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Batman: The Killing Joke

Batman: The Killing Joke (2016) Movie Poster
  •  USA  •    •  76m  •    •  Directed by: Sam Liu.  •  Starring: Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill, Tara Strong, Ray Wise, John DiMaggio, Robin Atkin Downes, Brian George, JP Karliak, Andrew Kishino, Nolan North, Maury Sterling, Fred Tatasciore, Bruce Timm.  •  Music by: Kristopher Carter, Michael McCuistion, Lolita Ritmanis.
        As Batman hunts for the escaped Joker, the Clown Prince of Crime attacks the Gordon family to prove a diabolical point mirroring his own fall into madness.

Trailers:

   Length:  Languages:  Subtitles:
 0:24
 
 
 1:25

Review:

Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
Image from: Batman: The Killing Joke (2016)
It may seem like this is a high rating given the backlash DC animated The Killing Joke has received, however this is an averaged out rating. In honesty this isn't a very good movie, despite the fact that when the filmmakers and adapter Brian Azzarello (do I hasten to call him a 'screenwriter' after this one credit?) stick to the original Alan Moore source it's a dark and involving delight. It's what comes before it, how they make it into a "full movie" that things fall apart. This is a schizophrenic experience full of high highs, generic lows and some what the almighty Jesus bloody hell for good measure.

And I get what they tried to do or felt they had to do as far as making it a complete experience as a 75 minute film. Barbara Gordon, aka Batgirl, is more of a plot device in the comic (spoiler? Joker shoots and paralyzed her before kidnapping Commissioner for his amusement park nightmare games), so to flesh out her backstory with Batman is good. On paper. Actually, not on this paper, as it turns into a half hour story where Batgirl is chasing after a ho-Hum "charming" criminal who I don't even recall in the comics (if he was in it he's certainly not memorable) and it's all here to make it a Batgirl story with Batman mostly as the ornery father figure...

Which makes that 'thing' that happens between them so jarring; if this was squarely a batmanbatgirl story theoretically it could go somewhere )I'm not saying it's a good idea in most any context, again those like Robin or Batgirl are more like the kids to Batman not those he gets uh down n dirty with). But Azzarello crams it in where it doesn't fit and if anything makes the motivations for what comes in the actual Killing Joke story hamfisted. Not to mention how it's presented is silly especially given what room is open with an R rating (the first for any Batman film, ironically you could show this to most kids 12 and up and it'd be fine).

Despite this troubling andor just typical BatmanBatgirl story that squanders potential with really delving into backstory the comic hinted at, or because of it, when that second half of the film kicks in to gear and we get the story of the comic it'S presented largely faithfully and the genius and power of that story comes through; the Joker as a 'sympathetic' being with his own origin story which, by the end, is satisfying as its own story and is brilliant as a circumspect narrative from an unreliable storyteller.

I may also be a sucker for Hamill as the Joker but how can one not be when he always sinks his teeth in and makes him a real PRESENCE in a room? Adding to this he creates a good, relatable voice for pre.transformation Joker in the flashbacks and we get drawn in to his story in large part because that voice acting comes through. The animation is also top notch (as far as the limited budget allows), and some moments in that fun-houseamusement park are shown to be iconic for a reason; if you get any allusions to the Burton 89 Batman there's a reason for that.


Review by MisterWhiplash from the Internet Movie Database.

 

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Nov 19 2016, 15:17