release year: 2005
viewing setting: home DVD, 8/6/12 and theater, 6/21/05
synopsis: This loose prequel/origin story reveals how a troubled billionaire becomes a night-stalking crimefighter.
impressions: Pretty good. It spared us the presence of goofy, scenery-chewing villains played by box-office stars, and stuck to the basics. Plenty of time and attention were spent on the makings of the Batman, not just his weapons but also his mentality. The movie had plenty of action and fighting, stunts, and cool gadgets.
things to watch for: The Batmobile chase across the rooftops.
something this movie has that no other movie has: A guy who dresses up in a scarecrow mask and uses fear gas on people.
acting: Christian Bale was grim and serious as the main character. Michael Caine did a fine supporting job as butler/helper Alfred. Morgan Freeman was also good as an inventor/scientist. Liam Neeson made a great mentor for Bruce Wayne. Katie Holmes was okay as a lawyer/pseudo-love-interest but thankfully the plot didn't spend much time on that angle.
final word: Good reboot of the franchise, taking it back to its darker roots.
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