Jay Oliva's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1"

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Jay Oliva's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1" Empty Jay Oliva's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1"

Post by Deviss on Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:10 pm

Deviss wrote:"You don't get it, son. This isn't a mud hole. It's an operating table. And I'm the surgeon."

  • Story: Four and a half Stars
  • Acting: Four and a half Stars
  • Directing: Four and a half Stars
  • Visuals: Four and a half Stars
  • Overall: Four and a half Stars

I am very inexperienced with the DC animated films. Only recently did I begin to expand my animated horizons, so to speak. For some time, my one and only foray into this area of the DC universe was "Batman: Under the Red Hood", which quickly became one of my top favorites, due in large part to the fantastic performances given from Jensen Ackles, John DiMaggio, and Bruce Greenwood. Having heard somewhat little about this movie, as well as its second part, back when they were released, and having gotten reacquainted with comic books in general, I made the choice yesterday afternoon to sit down and watch this pair of animated adaptations. While it wasn't what I expected, this movie cemented itself in my top favorites for animated movies and I suspect the second part will do so just as easily.


What would happen to Gotham if Batman were gone for a decade? Would Batman return should the crimes become egregious enough? And if he did return, would he be able to fight the criminal element as well as he did during his younger years? These are the questions asked by many in Gotham after the caped crusader's inexplicable disappearance, including the tortured Bruce Wayne himself. A new strain of criminal called The Mutants have risen up and threaten to destroy all of Gotham, quickly garnering the attention of an aging Bruce Wayne. Despite the best efforts and intentions of those around him, as well as his own, Bruce soon realizes that only the thing that can check the Mutants' rapid advance is the one thing he has tried to distance himself from for the past ten years.

Now despite having reacquainted myself with comic books, as I said in the introduction of this review, it was a gradual thing only. Despite my desire to familiarize myself with so many different comic series', I am either plagued by a lack of means to purchase them for my own or a lack of being able to check them out from my local library. The trio of comic books that I did read this past week were the two books of the "Captain America" The Winter Soldier" series and "Batman: Heart of Hush".

While I grabbed the latter based on the interesting premise, the reason why I grabbed the former was the desire to learn more about the story that would be supposedly adapted for the sequel to the 2011 film "Captain America: The First Avenger" slated for release later next year. Though, as much as I would have loved to have been able to read the comic book version(s) of this movie as well as its second part, they simply were not available to me. That stated, even though from everything I read told me both parts were faithful adaptations to the source material, it would've been nice to have that prior experience going into this movie as well as its second part.

As for the movie itself, overall, it is an amazingly fun experience. While the majority of Batman material shows the caped crusader in his prime,

"Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1" instead gives us a Batman/Bruce Wayne that is in his mid fifties. What a refreshing, bold choice to me. If anything, it is more impressive to see a Batman/Bruce Wayne at this point in his life, having gone through the things he has, seen everything that he's seen, essentially retired, and chosen to don the cape and cowl once again, than it is to see the character in his prime. More than once in this movie, especially in the final fight sequence, I can't help but wince when Batman punches or kicks an opponent because each blow has an irrefutable weight to it. One could say that each blow that Batman delivers to his opponents has the weight of Bruce's entire life behind it.

Another thing I loved seeing in this movie, and this is something I'll touch on more when I get to reviewing the second part of this duology, was the effect of Batman's "war on crime" on not only Gotham but also his archenemies. One prominent villain is supposedly rehabilitated, in more ways than one, and is reintroduced into the Gotham society, claiming to have turned over a new leaf and hopes for the people of Gotham, only to show the exact opposite. Another well-known villain is in a catatonic state for ninety-five percent of the movie until the closing moments, when the newfound actions of Batman brings him "back to life" more or less. Of course, it's rather obvious that these two characters wouldn't change their ways and return to evil, but the way it was presented, especially the former, was very intriguing indeed.

The acting, or voice acting rather, was well done all in all. I'm not particularly well-versed in voice acting and the people who take part in that profession, so I don't have much to compare to but I can say that I definitely enjoyed the performances given by Peter Weller, Ariel Winter, David Selby, Wade Williams, and the rest. Particularly that of Weller's, which while initially an unusual voice to hear in the case of the caped crusader, it didn't take long for me to warm to his performance. And it makes me all the more eager to get to the second part of this duology.

The only other thing that is worth noting, in my opinion, was the decision to have a female Robin, instead of the expected boy wonder. It was a very cool idea, and I enjoyed the way it was presented. From the initial "meeting" between costumed Bruce and regular Carrie, to the eventual donning of the traditional Robin duds.

That's it folks. That's all I got for this one. Onto Part Two!

This was a review by tMG, thank you for reading.

Time For Swords!
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Jay Oliva's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1" Empty Re: Jay Oliva's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1"

Post by frang on Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:13 am

This is an adaption of Frank Miller's famous "The Dark Knight Returns." http://www.amazon.com/Batman-The-Dark-Knight-Returns/dp/1563893428/


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