BY JOHN CARTER JR
Originally launching in theatres last March, Matt Reeves’ The Batman is the newest rendition of Batman starring Robert Pattinson, Zoe Kravitz, and Paul Dano. It also features Jeffrey Wright, John Turturro, Peter Sarsgaard, Andy Serkis, and Colin Farrell, who make up the surrounding iconic Gotham Cast. There hasn’t been a solo live-action Batman film since 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises by Christopher Nolan. However, that long wait was worth it as it was one of, if not the best, Batman films in the last 30 years.
While the discussion surrounding Pattinson’s casting primarily involved an Edward Cullen comparison, his performance in this film is a far cry from the constipated-looking vampire. Pattinson’s Batman is brooding, edgy excellence. In admiration of this installment, his performance, and the new Gotham, let’s take a look at The Batman (2022).
Murder, emo Bruce, spice, and everything nice (Reimagined Villains and Gotham). These were the ingredients chosen to create the perfect little Batman. Pattinson represents a culmination of the best traits that fans want to see in Batman but his performance as Brue Wayne is a pleasant surprise as well. A handsome social recluse with no real desire to spend his money on anything outside of his vigilante hobby, Pattinson resembles “L” from Death Note more than Sherlock Holmes and this is more than welcome. You can see the parallels between his two personalities, from the quiet detective work to the dark bags under his eyes. This Batman spends more time as Batman than as Bruce Wayne and that has an effect on Gotham.
The film has a current of social commentary flowing throughout the film. This is directly tied to poverty, philanthropy, certain groups in society feeling they have been abandoned, the inadvertent effects on self-validation in criminals by Batman, and the cult nature of The Riddler (Paul Dano) and his following. The film is a discussion starter for topics such as digital anonymity, groupthink, echo chambers, terrorism, and more. What are people capable of when trauma and twisted perspectives cause their darkest innermost feelings to be amplified in a large group of people who feel the same? Feelings become distorted, warped, and transform into a malevolent or insidious monster living amongst us.
In order to establish this new version of Gotham, the audience is reintroduced to familiar faces who represent the different factions the denizens of Gotham belong to and how they stray amongst each other. In this film, the underground criminal organizations, The Gotham Police Department, and independent civilians are on display. In the realm of crime, The Penguin (Colin Farrell), Carmine Falcone (John Turturro), and Gil Colson (Peter Saarsgard) are the most important players in this film. Part of the mystery in Batman (2022) is who is the rat among Falcone’s goons. This paired with the efforts of Catwoman (Zoe Kravitz), the schemes of the Ridler (Paul Dano), and The Opposing Gotham Police, makes for an excellent Batman Detective thriller.
The Batman (2022) is one of the best renditions of the character in film. This is due to its newest versions of the classic Batman Characters tackling modern issues in a deliciously interesting Batman detective story way. Pattinson and Kravitz are stunning and excellent at their roles and make for compelling iterations of the characters. The Gotham Underground and The incredibly hilarious depiction of the Penguin make this film more than just doom and gloom. This film is a perfect start to a new generation of Batman that is not only refreshing but a pleasure to look at.
I give The Batman (2022) 10/10 batarangs for its cast, setting, and commentary.