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|Index||2643 reviews in total|
Christopher Nolan undertook the difficult task of bringing back
Gotham's savior and managed to pull it off in style. Nolan's tribute to
the 'Caped Crusader' is a clean break from the twentieth century
franchise that included Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer and George Clooney
donning the mask of the great DC comic detective. The chiseled
Christian Bale takes on the mantle of the 'Dark Knight' as Nolan
delivers a gritty, edgy and, dare I say it, more realistic Batman than
his predecessors, who inadvertently ended up making a parody of the
superhero and his exploits.
Bale delivers a troubled and dark Bruce Wayne who in is complexity is more credible then the Bruces of the past. As Batman, he fits the mold although his delivery could use some work.
Cillian Murphy is far too pretty to play an arch villain like 'The Scare Crow' who, surprisingly, didn't pose much of a threat and would be laughed at if considered a true nemesis. On the other side of the tracks is the world's favourite girl next door, Ms. Holmes, who still looks like she belongs at the creek. Though their efforts are both apparent and commendable, they still come across as children caught up in a game for grownups.
Michael Caine brings emotion, humor and charm to the character of Alfred the Butler as is Gary Oldman believable as the helpless but good, Sergeant Gordon. The original Hitchhiker is back too, with Rutger Hauer's convincing portrayal of the ever so sinister Earle who runs Wayne Enterprises until Bruce comes of age.
Liam Neeson's performance is the big surprise in this movie of all stars, which also includes Oscar winner Morgan Freeman and Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe from 'The Last Samurai.' The audience can always expect a great performance from Neeson but in this flick he really hits the mark especially with the physical demands of his character. Not to be out done by the other heavy weights, Tom Wilkinson, also an Oscar nominee for 'In the Bedroom, is up to par in his performance as the immoral underworld boss, Carmine Falcone.
The action scenes are shadowed by darkness, literally. The audience doesn't get the opportunity to fully appreciate the fights mainly because they take place under limited lighting. On a brighter note, it's enjoyable to see how Bruce Wayne actually transforms into 'The Batman' albeit is at an accelerated pace.
With the combination of a worthy Batman, a great cast, a plot that's not totally predictable and a more REAL and gritty feel, 'Batman Begins' is an enjoyable feature that leaves you waiting anxiously for the next installment.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
WARNING POTENTIAL SPOILERS!!!!! OK, first things first, I loved this
film. I thought that it completely outstripped 'Batman & Robin' - not
one single shred of camp to be found amongst this gritty and
atmospheric comic-book yarn. FINALLY Batman has motives for what he
does. Before it was 'Parents dead, kill all crime!' - this was so much
deeper. Everything from ninja training to acquiring his weaponry is
here - and it all finally makes sense! Batman is a much more rounded
character - and the bottom line, he's believable. He never comes across
as a big-uber superhero. He is only a man. And Christian Bale (who I
always thought was a fantastic choice) is the perfect embodiment of the
tortured hero. Possibly better than Michael Keaton.
But I'm not gonna go on about how you should really go see this movie etc etc. I believe you should see it make your own mind up. I am therefore taking this opportunity to just say what type of movie it is you're going to see. I personally like the back-story angle to Batman (and the prospect that there are two sequels on the way). However, after talking to some close friends who saw it the same day, they said they wanted more action like in the early films. I can see their point - it's not all about wowing the audience this time around. But then, I don't think Batman ever was just about that. So it depends on what your mind-set is when you enter. If you're expecting an all-out action film, then you're gonna be disappointed. It does have fantastic action and it is all very believable and relevant - but it may not be enough for some. This film is concerned with bringing THE Batman that Bob Kane created. It is atmospheric, intelligent, and also kinda creepy in places.
Therefore, go in expecting more of a drama/thriller with action, than a superhero movie - like say Spider-Man. This is a very different bat, and I'm personally glad for it.
I liked the world Tim Burton created for his Batman movies pretty well.
Let's face it, for a real fan of the books, the TV series and one movie
were a real disaster. Burton, at least, wasn't making a camp spoof. I
was less impressed with the Joel Schumacher take on the Caped Crusader,
however and really didn't think the franchise was going in the right
direction. They really hadn't found the right combination of Bruce
Wayne and Batman in a single actor, either.
