Friday, July 20, 2012

Your Bat-Weekend at the Bat-Movies

Posted By on Fri, Jul 20, 2012 at 8:59 AM

Page 3 of 9

Did you have these Topps BATMAN RETURNS trading cards? I did. Why did I? Did they come with a Happy Meal?
  • Did you have these Topps BATMAN RETURNS trading cards? I did. Why did I? Did they come with a Happy Meal?
Batman Returns (1992): This, though: this is more like it. Batman Returns, like the original, deviates from most modern comics incarnations of the character in key ways: this Bruce Wayne doesn't use gregarious charm to mask his inner demons; this Batman doesn't seem particularly concerned with not taking lives, or doing more than cursory detective work. But in Batman Returns, these changes feel more organic, because with the introduction of a similarly altered Catwoman (now given a vaguely supernatural lifespan) and Penguin (in the comics, basically just a quirky gangster; here, a murderous and sometimes pitiable grotesque), Burton constructs a full reinterpretation of the material. This is a warped funhouse Batman, whose enemies become twisted reflections of his own fractured, lonely psyche. Indeed, the loneliness of this movie is fascinating and sometimes heartbreaking: Batman, Catwoman, and the Penguin barely have a friend between them (Batman comes closest with his butler Alfred, but that role is marginalized in the first film series, as is a more buffoonish Commissioner Gordon). Also, good luck to Anne Hathaway, because Michelle Pfeifer's Selina Kyle/Catwoman is the most interesting and complex villain and love interest of Batman Movies Mark 1. Grade: A

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