Review: The Lego Batman Movie (★★★★½)

4.5 stars

The Lego Batman Movie is the best Batman film I have seen since probably The Dark Knight. After the awful experience that was Batman v Superman, it’s so refreshing to have a team understand the character of Batman so well that they can perfectly parody not only him, but the superhero genre as a whole. Despite being a children’s film, it’s still perhaps the funniest film I have also seen in a few years. I left the cinema with a sigh of relief, still chuckling to myself for at least an hour.

3

The way that screenwriters Seth Grahame-Smith and Chris McKenna have managed to capture the very essence of the superhero genre makes The Lego Batman movie probably funnier for adults that it is children. The constant puns at past incarnations of Batman, going all the way back to the 40’s serial, makes the film incredibly rich, quotable and sidesplittingly funny.

Will Arnett is Batman. He captures the egotistical and broody nature of the character perfectly and, although it can become a tad tiresome towards the end, flaunts this arrogance around the screen hilariously. This is matched perfectly with Zack Galifianakis’ Joker who causes most of the problems Batman faces because he doesn’t feel like Batman hates him enough.

2

The plot heavily relies on an understanding of Lego’s extended universe of characters from licences that aren’t associated with Batman. We get to see Voldemort, The Wicked Witch and Gremlins throughout the film and to anyone who doesn’t know about these extended licenses, the film can be a little ‘out there’. I however, fully embraced this and had a blast all the way through. A particular highlight for me, and goes to show how cleaver the production team are, is that although Ralph Fiennes voices Alfred, he doesn’t voice Voldemort. This would have been incredibly easy to do, but no, instead they get Eddie Izzard to voice him. Ridiculous but hilarious.

The films plot is not as strong, not as meaningful, as in The Lego Movie. There are particular moments when resolutions to situations borders on being silly rather than funny. This isn’t necessarily bad, it just stands out as an issue especially when the rest of the movie is so clever in its execution.

The Lego Batman Movie

The Lego Batman movie is a cavalcade of funny nods and references that is perfectly blended with a deep satirical look at both Batman and the superhero genre. It’s not just a movie for children and, I strand by this when I say, I think we might have a new Pixar on our hands with the Lego franchise.

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