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The 2014 Lego Movie was a surprisingly entertaining movie. When I first heard that they were doing a Lego Movie I really didn’t know what to expect. I mean, how do you make a movie about Lego? Like I said, it was a very entertaining movie that told a simple story which was easy to follow. Aside from Emmett, Wyldstyle, and Lord Business, you also had recognisable characters like the Ninja Turtles, the Star Wars cast, and even Shaquille O’Neal. One of those characters was Batman. The seeds for this movie must have been planted right there and then.
When you see Lego releasing licenced produced, be it Lego sets, video games, or movies (straight to DVD movies btw), it’s only natural for them to take the leap and make a feature-length Lego movie involving these characters. The fact that a Lego Batman movie has been released suggests DC figures that Batman can take it, or he’s reached the point that it’s no longer possible to take a man who dresses as a bat seriously.
Voiced by Will Arnett, Batman is portrayed as a macho, humourless, self-regarding Dark Knight who imagines himself as God’s gift to humanity. He has no faults, or so he seems. He can do everything and prefers to work alone. Behind the cowl, Bruce Wayne spends his alone time playing a little solo heavy-guitar, eating microwaved lobster, and watching Jerry Maguire in his home cinema. In short, he’s a lonely guy that hates to admit it.
It’s made crystal clear from the get-go that Batman doesn’t do ‘ships (or “relationships”), he tells a heartbroken Joker that there’s nothing special between the during a spectacular opening sequence involving many of the most famous, and less known, of Batman’s rouge gallery. The rejection causes Joker to hatch an even bigger plan to win back Batman’s attention and get their symbolic relationship back on track.
With the 2014 Lego Movie, you had no idea what to expect from it. With Lego Batman, you again don’t have an idea what to expect, but Batman is such a recognisable name that you kind of do have some idea about the direction it will take.
Is the movie any good? It’s brilliant.
Seriously, if you enjoyed The Lego Movie or a fan of Batman then this is right up your street.
I love the attention to detail on display. It’s almost like a love letter to Batman fans. I mention the rogue gallery, where they literary go from A to Z with the villains. You have the big names like The Riddler, Penguin, Two-Face, and Bane (a parody of The Dark Knight Rises version). You’ve also got guys from the lower end of the scale like The Eraser, King Tut, Egg-Head, Polka Dot Man, Condiment King, and, my all-time favourite guilty pleasure Batman villain, The Calendar Man.
Fans of Batman will also appreciate little tributes to the character’s history. My favourite graphic novel of all time has got to be The Dark Knight Returns. So you can imagine my surprise when I saw members of the Mutant gang appear on screen. At one point, Batman’s butler, Alfred, reminds him he’s had similar crises of identity before, listing the years of all the previous Batman movies right back to Batman: The Movie, the 1966 Adam West version, from which we see a live-action clip. The Lego Batman Movie knows it’s closer to this than any subsequent iterations. We even get on-screen POW!s and BAM!s. They even pay homage to the classic Christopher Reeve Superman series.
And, of course, they even mention the legendary Shark Repellent Spray.
Another scene sees Joker proclaiming that Batman will never stop him, but is thrown off guard when someone asks him about the time he had the two boats, a reference to the final showdown in The Dark Knight.
There are some jokes for the adults, too. For example, Richard Greyson introduces himself to Batman and tells him that the other kids call him “Dick”. Batman replies, “children can be cruel”. I laughed my ass off at that!
Remember that “Everything is Awesome” song from the Lego Movie? Lego Batman has two songs which will stick in your head by the time the end credits are over.
This film is well worth your time. These Lego movies are quickly becoming guilty pleasures of mine. Like what I said at the start, it’s only natural for them to take the leap and make a feature-length Lego movie involving these characters. It wouldn’t surprise me if they did a Lego Star Wars movie.
I can’t recommend this movie highly enough. Its official release date is next Friday. I can imagine myself going to see it again actually.
Simply put: Lego Batman is awesome.
Check it out!
Rating: **** ½ (Champion)