FAN FICTION Screenplay – UNIVERSAL SAINT BATMAN by Nathan Trumbull

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Best Scene from the screenplay UNIVERSAL SAINT BATMAN Screenplay
Written by Nathan Trumbull


NARRATOR – Catherine D’Angelo
SUMMER – Val Cole
BIRDIE – Shannon McNally
KYLE – Gabriel Darku
BRUCE WAYNE – David Straus
VIC STONE – Charles Gordon
JOKER – Nick Wicht


Genre: Adventure, Action, Sci-Fi, Mystery

Decades after the disbanding of the Justice League, Gotham citizen, Birdie Vale’s public and private fight with a cutting-edge robotic policing initiative leads her on a collision course with not only her clouded past, but the Dark Knight himself.

What is your screenplay about?

Universal Saint Batman is about a future where Gotham has begun questioning Batman’s relevance after the dawn of hyper intelligent AI systems and androids. Birdie Vale, a new character to the Batman Universe, seeks to find out from the Bat himself what he thinks about the new robots as well as explore her own personal relationship to him.

What genres does your screenplay under?

In typical Batman fashion, I’d consider this a neo-noir sci-fi mystery.

How would you describe this script in two words?

Fun and fresh

Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

I think this would make a great film because it doesn’t follow Batman or Bruce Wayne, but rather a whole new character for people to rediscover the Batman universe with. It offers a fresh story with a cast of characters you may be familiar with, but shown in an entirely new light.

What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

I’d bet Jaws

How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I’d had the idea for the script for quite awhile before sitting down to write a draft, of which I wrote three in about two months time before it came to how it exists now.

What motivated you to write this screenplay?

I’d always wanted to give fan fiction a try and contests like this one seemed as good a reason as any.

What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Finding people to generate good feedback on fan fiction is difficult when no one in your creative circle has done it before so I’d say that was the hardest challenge… That or deciding to gender swap the main character after the first draft.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I enjoy bouldering, movies, and video games when I have the time.

What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The festival was great motivation to get the script done and the feedback was indispensable in regards to bettering myself as a writer.

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Don’t dwell on the advice of other writers. Do what lets you write and write as much as you can.

Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

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Get to know the Fan Fiction Short Film: ARKHAM’S JOURNAL, 7min, Canada, Fan Fiction/Mystery

Playing at the Thursday January 26, 2017 Sci-Fi/Fan Fiction Film Festival

ARKHAM’S JOURNAL, 7min, Canada, Fan Fiction/Mystery
Directed by Matthew P.H Rea

Based on “Batman” DC Comics. Filmed in and around Toronto, this short proof-of-concept film provides a small insight into the untold stories of Gotham’s darkest hour. With the timeline loosely based around the batman comic, “Knightfall”, Arkham’s Journal is told through the words of Dr. Arkham’s Journal, detailing the lives of all the Arkham Asylum patients.

Film Type:Short

Runtime:7 minutes 1 second

Completion Date:July 4, 2016

Production Budget:20,000 USD

Country of Origin:Canada

Country of Filming:Canada

Film Language:English

Shooting Format:RED Epic-X

Film Color:Color


Producer: Thao Nguyen

Writers: Stas Simon, Matthew Read

Key Cast: James Levesque

Key Cast: Aleksandra Kimaeva

Key Cast: Dave Walpole

short films short films short films
short films short films short films


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Movie Reviews

Directed by Lauren Montgomery, Sam Liu

Voices: Mark Harmon, Alyssa Milano, William Baldwin, James Woods, Chris Noth, Gina Torres, Gary Cole,
Review by Evan McCaffrey


When an alternate universe of evil superheroes threatens to destroy their world, The Justice League must team up with Lex Luthor in order to save the day.


For the past few years, DC Comics and Warner Brothers have combined forces to deliver a slew of direct-to-video comic book adaptations to the market. It is a series of films that deals with the source material faithfully, and respects its viewing audience. These are not a watered down kids film. Each one is filled with level of emotion and intensity one would expect from the source material. “Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths” is no exception.

