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Movie Review: Batman Begins

Friday, June 17, 2005

Caught this movie a couple of days ago and I would say this time round, the Batman franchise managed to salvage the damage caused by Joel Schumacher (remember the George Clooney FatBatman?). I've actually written a more comprehensive review but I pressed the $%^&* X button by mistake Image hosted by and thus, I've lost most of my intended post. Anyways... here's a trimmed down version.

As with many origin films in a superhero franchise, it takes a loooong time to get our hero into his actual costume. The early training scenes are intriguing if nothing particularly new – Liam Neeson's character pushing the hero around like those you see on Jackie Chan's kung-fu movies. The film really comes to life when Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham and with the help of his butler Alfred (Michael Caine) sets the wheels in motions for the birth of Batman. Wayne uses his wealth and the military facilities of his father’s company to construct an armoured suit, electrically-powered cape, tank-like Batcar and all sorts of James Bond-ish gizmos...

Initially, everything about Batman Begins is very serious. Unlike the Spiderman franchise, which is fun to watch and you somehow get the feel for the unlucky Peter Parker. In Bruce Wayne's case, I somehow didn't get the feel for the character. I guess somehow the director Christopher Nolan failed to give an insight of the character. Don't get me wrong Image hosted by, like Tim Burton's Batman, Nolan certainly manange to capture the darkness of the story, and Bale is convincing as a tormented man who walks a fine line between hero and dangerous vigilante.

For me, the one who stole the show is Alfred, who instills a little sense of fun with a few funny one-liners. The action scenes are nothing special, it's just not enough variety I guess... a lot of car chasing and punch-ups. The main villains this time round are Ra's Al Ghul and Scarecrow. Not bad I would say... not as memorable as Jack Nicholson’s Joker or Danny De Vito’s Penguin, but for once Batman isn’t over-shadowed by his evil co-stars.

Nonetheless, with the current CGI technology, Gotham City is realised on scale previously unimaginable, with incredible cityscapes and a fusion of 1940s Chicago-gangland-styled buildings and 21st Century sleek designs.

Overall, an enjoyable movie to watch and it's actually worth watching Image hosted by BTW, it's a 2 1/2 hours film and IMHO, the first hours was... torture... but the movie picked up in the middle and it managed to gain enough momentum to end it with a bang! For once, the Batman franchise looks promising.

Ratings (Scale of 1 to 5, 5 being the highest)

Cast : 4
Sound : 4
Picture : 4
Storyline: 4

posted by Ivan, 2:34 am


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