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On Batman Begins

2005-06-22

Category: movies

A friend talked me into going to see the new movie Batman Begins. Since I know you folks rely on me for useful information (though I?ve been slack for a while now in keeping up my end of the deal) I thought I would give you the low-down on this flick.

Before I discuss this movie, though, I would like to comment on one of the preview movies. The theater showed the preview of the new release of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It stars Johnny Dep as Willy Wonka. His character wears a long, bright red coat. He also has straight, black hair that curls slightly inward as its length reaches his shoulder. His face is very pale. He speaks in a soft, almost feminine voice. The question is: Why does Willy Wonka seem to be modeled after Michael Jackson? I?m just asking.

Anyway, I had concerns about the Batman movie. The previews looked like the movie may want to move away from the psychology of the Caped Crusader. I didn?t need to have worried. The movie covered the psychology better than any movie I?ve seen before. Where other films alluded to the mental difficulties of Mr. Wayne, this film really jumped in with both feet just to get a better view while the troubled Bruce struggled for air. This character was much more human and solid than most Batmen, and that seemed to make it more disturbing. I like being disturbed?by movies, I mean.

There was a good plot and rather good cast of characters. The bad guys surprise you, especially since there is such a large field of candidates. You never know who will turn out to be a bad guy, or just how bad he or she will be. I?m being intentionally vague here so I don?t spoil the film for you.

There was a problem with Liam Neeson character. Don?t get me wrong; Mr. Neeson did an excellent job. If you?ve seen the previews, you know that Neeson?s character is Bruce Wayne?s martial arts instructor. Dressed as he was, talking like he was, and playing with the sword as he was, I kept thinking that it was Qui-Gon Jinn from the first Star Wars movie. Unfortunately, that pulled me out of the film a bit. We should start a theater tradition that when you see Neeson teaching Wayne anything, everyone should shout, ?Use the Force, Bruce!?

Of course, Batman?s best buddy is the butler Alfred. In this flick, the Alfred is a real smart-alec. Some of the best lines belong to the quick wit of this slightly rougher butler. If the rest of the film hadn?t been so good, I would have still recommended seeing it just to see the Alfred parts.

Overall, this is a good film. It was easily worth the matinee price I paid (and would have been good at full price). It is good enough that I may go see it again in the theatre (at least the second run theater). I have to recommend this one to you.

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