Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Batman Begins Review.

Thoughts: My opinion of the Christopher Nolan Batman movies have changed many times after my three viewing of the movie. I have liked the movie more each time I have watched it and I have finally have come to a opinion of the movie.
Batman Begins obviously starts from the beginning of Batman's origin. His origin is well told and entertaining to watch. The cast is excellent including some my favorite actors like Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson and Michael Caine just to name few. The look and atmosphere of Gotham city is great, it looks realistic and gritty. However, in the sequel The Dark Knight the look of Gotham is a little different. Another thing that I did really like is how Batman used stealth to out his enemies in one scene, it was done very, I just wish that there was more of it in the movie.
Batman Begins is just what the Batman franchise needed at the time after the complete epic fail of the one of the worst movies of all-time "Batman and Robin". It revived the franchise with a good new take on the character. Although Batman is more of a ninja than a detective, which is not my favorite take on the character but I watched this version before Batman: The Animated Series version of the character. There is one major flaw in the movie that cannot be ignored. Most of the fight scenes are so poorly choreographed and edited you cannot see what is happening. There is absolutely no excuse for this in a modern action movie. One scene in particular were he first becomes Batman and fights crime is a poor excuse for an action scene, there is not reason for it. Some of the early action scenes are choreographed and edited decently but still could have better. The only good action sequence is the car chase.
After reading Drury at Banon's Roar!'s review for Batman Begins, which you can Click Here to read, he pointed out some valid flaws with the movie that I would like to mention in the reviews. He also agreed that the action scenes were not edited well. But one of his most interesting points in his review was that the plot unnecessarily explained multiple times to the audience. After this third viewing, I agree that it was a little unnecessary to question the audience's intellect, which Christopher Nolan would not do in his later movie Inception.

Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Genre: Action, Comic Book, Crime,
Release date: June 15, 2005 (2005-06-15)
Running Time: 140 minutes
MMPA rating: PG-13

The Good: Great cast, Darker more realistic version of Batman, Very good performances, Excellent score, Perfect casting of Gray Oldman as Sgt. James Gordon,

The Bad: Very poorly edited and choreographed fight scenes,

Plot: A young Bruce Wayne falls down a well, and is attacked by bats. Bruce then awakens from this nightmare of his past, and is revealed to be a prisoner in Bhutan. He is approached by Henri Ducard, who speaks for Ra's al Ghul, leader of the League of Shadows, and invites him to train with the elite vigilante group. The narrative returns to Bruce's childhood, to the fateful night he witnessed his parents' murder by a mugger named Joe Chill. Chill is later arrested, and Bruce is taken home and raised by the family butler, Alfred Pennyworth.
Fourteen years later, Bruce returns to Gotham City from Princeton University, intent on killing Chill, whose prison sentence is being suspended in exchange for testifying against crime boss Carmine Falcone. Before he can act, however, one of Falcone's female assassins posing as a reporter kills Chill. Rachel Dawes, Bruce's childhood friend and now an assistant district attorney, is disgusted with Bruce's intent, telling him his father would be ashamed of him. That night, Bruce confronts Falcone, who tells the young man that his criminal empire is invincible because it runs on fear and Bruce, being the "Prince of Gotham", would never understand this because he has never felt real pain and suffering. Inspired, Bruce decides to travel the world for several years, learning the various ways of the criminal underworld, before himself becoming a criminal and being arrested. After Bruce's training in the League of Shadows, Ra's and Ducard tell Bruce his purpose: He must lead the League to destroy Gotham, which they believe is corrupt beyond saving. Bruce refuses to become a murderer and battles Ra's, burning the temple in the process, before making his escape. Ra's is killed by falling debris, but Bruce saves an unconscious Ducard and returns to Gotham. Watch the movie to see what happens next.

Plot: 9.4/10- This is an excellent version of Batman's origin while it still incorporates characters like Ra's Al Ghul and Scarecrow into plot with feeling over stuffed like previous Batman movies.

