Well-Known Member
Oct 23, 2005
Toronto, Ontario(by way of the Kepler Verge)
So how would you rank the first four live-action Batman movies(Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever, Batman & Robin) and why? My raitings go like this:

Batman - Alone amongst the four in that it's 100% a drama(the comedic aspects never go beyond the realm of the kind of comedy that occurs in real life, no matter how dark... the movie just plays, it doesn't play to anybody with jokes and pauses the way the sequels do).

Anyway, I should mention I've seen this film more times than any other. ANY other, not just Batman films. I did the math recently and I think I've seen it upwards of 40 times since I was about two years old. I LOVE this film.

The sets and art direction are still rarely matched. Batman is portrayed exactly as I like him - black-suited, silent, solitary and not quite human. The Joker as played by Nicholson has to be one of the greatest cinema villains of all time.

The atmosphere and spectacle of it all are so expertly paced and delivered, they just dance on the edge of over-the-top without ever diving over it and it works sensationally.

A true work of art, just as they intended it to be, and easily one of my all-time favourite films.


Batman Returns - The problem here is that, unlike its predecessor, this film is very much a comedy. As black as they come - uncomfortably so, actually - but a comedy all the same. Also, unlike its predecessor, it's a pretty bad film in many ways. The plot is ridiculous and riddled with holes and it doesn't try to take itself very seriously.

However.... that doesn't mean it can't be extremely entertaining. Catwoman is as sexy as it gets, DeVito's Penguin is fun to hate, and Chris Walken is hilarious. The film also doesn't try to uphold any sense of morals and just lets loose with all-out asskickery. At the end of the day, where else can you get the satisfaction delivered from sights such as Batman driving up to an arsonist and ROASTING THE SONOVA***** WITH THE BATMOBILE'S JET ENGINE? BWHAHAHAHA!


Batman Forever - The black sheep of the "real" films(i.e. the first three films, as they actually tie together in a set of character arcs). "Forever" gets a far worse reputation than it should due to being associated with the abyssmal film that followed it. Beyond all the neon and over-the-top camp, there's a very good movie in here somewhere, in fact, everything with Bruce Wayne, Dick Grayson, and Chase Meridian is almost on par with the first brilliant film. It's only the villain half of the movie which is ridiculous, and even those parts are still fun.

Val Kilmer was terrific as Bruce Wayne(even Bob Kane says he was the best to portray the character... although he didn't get to see Begins) and Nicole Kidman, at the height of her beauty, has the best chemistry with both Bruce and Bats of any Bat-girl to date. Like I said, their half, the serious half of the movie, is actually really, really good. Chris O'Donnell was very good in his role too and you can't blame Jim Carrey for giving the performance the world wanted to see him give at the time. I always try to watch this with a 1995 mindset and come out with a smile on my face. Definitely better than "Returns", IMO, and certainly deeper.


Batman & Robin - Annnnd here's where it all fell apart. They ditched all the good, serious stuff from the last film and just went for all-out blockbuster camp. There are a few redeeming aspects here and there, but overall, there's nothing that can save it's film from it's own stupidity.

The saddest raiting I can give a movie is a 1 or a 0 out of 10, but that doesn't mean I don't do negatives. I use negatives for movies that have so-bad-its-good value, to show just how much of a blast they are to mock. This one gets a solid -8/-10 from me.

In short:

Batman - A good movie that's very enjoyable. 10/10
Batman Returns - A bad movie that's still pretty enjoyable, and on purpose to boot. 7/10
Batman Forever - Two movies. One very good, serious, and compelling, the other a ridiculous spectacle. Both halfs are enjoyable, and still deliberately so. 8/10.
Batman & Robin - A bad movie that's accidentally enjoyable due to just how bad it is. -8/-10.

I also wrote a long essay recently about the surprisingly deep and consistent character arc that plays out over the first three films, but I'll post that later.

I love the dark feel to the movie and the design of things like the Batmobile. Michael Keaton was a good batman felt and the direction by Tim Burton is fantastic

HOWEVER The joker ruins the movie for me , He is not the Joker. He is just Jack Nicholson with make-up and it annoys me


Batman Returns
I really enjoyed this film. It had all the good parts of the first one and then more. The scene at the start with the evil clown thugs were great , Catwoman was purrrrrfect (not really she was good though but I wanted to use that pun) Penguin was a bit off but seemed to work


Batman Forever
I liked Val Kilmer and Chris O'Donnell , This movie still gives me my favourite line from any batman movie with "Holey rusted metal, Batman!" and batmans like "what?" and then he explens the metal was rusted with a hole. Genius.

