Just forget the words and sing along

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Batman: Gotham Knight Review

I can't believe I sat on this for so long! Of course, I got the DVD as soon as I could, so let's review it!

Batman: Gotham Knight

Directed by Shojiro Nishimi, Futoshi Higashide, Hiroshi Morioka, Yasohiro Aoki, Toshiyuki Kubooka, and Jong Sik-Am

Starring the voices of Kevin Conroy, Gary Dourdan, David McCallum, Parminder Nagra, ana Ana Oritz.

Backstory: DC and Warner Brothers have been doing the straight-t0-video animated movie thing for a long time. The now legendary Batman animated film, Mask of the Phantasm, was originally going to be straight to video, but executives looking at rough footage thought it to be so good, that it went to theatres. For the next installment of Batman in animation, Warner Brothers animation decided to turn the Dark Knight over to some of the top animation studios in Japan to do something a little more anime-styled.

Plot: The film is actually made up of six seperate stories. Rather than recount them all, I'll just point you to this previous blog entry where I did that in excrutiating detail.

What I Liked: As is the case in anthologies like this, some segments stand out more than others. The standout for me was Work Through Pain, giving us yet another untold tale of Batman's training. And, of course, the Japanese animation is spectacular, giving us a great, fresh take on Batman. Oh, and Kevin Conroy once again proves why he's THE voice of Batman.

What I Didn't Like: Sadly, a lot of the tales had a genuine sense of "been there, done that." And despite all its hype, I found the segment with Deadshot to be most disappointing. The creators said that they were setting up Deadshot to be the "anti-Batman," but we don't get to see that. It's just a lot of shooting.

Final Verdict: Maybe Frank Miller's right. Maybe every Batman story has been told, and despite some fantastic Japanese animation, the latest Batman animated installment is very bleh.

2 Nibs

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