I cannot believe it has been 15 years since this film came out. And I get just as excited watching it as I did the first time I saw it. Still my favourite incarnation of the Batman.
Director: Christopher Nolan
Screenwriter: Bob Kane (characters), David S. Goyer (story)
Starring: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Ken Watanabe
Genre: Action, Superheroes
Runtime: 140 Minutes
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Pearl
It may not be the classic Keaton incarnation, that for some is the pinnacle of Batman awesomeness, but for a whole generation of film fans, it was Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy that introduced them to the mythos of Batman. I was one of those people, and even after seeing all previous versions of the story, yes even the George Clooney one, I still stand by my guns, that this is my favourite version of the famed Caped Crusader.
After the death of his parents as a child, Bruce Wayne leaves his home of Gotham and trains with Ras-al-Ghul to be the ultimate fighter, so he can return home and stop the spread of corruption in Gotham City. After Ras-al-Ghuls true motives are revealed, Bruce fashions himself into the Batman, a crime fighting vigilante, so he can fight crime in his city, and hopefully save it from Ras-al-Ghuls devilish plan.
This is the film that proved Comic book movies could make money. The cast were all fantastic, there are more famous names here then you can shake a stick at and they all perform spectacularly. Michael Caine as butler Alfred was a particularly inspired choice in my opinion. And Christian Bale brings a great suaveness to the role of Bruce Wayne, as well as adopting the famous gravelly voice of his night-time alter-ego, and really turning up the menace when he needs to.
Liam Neeson as Ras-al-Ghul, plays a great villain. Always calm, always in control, his is scary due to his pure LACK of emotion. He believes completely in what he is doing, never getting angry or having any kind of manic episode at all. Just constant, unwavering calm. An unusual approauch to a comic book villain, who we are more used to seeing do more of the maniacal laughing and moustache twirling up until this point.
The script is fantastically written, and very quotable, two things I love in a film. There are lines from this film that I love a lot and I still laugh at every time I watch the film. The humour helps to lighten the mood a little bit as this is a much darker and grimmer look at the Batman story, without it, it would have been altogether too depressing, and needs the lighter moments to even it out.
A great new look at the Batman story, and one everyone should see, it was undoubtedly upstaged by it’s sequel ‘The Dark Knight’, but I would highly recommend checking out where the story starts before heading straight to that one.