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Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 (2012)

Video  -  Animation | Action  -  25 September 2012 (USA)
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 22,498 users  
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Batman has not been seen for ten years. A new breed of criminal ravages Gotham City, forcing 55-year-old Bruce Wayne back into the cape and cowl. But, does he still have what it takes to fight crime in a new era?

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(character created by: Batman), (comic book), 6 more credits »
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Title: Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 (Video 2012)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Batman / Bruce Wayne (voice)
...
Robin / Carrie Kelley (voice)
...
...
Harvey Dent (voice)
...
Hernando (voice)
...
Don (voice)
...
Lana Lang (voice)
...
Ellen Yindel (voice) (as Maria Canals)
...
Joanie (voice)
...
Morrie (voice)
...
Anchor Carla (voice)
...
The Mayor (voice)
...
Mackie (voice)
...
Joker (voice)
Michael Jackson ...
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Storyline

Batman has not been seen for ten years. A new breed of criminal ravages Gotham City, forcing 55-year-old Bruce Wayne back into the cape and cowl. But, does he still have what it takes to fight crime in a new era?

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Old heroes never die. They just get darker. See more »

Genres:

Animation | Action

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some intense sequences of violence and action | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 September 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Batman DCU: Mroczny rycerz powrot, czesc 1  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Commissioner James Gordon is picking up nicotine gum in the convenience store before killing the Mutant gang member, there are other DC Comics titles on the magazine rack. Ones featured notably are Swamp Thing (1982), Watchmen (2009), V for Vendetta (2005), and Sandman. All but Sandman have received a movie treatment. See more »

Quotes

Mutant Leader: We will kill the old man, Gordon. We will chop him, we will grind him. We will bathe in his blood. I, myself, will kill the fool Batman. I will rip the meat from his bones and suck them dry. Don't call us a gang. Don't call us criminals. We are the law. Gotham City belongs to the Mutants.
See more »

Connections

References The Mark of Zorro (1940) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The fan-favorite classic: Expanded, elaborated and faithfully replicated
19 October 2012 | by (http://thexamtaroshowvault.blogspot.sg) – See all my reviews

One of the most beloved Batman tales finally gets the animation treatment. So influential was Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns" that it inspired Tim Burton and Christopher Nolan when they were crafting their live action Batman movies, as well as the 1990s Batman animated series (which gave birth to an entire universe of DC animated shows). Warner decided to split the tale, originally spread over 4 issues, into 2 movies. Turns out that it was an excellent decision which not only successfully adapted the first half of Frank Miller's epic, but added layers to the story and characters that the limited page count of the graphic novel could not leave in.

Rarely does an adaptation surpass the original source material. But Dark Knight Returns part 1 is just such an example of an animated movie that is not only true to its source material, but expands upon it. The original was great; the animated adaptation makes it better. The story will sound familiar to anyone who watched Christopher Nolan's "The dark Knight Rises". It has been years since Batman went into retirement. Billionaire Bruce Wayne now drifts from day to day hoping that the people of Gotham can take care of themselves. But now, a new threat emerges: The Mutants. A vast gang of street thugs led by their grotesque but incredibly strong and savage leader. Despite his age, Bruce is forced to become Batman once again to save his city. But can the aging crime fighter stand up to a threat that is faster, stronger and more powerful than he has ever been? And what happens when Batman comes face to face with his old nemesis Two-Face? Beyond the narrative lies a thorough deconstruction of the Batman character, especially when played opposite the two main villains, Two Face and the Mutant Leader. Both villains serve as a dark reflection of Batman himself. Like Two Face, Bruce Wayne and Batman are presented as two separate personalities fighting for control. But is Batman truly just a mask Bruce wears? Or is it the other way around? And as for the mutant leader, both he and Batman operate as a symbol to inspire others to action. One a symbol of chaos and crime, the other a symbol of hope and justice. But if the mutant leader's extreme acts can rouse Batman to return to vigilantism, so too can Batman's actions rouse criminals to return to their old ways (as one character claims in the story).

The characters are brought to life by a fine voice cast who nail their roles perfectly. Peter Weller of Robocop fame takes the role of Batman; a role that may comes across as a monotone baritone at first. But Weller infuses Batman's voice with nuance and subtlety which fits the character well. The only downside is that despite wanting to show a dichotomy between Batman and Bruce Wayne, Weller uses the same tone of voice throughout the whole movie; Compared to previous voice actors, like Kevin Conroy, who used different speech patterns and tones for Wayne and Batman.

A lot of deep themes about the nature of heroism vs vigilantism abound in this tale, all of which were in the original comic but just expanded upon in the animation medium. On that note, the animation presented here is the perfect balance of fluidity and art detail. Iconic frames, memorable battles and atmospheric scenes are replicated faithfully. Movie goers will be able to see many scenes that Nolan's Batman trilogy lifted from THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, including a fight scene illuminated intermittently by a gun's muzzle flash. Its only downside is that Warner decided to use its generic color palate rather than replicate the muted tones and heavy grays colored by Lynn Varley in the original artwork.

Fans would be pleased at how true to the original this is and how it expands on the original, smoothening out the rough edges while adding a whole new dimension to the characters. The action is intense and beautifully animated, accompanied by an epic score by Christopher Drake. This is a true ADAPTATION that does not translate the comic wholesale but translates the comic while making full use of the animated movie medium.


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