“Oh God, not another one.” That was my first thought when I heard about Batman Begins. My second thought was “What a goofy looking Batmobile”, as if the previous versions with huge bat wing fins were perfectly reasonable. These impressions were, of course, before I went to see the movie. Since it was so hot and smoggy today, I decided to see if those impressions were true, or if I should believe the rave reviews of my nephews and others.
Laura refused to see this incarnation of Batman because she thought it would be dark. Just like its predecessors, this one is very dark and moody, but that’s where the similarities end. The story is an excellent tale of how Batman came to be. Christian Bales does an outstanding job as the Dark Knight, and his equally troubled alter-ego, Bruce Wayne. However, it’s very hard to show emotion when all that is seen are the pupils and lower jaw.
The support cast reads like a who’s who of A-list actors, including Liam Neeson, Michael Caine, Rutger Haur, Gary Oldman, Katie Holmes, and Morgan Freeman. Neeson once again plays older-mentor-with-a-saber, but with a wicked twist. Oldman is great as a young Gordon, andd Caine plays a convincing Alfred. Morgan Freeman brings dignity to any role, and in this he plays a Wayne Industries researcher – a Bondian “Q” to Bruce Wayne.
The only criticism I have is that at times everything seems too blurred. The action shots are muddled, and even some of the dialogue gets garbled. All told, though, this is stil an excellent new beginning to the Batman franchise. I’m hoping we have more like this.