Often, when lesser-known entities of the comic book world are given feature film franchise, they are treated with less respect than they deserve, (i.e. ‘Daredevil’, ‘Ghost Rider’ to name a few.) The companies will take the name of the franchise, throw on a director who does not have the vision to fully realize these films, and then attach a star with little or no regard to how he fits in with the actual character. Fortunately, this film does not fall into that category. Though it is animated movie, it still contains everything you could want out of a Justice League film

As the movie begins, Lex Luthor and the Jester, an alternate universe Joker, have stolen a device of immense power. However, in doing so, they trip the alarms, and are quickly set upon by a mysterious and powerful force. It becomes quite clear at this point that this is not the Joker and Luthor we have grown to hate. In order to save his friend, the “Jester” sacrifices himself in order to give Luthor a head start, (something the Joker would never do.) Luthor’s head start is brief, and in moments, he is quickly surrounded by what appears to be a group of superheroes. Knowing he has no choice, he flicks on the device, and in a flash of light, he vanishes.

The story quickly shifts to our universe, where Luthor suddenly appears. Turning himself in to the Justice League, he convinces them he is not the Luthor this world despises so well, but from an alternate dimension where he is good and they are bad. On his planet, alternate versions of the Justice League have gone rogue and are creating a bomb that, if ignited, will destroy the entire planet. With little hesitation (the movies one quick and forgivable fault), the Justice League takes up Luthor’s cause, and joins forces to save his world from utter annihilation.

This is a fun movie. It provides roughly 78 minutes of solid entertainment. It never gets bogged down with too much exposition. It understands the audience watching this film, and it knows you already have an idea who most of the main characters are. Only once does it revert to a flashback, and that flashback is done in a way in which does not hinder the main story, but fleshes out one of the only characters I was slightly confused about. That is a testament to the writing abilities of the screenwriters. They know we have a solid foundation on most of the main characters. No one watching this film is going to be clueless about the motivations of either Superman or Batman. And most people have some sort of understanding of the Green Lantern, The Flash and Wonderwoman. It is this one character, J’onn J’onzz (The Martian Manhunter), that people will be confused about. Since the writers know this, he is the only character given a, if small, fleshed out backstory. I truly appreciate the respect and admiration these films have for their audience.

Now, as a story, does the film work. Yes. Absolutely. You will not go into this movie expecting the caliber of Christopher Nolan, but you will still get something immensely enjoyable out of this viewing. Not only is the story interesting, it is incredibly fun to watch. It is also very intense. People die, and, towards the end, the movie takes a dark turn reminiscent of “Watchmen.” It is a short movie, but one that delivers on all levels it intends to.

Studios take note; this is how you make a superhero movie. You do not need to always make an origin story. This is a movie that respects the audience and takes risks with its story. It knows what the fan base wants to see, and it delivers on all fronts. I can’t wait for the day that some company decides to stop playing the safe route, and to make comic films that deal with some of the more extreme stories in their universe. Until then, this movie more then satisfies that desire.



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Movie Reviews

Directed by: Sam Liu

Starring: Tim Daly, Kevin Conroy, Clancy Brown, Xander Berkeley, Corey Burton

Review by Travis Seppala


When Lex Luthor gets elected US President, he uses the threat of an oncoming Kryptonite meteor striking Earth as a rationale to frame Superman. Superman and Batman must team up to put a stop to Luthor’s tirade and to save Earth from impending doom.


Oh. My. God! Now THIS is how you make a superhero/comic book movie! The only way “Superman/Batman: Public Enemies” could have been any more epic is if it would have been live action. And even then, I’m not sure it could beat this, because some of the fantastic fight scenes probably wouldn’t be possible in a live action film even with the immense amounts of CGI that turns up in Hollywood films now a days.

