I’d like to start off before we get into all the story’s problems’ and how badly written the characters and how they are problematic at their core, I’d like to say this films’ visuals and references are very cool, and I was thoroughly impressed by the visuals being CGI looking Lego brick stacked together. The opening scene with a plane going through clouds looks incredible. Props to everyone who worked on the visuals on this film. This film can work as a mindless parody film, and many people in the audience were laughing out loud a t several points. I however was not because of the poorly crafted characters.
We are going to start off with how badly written the Joker is because it is simpler than batman’s problems. The dynamic of Joker and Batman throughout the comics goes as follows: Joker is insane and sees Batman as the only other person who is as insane as the Joker, and that makes Joker want to prove that they are so similar and the same, and Joker is basically in love with batman since he is the only one who can relate to the Joker’s madness, yet Batman denies all of this. This dynamic has been built over the years by many writers. Most notably in crafting their relationship are Dennis Oneil, Grant Morrison, Frank Miller, Alan Moore, Paul Dini, and Scott Snyder. The film tries to use this idea but fails miserably for one huge reason. This film is afraid to portray the Joker as an insane psychotic criminal, and that fundamentally breaks the Batman Joker dynamic they are trying. The idea of Joker being in love with Batman here doesn’t work for this reason, as well as them not setting it up in the film. This film goes in with tons of references, and expects you know the characters, because it is trying to be a celebration of the characters. Joker here is shown to just be a normal guy with a normal voice. I couldn’t stand the voice actor they had for him. Joker here isn’t crazy, but is just a normal guy, which breaks the character and dynamics they were trying to copy from the comics.
Batman, this film’s main character is so badly written. The whole film is his arc of finally realizing that he is lonely. If he never had realized he was lonely, then why did he become Batman? The reason he became Batman was to stop the feeling of pain, and loneliness, as well as other things I won’t get into here. This isn’t a video about Batman’s origin. Young Bruce felt lonely and powerless and didn’t want others to feel that pain, so he became Batman. But in this version, he never realized he has become lonely form loss of family, so his main arc doesn’t work at all, because it contradicts the character’s very core. He also acts horrible and is a narcissistic guy with no care about the collateral damage he creates, and acts like a fascist with no accountability. He also acts like a complete child endangering person, who doesn’t care about anyone’s lives but himself. Batman if he stopped all crime, would stop being Batman since he fulfilled his dream/nightmare. Batman wouldn’t try to create more crime and more things to do. He would go to his parents’ grave and become Bruce Wayne again. Speaking of young Bruce Wayne, how come Batman acts like an immature kid in this film? Several of these characteristics are what people have used to criticized the character of Batman, except they usually have not read many comics, and several stories give good examples to all of these, and show that Batman isn’t an absolutely horrible person who kid’s shouldn’t look up to. In this film Batman actually literally acts like those criticism of batman. It’s like they are trying to parody Batman by putting everything people think is horrible about him and turning it into one character. It is a horrible take on Batman, and a really badly written character.
Robin is a huge Batman fan here who will do anything for Batman, and it how Bruce treats him is horrible. Many people claim that comic Batman is committing child abuse by letting Robin’s work for him, which isn’t true since he gives them proper training, and they would seek out vengeance on their own,, Batman just gives them a safer healthier way where they can learn and help he city. In this movie however, Bruce Wayne should be arrested for child abuse, and not be a family friendly hero who little kids can laugh at.
Batgirl is done so horribly here. Apparently, they didn’t get the memo about Batman: The Killing Joke movie’s Batman and Barbara romance being horrible. Except this romance goes really nowhere, and we all get is that Batman is love with her. After Batman locks up and captures very single criminal in the city, but then Barbara says that no criminals have been stopped, and that Batman should work with the police force. But Batman acts like an irresponsible fascist in this film, and he learns that working together is for the better by the end, which is one of the few good arc developments in this film.
If you are looking for any serious character or depth that work, I would not recommend this, but if you are just looking for a fun, mindless hour and a half of family comedy, you might enjoy this.
If you disagree or have counterpoints about anything I have said in this review, please tweet at me or tell me in the comments. I’d be glad to hear them.