The Batman

The Batman

The Batman takes place outside the DCEU, directed by Matt Reeves. Director of Dawn and War of Planet of The Apes. The flick follows our masked vigilante in his 2nd year when a string of murders is perpetrated by The Riddler (Paul Dano) , leaving behind a trail of cryptic clues. As evidence starts to unravel and the perpetrator’s plan becomes clear, he must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit, and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued Gotham.

Many actors portrayed the masked vigilante over the years, and Ben Affleck is my favorite Batman. He had experience, grit, mad skills and went up against most of his rogues gallery including the Joker. Robert Patterson impressed me. Gotham City looks great. There’s crime on every corner and Batman’s striking fear into every criminal he’s encountered. Even when he’s not wearing the mask he doesn’t want to run Wayne Enterprise his or attend board meetings. Alfred and Bruce are pretty distant.

My favorite scene is the car chase involving Batman and Penguin. Penguin thought he beat him proud of himself then the Batmobile burst out the flames totaling Penguin’s car. And The Riddler interrogation scene.

The Riddler is creepy in this iteration. A far cry from Jim Carrey Riddler. At the beginning he’s already killed the mayor and wrapped duck tape around his head. He blew someone’s head off. Throughout the film he’s leaving Batman clues to a big conspiracy that harkens back to his parents and the renewal fund after their death but in a Riddler fashion. Carmine Falcone (John Turturro) exposed Maroni’s drug operation allowing him to take even more power and has everyone in office including the mayor in his pocket. He’s basically been the mayor for 20 years by the time Batman, Gordon (Jeffrey Wright) and Catwoman (Zoe Kavitz) find out. As Falcone was brought out into the light Riddler shot him from a distance taken away to Arkham. One of the takeaways from Riddler’s confession was leaving all that evidence behind. He wanted to get caught. In the interrogation scene he gives this big speech about his childhood, how Bruce Wayne had a penthouse and all he had was a pillow along with rats. He thinks he’s helping everybody but he’s really making everything worse. I’m thinkin he know Batman’s secret identity thankfully he didn’t. Dodge a bullet there. He was right about the corruption; everything else is off the rails. Flooding Gotham. He did the exact same thing in Batman Zero Year. Inspired a cult. He look harmless but disturbing as heck.

When I look at the comparisons in the sets they each have an approach. Some embrace Gotham’s nature, others tend to go in a different direction. Reeves’ team sought to invoke Gotham as a character taking a page out of Tim Burton’s playbook while also making it unique like previous Batman films. The streets are filthy and rainy like spring. There’s a drophead robbing a convenience store. Ben Affleck’s Batman had a Batcave connected to his lakeside summer house in the woods. It’s filled with tons of gear along with a Robin suit showing us that Death in The Family has occurred. But instead of Jason Todd it was Dick Grayson. It also showcased he’s been in the game long before Superman fought Zod. In Reeves universe Bruce lives in Wayne Tower. Underneath is an abandoned subway tunnel his family used to get to work from Wayne Manor. Now it’s his base of operations, analyzing evidence, watching footage from these proto detective lenses to find more clues, and writing everything in his journal. It’s a cool sequence with Nirvana playing in the background.

Everytime there’s a new Joker in town I’m scared to death. Heath Ledger scared me in The Dark Knight. Jared Leto scared me in the first Suicide Squad trailer. I even friends with him the Telltale Game had to cut him lose after he kill those agents. Phoenix’s Joker kept me up at night. I’m just glad I made it out of that film alive. And now Barry Keoghan’s Joker gave me sleep paralysis. There was this dream I had where I was watching Sonic movie 2 with Sonic, Knuckles, Tails, and Eggman. Then Nightmare (Doctor Strange villain) pop up his eyes glowed green. All of a sudden I’m in Arkham Asylum from the Gotham series. Someone’s interviewing an inmate then the camera pans to Cameron Monaghan’s Joker. Next thing I know I got sleep paralysis Barry’s Joker looking at me with this nasty grin. I can actually see his teeth. Somehow I was able to close my eyes then I woke up. From that day on I sleep with a eyemask. He might’ve already encountered Batman during Year 1. He’s just bitting his time. Waiting to stir trouble. Someone better up that security just sayin.

Overall, the movie had a great storyline, I’m not entirely sold on Robert Patterson yet but his Batman is off to a good start. I’ll need to see him in 1 more film to better assess him among the other caped crusaders like Ben Affleck. The action is hit or miss at times like the scene at the beginning where he steps out of the shadows and beats those thugs to a pulp. It doesn’t ruin the film, just not what I’d imagine how Batman would fight like Batman vs Superman and the Arkham games. Paul Dano is fantastic as the Riddler and it planted the seeds for the caped crusader’s journey in his mission to clean Gotham. Only now with Falcone gone there’s gonna be a power grab. It’s the end of the Mobster era and dawn of the Supervillains. You never know when new and old foes from the past might pop up. Definitely watching that Penguin spinoff he’s a higlight. I really like Jim Gordon in this iteration. It’s like if Batman teamed up with the Watcher. I’ll give this film a 9 out of 10.

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