The Batman

Contemporary Take on a Classic Hero

Mo Carter

The Batman storyline has always been  brilliant  and one that everyone deserves to enjoy. The new take on the iconic character in the most recent adaptation takes Batman away from the usual story of a superhero, instead it focuses on his title as “the world’s greatest detective.” This story follows the Bat as he tries to unravel the mysteries, and riddles, of the new cereal killer with seemingly political motives.

Warner Brothers

With performances from the likes of Robert Pattinson, Zoë Kravitz, Paul Dano, Colin Farrell, and Jeffery Wright, Gotham feels lived in. Everyone carries a healthy dose of fear and respect for the masked vigilante running through their streets. Pattinson and Kravitz have a chemistry that is uninhibited by their costumes and translates beautifully through the screen. Wright carries the weight of an overworked cop like a true resident of a hectic metropolis; and don’t forget that Farrell and Dano play the perfect chaotic antagonists of Pattinson’s no nonsense Batman.

Fear is a tool. When that light hits the sky, it’s not just a call. It’s a warning. For them.”

— The Batman

The camerawork, there’s only one word for it, breathtaking. Each scene is masterfully framed with the purpose of being reminiscent of classic comic panels. Drawing the eye to clear focuses while still filling the frame with the vibrant, yet often dark, lives of the city. The score helps elevate each scene with strong bass lines and dynamic balancing. While looking back, the music is repetitive, but when sitting in the theater those motifs fill the air with worthwild excitement. When the Batman theme starts to play you know that Pattinson is going to come on screen and execute some of the best fight choreography of the past few years. I would argue that it is some of the best ever, but people with more expertise might disagree.


The opening scene was a perfect way to introduce the Riddler in his new form, methodical and deranged. Waiting for just the right moment and then lashing out with little control of his own anger. Costuming for him may have strayed from the comics, but no one can convince me that “he lies still,” and “thumb drive,” aren’t the most Riddler riddles to ever be riddled.

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Dropheads are a crucial part of the story and a very Gotham form of drug abuse, and I can appreciate that, but they just make my teeth hurt. The idea of putting something into your eye and just trusting that it won’t make you blind is terrifying. It sets a stark difference between the general populace and Batman. Bruce is so comfortable in the suit, confident in his intimidating presence. Unfortunately, he walks the exact same way when he is out of the suit causing the toddler waddle to be sprinkled throughout the film. Almost like he’s looking for his dead mom to change his diaper.


However, that stance pays off just after the car chase scene with Penguin. When we get the upside down shot from the perspective of the flipped car. Flashing between the fear growing in the Penguin’s eyes and the slow crawl as Batman approaches. Easily, it is my favorite shot of the film. It is one of the few times that we see from the perspective of someone other than the bat. 

Because, like any true detective film, the story stays with Batman as he tries to solve all the riddles. 

This constant lack of information about the enemy is what makes the interrogation scene so heart stopping. When he started to nearly chant Bruce Wayne’s name, we could see Penguin’s previous fear reflected in Batman’s eyes. The Riddler seems to have it all figured out, until he starts on about the one that got away. A rush of relief and then a pang of pity as the Riddler turns to Batman like a friend. It’s almost like the character’s madness couldn’t fully be grasped until we see how truly alone he has been. So alone that he made up a friendship in his head with the man that has been trying to hunt him down.


There is a childlike naivety to the Riddler for a moment, until we are reminded of the devastation he has caused and plans to rain down. Suddenly the roles are reversed and Batman is the man not in the know. The great detective has missed the big picture and has to rush off to find the last puzzle pieces. The final shots of the film are eerily calm, reminiscent of pictures taken just after a horrific storm. 


The Batman is a testament to the very soul of its namesake character. He is a detective willing to put his life on the line, but in the end he’s only human. He stumbles and falls, he can’t save everyone but he can try his best to ease the devastation. This is a Batman that criticizes himself just as much as he criticizes others. Audiences are excited to see this man finally come to the big screen.

Warner Brothers

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