Gone are the days of Batman being seen as a campy character with a sidekick from the Adam West era. Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) reintroduces the character in a different light, black body armor suit, darker tone and less silly jokes. Batman (1989) has reinvented the character and has been built upon within future films of this iconic character.
A few eyebrows may have been raised when Michael Keaton was cast as Bruce Wayne/Batman, but boy did he prove his doubters wrong. Keaton’s performance fits perfectly with the films tone and his dual characters, altho he relies more on his brain and gadgets rather than his brawn as Batman. Michael Gough portrayed Alfred Pennyworth and for a very long time he was considered to be the perfect Alfred. Not only as acting as Bruce Wayne’s ever reliable butler but he was almost like a sidekick to Keaton’s Batman. Jack Nicholson absolutely knocks it out of the park as The Joker, his ability to go from extravagant clown to a psychopathic murder and back again just in the blink of an eye. Adapting a gangster like Joker is perfect for Nicholson who seems to be having fun with the role which elevates his performance even further.
Danny Elfman was tasked with bringing a Batman theme to the big screen, in which he nailed it. Elfman’s theme is so iconic it has become almost synonymous with the character of Batman where the theme was played throughout Batman games. Flamboyant and unique was the direction Tim Burton was going for in his creation of Gotham city. He created a Gotham which incorporates a combination of large industrial pieces, gothic vibes and dark moody colours which perfectly encapsulates how Gotham should be.
Batman (1989) could be seen as the inspiration of the latest versions of this character, as many Batman films in the past have paid homage to the darker tone of Burton’s films such as Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy. Batman (1989) is an incredibly fun and entertaining watch 33 years on from its original release and it will continue to be an enjoyable watch in the years to come.
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