Thursday, September 29, 2022     Volume: 23, Issue: 31
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Santa Maria Sun / Film

This weeks review
A QUIET PLACE PART II
ANOTHER ROUND
BARBARIAN
BEAST
BINGEABLE: 100 FOOT WAVE (2021)
BINGEABLE: A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN (2022)
BINGEABLE: ABBOTT ELEMENTARY (2021-present)
BINGEABLE: ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL (2022)
BINGEABLE: BARRY (2018-present)
BINGEABLE: CASTLEVANIA (2017-2021)
BINGEABLE: CHEER (2020-present)
BINGEABLE: FLEABAG (2016-2019)
BINGEABLE: HACKS (2021-present)
BINGEABLE: I JUST KILLED MY DAD (2022)
BINGEABLE: JOE PICKETT (2021)
BINGEABLE: KUNG FU (2021)
BINGEABLE: LAST LIGHT (2022)
BINGEABLE: LIFE & BETH (2022)
BINGEABLE: MAID (2021)
BINGEABLE: MIDNIGHT MASS (2021)
BINGEABLE: ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING (SEASON 2) (2021-present)
BINGEABLE: SLOW HORSES (2022)
BINGEABLE: SQUID GAME (2021)
BINGEABLE: STATION ELEVEN (2021)
BINGEABLE: SWEET TOOTH
BINGEABLE: TELL ME YOUR SECRETS (2021)
BINGEABLE: THE BABY (2022)
BINGEABLE: THE BEAR (2022)
BINGEABLE: THE GREAT (2020-present)
BINGEABLE: THE MOST HATED MAN ON THE INTERNET (2022)
BINGEABLE: THE PATIENT (2022)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: COWBOY BEBOP (1998)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (1989)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE CAT RETURNS (2002)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE MATRIX (1999)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE PRESTIGE (2006)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE SHOOTING (1966)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: WILD AT HEART (1990)
BREAKING
C’MON C’MON
ELVIS
EMILY THE CRIMINAL
EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE
GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE
GUILTY PLEASURE: VAMPIRES (1998)
GUILTY PLEASURES: GUNPOWDER MILKSHAKE
GUILTY PLEASURES: JOLT
HAVE A GOOD TRIP: ADVENTURES IN PSYCHEDELICS
HEARST CASTLE: BUILDING THE DREAM (1996)
I CARE A LOT
I’M THINKING OF ENDING THINGS
JURASSIC WORLD: DOMINION
LIGHTYEAR
NEW FLICKS: ANTLERS
NEW FLICKS: ARMY OF THIEVES
NEW FLICKS: BULLET TRAIN
NEW FLICKS: CRUELLA
NEW FLICKS: DAY SHIFT
NEW FLICKS: DON’T LOOK UP
NEW FLICKS: FINCH
NEW FLICKS: FRESH
NEW FLICKS: GEORGE CARLIN’S AMERICAN DREAM (2022)
NEW FLICKS: HUSTLE
NEW FLICKS: I WANT YOU BACK
NEW FLICKS: KATE
NEW FLICKS: MURDER AT YELLOWSTONE CITY
NEW FLICKS: PINOCCHIO
NEW FLICKS: PREY
NEW FLICKS: RED NOTICE
NEW FLICKS: SAMARITAN
NEW FLICKS: THE GRAY MAN
NEW FLICKS: THE NORTHMAN
NEW FLICKS: THIRTEEN LIVES
NEW FLICKS: WATERMAN (2021)
NINE PERFECT STRANGERS (2021)
NOPE
PIG
SOUL
THE ADAM PROJECT
THE BATMAN
THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM (2019)
THE MAP OF TINY PERFECT THINGS
THE NEW MUTANTS
THE PAPER TIGERS
THE SUNLIT NIGHT
THE TRAGEDY OF MACBETH
THE UNBEARABLE WEIGHT OF MASSIVE TALENT
THE WOMAN KING
THREE THOUSAND YEARS OF LONGING
TOP GUN: MAVERICK
TV REVIEW: BATES MOTEL
TV REVIEW: DEFENDING JACOB
TV REVIEW: EXTERMINATE ALL THE BRUTES (2021)
TV REVIEW: HOMECOMING
TV REVIEW: HOW TO WITH JOHN WILSON
TV REVIEW: I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE
TV REVIEW: I MAY DESTROY YOU
TV REVIEW: LENOX HILL
TV REVIEW: LITTLE AMERICA
TV REVIEW: MARE OF EASTTOWN
TV REVIEW: MRS. AMERICA
TV REVIEW: ONE MISSISSIPPI
TV REVIEW: PAINTING WITH JOHN (2021)
TV REVIEW: RAMY
TV REVIEW: RUN
TV REVIEW: SPACE FORCE
TV REVIEW: TED LASSO (2020-present)
TV REVIEW: THE BOYS
TV REVIEW: THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD
TV REVIEW: THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT
TV REVIEW: THE LAST KINGDOM
TV REVIEW: THE MIDNIGHT GOSPEL
TV REVIEW: THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA
TV REVIEW: THE QUEEN’S GAMBIT
TV REVIEW: UNDONE
TV REVIEW: WARRIOR
TV REVIEW: WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
TV REVIEW: ZEROZEROZERO
UNDERRATED: BATMAN BEGINS (2005)