I was eager to see Batman Begins, partly because I liked Momento and the remake of Insomnia, the two films I'd seen by the director, Christopher Nolan. I also had respect for Bale's work in previous films And I'm always up for a new take on Batman, my favorite of the classic-era superheroes. I liked him precisely because he wasn't super, just a man with an obsessive need to fight crime and the physical skill and money to do it in style.
This movie delivers. It has more the feel of the Dark Knight and Year One books rather than the classic ones, and it exists in the real world, or at least in a world that could easilly be real. I may see it again and it will be a keeper on DVD when it comes out.
I'd read some criticism of some of the casting and performances. I didn't see it. Some have quibbled that Katie Holmes looks too young to be a crusading ADA. Well, she's twenty-five, just like many of the bright young attorneys in a big DA's office. I believed her. And Tom Wilkinson holds his American accent well and I could see him as a big-city mob boss of the current era, polished but still brutal.
As for casting Christian Bale in the title role, he is Bruce Wayne and Batman and you can see the transition as he moves from one to the other. Not everyone can act in the Bat suit. Bale can and he carries it off very well. This Batman is the right mix and I hope he's signed on for more in this series. And there should be one.
The long and the short, if you love a gritty Batman, go see it. If you haven't liked the previous WB Bat movies, this will change your mind. It isn't a kid's movie -- some of it is pretty intense -- and if you think it bears any resemblance to the animated Batman stuff on TV, think again. There were a couple of kids in the theatre when we saw it and they looked scared.
Highly recommended. A Ten with extra credit.
This was clearly an amazing movie, but I'm surprised no one has made
comments about it. The entire theater erupted in applause after the
Dark Knight flew off the screen - I've NEVER seen this in an action
flick - the surprise factor really got everyone.
However, I had trouble with the film at the beginning - I kept losing concentration and thinking this didn't feel like a Batman flick - let alone any other comic book film. However, when he turned it on in the airplane with Alfred after his final conversion I was an instant fan.
This is the first movie in a while that I want them to make a sequel as quickly as possible for.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I will be the first to admit that I am a "Fanboy" in some ways. I will also admit that I liked the first in the most recent series of Batman Movies. The last three were not to my liking even though it was good to see the characters. That being said, this one worked on sooo many levels. The Writing, Directing, Acting and the Special Effects all were top notch. The question is always who wears the mask, Bruce or The Batman. This movie gets them all, from Bruce going swimming in the Hotel Fountain to The Batman telling the cop to swear to him and not God. Man what a ride. And to top it all off, maybe, just maybe we get to see the Joker in the next one. One last thing, this movie payed homage to the 60 plus years of Batman History, from the Pearls, the Stethoscope, the name of the Killer, Joe Chill while adding in a good way so much to the Myth. Thanks to all involved.
Two Words: Batman Begins.
The Batman franchise has been resurrected and it is better than ever. I can't stress enough on how good this movie is. Christopher Nolan directed (and co-wrote) a darker Batman that is portrayed perfectly by Christian Bale. A new youth and energy has been drawn out of the Batman legend and displayed perfectly. All of the performances in this movie are stellar, and each one does not seem out of place or pointless. The music keeps your blood pumping with the action and never lets up. And speaking of the action, you haven't seen anything until you see the Batmobile in motion. This thing is mint. I honestly wish that I could write something a lot better about this movie and go into great lengths of describing each piece of this glorious pie; but in all honesty, I will simply ruin the movies for others. I am not one to keep secrets. So please end my torment and go watch this movie. Then I will have people to talk to about it.
By far--the best movie this year--and the best Batman movie ever. Whoever had the vision to cast Christian Bale as Batman deserves the award of the year. This movie was my introduction to him and the impact he had on me was similar to the impact I felt when I first saw Russell Crowe on the screen. What a talented actor! (both of them). The movie was not camp. It was serious and intense and made you almost believe that there could really be a "Batman" out there someday. The villains were menacing and nasty without being cartoonish and campy. The background story on Bruce Wayne was detailed and very welcome. It laid a strong and credible foundation for everything he did. The other actors were also strong in their roles. Morgan Freeman is simply irreplaceable. What will we do if and when he retires? And what a turn-about role for Gary Oldman! He's another of my favorites. I'll never forget him in Dracula--absolutely superb. But this movie belongs to Christian--no doubt about it. Great story, great effects, great acting, great package of a movie. Highest recommendation.
