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Review The Batman (2022): Awful!

genre: comic book adaptation, action, crime, adventure

Honestly, I don't even know where to start with this one. How come this film gets so many good reviews? I mean, there is nothing, I repeat, there is absolutely nothing good in this film. Sure, at times it's close to being adequate. But so was, Batman and Robin, which was better than this crap. Yes, I said it. Let that sink in, people!

Say what you want about Batman and Robin, it at least offered fun. Not that films always need to light and comedic. I can sure appreciate darkness and doom, when done right. I read that writer / director Matt Reeves was inspired by Seven and other classic films. I don't even want to know which one because it doesn't really matter. I know it's been long that I have seen Seven. But I do remember that film being tense and suspenseful right from the start. It was dark and gritty, but almost everything about that film clicked. It was a thrill ride with a very dramatic ending that had real impact on you. The Batman is nothing like Seven. Everyone who said so most likely have never seen it or have completely forgotten about it. The only thing that resembles Seven are the visuals. The Batman is literally too dark for words. 

And yes, I am aware that is part of Batman. However, you can make things look dark and beautiful at the same time. Tim Burton was a master in doing that. Even Zack Snyder managed to bring grittiness and majestic eye candy at the same time. Both Burton and Snyder also knew how to deliver spectacle! Surprise, there is no spectacle to behold in The Batman. The few action sequences, including the finale, are supposed to be dramatic and grand yet are nothing of the sort. The way everything is shot and how events play out are just a slight level above what you would see in a bad B movie. And I am being very generous here. Also, why doesn't this Batman capitalize on the fear. None of the thugs are spooked. At least Christopher Nolan and Tim Burton understood this. The whole idea of a man in batsuit is to create the illusion he is not human. Here he walks up to the thugs and basically reveals he is just a man in a suit.

And no, I don't need action and spectacle. When I heard that The Batman was going to be more like a film noir and detective film, I was pretty ecstatic. Batman is the world's greatest detective, after all. One of the coolest mechanics in the Batman video games is to hunt for clues and deduce events. It's the element I have always loved in crime shows and thrillers. Just browse through my reviews and see for yourself which genre I watch the most. So yes, I was super ready to be wowed by Batman and his detective skills. But apart from a few times, all the (puzzle)solving is done by Alfred. Say what? Yes. Even Adam West's Batman was able to solve every riddle thrown at him. Andy Serkis was great for the time he was in the film. Two, three minutes? The dynamics between them were all wrong. Bruce Wayne would never ever have been disrespectful towards him. But apparently, emo Batman has real trouble dealing with his emotions. I did dig the hospital scene. It was a hint of the relationship they should have. And to be honest, I did like the dynamics between Gordon (Jeffrey Wright) and Batman (Robert Pattinson). Although I couldn't help but feel that he resembled Jordan Peele doing a parody of Lt. James Gordon. Especially at the moments when Gordon was surprised and shocked about the things that get revealed. 

When I was watching Kimi, I thought, you know, if ZoĆ« Kravitz keeps this up she might do wonders as Catwoman. But, wow, just wow. Never seen such a bad version of Catwoman in my life. Yes, even Halle Berry is better. She is nothing like what she is supposed to be. What was the point of her mask? You can clearly she who she is underneath. Also, where has the sexiness gone? It is one of her best weapons. Catwoman is a femme fatale. She plays along while at the same time manipulates everyone who serves her needs. She is conniving, intelligent and immensely dangerous. Why? Because people keep underestimating her. She doesn't have the same inhibitions Batman has. But Kravitz's version? She is a weak, timid and bisexual woman who thinks she is all that but still needs Batman's help. The real Catwoman on the other hand never truly needs help. She is smart enough to avoid getting into trouble, but when needed she can kick ass. Here she is useless! I wouldn't be surprised they made her bisexual because of Kravitz being one. 

Paul Dano is awful as The Riddler. Let's say that I want to go with the Jokeresque take on him. I don't. But let's go there anyway. Why would that be interesting? The whole point of The Riddler is that he is obsessed by proving his intellect. Or rather, that he is more intelligent than detective Batman. It's what he lives for. He is far more methodical and precise than The Joker. The Riddler is definitely not as bloodthirsty as The Joker. I did like Colin Farrel as The Penguin. If they hadn't revealed that he was playing him, I wouldn't have known. From all the characters, he easily was the best. He elevates the scenes he is in and makes The Batman tolerable.

I am not the biggest Batman fan. I am not familiar with all the versions that exist. At least the ones from the comics. However, I do know what he is about. And only a few directors get him. Reeves is not one of them. Apparently, neither do all the people who love this awful film. Even Mrs P. who has zero interest in Batman and who looked at this film as a casual viewer found zero enjoyment in this film. She had no bias whatsoever. But like me, she was bored out of her mind. Well, my commentary made her laugh. Because not a second could pass without me getting frustrated or angry. 

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