Given my fondness for superhero, or comic book hero big-screen adaptations, it hardly seems fair that I’d not yet seen a single version of the escapades of Batman. Though several years old, the first in the trilogy from Christopher Nolan is actually impressive.
Batman Begins (2005) Film Review
The memory of his parent’s murder etches in the childhood memory of Bruce Wayne. Following college and the assassination of the man who killed them, Bruce (Christian Bale) disappears. He leaves his father’s company, his home and faithful butler, Alfred (Michael Caine) behind. This leads him to an Asian prison that he chooses to be put into in order to understand the criminal mind. Mysteriously he finds a benefactor, Ducard (Liam Neeson), who “arranges” to have him released. Once Bruce finds Ducard’s army of elite soldiers, they train him in hand-to-hand combat, but when he refuses his final challenge, they part ways.
Returning to Gotham City, he lives up to his supposed image of a billionaire playboy and reunites with his childhood friend, Rachel (Katie Holmes). It doesn’t take him long to see Gotham is a fading city. To save it, Bruce creates an alter-ego to strike fear in the criminal. It’s only when his past rears its ugly head that Bruce realizes what he’s fighting to protect is worth preserving.
At the roll of the credits, I like this movie, a lot. Knowing what’s coming next makes me like it less. Had the trilogy not gone depressing, and I don’t have to “see” it to recognize the upsetting twists it encounters, I’d be much more enthusiastic. As it stands now, this may be the only movie I watch of this trilogy. Separating my feelings of things that are to come and focusing exclusively here, I can easily say that I love this superhero, but I do have bones to pick with the movie, and that is the purpose of this review.‘BATMAN BEGINS’ (2005) #Moviearchives #DCComics #Batman Click To Tweet
Blowing me away are the great special effects and storyline. I love how Batman comes to be. It’s fabulous to encounter such a selfless character and realize his moniker is to conquer his own fear. It brings the hero down to a more “basic,” human level. Christian Bale plays this role with finesse and style; he plays this as well as he does a 1800s gentleman. Here, he’s a larger presence with a character that’s easily more heroic. He’s a great character, though I these shriveling leading ladies is tiring. Seriously, with exception to one or two (the whiney, spoiled MJ is the worst), these superheroes are rarely get a pairing with a woman who deserves them. It isn’t that I don’t like Rachel but she goes all self-righteous on Bruce on one too many occasions.
At its best, this is a film I’d like to watch again. It’s brilliant, and doesn’t forget its hero’s past, although it does clock in longer than I expect. The script is phenomenal and as previously mentioned the cast wonderful. Surrounding Bale is an impressive supporting cast including Neeson and Caine as well as an extremely creepy (co) villain in Cillian Murphy. Though this is perhaps one of the darkest movies of its kind, it’s also got an edge plus I like how well the cast works and their chemistry; including the fabulous camaraderie between Bruce and Alfred. There are moral dilemmas, and really, there isn’t a flaw I can find between a hero and the people who have one of two objectives; to help him create a world of good, or seek to destroy him.
Content: Some of the violence borders on “graphic” but in reality, the emotional impact is greater (a villain uses physiological games); a toxic potion is released that causes people to hallucinate and see threats were there is none. There may be a profanity or two. Bruce arrives to a part with two scantily clad women on his arm. The film rates PG13.