It’s something that was unthinkable only a few years ago: I’ve found myself getting tired of seeing all these superhero films being released.
Back when Guardians of the Galaxy and the first Dr. Strange movie were released in close proximity, I saw them and… I didn’t like either.
Something in me broke, to be honest, and while I have caught a Marvel movie here and there, I haven’t been seeking them out as I did before. Further, while I have the final two Avengers films, I haven’t found the time or inclination to see them. The last Marvel film I saw was Spider-Man: Far From Home and… I really didn’t like it much at all.
I’ve seen many of the DC hero films but have a few I have that I haven’t watched either (Shazam! and Wonder Woman 84).
So maybe I’m getting a little burnt out, as I said above, with the genre yet when The Batman was in production and once it was released, I was curious to catch it. Then I heard it was 3… hours… long... and I just couldn’t see myself going into a theater and sitting there for that long, regardless of how much I loved the character (he’s easily my favorite super hero).
Anyway, the film was released to theaters, did very well, then was released to HBO Max and, in the comfort of my house, I finally gave it a go. For those living in a cave, here’s the movie’s trailer:
The Batman features Robert Pattinson as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Andy Serkis as his reliable butler Alfred, Jeffrey Wright as Commissioner Gordon, Zoe Kravitz as Selena Kane/Catwoman, and, in a fascinating turn, Colin Farrell as Oswald Cobblepot/The Penguin.
Given the film’s length, I figured I’d see it over the course of two days, one day for one half, the other for the finale. But as it turned out, the film moves quite well and, despite my fears, never felt drawn out or too damn long.
The story features a mysterious new villain, The Riddler (Paul Dano), who has taken upon himself to kill very high level governmental officials in Gotham while drawing Batman into his mysterious and grim “game”.
Before the movie’s release, director Matt Reeves noted he wanted to show us a Batman who was a “detective” and in this case, I’m pleased to say he gives this to us. In the villain, we have a man who lays out a string of clues as to his future actions and victims and Batman is there, with his “right hand man” Commissioner Gordon trying to figure them out.
It is a very good film, certainly a higher tier comic book film, and the characters and setting are well done. If there is a criticism to level against The Batman it is what I wrote above: We’ve seen much of this before, whether it be in other superhero films -or specifically other recent Batman films- and video games. By virtue of this fact alone, it’s impossible to view The Batman as anything but another interpretation of the familiar character and his world.
Still, it’s a worthy trip to take because the film is so well made and, dare I say it, even if you feel more than a little tired of superhero films in general.