After years of Trying, DC Finally Gets the Caped Crusader Right With ‘The Batman’

Ulises Duenas


Rebooting Batman yet again is a risky proposition, and while the initial trailers didn’t leave me feeling confident about this new movie, I can now say that The Batman is a solid film that explores the caped crusader’s character in interesting, new ways.


The film follows Bruce Wayne as he’s two years into his career as the Batman with a corrupt Gotham at the center of the story. While the basic premise of early-year Batman is tired at this point, the performances from this cast combined with Matt Reeves’ directing give this reboot a fresher feel.


Robert Pattinson delivers a unique take on a Bruce Wayne/Batman that is consumed by his emotional trauma and is portrayed as an awkward and unstable man struggling to do his best against all odds. He’s obsessive, self-destructive, and looks like he never gets an ounce of sleep, but it all gives the character a realistic feel.



The mystery at the core of the plot is very well done with the main villain, the Riddler, doing a great job of being a menacing enigma who taunts Batman at every turn. Whether it’s in comic books, games, or movies, Batman stories are at their best when centered on mystery and detective work, and this one probably pulls off that crime investigation aspect the best.


The supporting cast is also stellar, with Zoe Kravitz as Selina Kyle/Catwoman and Paul Dano as the Riddler. Kravitz delivers on the best incarnation of Catwoman, with a character that is developed, motivated, and vulnerable. Dano’s Riddler is deranged and full of anger and sadness, his performance only getting better and better as the plot goes on and he becomes more unhinged. Colin Farrell does a surprisingly good job of portraying Ozzy/The Penguin and Jeffery Wright as James Gordon was calm and collected. 


As good as the movie’s highlights are, that doesn’t mean this is the perfect Batman flick. One problem that occurred multiple times was the clashing of tones. The initial trailers made this look like the darkest and most self-serious Batman movie to date, and while that’s mostly true, there are a handful of scenes and lines that feel straight out of a comic book and give the movie a campier feel. I don’t mind it when movies try to balance different tones, but the mixture here felt awkward at times, and I could tell the audience didn’t know whether to laugh or feel uncomfortable during certain scenes.



The movie also feels a little too long for its own good. A good detective story should be a slow burn so that the mystery has time to breathe, but I would still say that the script could have used some trimming and tightening to help its pace.


That being said, for a movie that’s almost three hours long, the time felt like it flew by because of how good The Batman is. It’s a treat for Batman fans and also has a lot to offer people who want a good mystery thriller.


Author Bio:

Ulises Duenas is a contributing writer at Highbrow Magazine.


For Highbrow Magazine

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