Batman Returns: A Review
In preparation of the July 20th release of Christopher Nolan’s highly anticipated trilogy closer, The Dark Knight Rises, The Bro Journey is reviewing each of the previous six Batman films (in order) that have preceded it. We continue with 1992’s Batman Returns.
Alright party people, it’s time to call out your inner vigilante, put on your mask, and make sure your nipples don’t show in your Bat Suit because I’m back!! Today’s post is my return to blogging from after a small hiatus to be the best man in a wedding, laugh at Max for accidentally shaving off his beard, and search for Richard Branson’s vacation home, Necker Island (a post will accompany all of these adventures, don’t worry). I bring with me in my return to The Bro Journey the second installment in our review of ALL the previous Batman movies leading up to the epic release of The Dark Knight Rises on July 20. My assignment happens to be the movie that I have probably seen more than any other movie in my short time on Earth: Batman Returns. So without further ado, let’s call Alfred and get this party started.
When you look back on the entertainment you imbibed as a child, it’s easy to get a little nostalgic or happy or sad and realize some great days are FAR behind you and the next generation has much much cooler nonsense to keep them occupied (Oregon Trail was the beez neez, but I’m pretty sure kids these days would shit a brick if they had to experience anything in 8 bit like we battled back in the day but I digress). When I reflect on my most watched movie or TV show I ALWAYS think about Batman as it was my absolute favorite character and the VHS tape recording of Batman Returns (on the same tape as a recording of My Cousin Vinny (Pesci and Devito double feature, FTW)) was a mainstay at my house growing up and my Mom still quotes both movies all the time and I love it.
So now that I’m somewhat of an adult I get SUPER pumped to go back in time and re-watch the classics, hence my excitement for getting assigned Batman Returns as we recap all the previous Batman movies, so you don’t have to. Anyway, that’s a little bit of the back story of this movie’s history and your fearless Co-Founder so let’s dive in a little deeper and find out why I STILL cherish this flick.
EDITORS NOTE: These are just notes about the film that I took while watching. I’m not a critic so I’m just gonna talk about things that I like / dislike rather than take a journalistic approach to this thing. If you want to learn more about the plot go HERE to learn everything you ever wanted.
I wisely took notes on my duct taped and misshapen blackberry as Max and I watched Batman Returns last week and of the 15 bullet points, 13 were about how smoking hot Michelle Pfeifer was / is. Wow. Just wow. I know that Anne Hathaway is going to do a bangup job as the new Catwoman
and Halle Berry was once Catwoman too, butNOTHING compares to how amazingly tragic the transformation we see in Selina Kyle from sweet, docile secretary (ahem, executive assistant) to blood lusting (and freakin’ hott) Catwoman.
To catch you up to speed, Selina Kyle works for the corrupt businessman Max Shreck (Secretary Cleary) where she is under appreciated, frizzy haired and probably just run out of whatever people drank in 1992 instead of K Cups. As the plot thickens, Celina gets saved by Batman as Penguin’s thugs take over Gotham, gets tossed out of a building by her boss for being thorough, and resurrected back to life by a herd of alley cats. The stunning Michelle Pfeifer lets her freak flag fly when she transforms into the tragically twisted Catwoman and somehow gets hotter in the process.
My girlfriend in college rocked a faux hawk once, but Dear Lord look at the below image of Selina Kyle in evening attire / faux hawk / packing heat and tell me you didn’t weap tears of joy. A thing of beauty… kicking Batman’s ass and fighting The Man! Nice work Selina Kyle. Before I move on, I have to share with you my two favorite quotes from Selina “Catwoman” “I’m way to f’ing hot for five year old boys like the tiny Matthew Jared to be watching but who cares at this point” Kyle.
“That was very brief, just like all the men in my life”
“Honey I’m home. Oh, I forgot. I’m not married.”
Christopher Walken is Max Shreck.
