It's interesting how much people's opinions on this movie vary-- I wonder if it makes a big difference whether people saw them in the theater when they were first coming out or if they saw them all later on TV or video.
The first Batman movie I saw in the theater was Batman Begins, which is still my favorite of the bunch.
I found the earlier movies disappointing after seeing that, though I enjoyed Batman Returns for the atmosphere and feeling it created.
I thought that Batman & Robin was terrible, and I was surprised to find that Batman Forever wasn't much better.
I can understand that some enjoy Batman Forever's variety of silliness (though I think the 60s series and movie did it much, much better), but I don't understand why the people who do seem to hate Batman & Robin so much; the two movies seem pretty similar to me. Corny jokes, villains making tons of puns, flashy colors, impossible architecture-- very much a comic book feel.
Most people dislike Batman and Robin because it is different and just bad. To this day I still don't see how they managed to make a bad Batman movie with George Clooney as Batman. I mean the guy is Bruce Wayne in real life. If you grew up in the 80's or 90's then this is not a Batman you would know. If you are older you will. I mean everything about B&R is wrong from Bane, to Poison Ivy to Mr. Freeze.
There is nothing wrong with Batman Forever except that visually it is different from what they know. As I said before I remember the relief and pleasure so many older people felt when Forever came out cause they disliked Returns so much. It was way too dark and weird for them, but for a lot of folks here that is what they like. It was not kid friendly which also made parents mad. To me Begins is just Forever but taking all the jokes away and Tommy Lee. Same kind of discovery story just with the jokes and the neon.