During the economic downfall in the United States, Lex Luthor is voted in as the new President. His first act in office is to create a government operated team of superheros including Captain Atom, Major force, Power Girl, Black Lightning, Starfire and Katana. The new hero team catch up with Superman while he’s in pursuit of a criminal in a high speed chase and try to recruit him. Superman tells them he will not join their team because he is un-trusting of Luthor, especially now that he’s the most politically powered man in the country. Captain Atom pleads with Superman that Luthor has changed his ways, and the two almost fight before Superman finally flies away.

The U.S. Government discovers a giant Kryptonite meteor hurtling toward Earth. Rather than asking the many superheros at their disposal for help, Lex decides to destroy the meteor with nuclear missiles and says he’ll even do all the calculations himself. He arranges a meeting with Superman to arrange a pact.

The meeting between Lex and Superman doesn’t go very well and Luthor goats Superman into a battle with his “bodyguard” Metallo. Luthor flees the scene as Superman and Metallo engage in an epic fight. When Metallo proves to be more than a match for the man of steel, Batman shows up to help. Superman and Batman escape to regroup. When Metallo regains consciousness from Batman’s sneak attack, he is killed by an unseen assailant.

Lex Luthor pins the murder of Metallo on Superman, saying that the approaching Kryptonite is causing Superman to lose his reasoning due to the radiation. He claims Superman is a threat to the country and possibly the world and puts a $1billion bounty on Superman’s head.

In an attempt to find out what really happened to Metallo, Superman and Batman break into S.T.A.R. Labs and find his remains, determining that the Kryptonite powered cyborg was killed due to an intense amount of radiation. When the World’s Finest duo leaves, they are attacked and find themselves in a battle royal against more than 20 of the world’s most powerful super-villains. After the single most epic battle ever in a movie, they manage to defeat nearly all their opponents. The rest are beaten by Captain Atom when he and his team show up to arrest Superman. Not willing to be taken, Superman and Batman engage in yet another fight which ends with them fleeing with Power Girl in tow.

Luthor’s scientists fire nuclear missiles at the on-coming meteor, but they do no damage to the lethal space rock. Lex is furious, saying his calculations were perfect until it’s pointed out that it would have worked except that the meteor is outputting so much radiation it acted as a type of shield- the missiles blew up before they ever made contact with the Kryptonite itself. Luthor flees (followed by Amanda Waller) and takes a Kryptonite steroid injection. Waller discovers he’s been taking these injections for months to make himself immune to the Kryptonite radiation and now decides that if he can’t stop it, he’ll let it destroy the Earth and he’ll rule whatever is left.

Superman, Batman, and Power Girl have another battle with Captain Atom and his team. Batman gets Major Force to admit that he’s the one who killed Metallo under Luthor’s orders. Power Girl and Captain Atom kill Major Force and let Superman, Batman and Power Girl leave to try to save the Earth. But can they beat Lex Luthor and his second wave of super-powered goons, get the schematics of the meteor and get them to Toyman in time to save the planet from the oncoming ball of green death that’s already so close it can be seen with the naked eye?

“Superman/Batman: Public Enemies” is, in short, EPIC! The story follows that of the comic book mini-series of the same title almost frame by frame! Seldom does a comic book movie hold so true to the source material, and I’m glad they did because it’s one of the best stories to come out in recent years.

The animation in this straight-to-video release is fantastic. All the characters in this film have such sleek and modern looks to them that go above and beyond any previous comic book animated film. I especially love how the younger, more imposing Superman looks.

The voice talent is equally fantastic. Voiced by Tim Dale and Kevin Conroy (the same men who portrayed Superman and Batman in their animated series’ in the 90’s as well as the Justice League series), Superman and Batman shine with their true voices.

The action sequences (and there are a LOT of action sequences) are all brilliantly done. They are on a huge scale that one can only really find in the world of comic books and animation. The big fight with Superman and Batman VS more than 25 characters is truly a spectacular thing to see!

