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Looking back at those Batman movies, I realised that there are several moments I'm always looking forward to. Scenes I always go quiet for and can't wait to see again and again. This is my own personal best-of so feel free to share your own best moments in the comments below ;)


After 10 years of picturing George Clooney sliding down plastic dinosaurs in the infamous Batman & Robin, watching a decent Batman flick was almost overwhelming. So when we got our Joker promise in that final scene and that "you'll never have to" line before The Bat gloriously flies into our faces, it was pretty special. Yes the line is cheesy as hell but... what can I say? I still like it. Batman Begins was half build-up, half Batman and this moment really was the confirmation that this new, intimidating version of the hero was well and truly here to stay and that many more great things were still to come. Good news indeed.


Two-Face being my favourite Bat-villain, I was of course delighted to finally see a proper live-action interpretation of the character. Actually, I could have done with even more of Aaron Eckhart's awesome take on the double-faced one. Harvey Dent's story is a tragic one and when done right it can be pretty heartbreaking, so when you see the guy who was meant to be Gotham's hope for a brighter future kidnap a woman and her kid before threatening to kill the latter in front of his parents' eyes... it doesn't get more hopeless than that. I especially like the bit where he puts the gun to his head, this is really the moment where you're like "Shit... Harvey's not coming back, is he?". It's a dramatically very tense, very well done scene and it's always nail-biting, even when you know what happens next.


Just when you thought the Batmobile was as good as you were gonna get gadget-wise, Michael Keaton's Batman shows up with... probably the coolest flying thing ever. Sadly, it proves to be no match for The Joker's big boner gun but it does come in handy when getting rid of green smoke-filled clown balloons. The best bit though, has to be the cheeky moon display we get before The Bat charges the jet down towards Jack Nicholson's maniacal fiend in a thrilling face-off. Completely gratuitous, completely unnecessary but by god is it cool.


The Dark Knight didn't f*** around. Starting really strong with an intense, elaborate bank robbery led by a masked Joker. Not only is this a thrilling scene all around with double-crosses, William Fichtner's shotgun-wielding bank manager and the promise of a smart, action-packed ride but it's also a fab introduction to Heath Ledger's iconic villain. Revealed in close-up, he is instantly intimidating: "Whatever doesn't kill you, only makes you... stranger". Brilliant. Still my favourite line from the character in that particular film. Add to that an ever-so-slightly terrifying joke which shuts Fichtner's rebel up good and proper and you've got one hell of an opening sequence.


You've got Michelle Pfeiffer in a leather cat-suit, Danny DeVito looking like a bloody penguin and Michael Keaton as a rubbery bat dude: it's like a zoo! So how do you bring these three characters together? With the power of "Meow!", that's how. There's a good scene in which Batman and The Penguin finally meet and essentially verbally challenge each other when all of a sudden this other nutcase flips her way towards them, stops, looks up and meows before a department store behind her explodes. Completely unexpected, completely random, it's a perfect anarchic Catwoman moment. I love it.


Yes The Dark Knight's Joker introduction was brilliant, but I do have a soft spot for the way Jack Nicholson's killer clown was brought to the screen initially. First you see a hand pop out of that batch of acid, then the brilliant mirror scene in which you just see him with his back to us removing bandages like a mummy before losing his shit and laughing his ass off. I always thought that surgeon was so darn lucky he wasn't torn to shreds after that. Then The Joker in full purple gear is finally given his moment as he appears in the shadows, film noir-style, getting his revenge on the man that double-crossed him (a perfect Jack Palance, by the way) before finally revealing himself. What a day, what a day...


No moment in Batman Begins was quite as good as this moment. This happens about halfway through the film, after a whole hour of build-up plus seven years if you count post-Batman & Robin waiting time so by this point we NEEDED something badass to happen. The start of the scene shows The Bat fleetingly, fighting off random thugs, taking them out one by one. Then Tom Wilkinson's mob boss Falcone makes the big mistake of asking "What the hell are ya?" to whoever's on the roof of his car. The answer, as you know, kicked his ass. Great stuff. Again, I do have a soft spot for Keaton's original "I'm Batman" moment though, maybe because it wasn't followed by a coat comment...


Yes The Dark Knight again, but can you blame me? This Batpod scene about halfway through the movie was friggin' awesome! At this point, you're really involved in the story but you kinda want to see what all the fuss is about with this Joker fellow. How dangerous is he, really? Well... turns out very! I mean, in any TV show or movie where a prisoner is being transferred from one place to another, you just know something's gonna go really wrong along the way. But this movie takes that cliche to a whole new, higher level. You've got The Joker holding some kind of rocket launcher, Harvey Dent pissing his pants in that police van, the Tumbler being destroyed before giving birth to something even cooler and the Batpod in question giving The Joker's truck a truly lolgasmic punishment. Not only that but you get the first proper face-off between the hero and his arch-nemesis. Epic.


Ok, I know I'll probably be alone on this one but I'm a big fan of the way Batman Returns begins. There's just something about that whole opening sequence in which The Penguin is born and his parents reject him I've always loved. Not only does it really feel like a scene from a comic-book but it sets up the villain beautifully: you feel bad for him and yet you kinda get why his parents freaked out the way they did (he kills that cat for crying out loud!) at the same time. Danny Elfman's score is brilliant, visually you feel like you're watching an old Orson Welles movie and it all leads up to that classic Batman theme. It's dark, theatrical, twisted, touching, weird, funny, stylish... all the good stuff. A personal guilty pleasure? Quite possibly. Besides... it's Pee-Wee!


Yeah, you all remember that one. A silent scene in which Batman drives that badass-looking Batmobile of his  back to the Batcave. That's pretty much it really. It's SO simple and yet so good. Like the Batwing bit, it's completely gratuitous but somehow perfect. It boasts arguably the best use of Elfman's Batman theme and you gotta love Tim Burton's little gothic forest surrounding the scene throughout. Even Batman going home to take a shit is freakin' cool! Gotta love that. I really like that moment when Vicki Vale tries to get a closer look at Batman's face and he shines that little light into her face. Genius. Like the Batman Returns opening, this is a purely atmospheric win for me. Those moments are rare in superhero movies where they get the character and his environment just right for that one scene but when it happens, it's glorious. Nolan brought the "oomph" but you can't beat Burton when it comes to that stuff.

Then again I have yet to see The Dark Knight Rises...

Honourable mention to the many lols from the 1966 Batman: The Movie with Adam West including the shark-repellent Bat-spray and that soap opera bit where he finds out about Catwoman's real identity. Not to mention Batman and Robin RUNNING to the scene of the crime. Also, Selina Kyle's transformation into Catwoman in Batman Returns is classic, consider that one number 11.

1 comment:

  1. Very surprised by your number one pick but I couldn't agree with you more. The score, the set pieces, and the cold as steel detachment of Keaton in this scene really pulls it all together.


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