However Jim Carrey was horrible IMO , Not as bad as Nicholson's joker but still bad , He came off more comical then he was surpassed to , He was meant to be insane and it felt forced. Also the direction by Joel Schumacher was just off compared with Tim Burton's


Batman & Robin
I liked Uma Thurman in it. That's it. It had no over redeeming qualities , It's cringe worthy and a film I never want to watch again EVER

Batman - 9/10
Batman Returns - 7/10
Batman Forever - 4/10
Batman & Robin - 0/10, and one of the worst movies ever made in history.
Batman - 4/5 - Quite a cool movie and has lots of little neat things I like (the Batwing/Joker's gun scene in particular).
Batman Returns - 3/5 - It's alright, but it's too... weird. It doesn't feel like Batman. It's wacky.
Batman Forever - 2/5 - I probably loved this when it first came out, but it is really bad. However, I did like most of the Riddler segments (mainly with Bruce/Alfred trying to figure the riddles out).
Batman and Robin - 1/5 - Terrible movie, but again, I loved it when it first came out. I believe I saw this covered in chicken pox. And it was the greatest thing ever. Mr. Freeze? Bane? Poison Ivy? Batman, Robin and Batgirl? MULTIPLE VEHICLES?! It was great, but it's so bad now.
Batman - 9/10
Batman Returns - 8/10
Batman Forever - 6/10
Batman and Robin - No/10

And, even though it's not apart of the original Quadrillogy. . .

Batman Begins - 10/10 (Doesn't mean it's perfect, though).
I loved it. 5/10 the five points being arnold freezing the room and saying, "Cool Down."

The best part of Batman and Robin was George Cloony going on Letterman, and when asked "Have you met Governor Schwarzenegger?', Clooney responded "Oh yeah, we ruined the Batman franchise together."
Batman - 8/10
Batman Returns - 5/10
Batman Forever - 4/10
Batman and Robin - negative-infinity and full of batsuit-nipples/10
Batman Begins - 10/10.
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The best part of Batman and Robin was George Cloony going on Letterman, and when asked "Have you met Governor Schwarzenegger?', Clooney responded "Oh yeah, we ruined the Batman franchise together."

that almost seems like a setup joke but it's still hilarious. Is it on youtube? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
The best part of Batman and Robin was George Cloony going on Letterman, and when asked "Have you met Governor Schwarzenegger?', Clooney responded "Oh yeah, we ruined the Batman franchise together."

The best part of Batman and Robin was George Cloony going on Letterman, and when asked "Have you met Governor Schwarzenegger?', Clooney responded "Oh yeah, we ruined the Batman franchise together."

:lol: :lol: :lol: That's ****ing great

Like Planet-Man, I've undoubtedly seen this film more than any other film, ever. Funnily enough, my mother wouldn't let me watch it until I was about five or six, because she'd seen it and thought it was too scary or unsuitable, or something.

Anyway, while this is by no means a definitive Batman film that pays true homage to the character, it's the film that needed to be made in 1989. Batman Begins wouldn't have worked yet, because the general filmgoing audience didn't actually know that Batman worked as a dark character. That's why this film had to be as dark and gothic as they come; to truly establish Batman as a primal force rather than just a man. That's why Batman can get away with actually full-on killing in this movie. In this way, the surreal, out-of-this-world effect of the original films really works. Also, it's worth mentioning that while this film might not be a film that perfectly captures the non-lethal Batman we know today, this film is probably the closest thing to a live-action version of the original Golden Age Batman that Bob Kane created.

Keaton is different to your bog-standard Batman in that he looks nothing like Bruce Wayne, but the intensity in his eyes and his voice rank him up as being one of the best men to have ever played the role. Nicholson is of course, fantastic, the only problem being that he steals too much screentime away from Keaton. Kim Basinger is average, I think. Just a sweaty, sexy scream-queen not too different from other '80s hero' films. The plot of the movie isn't important, but it's cool (which is more than can be said for the films that followed).

Overall, this film's an easy 8.5/10

Batman Returns

A highly, wholly over-rated film that plays exactly what it is: a weirdo, psychotic Tim Burton movie with lots of clowns and scary circus characters, played out in a lonely little village.

Keaton's great in it and gets some great shots as Batman (in the two scenes that Batman's actually in). Pfeiffer was okay for the character she was playing, but that character was nothing like the actual Catwoman. Not to mention, I didn't find her sexy or attractive in any sense of the word. She was clammy, overly skinny and freaky-lookin'. Throughout the film, she looks like a heroin addict. Danny DeVito is good, I guess, but his character and his surrounding are just so ridiculously bizarre that it's difficult to care what he is or what happens to him.

The plot? Hah!


