REVIEW: Grab a large popcorn and prepare for long haul with your favourite caped crusader

Amanda Chalmers reviews The Batman (Cert 15) at Daventry's brand new cinema
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I’ll start by saying I am no stranger to DC – or Marvel – or any of the superhero movie franchises. I am a parent of teenage boys and they have formed a big part of my life!

But while familiarity often breeds contempt, I must admit to now being fully invested in the genre and took my seat in anticipation of the next chapter for our Caped Crusader.

Two years after stalking the streets as The Batman, striking fear into the hearts of criminals, has led Bruce Wayne deep into the shadows of Gotham City.

The Batman (Cert 15) is out now.The Batman (Cert 15) is out now.
The Batman (Cert 15) is out now.

With only a few trusted allies amongst them, the city’s corrupt network of officials and high-profile figures, the lone vigilante has established himself as the sole embodiment of vengeance amongst the fellow citizens.

When a killer targets Gotham’s elite with a series of sadistic machinations, a trail of cryptic clues sends the world’s greatest detective on an investigation into the city’s underworld. Here he encounters such characters as Selina Kyle, Oswald Cobblepot, Carmine Falcone and Edward Nashton.

So the evidence begins to lead closer to home and the scale of the perpetrator’s plans become clear, Batman must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued Gotham.

Robert Pattinson dons the crusader’s cape in this latest celluloid iteration of the DC Comics superhero and quickly makes the dual role his own. Pattinson does justice to the character with a different take on the vigilante than evidenced in previous roles, even bringing an appealing vulnerability to the fore.

The Arc Cinema.The Arc Cinema.
The Arc Cinema.

In fact this is a very much tapered down performance in a film which heavily relies on brooding scenes and dark content to convey what is essentially a three-hour chapter about Batman’s moral reawakening. Batman, while not one for a chat(!) does most of his talking with his eyes – and fists!

But where does it all fall down? While utterly full to the brim with fascinating characters and content – including new characterisations of The Penguin and The Riddler – it’s about 30-45 minutes too long, not that that will bother most DC fanatics.

Director and co-writer Matt Reeves brings us a superhero film that can’t fail to satisfy fans but, with a plotline that’s slow to emerge from a backdrop of grunge and angst, you’ll need to prepaere yourself for the long haul.

Grab yourself a large popcorn and settle in. . .

New cinema

I was lucky enough to be among some of the first people to catch the premieres of The Batman at the brand new Arc Cinema in Daventry, last week where Batman and his Batmobile were even on hand to the red carpet! Very exciting!

It marks the much-anticipated return of cinema to Daventry after a gap of more than 20 years.

The cinema boasts digital laser projectors in its four screens, state-of-the-art immersive surround sound systems and luxury electric recliner seats as standard. The foyer space is purposefully designed to be a bright and airy space for relaxation and refreshment though all the screens are licensed so you can enjoy a beer or glass of wine while watching your film.

The cinema will show the latest blockbuster and independent films as well as broadcast screenings of opera, ballet and theatrical productions.