dark Knight Rises.

My assignment with the above video was to create a linear, abridged version of Bruce Wayne’s life story as told in these three films. Like him, I also had my work cut out for me. As a lifelong Batman fan, trying to cut ANYTHING out was a challenge – but as late nights turned into mornings and groggy work weeks, I made painful cuts (my apologies to Katie Holmes and Morgan Freeman) and whittled it down to seven heavy-hitting minutes.

All in all 286 minutes of Batman Begins and Dark Knight footage was cut in order to distill the story down to the core sequence of events – culminating in the highly-anticipated Bruce Wayne/Bane showdown in The Dark Knight Rises. Tim Burton may have paved the way for a “dark” Batman film but Nolan’s approach to the character has set a new standard for grounded superhero movie storytelling that culled blockbuster box office numbers from both casual moviegoers and hardcore comic book fans.

I hope it’s the mashup you deserve AND the one you need right now.

For the full pre-Dark Knight Rises preparation regimen, check out the 5 Batman Comic Book Stories to Prepare You for The Dark Knight Rises.

If you enjoyed this Screen Rant mash-up video, be sure to watch our other summer videos: The Ultimate 2012 Summer Movie Trailer and Amazing Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield) Saves Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire).

Which moment in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight series is your favorite?

The Dark Knight Rises in theaters on July 20th, 2012.

Follow Chris on Twitter @Molinaro4Prez for future video mash-ups (as well as a fake presidential campaign).

Special thanks to B.J. Smith for the video’s opening title graphics.