Batman Forever

The great underdog of the original movies, this one is a forgotten gem. Its flaws are generally more widely noticed than its achievements and it is also often associated with the diabolically bad 'film' that succeeded it.

Kilmer is flat-out superb. His Batman might not be as menacing as Keaton's, but he's a lot more credible as an athletic, tough, superhero (as opposed to Keaton, who just looked like a skinny man walking around in a big heavy suit). Kilmer's Batman stretches his muscles and truly gets to kick some *** in this film (Keaton just did the odd karate kick and it never looked convincing). Kilmer as Bruce Wayne is close to being on a par with Christian Bale, of that much I am certain.

Chris O'Donnell again, is one of the forgotten reasons why this film is actually good. He is just amazing as Robin and in about two hours of film, he turns Robin from a stupidly bright, over-the-top, weird little boy, into a tough, street-wise, troubled young man in his late teens/early twenties, who could potentially be just as much of a force to be reckoned with as his mentor.

Nicole Kidman as Chase Meridian is the best love-interest Batman has ever had on the silver screen. Captivatingly beautiful and with more screen presence than all four (if you count Julie Madison and Rachel Dawes) of the other sirens combined. Her chemistry with Kilmer is unmatched.

What's wrong with this film: Nipples, Neon, Jones and Carrey.

Maybe Parker's right, maybe it's just because it was made in 1995, and people wanted to see Carrey act like a speed-freak, but it never sits well with me.

7/10, nonetheless

Batman & Robin

A piece of roasted, minced, and then boiled [and fed to a man with sores on his face] faeces.

The only thing I like about this film is the Robin suit. That thing is badass. Sadly, this movie is not.

**** you Joel Schumacher/10

Batman Begins

Proof that Justice always balances out.

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I agree with Gothamite almost entirely, ratings and all... I'd give Batman Returns an extra point for being a fun crazy disturbing Tim Burton film... Christopher Walken, Gotham City, Catwoman's outfit and demeanor...

The BIGGEST things that movie got wrong:

- Everything with the Penguin (Burton might have well invented a brand new character, there is NOTHING about the movie penguin that even remotely resembles the comics).

- Catwoman's Cat-Ressurection

- For most of the film, its too disturbing to be enjoyable.

I am also a semi-fan of Batman Forever. The cast was damn near perfect, though I would have preferred a younger Robin, Chris O'Donnel did a good job... Jim Carrey could have been a DAMN good Riddler had they only let him do edges of his crazy shtick. Two-Face would have been great if they actually took the time to write him as an interesting character. And the whole plot was WAY too sci-fi, with no real plausible explanations for Nygma's magical dream machine or whatever it was. Rediculous to the point of Nonsense.

And let me note that for all of Batman & Robin's faults, George Clooney made a great Bruce Wayne... With a better script he could have been my favorite Bruce Wayne... He just made a ****ty Batman. The campiness is so far beyond the laughable, yet enjoyable, Adam West series, and just makes any fan of the comic, the previous films, OR the sixties TV Show want to scream. Uma Thurman could have been good too... The Governator just ruins any chance the film has of being anything even remotely worthwhile. The sad thing is that he accurately presented the comic book character, who was a ****ty third-tier pun-laden villain everyone wanted to forget until the animated series reinvented him in the early nineties.

Batman Begins leaves them all so far behind... Batman is the closest they got in the original one to the street feel the character needed (although I agree that audiences wouldn't have accepted that version of the character in 89), but it wrapped up too nicely with Batman killing the person who killed his parents. It just wasn't necessary.

We'll see what happens with Dark Knight.
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Batman Forever was fun but it was such a huge departure from the previous two that I can't see how they thought they could consider it part of the trilogy. For that, it fails.
I remember liking Batman & Robin when it came out. I was like, maybe 12 or so at the time and not reading comics yet. I don't think I really care for it now, but probably not hate it so much either.
Batman Forever was fun but it was such a huge departure from the previous two that I can't see how they thought they could consider it part of the trilogy. For that, it fails.

In all honestly, I'd rank Batman Returns as almost as much of a departure from Batman as Forever is from Returns.

It's not as easily noticable, but if you really get down to it the gaps between each film are staggering. The first is a grimy chunk of industrial steel but the second is just a crazy Burton comedy. Both happen to wear black, so they seem like they go together, but under the surface they bear almost no resemblance.

I remember liking Batman & Robin when it came out. I was like, maybe 12 or so at the time and not reading comics yet.

Like you and Proj, Batman Forever was literally my all-time favourite film when it came out(when I was about to turn 6, and I think it was replacing The Mask) and I really liked Batman & Robin at the time too.