THE BATMAN REVIEW: BATMAN GRAPHIC NOVEL BOUGHT TO LIFE
It’s finally here! The Batman is out, and it’s one the greatest comic book movies ever made. The film features Batman fighting the Riddler, who is on a rampage of violent crime against Gotham’s elite. It’s a must-see movie for Batman fans.
The pre-production of The Batman was an exciting experience. Ben Affleck was initially supposed to direct and star in his first film. He eventually quit running and decided to put down the cowl. The Flash solo movie will be released later in the year. Matt Reeves saw his Batman as more of a noir detective tale set in the Caped Crusader’s earlier years. It would be an understatement to say Matt Reeves was successful. He delivered one of the greatest comic book movies ever made.
STORY: THE WORLD’S BEST DETECTIVE
On Halloween night, Bruce Wayne describes the current state in his city. Gotham is rife with corruption and low-life scum who are afraid of Wayne. The opening is a great way to show Gotham’s state. This is a common theme in the review. However, it feels as if it was taken straight from the comics. Jim Gordon calls Batman to assist in solving the crime of Gotham’s mayor. The chase turns into a pursuit to catch The Riddler, a serial killer who calls himself The Riddler, and stop killing.
Finally, we have a movie that lives up to the title of “World’s Greatest Detective.” Having a villain such as The Riddler is a fantastic feat of genius. Batman must use his wits to solve the mystery that is Batman’s life. The secret is well-crafted and has just the right amount of twists. It never felt like I was not interested in the result.
CHARACTERS & PERFORMANCE – BROODING BROUGCE
People who only knew Robert Pattinson from Twilight were skeptical when cast as Batman. Many people who know him from movies like The Lighthouse and The Good Time have seen his true genius. Incredibly, Pattinson will be finally seen by a broad mainstream audience. Robert Pattinson was the Batman. It didn’t feel like he was playing Batman. He had the same brooding energy as Bruce, especially in his early years. It was perfect to use his Bat voice to make it sound like a stage whisper. Each detail worked in the movie’s favor.
Zoe Kravitz portrays Selina Kyle to an exacting standard. She has an elegant grace and a sharp wit. One of her highlights is her chemistry with Pattinson. The push and pull between them are strong, but they don’t feel it. These two characters are very similar but so different. It’s like comics. Their scenes create a powerful force, much like a Yin/Yang symbol.
GOTHAM’S CAST of CHARACTERS
It’s still a surprise that an actor as indie as Paul Dano would take on a movie about comic books. He made the right choice, and he was terrific as The Riddler. His gleeful telling of his riddles and torturing people was frightening at times. It is exciting and, without spoilers, it ties in cleverly to Batman.
Too many outstanding characters deserve the spotlight. Jeffery Wright is a perfect Jim Gordon. This felt like the classic comic book partnership. He felt more like Batman’s friend in this case. In many ways, Colin Farrel can’t be recognized as the Penguin. Physically, his transformation is fantastic, and Mike Marino deserves a special mention for his incredible work. Farrell’s performance is full of sinisterness and sliminess. I am more excited for the HBOMax spin-off series featuring Farrell.
CINEMATOGRAPHY & SOUND WELCOME to GOTHAM
A live-action Gotham has not felt like Gotham since Tim Burton’s Batman. You could see that most people had Chicago or Detroit as their place. Greig Fraser’s cinematography truly portrays the city as it is. Its dark underbelly, dominated by abandoned buildings and gothic architecture, is a sight to behold. It was like visiting New York City in the late 1970s when crime was at its peak. Bruce is trying his best to save this place from the evil spirits. There is beauty throughout, like the sunrise at the horizon.
The score by Michael Giacchino is another fantastic element that works extraordinarily well. We’ve heard Giacchino’s official Batman theme since the very first view. It’s amazing. It is featured throughout the movie and makes this incarnation unique. Batman’s Batman theme is a combination of anger and rushing commands. Catwoman and The Riddler also present two other themes. The Riddler is a strangely toned choir that hums incessantly while being happy. This is a stark contrast when you hear it while performing terrifying acts. Catwoman’s theme is noir-toned and feels like a mysterious lady entering a detective’s station. It’s charming, romantic, and cunning all in one.
EDITING AND PACING: TIME WELL SPARED
The Batman run time was a significant concern. Although the film lasted almost three hours, it didn’t drag for a single second. Although a movie can last three hours, the goal is to make it feel effortless. The mystery and performances kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the film.
I was captivated by every twist and revelation that unfolded. There’s not a single moment that feels like filler, even in the third act. One moment is so crucial to Batman’s story that removing that would be a crime. Matt Reeve made the most of every second, and nothing felt wasted.