The Batman (2022) – Review


The Batman (2022) - Review

Since I was dropped off at my house after watching The Batman on opening night, there was one question on my mind: How will I start this review? Fact is, I’ve grown to despise superhero films. Hollywood spewing out the same old formulaic superhero films five times a year put a dagger through my heart where I once held enjoyment for these types of films. Because of this, I can’t quite understand why seeing The Batman was a different experience for me. It could have been the dark, gothic aspects of Batman that have stuck with me throughout the years, or maybe the fact that I’m constantly speculating the different ways Batman could be filmed and interpreted. It mainly comes down to personal taste, seeing as I’ve grown out of all the other adorned superhero stories. So, without me rambling on more than I already have, I’ll end this intro with a warning to the following readers that I will try my hardest to not be biased, although I may not try hard enough.

The Batman was released statewide on March 4th and was directed by Matt Reeves, who previously filmed the last two Planet of the Apes movies. Seeing The Batman was one of my favorite theater experiences I’ve had in a while; it felt good to be with a crowd of people just as enthusiastic as I was. However, the second time I watched this film I had to endure the crying of children throughout half of the film before they left. Despite this film’s three hour run time, I went in with high expectations and my usual iced tea and large popcorn (which is fortunately vegan).

Off the bat, we see an intense, gothic atmosphere that this film proudly presents. The Batman was one of the only Batman films where Gotham actually looks bad, and it’s mainly due to the powerful atmosphere and production design. It’s raining in almost every scene and I absolutely love the feeling it adds to the already gloomy film. The 3-hour run time isn’t a problem at all when its consistent atmosphere pours over the film. It does a great job creating the feeling of one of Frank Miller’s Batman stories, and is probably the closest we’ve gotten to one of his stories being adapted. From the gloomy atmosphere to its gritty portrayal of our world, it works so well and it’s refreshing to get a different look to a comic book film especially in a time bloated by formulaic superhero films populating theaters.

This is such a well casted film. Colin Farrell as the Penguin – who would’ve thought? The characters that Matt Reeves and the wonderful performers brought to life are different from what we’ve seen before in the best way, I absolutely love the new style and how gritty these characters feel. Of course, let’s start with the main bat of the film, Robert Pattinson. Robert Pattinson has become one my favorite actors of all time with his great performances he’s been cranking out in just these last few years. From his roles in the Safdie Brother’s Good Time to Robert Eggers The Lighthouse, Robert Pattinson has reconstructed a much better name for himself in the acting world. He encapsulates the character of the dark knight so well; he might be my favorite portrayal of the caped crusader. He blends the look of a person with immense pain with a person with unstoppable strength so well. Zoe Kravitz also does great and quite honestly steals the show. All the actors in this film absolutely embody their role perfectly. Our two villains, Colin Farrell as the Penguin and Paul Dano as the Riddler both do incredible jobs. In fact, everyone in this film just does their job nearly perfectly. I felt captivated by each performance and the characters and actions felt believable in terms of the story and their performances.

Matt Reeves for the past few years has been a pretty good director. I really liked the direction he took with the new Planet of the Apes trilogy and Cloverfield wasn’t bad. However, with The Batman his directing really shines. There’s so many different shots and camera angles that feel so unique in this genre, although I may not agree with 100% of the shots used, I can respect the fact that the filmmaking in this film doesn’t feel repetitive or derivative of other films of its genre. It’s obvious that Reeves had a giant passion for Batman, and he shows it through every frame of the world he creates on screen. From the performances to the beautiful production, the directing of this film is astonishingly impressive. However, a few of my small issues with this film come from it’s writing. Although the story itself is extremely engaging and captivating in it’s own respect, the dialogue and some plot elements are a bit… questionable. It’s nothing too big for me to diminish it any major points, but the writing wasn’t as impressive as other aspects in this film. I will say the way this film handles Batman’s privilege was very fascinating and it was done in a way that hasn’t been done before. Showing how criminals and underprivileged work in the city of Gotham is where the writing shines. Catwoman’s vigilante ways and thirst for bloody revenge compared to Batman’s cleaner way of going about things is a great example of this.

It the end, The Batman is an extremely impressive film. There’s so much talk on if this is better than The Dark Knight or not, and although my opinion leads me to say The Dark Knight is the better film overall, I can’t deny that The Batman may be the better Batman film, if that makes sense. This film is full of great performances and a really captivating, thrilling story with some great directing. The Batman is definitely not another studio cash grab. It’s a 3-hour epic with a vision. Check it out.

9/10 – Prisoners (2013) starring Robert Pattinson