Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Warped9, Jul 28, 2012.
Yet you included the movie serials.
Because they were live-action.
But the argument for why you didn't include animated projects applied to the serials. Don 't take me too seriously. I'm just arguing for the hell of it.
I know I may be shot at sunrise for admitting this but I prefer the two Schumacher Batman films over Burton's Batman Films (Although Keaton was a better Batman/Wayne). They're a lot of fun! Sure Batman & Robin is silly and cheesy but they're more fun and entertaining than Batman Returns which was too depressing and Dark...although Michelle Pfeiffer was great as Catwoman. Batman 89 is pretty good but gets a little tedious at times.
I like Batman Begins more than The Dark Knight which was too long too complicated and joyless. If it weren't for Heath Ledger's performance the movie would not have been as good. I have not seen The Dark Knight Rises yet.
So here are my top live action Batman movies.
1. Batman Forever
2. Batman Begins
3. Batman & Robin
4. Batman 89
5. The Dark Knight
6. Batman Returns
I'd put the transition between periods a few years earlier, around 1985. The last season or two of Superfriends in the mid-80s, under the Super Powers Team title, had Alan Burnett -- the producer of the DCAU and subsequent Batman/DC productions -- as its story editor, and he handled Batman in a way that was much closer to the comics of the '70s and '80s, a more serious character and a master detective who was always the smartest guy in the room and five steps ahead of the bad guys. He was still a lighter Batman compared to what came later, but handled more seriously and feeling more authentic to the comics. (This was the third and final series in which Adam West played Batman, and the first time he'd played it seriously, which he did reasonably well.) In particular, Burnett wrote an episode called "The Fear," which was the first ever depiction of Batman's origin story outside of the comics, and which felt in many ways like a prototype for B:TAS. (Indeed, I think I've read that it actually was a backdoor pilot for a Batman series.)
Alan Burnett is surely one of the people most responsible for the maturation of Batman in animation. Timm and Dini get all the credit for B:TAS, but Burnett was their partner and predecessor in the process, and his resume as a producer includes the entire DCAU, The Batman, and the DC Universe Original Animated Movies series (as well as Krypto the Superdog).
I don't see why you'd expect an influence. The point of the DC Universe DVD movies (which are DCU, not DCAU) is to tell standalone stories inspired by the comics, each in its own distinctive style. They're created and marketed for a different audience than the TV shows -- older-skewing and more familiar with the comics. So there's no reason why they would be the same.
And I don't agree that the DCU films are specifically imitating B:TAS and the DCAU; it's just that they have the same producers, Timm and Burnett. They aren't specifically trying to copy their past work. They're trying to make original movies that are inspired by the comics. But since they're still the same people (plus a decade or two more life experience), there's naturally going to be a similarity in their creative voices and styles, even when seeking to do something new and different. The Batman and The Brave and the Bold are different because they're from different creators. The Batman had producers Burnett and Glen Murakami in common with the DCAU but owed largely to Duane Capizzi and Jeff Matsuda. The Brave and the Bold was the vision of James Tucker and Michael Jelenic. Most of those people are DCAU veterans, but they have their own distinct styles and approaches.
So the similarities and differences you're talking about don't show anything about how much of a "legacy" the respective shows have left. It's just a matter of who produced them.
The Burton Films never really impressed me. Although I do recognize without them I wouldn't have my favorite version of Batman.
Schumaker should've been ashamed of himself, imho.
So the NolanVerse films are the only Live Action Batman films as far as I'm concerned.
I've enjoyed all three equally well. Have seen all three in the theater multiple times and will own all the dvd's.
But B:TAS and it's accompanying series, movies and such are my favorite portrayal. Kevin Conroy grew into that role and is the quintissential Dark Knight as far as I'm concerned. Mark Hamill is the Joker like no other can be.
I'm jus' sayin'
I give it to Nolan, no question about it. None of the other attempts interested me at all. The animated show was good and The Mask of the Phantasm was great, too, but even if that was there I'd still give it to Nolan.
I was torn between The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, but in the end I chose TDKR by just a tick. Nolan's last two films are brilliant.
The serials are awful, and racist to boot.
I remember finding the Batman tv series (watched in reruns) rather fun, but the character made no more impression on me there than he did in Superfriends, which I watched because I was a mad Wonder Woman fan back when that series was on. I, in fact, had no perception of Batman particularly, until I got my hands on a comic that my mom must have picked up for me - it was The Death of Batgirl - a classic I have since reread. Good stuff that gave me my first taste of what a rich playground Gotham City is.
I never made it all the way through the Adam West Batman movie. I usually find camp a snore and it is so here too.
By the time Burton's Batman came along, I had truly discovered the Dark Knight - introduced via DKR and Year One. I always hated Nicholson, who wasn't playing the Joker so much as he was playing Jack-Nicholson-as-the-Joker, and Keaton, while quirky, fun and charming barely felt like Batman. Too scrawny and that's all there is to it. I could beat up Michael Keaton.
