savanah’s review published on Letterboxd:
there’s a sequence at the beginning of this film: it’s the first time we hear pattinson’s bruce wayne giving his narration and see the bat-signal in the sky, accompanied by michael giacchino’s incredible score that slowly builds throughout the scene. we see fragments of gotham city, the menacing figures haunting the streets which seem powerless in comparison to the overwhelming darkness around every corner. the camera lingers on the shadows for a moment and you’re just waiting for the batman to walk out, but he doesn’t. you can feel life in the darkness even when there’s nothing there. it was exhilarating and it was terrifying.
i apologise for this being the most dramatic review i’ve ever written but i seriously felt like i had an epiphany. very recently i came to realise that every opinion i’ve ever formed on batman has just been me lying to myself. i do not care at all about batman. i realised very young that the character does not interest me in any way so i have spent years basing my opinions off of what other people say — because it’s batman, why wouldn’t i be excited? i saw this movie as a task to tick off of my to-do list just so i could join in with the excitement that my friends would be feeling. i expected to watch this, not really care for it, post some very generic thoughts about it and still probably pretend to like it more than i actually did just in case people got mad, and then move on.
what i did not expect was that this film would give me everything i didn’t know i wanted from batman. it’s a mystery thriller, a detective procedural, a story about privilege and unbridled rage against the corruption found within our institutions whilst holding moral relativism at its core. i’ve seen some of my mutuals talking about which acts they thought were stronger or weaker but i honestly think the entire thing was consistently good with moments throughout that were just incredible. phenomenal work from the entire cast too, everyone was perfect for their roles but i’d like to highlight paul dano who was especially horrifying.
i can’t stop thinking about the scene i mentioned at the beginning. from that moment it sort of just solidified to me that this is something i know, something i’m familiar with — shadows and darkness are central to batman, it’s nothing new, but i’d never felt so impacted by its use before, not just there but throughout the whole film. this film utilises the grittiness of the character and the city in a way which never feels overdone or makes me roll my eyes like other adaptations of gotham and its inhabitants have. sorry this is so long my god i just have a lot to say but most importantly the main take away from all of this is that batman was made to be this fucked up weird little emo guy and nothing else can come close! it just makes perfect sense.