The Batman

The Batman ★★★★½

Something in the Way

A whole lot of movie, and the most "genre film" a superhero movie has been in I'm not really sure how long. I don't know man, considering that sometimes this film subgenre forgets that it has its roots within the likes of crime thrillers, science fiction, fantasy and so on, it's wonderful to see a movie that somehow has its cake and eats it too with being "dark" of course while still pulpy and just over the top enough. Bruce Wayne is a reserved, pale, heavy-eyed emo boy in this, and it fucking rules. One of the best things I can say about the phenomenal cast featured in The Batman and how they are used is that for essentially every cast member being something super iconic in their own right, the film very quickly evolves these characters in such a comfortable way that I at least stopped seeing the actor and only saw the character. Robert Pattinson as Batman is exactly as good and as specific of a performance as you would want it to be. Gorgeous framing of a Gotham City that feels fully its own both with world-building and literal shot-framing from Grieg Fraser. Good lookin' movie. Sounds even better too, always been a major fan of Michael Giacchino's scores, and I don't think I necessarily believe this is his all-time best like others have been saying, but I do for sure think it's one of his best. You're getting two movies in one here in the same way the eternal graphic novel The Long Halloween has both mobsters and serial killing at its core. John Turturro oozes screen presence as Carmine Falcone, Farrell is damn good as Cobblepot, and of course, my baby boy with his dimples and little devilish grin, Paul Dano kills it as The Riddler. I think that there are certainly scenes in here that you could whittle down or cut out entirely, yet there's something to the inner machinations of the whole film where few things that were extra took away from the overall experience. At the end of the day, I felt like I was getting more movie, and considering how long it feels like this thing has been delayed for before finally being released, I'm happy to have as much of it as I do. Plus, the fact that it feels like it's the director's cut of a movie that got released into theaters means it just hammers home how well Matt Reeves directed it and how much free range it appears he got to have with this iconic property. It's not anything you wouldn't be unfamiliar with for the universe of the Caped Crusader, but it's all at the level of quality that you should expect from it all too. If there is something that I was surprised by, and it's what I'll leave this review off with, there is a nice good ol' warming the cockles of your heart message to the film that I adored. The finale of the film demonstrates "heroism" in the way very few other superhero films I think do. Being a hero isn't about beating up other people. It's about saving other people. A driving motivation like vengeance offers the surface level initial catharsis to pain and suffering, but it's a whole other level to then put yourself in a place where others can look to you for guidance, strength, and a helping hand. I look forward to rewatching Bruce's biggest act of that heroism in the finale of this dozens of times because, oh boy, did it look and feel just beautiful. Ergo, to wrap up, a beautiful mess is exactly what I think The Batman is, and because of that, I loved it. Pattman begins.


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