Friday, June 17, 2005

Batman Begins

Oh, sweet sugary goodness, Batman Begins is the real deal.

Screenwriter David Goyer knew exactly where to look to find a Batman vision that fit perfectly into a motion picture. Borrowing liberally from the '70s Denny O'Neil/Neal Adams collaborations, Batman: Year One by Frank Miller and David Mazzuccelli, '80s works by Alan Grant and Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, this is a complex and psychologically rich portrayal of a young Billionaire learning to become a legend, to become the night.

My biggest pleasure was in seeing Gary Oldman excelling so finely at the Year One-era Jim Gordon. He was just spot on, and they even gave him the kind of time to almost make up for the fact he had to take a backseat in this, compared to a full-scale adaptation of "Year One". I'm hoping that the threads of Flass, Loeb and Falcone - Really, are the makers paying due praise to Miller and Mazzuccelli in interviews? - in the sequel. I know there was a suggestion at the end here where they will go, but I think much as this managed to be both a "Year One" styled movie and a supervillain bonanza, the sequel can be "Year One" itself as well as the other thing... it can work.

I'm not going to say too much, because the twists and turns are half the fun. I don't want to spoil it.

I'll just add that I love the way the action was handled, in the shadow, with mysterious bat noices and grunts. Killer.

The only real sticking point for me was Katie Holmes, who never really sold me that she was an assistant district attorney. She just seemed to soft and fluffy for that and lacked the kind of studious intelligence of a rising young lawyer. But that's minor stuff.

This totally kicked ass!

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