The Lego Batman Movie (2017), Dir. Chris McKay

The Lego Batman Movie (2017), Dir. Chris McKay
Sir, I have seen you go through similar phases in 2016 and 2012 and 2008 and 2005 and 1997 and 1995 and 1992 and 1989 and that weird one in 1966.
— Alfred Pennyworth, The Lego Batman Movie (2017)

Stars: Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, Ralph Fiennes, Mariah Carey, Jenny Slate, Susan Bennett, Billy Dee Williams, Héctor Elizondo, Conan O'Brien, Jason Mantzoukas, Doug Benson, Zoë Kravitz, Kate Micucci, Riki Lindhome, Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Adam Devine, Eddie Izzard, Seth Green, Jemaine Clement, Ellie Kemper, David Burrows, Laura Kightlinger.
Director: Chris McKay
Screenplay: Erik Sommers, Chris McKenna, & Seth Grahame-Smith.

The Lego Batman Movie has finally made it onto New Zealand screens and while The Lego Movie is a far slicker film, Batman is nonetheless hilariously enjoyable.

I started laughing in my seat from "Airline MacGuffin" to using "Get a bunch of bad guys together to fight bad guys? That's a terrible idea!" The film is riddled with in jokes both about the general film industry and poking fun at what is just not working in comic book movies. My only critique is that there are so many that some just don't quite land but for the most part its terrific.

The basis of the plot is that Joker (Zach Galifianakis) is offended that Batman (Will Arnett) does not find their relationship to be as important as he does. He takes such offence that he makes a plan to surrender himself to prove that Batman's life is meaningless without him in it. On the other side Alfred (Ralph Fiennes) is fearing that Master Wayne is not allowing himself to heal from his greatest fear, that being in a family again. Bruce is a lone wolf and takes no help from anyone and when Barbara Gordon (Rosario Dawson) becomes the new commissioner of Gotham and demands that the police and Batman work together Batman's world starts to crumble. And then he also accidentally adopted an orphan boy and so he must raise him while trying to stay the same ol' Batman.

There is enough here to make a freaking fantastic Batman movie and then instead of this being enough they decide to throw every other superhero movie trope into the mix. This is movie pointing a finger at Marvel and DC's bad habits but in the future these jokes are going to be a little lost without context and it removes the fun from the main plot as it gets clogged down with every bad guy imaginable attacking from the hole in the sky while Joker tries to blow up Gotham.

But the main 3 messages are great and like any good film they create great character development for our main protagonist. Batman starts off alone and never needing help even if underneath he really craves for someone to be there. Then by the Joker wanting him to admit the strength of their relationship, Dick Grayson (Michael Cera) is the shining possibility of a new adoptive family, and Barbara Gordon holds the key to Batman not always having to do it alone. These 3 messages marry themselves well in a very obvious way but isn't that exactly what we need, some fucking structure in a superhero movie?!

★ ★ ★ ★