Movie Review: Batman Year One

Details from IMDB:

BatmanYear1

Batman: Year One (Video 2011)

64 min  -  Animation | Action | Crime  -   18 October 2011 (USA)

Ratings: 7.3/10 from 7,592 users
Reviews: 42 user | 32 critic

A wealthy playboy and a Chicago cop both return to Gotham City where their lives will intersect in unexpected ways.

Directors:

Sam Liu, Lauren Montgomery

Writers:

Bob Kane (creator: Batman), Tab Murphy, and 2 more credits »

Stars:

Bryan Cranston, Ben McKenzie and Eliza Dushku | See full cast and crew

Initial Thoughts:

I love Batman, there I said it. I think I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Batman done well is an amazing thing in any incarnation (comics, movies, video games). Thankfully lately Batman has been done very well (at least what I’ve seen). I love the simplicity of his character, someone who has been wronged as a child and dedicates his life to fighting crime and making criminals pay.

I read the graphic novel Batman: Year One by Frank Miller and loved it, when I learned of the animated movie (I’m late in the game I know) I had to watch it. So with Xbox points to spare I finally saw this little gem.

Main Points:

As far as I know the movie follows the comic book almost perfectly. Ben McKenzie does great voice work as the caped crusader and Bryan Cranston is amazing as Jim Gordon and Katee Sackoff does a respectable job in a minor role as Detective Essen.

Seeing this comic book (one of Frank’s best in my opinion) brought to life was a treat. It’s not dragged out and all of Batman (and Jim’s) trials and tribulations are on display for us to see. If you haven’t read the comic, do that first, then see this.

SPOILER ALERT!

Once again nothing really to spoil, Jim starts having an affair but stops and learns the identity of Batman (technically he’s not 100% sure but he is fairly certain). Batman does not have his batmobile (or batwing) and the Joker is only just mentioned at the end.

Final Thoughts:

This is how a great comic book animated movie should be done. I loved it, though I do wish there was more of Batman/Bruce’s thoughts put into the movie and I think if you have someone with as distinctive and recognizable a voice as Cranston, Batman should have been voiced by a bigger star, obviously the dream would be Bale but I know that will never happen.

I give this an 8/10 and a strong recommendation. Any fan of Batman, Frank Miller or both will be happy, I sure was. Next post another movie review (I do love ‘em! Smile) until next time I am as always…

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