OPINION: The Batman: Dark and Brooding
By: Cole McMahon
The tale of the Caped Crusader has been rebooted again.
“The Batman” arrived in theaters on March 4, after being delayed for over a year due to COVID-19 . The film is set in Batman’s second year of dawning the cape and cowl when Gotham faces a new threat of The Riddler who has been working to terrorize Gotham City.
Like most Batman movies, the film has a darker tone in the plot and of the shooting of the film as well. The story of billionaire Bruce Wayne shows the contrasting lives he plays when putting on his Batman face. However, when Bruce Wayne was on screen it felt as if it was just Batman without his mask on. Robert Pattinson, who plays Batman/Bruce Wayne in the film had an emo and brooding attitude when he was Bruce Wayne during the day. His persona did not change much when he was either Batman or Wayne. Whether or not that was the intention of the director Matt Reeves is unclear. The whole idea of Bruce Wayne living double lives is that as Mr. Wayne he is a celebrity billionaire to the eye that has no problems in the world. While at night he is a cold-blooded character who is trying to clean the streets of Gotham.
To be fair, the emo and brooding Bruce Wayne did appear in other Batman films such as Batman Begins, but not to the level and capacity as in this film. This is not a knock whatsoever on Pattinson’s acting in the movie. His acting along with actors Zoe Kavitz, who played Catwoman, and Colin Farrell, who played Penguin, all did well with what they were given. That is not to say that some of the writing in the movie seemed poor. One line that makes me cringe is when Batman is having an interaction with Catwoman and makes a remark that she has a lot of cats. This line and other unwanted written lines in the movie are what kept it from reaching a movie like The Dark Knight’s potential.
The film was not only held back by Bruce Wayne’s portrayal and the writing, but also by the story and plot itself. It would have been a more enjoyable movie if the time were shaved off by at least a half hour. By limiting the number of [TH3] times Batman entered and kept returning to a club with Catwoman to find answers to The Riddler’s plans and whereabouts. With The Riddler being the main villain in the movie, it would have been nice to see him have more screen time with less of it being projected by videos taken by his phone. Finally, what stuck with me the most was the cheesy ending of the movie where you have Batman and Catwoman going separate ways and the camera showing the two of them driving off on motorcycles in different directions.
Some of the better parts of the movie were Batman’s epic theme that would play almost every time he was on screen, the creepiness of The Riddler’s look and personality in the film, and the overall look of the whole movie and the way it was shot.
Simpson students Ethan Padilla and Eric Winchester had their own thoughts about the newest Batman film.
When talking about the past Batman movies, Padilla said, “it was a different take on the traditional Batman, and I enjoyed it.”
Winchester had a similar taking saying, “I thought it was something we have never seen...Robert Pattinson was a good choice for the movie... and even though it was a three-hour movie, I can’t think of anything they can take out.”
After watching this film and hearing all the great reviews by critics and peers, I thought that I may have been crazy and maybe The Batman really was a fantastic film. Then, a few days later I re-watched Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight and I understood that I was not crazy, and The Dark Knight still is a better Batman movie and film altogether.