“The Batman is the best Batman movie. At its heart, it’s a mystery story and an in-depth character study. Matt Reeves has created a dark and gritty universe. And Robert Pattinson proves himself to be a memorable Batman delivering a complex and multi-layered performance.”
The Batman is the latest iteration of the caped crusader. It’s not part of the current DCEU timeline. Instead, it’s the beginning of a possible new trilogy, creating its own Batman world. This time, it’s Robert Pattinson donning the cape. So, is it really worth all the hype?
The Batman is not your typical superhero movie. At its heart, it’s a mystery story. Actually, it’s the first time in live-action we see Batman doing a proper detective work, like he does in the comics. I have been waiting to see this for a long time. Inherently, it’s the Batman movie that feels the most like a Batman story. It’s basically a comic-book brought to life. Throughout the movie, I was on the edge of my seat as Batman unravelled the mysteries surrounding Gotham and Riddler. There are a lot of surprises and plot twists. It’s a dark and gritty universe. Furthermore, Reeves has definitely been inspired by the classic comic The Long Halloween. Indeed, it’s a long investigation for the Batman as there are a lot of moving pieces and Riddler is always steps ahead of him.
There is a lot of detective work in the movie but there are also a lot of action scenes. They are intense and brutal. Batman doesn’t hold back his punches. Though, he always makes sure not to kill anyone, which is what Batman does in the comics. Each fight sequence is expertly choreographed.
Starting over with a new Batman was probably the best choice here. Indeed, it allowed Matt Reeves to tell his vision the way he wanted without thinking about whether it will fit within the DCEU. Possibilities are endless in this new Bat-verse. Matt Reeves understands what Batman is all about and he delivers a masterpiece. More than a detective story, it’s also an in-depth character study of Batman and Bruce Wayne. Three hours may seem long but you don’t see time passing by as you see the movie. Honestly, I wouldn’t have minded if the movie was even longer.
CAST – THE HEROES
Matt Reeves has assembled an all-star casting for this movie. Honestly, when Robert Pattinson was announced as the next Batman, I was skeptical. Thankfully, I was wrong to doubt him because he did a fantastic work. He really embodies what Batman and Bruce Wayne are. Indeed, he delivers a complex and layared performance. Leaving the theater, all I could think about was when are we seeing him again as Batman? I think he has a beautiful future ahead of him as the caped crusader.
Zoë Kravitz delivers a strong performance as Catwoman. Just like the previous actresses who played her, Zoë brings her own touch to the character and makes it her own. The on-screen chemistry with Pattinson’s Batman is great. As for Jeffrey Wright, he is an excellent Gordon. His version of the character is poised and he has a presence that inspires respect. He also has a very good chemistry with Pattinson, they form a great dynamic duo. Plus, I love that Gordon is a fan of Batman.
Even though, we do not see him a lot, Andy Serkis is a good Alfred. He deserves more screen time next time.
CAST- THE VILLAINS
Paul Dano as the Riddler is absolutely frightening and creepy. I am convinced he will be remembered as one of the best villains in a DC Comics movie. It’s on the same level as Heath Ledger’s Joker in The Dark Knight. That’s how good Dano is! Everytime the Riddler appears on screen, you know something bad is going to happen. There is an anxious atmosphere all around, it’s really scary. Dano’s performance adds a lot to that. Plus, from the moment we see his face, he becomes even scarier because not only do we hear his voice, we see his facial expressions.
I also want to mention Colin Farrell as the Penguin. He is almost unrecognizable physically but when you hear his voice you can clearly tell it’s him. I definitely like this new take on the character and I am looking forward to see more of him in the sequels. Moreover, it was so unexpected to see John Turturro in a superhero movie but it was a perfect casting choice for Carmine Falcone. He plays a scary crime boss.
Finally, there is someone I want to mention. We hardly see his face and he is on screen for only a scene but it gave me chills. It’s obviously a tease for a sequel and I’m ready to see what he brings to the role.
The Batman is visually the most beautiful Batman movie. Greg Fraser’s cinematography is truly impressive. Most of the movie takes place at night (with some scenes during sundown and sunset) so Fraser created a dark and gritty atmosphere which is a perfect fit for a Batman story.
Furthermore, this version of Gotham is the one that is the most faithful to the comics. It doesn’t simply look like any American city like in the Nolan movies. Indeed, it has its own unique identity similar to what Tim Burton had done with his Batman movies. That’s because Reeves also shot his movie in England where there are Baroque buildings. Thus, he mixes elements of American cities with elements of Baroque buildings and creates something special. Throughout the movie, I truly felt transported into Gotham.
With every new score he composes, Michael Giacchino is becoming my favorite music composer. Each time, he is able to create something totally different while still having a recognizable style. He has crafted a brilliant score for The Batman.
His Batman theme is powerful and dark, it’s evocative of fear while as we reach the end of the movie, his theme becomes more hopeful. Which lines up with Batman’s character development. It’s a theme that feels very much like Batman. When you hear it there is no doubt about it. For Catwoman’s theme, Giacchino went the jazzy road. And I think it fits the character very well. As for the Riddler’s theme, it’s mysterious with a subtle touch of fear, which works perfectly with Paul Dano’s frightening performance.
Nirvana’s ‘Something in the Way’ is also put to good use in the movie.
The Batman is the best Batman movie. At its heart, it’s a mystery story and an in-depth character study. Matt Reeves has created a dark and gritty universe. And Robert Pattinson proves himself to be a memorable Batman delivering a complex and multi-layered performance.
The Batman is now in cinemas.
Collectables Editor at Future Of The Force.
Star Wars and Marvel specialist, anime expert