“Superman/Batman: Public Enemies” is the superhero film of all super hero films. It’s great for all ages and is superb animation filmmaking.




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Movie Review: BATMAN (1966)

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Batman 1966
Classic Movie Review
Directed by Leslie H. Martinson
Starring: Adam West, Burt Ward
Review by Anthony Acri


The Dynamic Duo faces four super-villains who plan to hold the world for ransom with the help of a secret invention that instantly dehydrates people.



One thing I learned from dealing with comic books aficionados is that the more incongruously serious they take the books, the less they like the Batman film and tv show of the sixties, seeing it , as one personal actually called it in a blog, a ‘heresy’.

But, as a kid, me and my friends all loved that Batman, as in those pre ADD days, even a kid could get a joke. Not now, god knows, a satirical mind lends you to being given a time out, and in our serious self important days of now, satire is dead, empire is here and self righteousness is our only sacrament. Yet, back when, we adored Adam West since he was the perfect hero. He was part square and yet, with enough self awareness and enough of a sly grin that he was eminently more acceptable than the wholly Ernest Captain Kirk, who seemed his equally psychedelically colored yang, whose desperate needs and wacko undercurrent of devotion mad him the perfect symbol of parody by SNL in its first great season. That sketch has the resonance, to this day, and certain candidates for president seem as unwilling to move on as did Shatner in that sketch, I think because it was a nearly prefect manifestation of the Square stature, comic book jawed, rather loopy and by the book Call me Bill Shatner. But our true hero, his strange blood brother, Adam West, as amplified in this movie, was already a parody, he was already a joke, and from their his humanity grew outwards whereas Shatner was just the lug in the center of the cardboard playacting, and seemingly believed as real painted starry night. room.

The film is a basic comic book come to life. For all the wailing of fan boys about how insidious that great TV show and its subsequent film were, actually, most of the plots came ready-made and were taken out of the old Carmine Infantino books, anyway.

This was the era of batman things made famous on the internet like “the Jokers big boner”, and such like classics, as it was a day and an age when superman, that dick, tried all manner of things to never have top kiss Lois, but that is another story, or part of the same story. The film then could be more than a usual two parter, and gains a rolling of these collected stories, like those 100 page comic giants dc sold when I was a kid. And, the cliffhangers, as would be in later Indiana Jones, just flow right into the next scene, like a serial all pasted tighter, like that of a dickens novel with actually less homo erotic variants.

Now, here, as opposed to the innocent….?…DC comics books, the homo- erotic undercurrent to the material was its creed, as how could a story about a man dressed in tights with a circus boy near him not have loads of homo erotic intentions…? And, thank fully, to the chagrin of the fan boys yet unborn then, it was all played for laughs, as back then, adults were adults andcomic books were not seen as literature, but then, Tennessee Williams wrote plays back then, and others of his ilk wrote often, so why would anyone have to see dc cosmic as a font of literature…? .

The four master criminals of the series are united together in a brilliantly satirical waterfront dive where even the floors are crooked, and they plot and scheme incessantly away, below a giant octopus icon as owners of the earth something which would later be done, without the laughs, at the offices of the vice president. But, since this was done when America was still a republic, Bruce Wayne—batman , whose inner demons in a more innocent time are not worn on his sleeve, but occasionally seep out in a way which is actually more adult and more thoughtful than the now constant mudslides of tempestuous fraught emotions, is hot on the trail of the four fiends. He is out to capture them before and lest they try that most unthinkable of things, to take over the entire world, and thus make littering and nuclear proliferations, gum disease and weather machines possible in every corner of the earth. One or two or even three of the greatest criminals of earth might be after just the city of Gothem,– yet to become a hell hole waiting for its black and gray Giuliani to clean things up,–or even the good old usa, but all four, …they are after that world which beguiles these men in colorful clothing as nothing else does.

