Batman Forever 25th Anniversary

The third Batman film released in 1995 known as Batman Forever. It was viewed as one of the most fun superhero comic book movies at the time. Batman Forever was a movie made for kids and families. It had an all star cast starting with Jim Carrey as the main villain Riddler, Val Kilmer as Batman who replace Michael Keaton, Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face, Nicole Kidman as the female lead Chase Meridian, and new actor Chris O’Donnell who is now known today from CSI Los Angeles the hit crime show. Batman Forever like Batman 89 was a huge financial success and marketing success at the time. Batman Forever was Joel Schumacher’s first Batman movie before the disaster Batman and Robin movie that nobody ever wants to talk about ever. Even though Batman and Robin was never his fault.

I re-watched Batman Forever before writing this anniversary look back review. I forgot how action pack this movie was and how much comic book material was brought into Batman Forever. One of the biggest changes was how Bruce Wayne in Batman Forever was viewed as the billionaire playboy he was known in the public. Just like in the comic books. The previous Batman movies did not go there with their Bruce Wayne. Dick Grayson’s origin story was almost comic book accurate, and Two-Face was involved in Robin’s origin but it was Jason Todd’s origin not Dick Grayson. The only flaw with Robin in Batman Forever was that he was cast older than what he was meant to be. I viewed this Dick Grayson personality mixed with Jason Todd and Tim Drake. He wasn’t the light like he is in the comic books but he had the attitude of Jason Todd and the will to save Batman after getting blown up in a construction building like Tim Drake did when he dressed up as Robin in a lonely place of dying Batman story.

I viewed Batman Forever as how Batman 66 would be present in the 90s. It was very bright, lots of campy scenes, but it got serious with its action. My favorite Riddler is Frank Gorshin’s Riddler from Batman 66 series. Jim Carrey’s Riddler did emulated a lot of Frank Gorshin’s Riddler especially when he was around this version Two-Face who Tommy Lee Jones played like he was in a recent Batman 66 episode villain of the week. As a big fan of Batman 66 tv series I can see a lot of similarities from Batman 66 in Batman Forever. The Batmobile drives on the side of the building as a nod to Batman 66, and Robin using the catch phrase “holy rusted metal Batman.” As a nod to Burt Wards Robin. When I was eight years old this movie blew me away because there was so many awesome Batman moments. Like when Batman is jumping off rooftops, breaking through glass entrances, and using all of his awesome gadgets to take down the bad guys. My favorite moment was watching Batman run through the flames after Two-Face thinks he killed him. It was a awesome Batman moment because he is Batman.

Watching Batman Forever after re-watching Batman Returns is like watching night and day, because that’s how different both movies a represented. Its very clear in my opinion that when Warner Brothers was working on Batman Forever they wanted to brighten up and make Batman family friendly again. Its clear they wanted to emulate some of the Batman 66 elements that made the show a success, because that was their only success at making a kid friendly and family Batman movie to watch. Obviously the toy markets dictated what was put in the movie. Like having two Batman suits, Riddler wearing a few different outfits. Having the Batmobile, Bat boat, and the Batwing was all about selling toys. If you didn’t know Joel Schumacher did have a lot of deleting scenes that bat fans can look up on YouTube.

The title Batman Forever did have meaning to it. In the deleting scenes from Batman Forever appears to have Bruce Wayne self-doubting himself to continue to be Batman and figuring out why he still goes out to fight crime, after avenging his parents murderer in Batman 89. There was meaning in the scene to when Batman tells the Riddler on why he is Batman at the end of the movie after he defeats him. I highly recommend readers to check it out it differently gives Bat fans a new perspective on Batman Forever. I think one of the things why those scenes were cut out is because Warner Brothers wanted the film to be a two hour movie. Back in those days it was rare to watch an action movie that was over two hours long. Never mind it being a comic book movie, because a lot of blockbuster movies were no more than two hours.

I think the movie would’ve been a lot better with the deleting scenes added into it because the movie would made more sense. Overall the movie still holds up very well. There’s a lot of Batman in it. There’s a lot of action and comedy moments. There’s a lot of the flaws when some scenes do not work without the deleting scenes helping the story narrative. For example there is longer scene with Bruce and Alfred after Bruce argues with Dick for rescuing him from the construction site. Its a great Bruce and Alfred moment that carries into the Batman and Chase scene that makes more sense an to why Batman smiles leaving after Chase choose Bruce Wayne over Batman. If I had to pick what’s my second favorite Batman movie after Batman 89 is Batman Forever over Batman Returns. If you are looking for a good Batman movie to watch outside of the Nolan Trilogy and Batman v Superman I highly recommend to re-watch Batman Forever, because it is one of those superhero movies that is actually good and defines how Batman was viewed in the early 90s.

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