Bruce Wayne is techy as shit
I can’t really fathom the level of techiness that comes from living in Gotham City. I’ve been in Austin for three months and I’m operating on a whole new level of vernacular than I was when I left the Midwest. If you live in Gotham City in 1992 you are pretty much at the epicenter of The Code! (Cue Neo and the binary mapping thing that happens in The Matrix.) Since I’m such an esteemed journalist (Mr. Schmidlapp gave me a B+ in Intro to Journalism class in the 9th grade), I know that I need to show you some sources for my claim here. Well how about this, you question-asking-jackal…
- Bruce Wayne is just a lowly billionaire and he has his own CUSTOM batman CD-Rom.
- He has a Batboat with infared radar that can hack into the penguin kamakaze network.
- He has a multi-media station in his f’ing cave!
- And to top it off… the Batmobile is run on a flux capacitor!!!!
There aren’t enough exlamation points in the world to show the excitement Max and I felt when we realized that Bruce Wayne is the Steve Jobs of the vigilante world. I’m actually surprised Max’s beard didn’t fall off. Even though all the technologies of 20 years ago have been obsolete since George Clooney dawned the nipple suit in 1997, the fact of the matter is that it is pure joy to go back and check out all the technolgy that was state of the art back in the day, flux capacitor and all.
As cool as Batman’s technology improves in the second movie, Michael Keaton kind of sucks in this one. Sorry folks. The story revolves around Catwoman and Penguin far more that the Caped Crusader and rightfully so. Unfortunately for Billy Crystal Jr., Tim Burton sprouted a hard-on for Jonny Depp after BCJ came up short and never cast him in a film again. Why you mad, bro?
Danny Devito stands all of 4 foot 3 inches and is of direct descent to Bilbo Baggins. Another fun fact about this sick son-of-a-bitch is that he haunted my dreams from 1992-2003 because he was CREAPY AS SHIT as Penguin (He earned little retribution in Matilda as well). Tim Burton’s make up crew made Devito look like a 4’3″ mutant descendent of the Lollypop Guild with an even bigger FUPA, bad teeth and penguin pincers. A far cry from the tuxedo’d monopoly guy from the Batman cartoons, Oswald Cobblepot is still a crazy mother and demands your respect in Batman Returns. All in all, Devito is the best actor in this flick and brings to life the most deranged character in any Batman movie (until Bane eats Batman’s face off in the new one) and he had a special place in my nightmares for the better part of a decade.
Before I segway into my emotionally charged finale and conclusion, I want to share a few notes from the movie that I thought y’all would enjoy reading…
- Penguin’s henchman are clowns because they are leftovers from the Joker era. I’ve been watching this movie for 20 years and I just now figured that out.
- Jack Skeleton is in the old rundown Gotham Zoo. If you watch during the epic collapse of the Gotham Zoo you’ll see a glimpse of Jack Skeleton who makes his full time appearance on screen in Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas a few years later.
- Answering machines are f’ing awesome
- Bruce Wayne has Google 5 years before Sergey and Larry were at Stanford.
- “If his parents hadn’t 86’d him”
As we gear up for The Dark Knight Rises and all the amazing things Christopher Nolan will do with Anne Hathaway in a skin tight jump suit, it’s fun to reflect on all the movies we already cherish. I’ve seen Batman Returns more than any other movie and I’m still finding parts about it that totally blow my mind. With the newest release coming in a few weeks I’m expecting some absolutely crazy things heading our way. This was Tim Burton’s second stab at a Batman flick and he got darker, creepier and much more EPIC in the process. We saw just that with Christopher Nolan’s second Batman (The Dark Knight) and he did not disappoint. Now imagine if Tim Burton had yet another Batman movie on the heels of Batman Returns and all the crazy shit he would have done. Christopher Nolan gets to finish out his trilogy with something that is going to be simply batshit crazy. To cap it all off, Batman Returns is a mainstay in the Batman series as it shows how dark and twisted Gotham City can be and how we humans as a species have no hope to protect ourselves unless we have an animal themed vigilante to protect us!