The LEGO Batman Movie (PG)
Directed by: Chris McKay
Starring: Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Rosario Dawson and Michael Cera
Running time: 1hr 44mins
Oh, man… for a studio that many believe is too dark (clearly they don’t watch The CW shows or any of the games, books, animated movies etc), DC and Warners sure do a stand-up job of laughing at their own expense in this one.
The LEGO Batman movie is the follow-up to The LEGO Movie which surprised almost everyone two summers ago by being, frankly, hilarious, clever and really, really good.
And the good news? The Batman version is pretty much as good… pretty much.
With a story based around why Batman works alone and his reluctance to allow himself to be a part of a family or have anyone special in his life, including the Joker who just wants Batman to admit he’s his greatest foe, the movie features a wealth of nods, references and characters from Batman’s history.
I always thought I knew my Bat-history, but there’s characters in here that I still don’t recognise; as Joker says in the movie, “It’s probably worth a Google”.
And that’s how this movie goes, it’s got a faster gag rate than Airplane! and aims at the casual fan and the hardcore in the same one liners and most of them hit; there was a handful of times where I genuinely laughed out loud during this movie but, and I’ve heard a few others say this, the gags at some points are almost too fast – this movie will need to be rewatched for lines you’ll have missed while laughing at the one just before, to the characters, vehicles and jokes in the background, this is fun film-making on speed… it’s fast and furious to a point where you risk whiplash at times.
But, don’t get me wrong, to criticise a comedy for being too funny isn’t really a criticism at all, is it?
It pretty much requires to be seen again, the only issue is that myself, personally, I’ll be happy to wait for the home release. But, again, it’s not really a criticism.
The animation is perfect here but I feel that once you see it in the cinema, being able to watch it at home on your big HD screen will be the perfect way to enjoy it the second, third or fourth time.
While I don’t think I’ve ever seen a movie that managed to be funny before it even started (you’ll see what I mean), The LEGO Batman Movie does run a little long. The opening 30-45mins is almost non stop; as a comic fan I adored it – oh and it merrily pokes fun at Batman’s whole history, including the recent Cinematic Universe – however it does lull in the middle to the extent where you almost feel it hit the breaks to explore the more ‘serious’ elements here – the Batman family and why, as a character, Batman works alone – and these elements work just fine, it just feels like a slightly different tone for a while in the middle and it does make you crave the spectacle and giggles when they are gone.
Overall, the movie is fast, funny and full of pop culture and comic book awesomeness. But it never quite reaches the awesome level of the first LEGO movie – but again, that’s not the worst criticism in the world, is it?
4 out of 5 Nerds