‘The Batman’ is a dark political thriller noir

THE BATMAN

PHOTO BY , COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. AND DC FILMS

THE BATMAN


Where is it playing?: HBO Max

What's it rated?: PG-13

What's it worth?: $Full price (Glen Starkey)

What's it worth?: $Full price (Anna Starkey)

User Rating: 0.00 (0 Votes)

Co-writer Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) directs this new reboot of the popular DC Comics series about Bruce Wayne (Robert Pattinson), a vigilante crime fighter with deep pockets and a brooding persona. When The Riddler (Paul Dano) begins murdering key politicians in Gotham, Wayne as his alter ego, Batman, investigates. Catwoman (Zoë Kravitz) and Penguin (Colin Ferrell) also make appearances. (175 min.)

Glen: Relentlessly dark, overlong by about an hour, and gothic as Hades, this new Batman flick still manages to offer a potent payoff with some cracking good cinematography and set design along the way. Pattinson plays Bruce Wayne in full emo mode—his black hair shrouding his eyes, brows furrowed, mouth set to grimace. Only about 30 years old, he’s new to crime fighting, and he questions whether he’s having an effect, knowing Gotham is a big town and he can’t be everywhere at once. When The Riddler begins taking out politicians, leaving behind thorny clues to be deciphered, Batman starts to unravel conspiracy and corruption at Gotham’s highest levels. And just to add to his angst, his revered father may too have been involved in some way. Dano’s The Riddler is a physically weak, pasty type, with an inflated ego. His weapon is his brain, and he likes to invent diabolical devices to exterminate his prey. He considers Batman more of a friend than a foe—after all, they’re both after justice. Then there’s Selina Kyle, aka Catwoman, who has her own agenda against the criminal underworld, especially reclusive kingpin Carmine Falcone (John Turturro). Working at the Iceberg Lounge, a criminal underworld hangout, Selina becomes the tool Batman needs to get inside information. It’s all very convoluted with lots of characters, including Oswald “Oz” Cobblepot, aka Penguin (Colin Ferrell, made unrecognizable under facial prostheses). Jeffrey Wright stars as honest cop James Gordon, who against his fellow officers’ wishes brings Batman into the investigation into The Riddler. 

Anna: I had absolutely no idea that Colin Farrell was Penguin. That’s bonkers! Whoever the artist is who made his prosthesis should win an award—he was completely unrecognizable. I’m in agreement that this film definitely could have been tightened up. There are very few movies that have enough meat to actually justify an almost three-hour runtime, and The Batman isn’t one of them. That said, I like the storyline, I like the characters, I even like the dark moodiness and style that were chosen. There were just too many lingering shots and long moments where in my head I was snapping my fingers and saying, “Tighten it up, people!” I wasn’t sure how Pattinson would come across as Batman. Honestly, he’s not exactly the actor I picture for the role, but he handled this young Bruce Wayne with a real sense of the tortured hermit that Wayne is, especially in his younger years. Dano does creepy so well, and his Riddler is definitely an unforgettable villain. This film is, of course, a setup for more to come, and I’ll totally watch them—I just hope the next go around they stick with a two-hour script.

Glen: I’m still of the mind that director Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight trilogy is the best run of Batman flicks, but this one is appealing, and I’m all in for sequels too. This is less a standard superhero movie and more a political thriller noir. Gotham is a horrible place to live—dirty, crime-ridden, operated on graft and corruption. It feels irredeemable, and one wonders why Wayne even bothers. In part, it’s because he thinks it’s his legacy since he believes his father was such a do-gooder, which is why the story’s revelations shake him to his core. He essentially has no one left … except Alfred (Andy Serkis), the family butler, the only person still able to guide him to do more than mere vengeance. This isn’t a revelatory reimagining, but it’s a nice twist on a favorite franchise.

Anna: It’s not my favorite Batman film, but it definitely soars above some of the disasters that have happened over the years. Kravitz is a good fit for the Catwoman character, playing a damaged woman who is desperate for vengeance. I love an effective villain, and Dano’s Riddler is creepy, sinister, and unpredictable enough to do the job here. The finale of the film pulls off some epic shots, and without going into spoilers, I’ll just say that both good and evil have their time to shine. One thing is for sure, I’ll never set my Zillow search to Gotham—that place is bleak, rain soaked, and riddled with crime.

New Times Senior Staff Writer Glen Starkey and freelancer Anna Starkey write Sun Screen. Glen compiles streaming listings. Comment at gstarkey@newtimesslo.com.










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Homelessness. Our state needs to address this growing issue and come up with creative solutions.
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Our state is beyond fixing and there's nothing we can do.

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