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Movie Review: "The Batman"

By Dhruv Anish April 7, 2022


Rating: (5/5) Heart-racing action, gritty realism, rushed romance.


Gotham is a metropolitan hellscape scarred by crime; the flashing billboards akin to Times Square fail to cloak the city’s grime. This is the Gotham wherein director Matt Reeves’ “The Batman” takes place, starring Robert Pattinson as the titular character as irreversibly damaged as the city he protects. His story begins in his second year of crime-fighting, presenting a vigilante in the early stages of his career. Joined by his only ally, Policeman James Gordon, and acquaintance Selina Kyle also known as Catwoman, Batman works to outwit a supervillain known as the Riddler, whose mission is to unveil the web of lies the city’s elite have spun to keep their positions of power.


As Batman, the nuance in Pattinson’s performance comes from his on-screen presence, speaking only when necessary and relying on his movements to strike fear into the audience.

Pattinson captures Batman as the tragic figure originally portrayed in comic books, a man so broken by his parents’ deaths that he devoted his life to waging a one-man war on crime, perceiving violent retribution as justice. His performance expertly blurs the line between Bruce Wayne’s and Batman’s identities—depicting his obsession through bloodshot eyes, his immaturity through a rejection of the Wayne family’s status, as if Bruce is an alter-ego for Batman rather than vice versa. As Batman, the nuance in Pattinson’s performance comes from his on-screen presence, speaking only when necessary and relying on his movements to strike fear into the audience. Paul Dano’s Riddler, despite an innocent appearance, delivers a bone-chilling rendition, leaving behind disturbing clues at crime scenes and mocking Batman with his erratic vocal inflections and hellish stare. The fight scenes are masterfully choreographed to demonstrate Batman’s proficiency as a fighter whilst accentuating his rage. The story, despite an almost three-hour runtime, is well-paced with few unnecessary plot points. The only storyline that felt underdeveloped was Batman and Catwoman’s relationship: While their introduction felt natural, some romantic moments between Pattinson and Zoë Kravitz feel insincere as they progress from acquaintances too quickly.


Equal parts crime thriller and psychological horror, “The Batman” will leave viewers at the edge of their seats.

“The Batman” is a movie that understands its source material, portraying a hero with assets and flaws that make him the beloved character he is. It is a film that goes beyond the conventions of traditional superhero films, producing a work that feels relatable to any Batman fan like myself. Equal parts crime thriller and psychological horror, “The Batman” will leave viewers at the edge of their seats.


 

About the Contributor

Dhruv Anish

Staff Writer & Movie Review Columnist


Dhruv Anish is a senior at Leland High School and a staff writer for The Charger Account. He likes to watch movies and listen to music in his spare time. His favorite actor is Robert Deniro and his favorite movie is The Godfather: Part 2.

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