I'm shocked that the film i loved when i was a kid, has come back in such a way, especially after the terrible forever film. what can i say that already hasn't been said, everything about this film was brilliant apart from Katie(child looks), but she cant help that. i recommend that everyone goes out and watches this film, it makes all the other superhero films fall short in comparison(including spider man). also what i like to say is that all the comments i heard before the film was launched have been blown out of the water, such comments as "it will terrible because it has a British batman". how wrong they where, with the film being of mostly British and by having a British director really paid off, it was made how it should have been and not hollywooded up like the originals. why the film is still of Hollywood it seems they are looking at us brits to bring the life back into movies which has been missed i.e LOTR, Harry potter, and with many more in the works all i can say is keep it up.
What else needs saying? Apart from a quick mention of the turgid idiots who work the projection booth at Cheltenham Odeon, and let the film run blurred on numerous occasions. So sorry, even that couldn't ruin what is quite frankly the finest comics movie ever, better even than Sin City, no need even to pause for thought about any of Marvel's efforts. Let's hope that Bryan Singer is prepared to bring it all to the table, because anything less than perfect will look like soggy crap. So there it is - great script, great acting, a great movie. Where do you start? Its not just the Batman movie that fans have waited there whole lives for, it's the Batman movie that Batman has waited his whole life for - from bad comics in the thirties, through Adam West, and Frank Miller, and (God help us all) Akiva Goldsman. This is it, Batman as Batman should be, Batman as we always hoped he'd one day be, Batman done right.
Sometimes, a movie comes along and blows away your expectations.
Sometimes, a movie comes along and redefines a genre. Sometimes, a
movie comes along and gets nearly everything right. In the world of
comic book-to-movie translations, I doubted it could get much better
than Spiderman 2. Spiderman had great acting from Tobey Maguire and
Alfred Molina. It had great visuals. It delved into the emotions and
motivations of a superhero. But there was that pesky, awkward romance,
ruined by Kirsten Dunst's I'm-always-embarrassed look.
Batman Begins take everything that went right about Spiderman 2 and replaces all the wrongs with tastiness. It's the creamy goodness inside Spiderman 2's empty Twinkie shell.
In the past decade, the Batman saga has been, to use a terrible pun, rather two-faced. There have been a few great performances in the movies, but they have, overall, failed miserably. Possibly the crowning failure was director Joel Schumacher's decision to put nipples on the batsuit.
Thankfully, those nipples are now gone. The painful dialogue, the laughable plots, the poor acting -- it's all gone in this iteration.
With Christopher Nolan (Memento) taking over, the franchise was bound for some redemption. Nolan's personal philosophy results in his potential to be the anti-Lucas. Where the Star Wars creator relies excessively on special effects, Nolan avoids them when at all possible. Among the few computer-generated graphics found in the film are -- well, nothing, really, aside from some swarms of bats.
Something about this film works perfectly. Likely, it's Bale's convincing performance as Batman. Where others have tried and failed to make Batman something more than a black suit and mask -- and it's no discredit to them, seeing as how the suit and the mask are his defining features -- Christian Bale turns the character into something more. There's a human element the superhero. He is constantly wrestling with his emotions; his parents died in front of him when he was a child, and he had his only chance of revenge -- at peace of mind -- stripped from him.
Or, maybe, the point at which this film separates itself is refusal to turn itself into a joke. While the X-Men movies and Spiderman movies are fantastic in their own right, they tend to have a certain dark sarcasm about them, an intentional foray into classic action humor. Batman Begins does not. There may be three or four laughs in the film, but they don't take over the film. Even without the laughs, the film is enjoyable.
Or, quite a bit more likely, it's the raw emotion in the film. It's the passion, the anger, the guilt, the sorrow. I felt as though the film was tossing me around like a kitten would a ball of yarn.
The supporting acting, too, is fantastic. But, honestly, how could one expect any less from the likes of Michael Caine (Alfred), Morgan Freeman (Lucius Fox), and Liam Neeson (Ducard)? Sprinkle other spot-on performances (Ken Watanabe -- The Last Samauri -- and Katie Holmes play their parts perfectly), and this version of Batman can't fail where others did. It can't fail where Spiderman 2 did.
Everything is subtle, not overblown like one may expect to find in a summer blockbuster. Not completely flawless, no -- but close enough to have raised the bar for comic book movies far beyond its previous resting place. If the Fantastic Four trailer is any indication, I doubt we'll see another superhero film like this in a long time.
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