Starring: Adam West, Burt Ward, Lee Meriwether
Director: Leslie H. Martinson
Running Time: 105 mins
Batman: The Movie is an American film, based on the TV series, about the adventures of Batman and Robin as they attempt to prevent the destruction of the entire world at the hands of the assembly of the Caped Crusader’s greatest foes.
This film is the reason that we really love superheroes! Sure, the modern ones are a bit more serious and intelligent, but classic films like this which are campy as hell, full of crazy villains and story lines and mad special effects and gadgets, are just an absolute ball to watch.
The main thing that you get from this film is how ridiculously camp it all is, and deliberately so. It uses this zany form of comedy to its advantage, however, turning a relatively poorly-produced and acted film into one that’s a hell of a laugh, where the mad antics turn into the thing that you’re most looking forward to, with the silly story secondary to the enjoyment factor.
In reality, like the 60s TV show, this is a film for kids, with cheesy messages and very light-hearted action and dialogue. However, it’s just as interesting for anyone else, whether you’re a fan of Batman or not, because this is simply so mad and funny, and whilst there may not be any extra double-entendres thrown in for the adults, that campiness is something to be treasured that you don’t ever see nowadays.
Away from the comedic value of this, the story is a good bit of fun. It blows everything up to proportions with stakes worthy of the big screen, as Batman and Robin have to do battle against the collection of The Joker, Catwoman, The Riddler and The Penguin altogether, which is just epic to see.
The story in itself is pretty shocking, however. Yes, it’s fun, and it doesn’t really matter how stupid it is, but even for a campy 60s superhero movie everything is completely preposterous, and quite simply makes no sense at any point. The writing isn’t great either, with cheesy dialogue throughout intended to be kid-friendly ultimately making this a bit of a weak plot, but in the end, that’s just not that important.
The performances of the main heroes and villains are excellent here. Adam West is so slick as Batman, whilst Burt Ward is a brilliant Boy Wonder. In terms of the bad guys, Lee Meriwether stands out as Catwoman, adding probably the only dramatic tones to the story from time to time, but mainly shining as the crazy seductive cat burglar.
Finally, the theme song is pretty noteworthy here. It’s the ultimate superhero theme (na-na-na-na-na-BATMAN!) and it plays throughout, heightening the sense of fun at every point and ensuring that you have an absolute riot of a time watching this stupid film, so that’s why it gets a 7.6 from me.