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Post By
Grey Gargoyle

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
In Reply To
America's Captain 

Location: Bayville New Jersey
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 12,139
Subj: Batman Returns is one of my favorite movies. I like this film as much as I like Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy.
Posted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 at 08:06:36 am CST (Viewed 289 times)
Reply Subj: New banner! Looking back, how do Tim Burton's BATMAN films hold up?
Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 at 05:41:58 am CST (Viewed 421 times)

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Two with Michael Keaton. One with Val Kilmer. One with George Clooney. Along the way we got the Joker, the Penguin, Catwoman, the Riddler, Robin, and others I can't recall. The aesthetic was one part Kane/Fingeroth and one part Nightmare Before Christmas. The first Batman actor might legitimately, under another director, have been cast as the Joker - and I've sometimes wondered if that was the point, that Batman could have been the Joker, and the Joker could have been Batman, or so Tim Burton was trying to imply.

How do you rank these films? Best ever? Worst ever? Better than the 60s film with its celebration of campiness? Worse than the Christopher Nolan films? Better than the Ben Affleck stuff? Worse even than that?

I think Burton's strong point was the villains and the City. I think his weak point was Batman. What do you think?

BONUS QUESTION: How did you react back then?

I was strongly anti-Burton because I was strongly anti-Keaton. I liked Michael Keaton a lot in roles I considered meant for him. I didn't think Batman was meant for him and I couldn't get past it. He would have made a better Joker. Sort of in the Keith Ledger vein.

I also, at the time, wanted zero camp. I wanted all dark all the time. Which of course is what we got with Christopher Nolan's version, pretty much, and I wasn't thrilled with that either. In the end, I think Burton was moving in the right direction. I wonder what Joss Whedon would have done. Probably something closer to Burton than to Nolan.

I like a lot Tim Burton & Christopher Nolan because, even though we are talking about commercial superhero movies, these films have clever scripts, outstanding visuals and excellent casts.

The difference in style comes from the sensibilities of the two directors and also their main influences :

- Tim Burton : gothic horror monsters, retrofuture, film noir, Tod Browning , Lon Chaney, Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau, Robert Wiene, ...

- Christopher Nolan : tech noir, hardboiled, thrillers, James Bond, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Michael Mann, A Tale of Two Cities ...

I think that the Smylex commercial in Batman 1989 was a brilliant idea. So was Joker luring the citizens of Gotham to a parade with the promise of free money.

And there are the excellent production designs of Anton Furst (Batman 1989) and Bo Welch (Batman Returns).

For example, the rendition of the Batmobile by Tim Burton & Anton Furst has become one of the most iconic movie cars ever.

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