So much as it pains me to have paid money to do so, I went and watched The Batman. The first and most important things about this movie is that it walks a very fine line and doesn’t fall off it; and that it might actually have been written by an adult human being with a normal amount of intelligence.
That line? The ability to balance inherently ridiculous concepts (and resultant dialogue) with serious execution and sensibilities.
Does this movie “hate Batman?” Not so that I noticed; and for some of the things it did that are objectionable, you might as well criticize the comics themselves for (JUST KILL THE MASS MURDERING COMPLETELY IRREDEEMABLE PSYCHOPATHS ALREADY. JUST DO IT. Now bring back the electric chair treatment for their henchmen. There you go, that’s ALL OF YOUR RECURRING PROBLEMS SOLVED. Gahhhhhh.) Does this movie hate traditional heroism, masculinity, virtue, and the rule of law? Not really–it may even have been written by someone who actually knows what these things are. Is this movie painfully political and woke? No, and without extending too much of the benefit of the doubt, it might actually have a subtle criticism of the concept. More on this later.
Good stuff: The acting, the casting, the cinematography, and the action are all good, you’ve heard it before and in great detail; not arguing there. The semi-climactic fight in the Iceberg Lounge especially was really good, because it showcases “tactician Batman” along with “hand-to-hand combat tank Batman.” I also noticed some of the usual “We hate 100-pound women beating up stuntmen like it’s possible” suspects cheering Selina in this movie, because….of course they would, the choreography is neat and she’s wearing skin-tight latex.
There’s also the playing up of the terror factor to the Batman identity, which I liked immensely and which was stolen wholesale from The Shadow, but never mind.
So the line that everyone is going to point to is Selina accusing “White privileged people” of lacking sympathy for anyone who doesn’t share their particular circumstances. What this movie doesn’t explicitly do is point out that Selina entirely lacks sympathy for anyone who doesn’t share her own particular circumstances. What’s more, several people–the (useless) black lady mayor and the unhinged murdering pathetic psychopath–accuse Bruce Wayne of….well….hm. Privilege, and doing nothing with it. The fact that they’re completely and utterly wrong and the fact that they’re allowing their assumptions, jealousy, and lack of insight to dictate how they react to Bruce, doesn’t get explicitly called out to them…but it is demonstrated in the movie itself. The mayor lady comes across as entitled and stupid; the unhinged pathetic psychopath is an unhinged pathetic psychopath. Bruce Wayne is a man who puts his own life on the line to help others, personally, face-to-face, and it has an actual impact* on people.
(Also, try misappropriating Bat-funds. See where that gets you, HAH.)
I will also give the movie this: while it does have lame dialogue, they did not jar me so far out of enjoyment that I was never able to get back in.
Oh! Also, Bats and Gordon had great buddy-cop chemistry. Also, Catwoman had great chemistry. Just, y’know, in general.
Middle stuff: Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne does pale in the shadow of his Batman, but that’s okay. The evolution of Batman from the darkness to the hero who leads people out of the darkness hasn’t quite begun, and it hasn’t included Bruce yet.
Snerk stuff: Batman walking heavily and loudly AND SLOWLY out of the shadows to impressive music gets rather old, rather fast….as, unfortunately, does the directors’ addiction to showing Batman standing still in the middle of a room doing nothing. (Even the Batmobile gets the same slow, to-music entrance, heh.)
Bad stuff: The last hour of the movie was clunky as hell. There’s no getting around that. Other than the fact that it’s not integrated into the overall plot well, there’s also the shift in tone from the villains being powerful and dangerous, but untouchable, to villains being pathetic…and untouchable. And there’s also the shift in genre from “I desperately want people to call this noir,” to “we’re doing it, we’re blowing it up, WOOO” and these things just don’t gel well together.
For a movie that celebrates Batman’s detective ability….half of Batman’s detective work in this movie consists of walking up to people and asking them if they did X….whereupon they will happily admit to X, reveal all the details about X, and offer to sign the affidavit about X. The other half can be summed up with the phrase “bat deductions.” So….
Rating: I will probably watch this movie again and enjoy it, but I sure as hell will not pay money to do so.
Hope his rabies vax is UTD.
They art-decorated the everliving HELL out of Wayne Manor.
Gordon you plugged the LITERAL THUMB drive into YOUR WORK COMPUTER?
OK motorcycles, I dig it.
CLOSE YOUR FRIDGE
Selina dun fell for tall dark and handsome. Already. Pwah.
Damn. Dat girl got some SLINK.
WOW these people want to spill the beans.
“Alfred, I don’t need your cufflinks.” = best line in the movie.
$10K? 10 measly K? REALLY?
“You think Penguin is the rat?” = close second.
DUKES OF HAZZARD RANDOM RAMP
Shirtless RP is rather disturbing.
WELL WHAT DO YOU EXPECT OF A HUGE CHARITABLE FUND WITH NO OVERSIGHT?!?!!!!!
DUN DUN DUN DUN DUN DUN DUN DUN
YOU HAD BETTER BE UP TO DATE ON YOUR RABIES SHOT MAN
Really? Really? Things were THAT bad at the orphanage? Is this the Victorian era? You couldn’t import some Catholic nuns or something to run it?
I feel a crowbar would have done just as well there.
All those guys are 150% too slim.