‘Batman’ (Film)

‘BATMAN’

Please feel free to comment on my review.

Batman with the Joker and Vicki Vale

The Batman in this movie series is a Time Lord! Wait until ‘Batman & Robin’ for me to explain why!

In December 2016, I purchased the DVD box set of ‘Batman: The Motion Picture Anthology’ (as well as ‘The ‘Superman’ 5-Film Collection’ DVD box set) whilst shopping in Cardiff after Christmas. I watched all four movies of the original ‘Batman’ movie series from 1989 to 1997 and enjoyed them!!

It was after my enjoyment of ‘Batman Forever’, which my best mate from school Stephen purchased for me for my birthday in May 2016, that I got into these ‘Batman’ movies more. I wanted to see these original four ‘Batman’ movies on DVD and to also find out what each of them were like in turn.

I thoroughly enjoyed each of the ‘Batman’ films in this DVD collection. They include ‘Batman’, ‘Batman Returns’, ‘Batman Forever’ and ‘Batman & Robin’. Each film was different in terms of taste and style. It was very interesting and fun to see how Batman was made during the late 80s/early 90s.

My thoughts about these ‘Batman’ films since first watching them have changed a bit. But that’s what time and reflection will do for you. I found the entertainment in each of the four films, but they’re not all necessarily great. Each film was made differently in terms of direction as well as taste.

The first film ‘Batman’ was directed by Tim Burton and it stars Michael Keaton as Batman. I think this is the best ‘Batman’ movie ever made! It was also the first ‘Batman’ film I saw in its movie collection.

I recall seeing the first ‘Batman’ movie from 1989 when my Dad purchased the DVD for me to watch, whilst I was in the heyday of ‘Spider-Mania’ in the 200s. I must I admit I didn’t take an interest then.

Don’t get wrong, I enjoyed watching the 1989 ‘Batman’ movie with Michael Keaton. It’s just I wasn’t ready for Batman since Spider-Man was for me. Batman was also rather dark for me as a superhero.

By the time I purchased the ‘Batman: The Motion Picture Anthology’ DVD box set and saw the 1989 ‘Batman’ film a second time, I greatly enjoyed it. Watching it a third time has given me more insight.

The film’s director Tim Burton is the perfect choice to direct a ‘Batman’ movie. I’ve seen other films directed by Tim Burton before ‘Batman’. These include ‘Edward Scissorhands’, starring Johnny Deep

Tim Burton delivers a dark quality to this first ‘Batman’ movie as well as edges of black comedy. This suits the movie very well and the plot and the characters are engaging throughout from start to end.

There’s also a sense of atmosphere that matches well to the dark quality in the film. This is reflected in the musical score composed by Danny Elfman as well as in the lighting for many scenes in the film.

Michael Keaton is very good as Batman/Bruce Wayne in the film. Keaton plays the two roles very distinctly and you would not tell that Batman and Bruce Wayne was the same person during the film.

I like how Keaton balances the charm and humour of Bruce Wayne in the movie as well as in Batman. When he’s Batman, he’s pretty stern-looking especially when he’s out fighting the criminals.

The film also stars Jack Nicholson as the Joker, the archenemy for Batman in this movie. Nicholson is very good as the Joker. He’s both funny as well as very scary throughout when becoming the Joker.

From watching the film, you can see that the Joker is pretty insane as well as murderous through his clownish behaviour and appearance. It was interesting how the Joker was created from an accident.

An interesting revelation takes place during the movie. It seems that Jack Napier (before he became the Joker) murdered Bruce Wayne’s parents when he was a child. This led Bruce to become Batman.

Kim Basinger stars as Vicki Vale, Bruce Wayne’s love interest in the movie. I enjoyed the romance element of the movie with Vicki Vale. Vicki is a very talented photo journalist that visits Gotham City.

It was interesting to see how Vicki and Bruce fell in love with each other in the movie. Vicki also gets desired by the Joker, as he sets up a meeting between him and her as well as visiting her apartment.

The most memorable segment of the movie is when Batman rescues Vicki Vale from the Joker and she gets to ride in his Batmobile. Batman drives Vicki with him back to the Bat Cave in the Batmobile.

The cast also includes Robert Wuhl as Alexander Knox; Pat Hingle as Commissioner Gordon; Billy Dee Williams (from ‘Star Wars’) as Harvey Dent and Jack Palance (from gangster movies) as Carl Grissom.

There’s also Michael Gough as Alfred Pennyworth, Bruce Wayne’s butler at Wayne Maynor. For me, Michael Gough starred in ‘Doctor Who’ in the stories ‘The Celestial Toymaker’ and in ‘Arc of Infinity’.

The 1989 ‘Batman’ movie is one of the finest pieces of cinema history! I consider it one of the best ‘Batman’ movies ever made and Michael Keaton is certainly one of the best Batman actors indeed!!!

‘Batman’ was released on a 2-disc special edition DVD in 2005. The DVD special features are as follows. On Disc 1, there’s an audio commentary by director Tim Burton and a theatrical trailer of the movie.

On Disc 2, there’s the ‘Legend of the Dark Knight: The History of Batman’ documentary; the ‘Shadows of the Bat: The Cinematic Saga of the Dark Knight’ three-part documentary and the ‘Beyond Batman’ documentary/gallery. There’s also the ‘On The Set With Bob Kane’ featurette; ‘The ‘Heroes’ profiles gallery; ‘The Villains’ profiles gallery; the complete Robin storyboard sequence; and three music videos by Prince.

‘Batman’ rating – 9/10


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6 thoughts on “‘Batman’ (Film)

  1. Awesome review, i love this film & it’s up there with the Dark Knight Trilogy for me, i remember causing my parents a ton of grief because they decided we were going on our yearly 2 week caravan holiday the day this film was released 11th August 1989 if i remember correctly & boy was i a nightmare for the first few days of that holiday until my mom found a cinema in the city near our campsite & went with me to see it.

    I ended up buying two Batman movie tie-in T-shirts & a ton of other merchandise including the audiobook read by Roddy McDowell.

    Cheers Tim for writing a excellent review & bringing back fond memories of when i seen this film.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Simon.

    Very pleased you enjoyed my review on the 1989 ‘Batman’. Glad you love this film and thank you for sharing your memories of when you saw it at the cinema all those years ago!

    I’ll have to watch and review ‘The Dark Knight Trilogy’ sometime! Thank goodness I’ve reviewed the first four ‘Batman’ movies. I’ve got the Adam West stuff to do next. 😀

    Oh I didn’t know there was an audiobook of the ‘Batman’ movie by Roddy McDowell. Is that still in print or available to purchase on Amazon? I can’t seem to find it.

    Thanks for your comments, Simon. I’m pleased I brought back fond memories for you when you saw this movie.

    Tim. 🙂

    Like

    • Thanks Simon.

      The 1989 ‘Batman’ and ‘Batman Returns’ novelizations happen to be penned by Craig Shaw Gardner. Should I ever get round to reading and reviewing these novelizations (with the first one by Roddy McDowall), I’ll let you know.

      Tim. 🙂

      Like

  3. There’s photos of me looking grumpy on our holiday because my parents took us to these caves & i wanted to go see Batman I’m even wearing the T-Shirt, i laugh about it now but i was in a mood until i got my way lol.

    Liked by 1 person

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