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While one Batman movie can’t seem to drag itself out of a deep, dark abyss, another Batman movie has its act together enough to be released this next weekend! Also, yes. I do realize that the word “movie” is repeated in the title. It kind of bugs me, too, but for the sake of consistency I have to keep it that way. Back in 2014, one of the biggest product placement schemes was released into theaters. Kids and parents loaded into cars to see the movie, and the $60 million LEGO commercial racked up $69 million in its opening weekend. As it turns out, the movie was great. It was much more than big budget commercial, and it became arguably the best animated film of 2014 as well as one of the biggest Oscar snubs of all time. That led us here. To The LEGO Batman movie. I was psyched for this film, and I was hoping it could pick up on the magic of The LEGO Movie! Let’s see if it did!
The LEGO Batman Movie is directed by Chris McKay and stars Will Arnett, Ralph Fiennes, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, Channing Tatum, and Jenny Slate. Batman is dealing with a lot. I mean, how do you balance tons of super villains trying to take over Gotham, starting a family, a hateful relationship with Joker, and being the most awesome person in the galaxy? That’s basically the plot of this movie. With a newly adopted son, a brand new police commissioner, and a loyal butler, Batman will try to save Gotham while learning the importance of others.
I’ll start by saying that I had an absolute blast with this movie. This is probably the most fun I’ve had in theaters this entire year, and it all starts with the comedy. The LEGO Batman Movie picks up right where The LEGO Movie left off with the fast-paced, quick, witty, gag-driven comedy that had me about to fall out of my seat. From the opening studio credits, you can tell exactly what kind of film this is, and it instantly sold me and locked me in. Like almost all great animated films, this movie has plenty for adults to enjoy on top of the great jokes for kids. The LEGO Batman Movie proves that we can laugh at a clean joke that is based on pure wit and intelligence, and it’s such a smart movie. If you’re a big fan of LEGO bricks, Batman, DC properties, and pop culture, I think that this a movie for you. I wouldn’t say that it steals from them as much as it perfectly pokes fun at them. It knows its limits, but I mean that in a good way. It doesn’t hold back, and it continues to push the bar until it reaches those limits, and it works well just about every single time. It also uses LEGO bricks extremely well. There wouldn’t be a point of this movie if it was just your typical Batman flick. Sure, I’ll never say no to a Batman movie, but it wouldn’t have that special element that you can only get from a LEGO movie. It’s also brilliantly animated and puts together some of the best animated action sequences I’ve ever seen. This PG animated comedy had great action with fast-paced edits and dialogue that make it entertaining and hilarious. I also loved the dynamic between Joker and Batman. Joker isn’t blowing up hospitals in this film. Sure, he has bombs, but his main goal is to make Batman feel like he needs Joker. It’s so self-aware and knows what it’s able to use, and it goes over points that fans constantly make about why Batman and Joker are so great together. The vocal cast is just another reason to love this movie. It takes some of the finest talents in the industry today and perfectly casts them. I personally think that Will Arnett’s Batman is right there with the most famous voice of Batman in Kevin Conroy. Kevin Conroy will always be my go-to for Batman vocals, but Will Arnett isn’t as far behind as you would think. I also loved Michael Cera as Robin. Michael Cera is just quirky and odd enough to pull this role and this style off, and his jokes worked very well. Zach Galifianakis is also excellent as Joker. He has the perfect tone and sound for the style that this movie was going for, and he is probably my second favorite Joker vocalist to Mark Hamill. This movie is just supremely entertaining, and it’s a great follow up to The LEGO Movie. Solely based on both films, I can’t wait to see more LEGO Movies.
I mentioned that this movie is very fast-paced and quick, so when it calms down a bit from that speed, it’s very noticeable. We spend a lot of time focusing on Batman and his lack of family due to his inability to create personal relationships, and while that is great for the story, it definitely makes the movie drag, especially when you compare it to the adrenaline-fueled introduction. Yes, the introduction is adrenaline fueled. Who would have expected that from an animated comedy? I found a lot of this dragging toward the middle of the film, but it does a good job of picking itself back up. Next, after you get acclimated to the jokes, you start to get a bit worn down, and that contributes to the dragging. Other than those two things, it’s hard to pinpoint something I didn’t love about this movie because I was having too good of a time.
Overall, The LEGO Batman Movie is hilarious, entertaining, fun, smart, quick, and action-packed, and it makes for one of the most enjoyable films I’ve seen in a while. It has amazing vocal casting, and it’s great technically. It knows what to poke fun at as well as how to go about poking fun at it, and still does plenty of justice (no pun intended) to all of the Batman properties included in the film. One thing that is so interesting is that Warner Bros. owns the property to all LEGO bricks, so they could really open this world, and they did a great job exploring this universe. I had a smile on my face the entire time watching this movie, and there were so many times that I chuckled so hard that my cheeks hurt. Adults shouldn’t be worried about bringing the kids to this movie because there is just as much for them as there is for the little ones. It did drag a bit due to its fast-paced opening and its snappy dialogue and comedy, but that’s a relatively minor issue when compared to the good time this movie gave me. When The LEGO Batman Movie is undoubtedly compared to The LEGO Movie, I think The LEGO Movie will come out on top simply because of the depth and the pacing, but that doesn’t mean that The LEGO Batman Movie isn’t a success. It’s a huge success, and it just shows that we can probably expect more of these movies in the future, which, trust me, is a good thing. I’m going to give The Lego Batman Movie an 8.3/10.
Will you be seeing The LEGO Batman Movie? Comment down in the comment section and let me know! I was lucky enough to see this one pretty early, so be sure to stay tuned for reviews for John Wick: Chapter 2 and Fifty Shades Darker! As always, thank you, and keep listening to 88.7 The Pulse!
Images courtesy of Warner Bros. Entertainment