Shakespearean actors like Burgess Meredith and Vincent Price, and Victor Buono , an aging Latino mgm swashbuckler , and a pretty , sensual brunette in spandex and cat ears, to me , always lent a satirical heft either lost on the fan men of perpetual boyhood, or was a satire they didn’t want to see. Frankly, having flipped through a Batman essential collection when he was at his most Capoteasque, the TV show and film cleaned it all up a bit, and made the humor at easy, at least knowingly, homophobic. The show and film, especially, was where the gay stuff was toned down in exchange for Adam west and a feline brunette—no longer seen in blond America– and so didn’t rely on the odd unintended gay knock knock joke which have made their famous way to the internet, like thought balloons about Robin and the famous bat touch. Here batman is played as farce, god forbid among the comics as art crowd, but it is Art too, in ways that that crew never knows. It is pop art, a Warhol spasm, a four color illuminated manuscript come to life, like a fresco of purple and red and blue and green, made out of in within a plaster which never dried completely, thus always allowing it to shine. Batman is that hero of the dying republic then, half rko and half Castro street, part Carmine Infantino, part Furlinghheti, too, and is a delightful remixture and reinterpretation of both. He is Dick Tracy meets easy rider, and wholly American and thankfully, the result isn’t like later heinous exemplars like Joe or Archie Bunker, for batman is above all things here decent and honest and a true boy scout which is why even sissyes want to be included., deep down. HE IS HERE THE AMERICAN HERO, an outgrowth of MARSHALL DILLON, A LONE RANGER AMID INDIAN HATERS AND RACISTS WHODESPITE THAT OR BECAUSE OF IT, BELIVES IN TRUTH, and he is always sobered ,and yet always funny, but decent too. And, when the black suited cat suit wearing woman is revealed as the woman he started to love, the actual second of his disillusion is priceless and touching too, and is better than a thousand different throughly ungay and purposefully made ungay in the atomic age of will and grace as less than Virgil gay clowns, black and un-purple batmen falling from crushed skylights. It is a farce, to be sure, but never becomes the mere pie fight of silliness, though I think they may have had a few pie fights actually, and always returns back to him as good and decent American.

He doesn’t, as the caricature later would, become a suit of armor or a knight errand amid a city of squalor , and eschews that most favorite pejorative of the lost boys era, post Lucas crowd, Dark, whhhhhhheoooooooooo. Batman 1966 as It is referred almost derisively, was as America once was itself, played for laughs, as things were in the republic of Jack Webb –who ironically as violence teems on the screens of the age of mommies boys and hectoring nannies, never fired a gun. The last third is the weakest part, and the ending is too farcical even for it, and the old actor’s creek and punch off a suberine, as the act is getting old in this extended form and things have to be quickly tied up. But there is a scene in the brilliant middle, before the obligatory fight scene and its splats and pow sound effects, which gives away its heart. At the docks, Batman, the real batman, yes the only real batman all you other batmen are just imitating, … is confronted by a giant carton bomb, complete with a a black ball and fuse, which was expressly put in to lampoon the parent company about to destroy it as a passé Phenom, ABC. Batman takes the bomb and runs around madly looking for a place to dispose of it, but cant let himself just hurl it at the jetsam of the docks and the waterfront, since he cant just indiscriminately kill ore maim these miscreants, as they all had mudders too as the Lenny the Penguin,– tell me about the penguins George– would surmise, and that they were human beings too. Not even baby ducks in the river can he hurt, for still within him is the early version of American resolve, not to get even with the nuclear fact which made him, the killing of his parents , or to elicit others pain, but to never reach that heinous level himself, and to never be a miscreant himself. This is underhandedly brilliant, and is a subtlety lost on the fan boys who like things ‘Blewed yup reeel good’ by men in tights. It is a kind of oath of the purple tighted centurion. As a moment, it is sweetly conceived of and played . The set piece is a gem of a frame in a sweet Mod movie, and it is last glimmer of a decent America before Lyndon, Richard, Jimmy and the rest of the fools of power would themselves regretfully go against the ethics and the oaths taught to them as kids in an America, which would no longer be there. Then, the Shakespearean demise of Richard would be sadly replaced by a dim wit actor , a corpus in rouge, whose indecency and cruelty, like Nero say, was the closet thing he had to a thought process or a belief system. Moreover, batman was finally blown to bits.

