On June 20, 1997 Joel Schumacher released upon this world a film that would beckon some of the worst reviews of all-time and bring a once triumphant character series known as Batman to it’s knees.
Batman and Robin was gifted upon this world on June 20, 1997. It was year nine of my now 23-year-old life. At the time I was entranced, the day-glo bad guys, the idea of first seeing bane, and the possibility of the bat being broken, the promise of Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze, these were the things that kept my fragile mind from actually realizing how friggin bad this movie really is.
I know, I suckered you in with the title, ‘Why Batman and Robin is the greatest movie of all-time.’ You honestly thought that anyone on this world could find a reason this movie is good? No way. This movie from beginning to end is a tear inducing molestation of anything and everything you ever loved about Batman or anything affiliated with Batman.
Batman and Robin, or more aptly titled Crap and Sandwich, grossed 238 million dollars in it’s time at the box-office. 238 million. How the hell does that happen! Was everyone really that stupid in 1997. I understand fanny packs, those things are sometimes convenient as hell. But really how else do you explain a movie with the worst acting jobs done by prominently good actors being able to capture the hearts and minds of 238 million dollars worth of viewers. It’s a travesty. On par with Avatar and Titanic. But ripping James Cameron’s ass is better saved for another article.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is honestly the only “saving grace” in this film, but that’s only due to his comedic value. In baseball there’s a statistic referred to as WAR (Wins Above Replacement) which evaluates what a team would be without that individual player. If per say Matt Kemp has a WAR of 12, the Dodgers would have 12 less victories without him. What this equates to is Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Film WAR would be 125, I get this number because Schwarzenegger rules all 125 minutes of this film, if not for him you left with a big sloppy poop.
George Clooney mails this one in from whatever model he just so happened to be inside at the time. Chris O’ Donnell is, well he’s just always terrible at acting and here is proof of that. Alicia Silverstone, plays her part with the same half-wit charm that she’s had in such classics as Clueless (another clue that she was a terrible actress, pun intended.) and Blast From the Past (a total load of crap that I still have no idea why Christopher Walken was in that film.). I don’t even know who played Bane and I don’t honestly care all I know is that at one point in the film the behemoth of a man is wearing a trench coat and fedora in order to be inconspicuous while driving Poison Ivy around. Poison Ivy, played by Uma Thurman, is just the worst, she is essentially a sexual tyrannosaurus with a pension for loving plants and it gets creepier and creepier as the movie progresses.
But, back to Arnold. His performance as Mr. Freeze is possibly the single greatest performance of his career. How he was able to day-in-and-day-out put up with the shit that goes on in this movie without just destroying everything on set and setting fire to any scripts is beyond me. Mr. Freeze is deep, one of Batman’s more thoughtful rouges. Freeze is only after a cure for his wife, and by any means necessary but he only hopes to procure funds illegally to sustain care for his frozen bride. Schwarzenegger brings the thunder with his performance but is relegated to one-liners and zings that are the piss icing on the shit-cake.
At this point, if you’re still reading, you may be asking, “What the hell is this guy talking about and why is he blabbering on about Batman and Robin?” Well this summer on July 20, nearly 15-years later, Batman has one more go-round with Bane. This time with a more esteemed director and a more prestigious cast. And we should be thankful for this, us comic nerds and sci-fi fanatics, because we get a re-do on one of the better Batman story lines. Bane was made to break the bat and that’s what we want to see. The altruistic Batman get broken, not by day-glo street gangs, not by Poison Ivy, not by Joker, Not by Freeze, Sure as shit not by the Scarecrow, but by the Character that was designed to break the unbreakable bat.
Bane is a bad ass and also smart character. But in Batman and Robin he is a goddamn idiot who bumbles around and hides in trench coats and fedoras. You know who hides in a trench coat and fedora when there a gigantic fucking man. No one that’s who. And in Nolan’s Batman universe there isn’t any of that shit. It’s a dark and depressing world with very little hope and it looks like it’s olny going to get darker.
So when it comes time to get your tickets for “The Dark Knight Rises” at midnight or whenever. Never forget the steaming shit-pile that was Batman and Robin hold the memory of it in your mind so you know what true shitty film-making is and how far we’ve come as Batman fans to finally get a decent series of Batman films.
Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever, and Batman and Robin are not decent Batman films, let alone decent films. Tim Burton was and is a no talent hack feeding of misguided youths and puberty. Joel Schumacher is the worst storyteller ever and his list of crap-tatsic films proves this.
Long live these Nolan Films and lets hope the planned re-boot is even a sliver as in-depth and good as the two previous Nolan films and the upcoming ‘Rises’ are and may be. Cause if not the Batman rights need, i repeat NEED to be taken away from Warner Brothers and maybe just put in a bottle and sent adrift in the ocean cause now in my cynical older age i don’t know if I can take another Bat-film-molestation.