I used to have a big celebrity crush on Val Kilmer and flipped out when I heard he was going to play Batman. Sadly, he phoned it in big time. Thumbs down. The best thing about Batman and Robin is Alicia Slverstone, and when Alicia Silverstone is the best thing you've got going - you're in major trouble.
You know, I liked Mask of the Phantasm very much - but I'm not as critical of animated material as I am of live action stuff. If I were to give MotP the same sort of once over I've given TDKR - the story has a ton of holes. A+ for mood though.
Having just rewatched the entire Nolan trilogy, which I tend to favor since his take on the character is closest to the version of Batman I prefer, I gotta say it's Batman Begins that stands out for me - especially if the question is my favorite Batman. The Dark Knight is probably the superior movie, but it is a great deal less about Batman. The problem with a stoic, long-suffering hero is that he often gets overshadowed by his villains, and that is very true here. But the Hong Kong extraction may be the best on-film example of Batman's tactical brilliance.
Batman Begins gets into the character, mind, heart and soul - and it's always been certain key issues that have turned me on about Batman as a mythic hero: "will is everything!", the urban landscape of Gotham as character, the sheer cleverness and nerve of Bruce Wayne - these are all best on display in Batman Begins. It also has the best conclusion for a Batman story - never a happy ending, but one that comes down to small triumphs in a never-ending battle.
One of the things I've really liked about B:TAS and subsequent animated features has been Batman's voice. And one of the criticisms I've had with Nolan's film's is Batman's voice.
I think The Animated series is the best adaption of the character.
As for live action I can't decide between the Nolan-verse and Adam West. Both are nearly perfect at what they are trying to achieve. I think I will have to favor the West series as my favorite while admitting the Nolan series is the best version.
Agreed! I love Kevin Conroy's Batman. Granted, he hasn't been in all the animated features, but was in the entire run of TAS. Bale's Batman voice sounds too cold to my ears and it got worse with each film IMO.
90's cartoon, followed by Nolan's trilogy and the the '89 and '92 movies.
In Tim Burton's Gotham it's totally believable to me that a normal guy like Michael Keaton could be the badass called Batman.
Kilmer and Clooney? Too many costume changes. Too ... nippley. Chris O'Donnell was a decent Robin, but Alicia Silverstone? Please.
I never bought into Bale as Batman. To me he just isn't believable. I don't like the suit either. Not one little bit.
Conroy will always be the voice of Batman to me.
Adam West IS Batman.
For me, it's The Dark Knight. Heath's Joker was amazing, yes. But everything else clicked as well.
And I feel Nolan and Bale nailed it with Bruce Wayne/Batman. Not just Bale's performance, but the way Nolan made sure we saw Wayne plenty aswell, being Wayne. The older movies focus and Wayne as Batman, while the Nolan-movies focus on Wayne as Wayne. Like Alfred said, you can't just be a billionaire and not act like the billionaire playboy. Appearing at the restaurant with a famous ballet-dancer, and just shoving some tables together because he owns the place. Appearing at Dent's fundraising with not one, but three pretty women. Stuff like that.
I like the Nolan-Batman approach the most. But of all his films, I like Batman Begins the most. It contains the greatest amount of Bats, Fear and ninja tactics.
In the other films, they almost ignore that, so he could wear ANY mask. It's not important anymore that he's the BAT man.
A very good point and why I almost chose Batman Begins as my favourite. It does a good job of setting the stage for the Batman we know. On another day depending how I feel I could well pick BB.
Two main reasons why the Burton films are weak for me. Burton's Gotham City doesn't impress me as a believable place. It feels like a huge isolated soundstage, which it really was. It feels small while Nolan's stories feel like they're part of a broader world. Also the camp element hasn't aged well and comes off as too blatant. It feels too much like a lighthearted comic even with some of the darker elements present. It feels too operatic and staged, which works for some people but not for me.
Mind you the live-action films have largely missed the boat on a big element of Batman comics: Batman as detective. This is something B-TAS got right as well as Bruce's occasional other disguises.
I think George Clooney could've been a superb Batman (and Bruce Wayne) if he'd had good material to work with. Unfortunately, he never got the chance.
Indeed, after seeing his performance in 'From Dusk Till Dawn' I had wished they'd taken a less campy take in his Batman outing. He could have played a great Batman in a more Nolan style outing.
As far as the animated series I go really liked the Tarzan/Batman Adventure Hour which was turned into Tarzan And The Super 7 on CBS.
As far as the live action shows and movies I have a soft spot for Adam West series and movie, it was campy and not quite totality faithful to the comic book but it's still alot of fun to watch.
But as far as Batman goes oddly enough I found Michael Keaton's Batman/Bruce Wayne the most efective version. He was able to play the sad and slightly mad Bruce Wayne that I thought worked rather well.
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