On this flashback Friday, we check out the classic Batman & Robin. Out of all the Batman movies throughout the years, none has reached a cult following or has received such negative feedback like Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin. See, Batman & Robin is the first ever batman film I saw when I was younger, it holds a special place in my heart. George Clooney was my batman for many years until Christian Bale came along. I would beg for my mom to buy me all the action figures that came with the film. See I don’t think Batman & Robin is bad and here are my reasons why that Batman & Robin is a good comic book film and it is not the worse.
First off, we have an ensemble cast starring George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell, Alicia Sliverstone, Arnold Schwarzengger, and Uma Thurman. During the time, these were the mega stars of the box office. George Clooney was the new actor to dawn the cowl, a lot of people had their skepticism and concerns but I believe he played a fantastic Bruce Wayne/Batman during the time. We had a great adaption of Mr. Freeze by Arnold Schwarzengger, who some may have not known was originality a “joke” villain and got his Mr. Freeze name from the Adam West’s Batman TV show. Uma Thurman also brings to life Poison Ivy and she does a wonderful job as her. Concerning that she was one of the most popular actresses during the time, Alicia Sliverstone was announced as Batgirl brought excitement that she was finally being adapted to the big screen. Besides some of the new great faces we were getting for this movie, we got some returning roles as well. Michael Gogh reprises his role of Alfred, as did Pat Hingle as Commissioner Gordon, and Chris O’Donnell was returning after a solid performance in Batman Forever so there were a familiar faces to bring some continuity and to carry this film.
Secondly, the story, plot, and music are solid in the film. Batman & Robin have one of the best sound tracks in any film and visually, all that neon looks incredible. Each character has a back story, which was covered or already known, each character goes through developments, and we get a view of each character on a personal level. You out this together and you have a solid screenplay and there isn’t really anything awful about the plot. Let’s go down the line of each character. Mr. Freeze is a man trying to find the cure to the disease that killed his wife, Poison Ivy wanted to see plant life take back the planet, batman is dealing with a rift between him and Robin and is on the verge of losing his closest family members in Alfred, and Robin is tired of being in the shadows of Batman and realizing that he needs Batman as much as Batman needs him, and Barbara is trying to adjust to her new life. Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze work together to take over Gotham and the caped crusaders must take them down. The story is simple but that’s not what’s wrong with this film.
If we take it as a film on it’s own with nothing related to the earlier films then it’s actually not that bad. Think about it, would you really give this film as much hate as you do if it wasn’t related to Tim Burton’s earlier Batman films, probably not. People expected a more serious and dark tone, somewhat like the earlier installment of Batman. What turned off people from this film, I felt it made it better. It didn’t take it self so serious and not every film should be dark and brooding. It was a tribute to the Adam West’s campy Batman and I loved it. I believe just freaked out in the idea of having a campy batman.
For that reason I think this movie is actually very good, because they captured the campiness of the Adam West’s Batman and it is done perfectly. It is far from being the worse comic book film of all time, Batman and Robin is entertaining, which is the main reason people go to see superhero films unlike some others like Hulk, Elektra, Fantastic Four (2015), and many more others. It was a fun movie that didn’t take it self too seriously even though it dealt with some serious issues, it was full of some great action and special effects for it’s time, the stories and plot were actually pretty good, and it did give us something completely different and original. Batman & Robin is one great film for it’s time and it is totally misunderstood.
SuperSam Rating: 7/10.