And now, the darkeners have won this civil war and another, incessant, perpetual batman appears on the scene. This time with a clown fag villain who went made himself a strange martyr before it opened wide, thus robbing Flattop—I mean Joker, of any playfulness or joy, not that he or our latest Toxic avenger selling popcorn as a true ethic, the now national lampoon re casted and re created Batfart was going to have any, anyways. In Batman 1966, film came as close to pop art and to a Lichtenshien verve, as they were even going to come, and now, Guarnicas of plaster and bad lighting and explosions and mayhem, with strangely more exceedingly silly rubber nippled black hooded vigilantes, seen spinning through the rubble skipping un gay men seem everywhere.

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Movie Review: Batman and Robin (1997)

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Movie Reviews

Directed by Joel Schumacher
Starring: George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell, Uma Thurman, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Michael Gough and Pat Hingle
Review by Andrew Kosarko


“Batman” fights Mr. Freeze and Poison Ivy and Bane.


As you can most likely tell from my synopsis, I’m none too enthused with reviewing this “film”. Please be advised there will be numerous quotations used throughout this review because I openly mock any chance of dignifying the attempts of this scrap heap of a “movie.” It should be noted I’m very upset not only because I love Batman, but because Mr. Freeze and Bane are my favorite villains. And they get pissed on even more than Batman in this “movie”. I tried to watch the “movie”…got literally 30 seconds into it and remembered everything I hated….and turned it off. Here is the result:

The Story:

Mr. Freeze needs diamonds (rocking dat ice yo – get the pun?) to power his massive freezing machine used to hold Gotham ransom for the funds he can use to cure his frozen wife of her disease. Poison Ivy wants to bang Mr. Freeze and take over the world with plants, killing all people. Bane…..uh….breaks stuff. Batman and Robin….well, they run around in rubber bantering about plant/ice puns. Oh, and Alfred is dying of the exact same thing as Mr. Freeze’s wife. Well isn’t that quite a lucky parallel? The script is honestly ¾ of ice puns and homosexual innuendo. The nipples on the suits are the least of this movie’s problems. Everything that happens for pure aesthetic reason. The characters are openly mocked – Batman and Robin as a homosexual couple having their first lovers quarrel, Mr. Freeze as a madman driven by love who wants to joke about his physical deformation, Poison Ivy as the crazed lunatic who wants to enslave the world and Bane…..reduced from a cunning muscle assassin to a Poison Ivy lackey. The plot is trite and boring and really doesn’t take much artistic risks.

Acting: George Clooney had great potential to be a memorable Batman. Instead, for once in his career, he threw his artistic integrity to the wind and decided to play in the sandbox. Arnold….don’t even get me started. Three people really do a good job though – Michael Gough’s Alfred has the best character arc in this film than he does in the first 3. Chris O’Donnell, while still stuck with a shit script, makes a good Robin. But the best, Uma Thurman really takes the Poison Ivy role and makes it fun. It’s actually my favorite part of the entire film – which is shocking because Batman is my all time favorite character, Bane and Mr. Freeze are my two all time favorite villains and most of all – when it comes to comics, Poison Ivy is my least favorite villain. Go figure.

Directing: I don’t blame Joel Schumacher. I honestly don’t. I blame the studio for this debacle. Chris O’Donnell is on record saying that production was rushed on this film and toy concepts were created before the script was written. The whole movie is one big toy commercial. Joel has his faults for sticking to the project, but in the end, it’s very obvious of his capabilities as a film maker and what the final product was. Were some of the faults of the film his decision? Most likely, but the opportunity to explore dark territory was all but destroyed after Burton’s Batman Returns.

