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Courage now, truth always...
The Dark Knight of Gotham City confronts a dastardly duo: Two-Face and the Riddler. Formerly District Attorney Harvey Dent, Two-Face believes Batman caused the courtroom accident which left him disfigured on one side. And Edward Nygma, computer-genius and former employee of millionaire Bruce Wayne, is out to get the philanthropist; as The Riddler. Former circus acrobat Dick Grayson, his family killed by Two-Face, becomes Wayne's ward and Batman's new partner Robin.
Looks like I'm in the minority when it comes to this film. I actually really enjoyed Batman Forever. Sure it's over the top, silly, and has no real substance. But I had a surprisingly good time watching it. I enjoyed the heck out of Jim Carrey as The Riddler and Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face; even though they were both cheesy. However, I can totally understand why someone would not like this film.
"Was that over the top? I can never tell."
Batman Forever is more of an extension of Burton's two Gothic tragedy pieces than many realize, both in their joyous, external depictions of internally traumatized villains and in the continuous back and forth progression of campy banter. Schumacher, while hired to veer the series back into kid-friendly territory, also understood that after Batman Returns, an eerie, haunting exploration of various wounds and fetishes, nothing could top it. Instead director Schumacher and Michael Keaton replacement Val Kilmer shake an already strange depiction of Gotham City and infuse neon sights, homoerotic overtones, and an icy pitch-black layer of overblown goofiness to mix with Burton's original character foundation.
It is in many aspects…
"Does anyone else feel like a fried egg?"
sublimely tacky, but there's very little here that doesn't have precedent in Burton's installments, and it's inarguably just as technically polished, as if the old TV show had, like, $18,000 papier-mâché rocks and state-of-the-art miniature work. i'm no longer able to see this as intrinsically awful, even if i don't particularly care for Schumacher's approach (also i think a lot of the supposedly legendary awfulness is some ugly "no homo" bullshit).
if they ever put Schwarzenegger in something like this, i might never stop laughing.
An almost-offensive step backward from Tim Burton's excellent "Batman" and "Batman Returns," Joel Schumacher's "Batman Forever" expunges the franchise's authentic darkness, weight, and soul in exchange for neon colors, overwrought silliness, and superficial spectacle. Reducing Bob Kane's cape and cowl wearing crime fighter and his shadow-concealed heroism to a plastic, studio-scrubbed superhero works in terms of building a crowd-pleasing antidote to Burton's elegant esoterica, but it does not create anything with depth or resonance. Still, Schumacher's film is committed to its new direction and is able to entertain despite its frustrating emptiness.
Beginning with winky one-liners and scenery-chewing characters, "Batman Forever" instantly begins down a new tonal path. It is, once again, an operatic superhero outing, but the narrative eschews…
Riddle me this: How can such a formidable movie like Batman Returns be followed by such a piece of overacted crap? Whilst I recognize that Joel Schumacher's Batman films are low hanging fruit when it comes to mockery, I must say Batman Forever fully deserves it. Let's break down its inherent shittiness by spotlighting the awfully characterized parade of over-the-top idiots Schumacher tortures the audience with in order to highlight what I hated most about this film (Hint: Its the characters, I'm not the fucking Riddler)
*Speaking of him, let's start with the aforementioned Riddler (sigh). Granted the Riddler is a problematic character. His shtick of leaving hints in form of riddles is…
Much like everyone has their own James Bond movie, the one they fondly remember from childhood, most people roughly 30 & under doubtless have their own Batman movie and, without question, Batman Forever was mine. After at least a decade since last watching this, I was immediately transported back to the 13 year old callow youth mesmerised in the cinema as Elliot Goldenthal's rousing Bat-theme blasted in as the names of Val Kilmer, Tommy Lee Jones et al raced at us across the screen in typically overblown theatrical fashion, in many ways setting the tone for everything that follows. I loved Batman Forever when I was 13. Do I love it now? Maybe a little. Do I think Joel Schumacher made…
The Bat nipples started not Batman & Robin. Spread the word.
OK, so Burton was butted out for being too melancholic and dark to the extend that the audience could no longer identify with the characters, so in comes Joel Schumacher, a directer of questionable skill, to bring a more lively feel to the franchise. Well, he succeeded but he also started the beginning of the end for the original Batman franchise. His campier approach to the source material is indeed fun to watch (at least in this installment) and for what it is worth really quite entertaining. You do get the feeling, however, that he had been curbed just a bit so as not to make the franchise succumb into camp and silly one-liners. Too bad the producers didn't continue…
It's better than the sequel.
If this were a Tim Burton movie, Robin Williams as The Riddler would have been bone chilling. For various reasons neither of those things happened, and instead we get a mildly flamboyant but above-average Schumacher film with Jim Carrey, who deserves the most recognition for accomplishing a whole lot with a script as batty and nonsensical as this. Here's the master plan: steal brainwaves. Be smart. And maybe kill Batman. It's not just weird, it woefully misunderstands the character. In the comics Nygma's psychosis isn't chaos reigns; he's a narcissist. In other words, he's smarter than everyone else. The reason he leaves clues is to taunt his victims. Just look at Scott Snyder's Batman: Zero Year storyline. However, what do…
Misguided attempt to bring a more personal and darker tone to the Burton era of Batman films. Val Kilmer is decent as Bruce Wayne but the screen hogging of Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones bogs down the rest of the film.
While most people will name Batman & Robin as the worst Batman movie ever, I'm usually quick to name Batman Forever as my least favorite Batman movie. While B&R can be hard to watch, if you watch it with the mindset that it's paying homage to the Adam West tv show, it makes it more watchable. Not to mention the fact that it's villains, particularly Mr. Freeze, does have some depth to his character.
None of that is present with Batman Forever. It's not sure if it wants to be dark and serious or a goofy, campy take on the material. You will watch a scene involving a flashback to Bruce's childhood shortly after the funeral of his dead parents, and…
Shame the studio tampered with it so much, I can see tiny glimmers of something that could have been. Jim Carrey is great.
It's fitting that Two-Face is the villain here, he plays second fiddle to The Riddler, in a film that doesn't know if it wants to be Tim Burton Batman or Adam West Batman, and raises two major questions:
1. How does The Riddler manage to have four distinctly different hair cuts? (Sub-question: Does he have his own stylist?)
2. If Bruce Wayne lives on a large estate...outside of Gotham...why are trick or treaters going to his house?
I am sure there is something positive to say about this movie, I'll just have to think for a moment...
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