Action: 5.9/10- As I stated above, the fight scenes were very poorly made. It almost would have made the movie better to not have a few of the poorly filmed action scenes. The camera work was not well directed and the sets were not well lit. The fight scenes may be due to Batman's costume that makes it nearly impossible to actually performance much real action, but there is no excuse for it in a movie. Unfortunately, it would not be until Inception that Christopher Nolan would truly figure out how to direct action scenes.

Acting: 9.6/10- Batman Begins has an excellent cast and the actors are perfectly casted for their respective roles. Liam Neeson as Henri Ducard gave his usual great performance, Michael Caine as Alfred and Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox added good dry humor to them movie to keep the entertaining, and Cillian Murphy as Dr. Crane/Scarecrow gave a very chilling presence to the character. Also Gary Oldman as Sgt. James Gordon was the perfect choice for the character, he looks almost exactly like his comic book counter-part. Although Christian Bale's performance was very good, he cannot match Kevin Connroy's version from Batman: The Animated Series, fortunately at this point his voice is not ridiculously over played. The only subpar actor is Katie Holmes as Rachel Dawes, she gives a solid performance but she become annoying after a while.

Special effects:7.9/10- The special effects were used well where needed. Although it might not be considered a special effect, Batman's "Tumbler" (Batmobile) looked great on screen.

Soundtrack: 9.3/10- Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard's score added to the overall theme of the movie well.

Comedy: 7.3/10- Surprising amount of dry humor, mostly Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine's characters.

Would I Watch This Again: Yes, this movie has a surprising amount of re-watchablity.

Overall: 9.2/10- Despite its flaws, Batman Begins is a great start to the Batman trilogy.
Closing comments: Batman Begins is exactly what the Batman needed to revive the franchise.

Recommended for: Action movie fans, Comic book movie fans, Batman fans.

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  1. Han Zimmer!!!!!! He has good music! XD
    Oh, and Liam Neeson... he's everywhere. XD

  2. Thanks for the review! The only thing I disagree with are that the fight scenes are poorly choreographed and too dark. First of all we have to remember that most of the fights take place at night in a gritty, dimly lit city. Not to mention he's Batman, the Dark Knight, he doesn't exactly want to fight his enemies in the best light possible. I think Nolan captured what really needed to be captured with the eyes, I could hear the rest just fine.:) As to being poorly choreographed Nolan himself said that he was shooting for chaotic, violent and gritty. He said that modern action sequences had become too beautiful, taking away the real threat of violence. He wanted to make you feel the hits on screen. I think he did that well. Not to mention Batman is just a regular (very strong) guy, in who-knows-how many pounds of protective armor, using his no-nonsense skills to beat the crap out of the scum of Gotham. I don't think it was supposed to look good or be pretty. (i.e Matrix)

    Anyway, that's my two cents worth. Sorry for the rant. ;)

  3. @Kayla: Yes he does, he is one of the best. :)

    @Jake P.: Thanks for the long rant comment. :) The part about lighting was originally intented to be removing from my review, which it is now.
    I compared the violent and gritty action scenes to the Bourne movies and The Dark Knight were you could mostly see what was happening, while it was still realistic. :)


  4. So, I wasn't able to do the marathon, however, I have both movies here at home, so, we watched Batman Begins last night!



    IT WAS AWESOME! I totally flipped for Bruce; especially at the beginning when he refused to move from his own standards; that was awesome. And I completely fell in love with Batman, too. I got such tingles the first time I heard him say, "I'm Batman."


    Alright, I'll stop now; I just had to drop by to share my thoughts!!! :)


  5. @Jamie: Glad you liked it. :D Looking forward to hearing more of your thoughts and I think you will like The Dark Knight even better. :)



One rule: No strong profanity. If you want to link to one of your posts, please do; I am always interested in other reviews and such.

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