Cinematography: One of the biggest things that I hate about this movie, is the lighting. Neon colors are very comic booky, yes, but this is a movie. You don’t need bright red, green and blue colored gels to tell this story well. Oh wait, there is no story, we’re selling toys to kids. My mistake. Oh, and for crying out loud, I don’t care what you are doing, FILMING THE LIGHTS AS PART OF THE SCENE IS THE MOST UNPROFESSIONAL THING YOU CAN DO. And you did it on purpose. Congratulations, you’re a horrible cinematographer.

Production Design: Nipples on Bat-suits….do I really even need to go past this?

Editing: Actually……the editing I can deal with. Maybe a few hundred extra cuts to eliminate the puns and I’d nominate that person for an academy award. We could have a decent movie if we could eliminate 90% of the dialogue.

Score: Ok, my 2nd biggest beef with this movie. I can overlook nipples, puns and bad lighting. But 2nd only to the story, this pisses me off the most. It started back in Batman Forever with the trumpets. Now….it just drives me nuts. I love film scores and this…is a mess of a circus fanfare. I mean, since this is a 2-hour commercial, I’d have been happier with a catchy jingle. The studio even felt like this sucked. They used Elfman’s Batman Theme in all the trailers….a very sneaky move. Honestly, if you could replace the score in this film, eliminate the puns, and take the gels out of your Arri kit, you might have a decent once in a while movie on your hands….but you didn’t.

Special Effects: You’d think for a “movie” trying to sell toys, they’d put some more money into the effects and props. Not so much. There’s a moment where a frozen Robin is lifted out of a pool of….water….but he’s frozen……um….anyway…Robin is about as light as a pool raft. There’s CGI that freaking LAGS on the film. It’s jumpy. I mean…come on, here, even little kids know crap CGI when they see it.

In closing: Batman and Robin isn’t a film. It’s not a movie. It’s a 2 hour mocking of characters in an attempt to make them kid friendly and make an audience buy the toys. That’s it. There’s nothing all that fun in the movie to enjoy, no great characterization, plot twists, action scenes. This is even a shit movie to watch drunk….ok, maybe it’s fun to watch drunk but still. Lots of movies are good to watch under any circumstances. If you want to see a loyal interpretation of the Batman comics, this is it. You read correctly, this accurately portrays the Batman comics of the 50’s/60’s – which were also merchandise crazy. Why was it unsuccessful overall? Because people don’t buy things that look cool. We buy things when we can relate to them and feel a personal connection to them. That’s my personal marketing mind at work, but still. Just because you can draw batman and call it batman, and put a batman mask on and call yourself batman…you are not Batman. Batman is the character originally created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. This is not their Batman. It’s not THE Batman. This is a bastardization of a character simply being exploited for someone’s personal greed and money hungry desires. F*ck this movie…err…commercial.

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Movie Review: BATMAN RETURNS (1992)

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Movie Review

Directed by Tim Burton
Starring: Michael Keaton, Michelle Pfieffer, Danny DeVito, Christopher Walken, Michael Gough
Review by Andrew Kosarko


The Caped Crusador (Michael Keaton) is pitted against the demented, ravenous Penguin (Danny DeVito), a pitiful, orphaned psychopathic freak who once went on a baby-killing spree, and a “power” hungry capitalist villain Max Shreck (Christopher Walken). As the two criminals plot to gain domination over Gotham City, BATMAN must plot to stop them. Cat Woman (fearlessly and fabulously played by Michelle Pfeiffer). She is the slinky, sharp-clawed alter-ego of Shreck’s secretary Selina. Batman must overcome his own dark past, and his present love entanglements, to rid Gotham of it’s evil enemies.


