Batman Begins – Should I Watch It?
Intro to… Batman Begins
A privileged white man with a fear of bats spends millions of dollars to beat up criminals in a high-tech bat suit.
Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) never fully recovered from the mugging that resulted in the death of both his parents. He grew up under the care of this butler until he decided to leave everything behind. He leaves his city, and travels the world to master martial arts and to try to understand the criminal psyche. His journey leads him to Bhutan where he meets Henri Ducard (Liam Neeson). Henri sees great potential in Bruce, and offers him the opportunity to join the League of Shadows, a secret organisation that opposes and fights corruption. Bruce accepts.
Years later Bruce returns to his family’s mansion in Gotham. The crime in his city has worsened of the years, but that is also one of the reasons he came back. Bruce uses his wealth to create an alter ego: the vigilante Batman.
Should I Watch It?
Batman Begins is the first movie of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy and tells its well-known origin story. It also introduces two major villains: Ra’s Al Ghul and Scarecrow. The movie has a runtime of over two hours, but does not feel like it. A steady alternation between action and exposition and several great acting performances keep the movie interesting and entertaining.
Christian Bale received a lot of criticism for his Batman voice, but I kind of liked it. Sure, it might sound ridiculous, but you have to remember why he created his alter ego. Batman is a way to transcend the limitations of being an ordinary man that stands up for what is right. An ordinary man has family, loved ones, and passions that can be exploited to pressure, corrupt, or destroy him. By being anonymous Bruce protects his friends and family. So by using a different voice he not only creates a greater distance between him and Batman, he also protects the people in his life, which in turn allows him to focus even more on taking down bad guys.
The overall level of acting is pretty high. Christian Bale, Liam Neeson, Michael Cain, Morgan Freeman, and Gary Oldman all bring in strong performances, but it is Cillian Murphy that steals the show. His portrayal of Jonathan Crane is cold and unsettling. You never feel at ease when he is on screen. He is calm and collected, yet there is always this malicious bewilderment in his eyes. This is done brilliantly. The only actor I found to be unimpressive is Katie Holmes. Her character fails to convince that she is the strong incorruptible district attorney that is going to put a stop to the rising criminality in Gotham. And there is little to no chemistry between her and Christian Bale.
Batman Begins is a great example on how to create an origin story. It respects the source material, introduces interesting characters, and is easy to follow even when there is a lot of exposition.
Yes, watch it.
Hi guys, I hope you enjoyed reading this review. If you have any comments or suggestions on what I should watch next let me know in the comment section below.