film reel image

film reel image

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

The Batman 2022 * * * Stars


Why so serious? I say why not. 2022's The Batman is just that, serious. You want a Batman flick that makes 1989's version seem like a long-lost takeoff? You'll get that with The Batman. You want a Batman pic that makes all that Joel Schumacher stuff seem like cartoon schlock? Uh Prego, it's in there.

Even darker than those Nolan films from 2005-2012, The Batman is a PG-13 endeavor that pushes its "Parents Strongly Cautioned" tone to the brink. A little David Fincher here, a little Bruce Wayne as Rick Deckard there, a little song, a little noir dance. The Batman is a moxie crime thriller with a stupendous action finale and a substantially brooding, musical score. It's unlike any Batman vehicle you've ever seen or will ever see again.

Robert Pattinson stars in The Batman as you know, Bruce Wayne/Batman. He doesn't smile once and always looks like he lost his dog in a freak accident. I like that. Pattinson has immense screen presence and is a superhero who's all business. I'd rank him along Christian Bale and Micheal Keaton as the best Batman-s in the bunch.

The Batman cascades almost three hours with a couple of subplots and less set locations than the norm. Thankfully the runtime doesn't drag as much as you think. It's also nearly a small-scale Batman conch that's as dark in its grain as it is in its look. Albeit, the sun actually shines a couple of times. Otherwise you can almost taste the tasteless raindrops on your tongue. Steamy, smoky, and wet.

Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and directed with a steadily, copycat vision by Matt Reeves (I'll let it slide), The Batman has Riddler (Paul Dano being Paul Dano), Catwoman (Zoe Kravitz coming into her own), Penguin (an unrecognizable Colin Farrell), and of course, Pattinson. Their characters inhabit Gotham City as if it's the chronic underbelly of totalitarian society. "Pow!" "boff!" kapow!" "whack!".

Written by Jesse Burleson

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