Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of February 28, 2022

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton
Week of February 28, 2022

The Batman
Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material, drug content, strong disturbing content, strong language and strong violent content
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 87%
In Theaters

In the latest major reboot of the Batman franchise, Writer/Director Matt Reeves (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) presents Robert Pattinson as a dark, broody billionaire lost soul who acts as a vigilante at night as a means to find solace and seek justice for the murder of his parents. He is the same tough crime fighter basically, but with a more gritty and vulnerable side that we aren’t used to, and a lot fewer cool toys. He’s not a womanizing playboy by day, but rather a sad young man trying to figure himself out. But when a strange new serial killer named The Riddler (Paul Dano) begins to kill prominent leaders in Gotham in order to expose their crimes, he addresses clues to The Batman, shedding light on both current and future crimes. So needless to say, this isn’t your daddy’s Batman. It is a dark noir crime thriller with a mystery slant and a much more organic look and feel to it, rather than the flashier versions we’ve seen until now. Rather than the supervillains we’ve watched in this franchise previously, The Riddler is almost like a more sociopathic-like version of The Peacemaker, a villain who thinks that he is doing the right thing by using extreme violence to thwart the evil-doings of the leaders of Gotham. It’s as if he thinks he is like Batman, with a darker edge. Like he’s trying to possibly team-up somehow. This kind of plot works well and turns out to be a very interesting take on the storyline. And when you add in Catwoman (Zoe Kravitz), a cat burglar who is also willing to do what it takes to bring down the mob, you get a memorable version and a worthwhile place to take the franchise. There is honestly a lot to like here with great acting, a strong production and a serviceable script. Sure the score by Oscar Winner Michael Giacchino (Up) sounds like a western version of the Imperial March by John Williams, but when you consider that batman sounds like he is wearing spurs when he mysteriously walks into rooms, it all starts to make sense. What doesn’t make sense is the 3 hour runtime. Some films earn their 3 hours, but this one sadly does not. It is an overly long bladder-buster that could have used a major edit. There is a lot of wasted space in this film and that bloat takes focus off of what could have been a better movie with just less of it there. B+