People who like this movie seem to like it because it screams Tim Burton left and right. Some people who absolutely hate this movie, hate it because it’s not Batman. I may be the only person who sees both sides of the light.

The Story: Now one who’s a hardcore Batman fan can see where this was once a Batman story. And in some ways, it still is. The Penguin is on a quest for political power through means of intimidation, greed and corruption. Max Schreck is a capitalist helping the Penguin lie his way to the top. All Batman fans knew that originally that was going to be Harvey Dent and that Selina’s kiss of death at the end was supposed to scar the corrupt D.A. into two-face. I’d say the only down fall from the story is that there is no real arc for Bruce/Batman and there’s a bit too much focus on the villains as opposed to Batman (a problem that seems to be inevitable in Batman sequels.) That and Catwoman’s creation…..that was little much. Getting licked back to life by cats is a little too “I wanna kill the Spider, you wanna kill the spider” for me.

Acting: By my opinion alone, I think this is some of the best character acting in a Batman movie up until Ledger in The Dark Knight. Keaton does a great job as the distant, brooding Bruce/Batman yet gets some spunk in his life with Selina. Pfieffer does a great job at contrasting her before and after transformation as the sexually explicit Catwoman. She’s by far the most accurate of portrayals in the whole film. And Danny DeVito threw so much of himself into the freak Penguin that he scared a monkey shitless (no lie.). Christopher Walken, get this, actually acts in this movie. There are very little Walken-isms in this film and I’m still amazed at his actual ability when I watch this.

Directing: Ok Tim, here’s where you catch some heat. The sets are amazing, the story is alright, the direction of some of the characters…….not so accurate. Batman, as highlighted in Christopher Nolan’s series is not a killer. Yet, in this film, he sets a man on fire and throws a man down a shaft with a bomb attached to him. Can you say “oopsie?” You got away with it in Batman ’89 because the killing of the Joker was accidental and not intentional but this time, it was intended. Now the heat you catch for “freaking” the Penguin, in my opinion, is unwarranted. Chris Nolan can un-permawhite the Joker and get away with it, but if you add an elongated nose and disabled flipper hands, it’s a bastardization? That’s unfair in my opinion. And it fits well into the Gotham that Burton has created.

Cinematography: Perfect fit for the Burton Gotham. Stark black and whites. Shadows all over the place (some great throw backs to the Batman 60’s TV show at one point) and it’s wonderfully covered. Not too many close ups, not too many wide shots. It’s just well shot.

Production Design: Again, amazing. Not as perfect as the Batman ‘89’s Gotham, but still ranks up there higher than the newer franchise at capturing the “gloominess” of Gotham. Everything is just a bit too “new” and clean and shiny. That’s the only problems with it.

Editing: Well edited all around. There wasn’t a point where I felt it was choppy or out of place. Everything is covered well and truth be told you never really get bored with anything that’s going on. The marks of good editing in my opinion. Score: Danny Elfman does it again. Expanding on his original Batman score, he really hits a high point with this one. Gloomy, dark, and gothic. It doesn’t get any more Batman than that.

Special Effects: Where there special effects in this one? I can’t really tell. I mean the make-up department does a fantastic job. But as far as the rest of it goes, a lot of it is so well masked that you really think everything that’s going on is real. Explosions, bat-boats, and giant rubber duckies. It works.

In closing: Batman Returns catches a lot of heat because of it’s stylistic differences from both the comics and the original Batman film. But in Burton’s defense, he’s an artist trying to create his own original piece of art. It works as a Batman movie on some levels and on others it fails. Same as Chris Nolan and Joel Schumacher’s entries. It’s just the way adaptations work. I think some great additions were made, and some essentials were left out. But overall, I can sit back, watch Batman Returns and be entertained. It may not be perfect in what people hoped it would have been, but it is one solid piece of work. Burton committed himself to his own originality, which in turned, made him a greater film maker or the bastard director of Batman. You be the judge.

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