Written by Luke Barnes
A new emotional Batman, played by Robert Pattinson, is born. Is this Nolan? Not quite.
I will admit I liked this film more than I thought I was going to based on the trailers, there are a number of things that work here and a few major things that don’t, but to the positive first.
Jeffery Wright, Zoe Kravitz and Paul Dano are all terrific. Wright and Kravitz totally make the characters of Gordon and Kyle their own to such an extent that you can’t think about anyone else in the role. Yes, I do think these may become the definitive versions of these characters. Moreover, Dano is magnetic as Riddler and really makes the character come alive in a threatening, unstable way that has never been done on the big screen before, Dano’s Riddler is easily the star of the show.
Another positive is the world. This Gotham City feels very comics accurate; the deprivation and the despair are clear to see and inform the wider narrative of the film. Reeves very accurately captures the world of Gotham as it appears in the comics.
Now onto my issues with the film.
This film really suffers pacing wise, I did say when it was announced that the film was going to be on for close to 3 hours that it was going to be an issue and I was proven quite right. After a while the film starts to drag and even becomes boring, this obviously hurts it tremendously.
Additionally, the film is clearly trying very hard to mimic Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy and as such goes hard with the uber realism and grit. However, unlike Nolan’s films this really doesn’t land and comes across as silly, baffling or simply not as intended. Examples of what I am talking about can be seen as Batman rarely talks to people instead he just stairs, this might have seemed like a cool idea but doesn’t work, moreover, whenever Batman walks anywhere he does it so slowly that anyone could easily just run away, a lot of the time it is not even slow motion he is just barely strolling along. Though Reeves thinks this makes for an intense on-screen presence it actually instead becomes a recurring joke.
Lastly, the emo hot topic Batman played by Robert Pattinson certainly won’t be to everyone’s taste, he wears copious amounts of eye makeup and acts like an angsty teen which at times does become grating, some of the lines are incredibly on the nose in this regard. Furthermore, I don’t think anyone will be coming away from this film saying what a great actor Pattinson is as he is really quite monotone throughout.
Overall, on the better side of fine, but not approaching truly good.
It tries to hard to copy what Nolan did
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