Top 5 Successful Batman Film Performances. Also an Exclusive New Trailer for The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Top 5 Most Successful Batman Film Performances.
Plus an Exclusive New Trailer for The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Batman has been an American icon since his first Comic book appearance in 1939 and adapted into all forms of media including films, TV, video games, etc. The feature films are the most well-known and have been played with varying levels of competency by numerous actors. With the upcoming release of his latest adventure The Dark Knight Rises (2012) the Movie Monkey has compiled a list detailing Batman’s Top 5 Most Successful film performances from worst to best.
#5 Batman & Robin (1997) George Clooney
The Batman film that brought back Batman’s alleged homoerotic undertones with a raging force. Directed by Joel Schumacher and starring George Clooney as Batman, this film introduced such inane details such as retractable ice skates, Batsuits with nipples, ice related puns and an awkward relationship between Batman and Robin. This film is in essence a commercial for kids toys on ecstasy that should have never been made. George Clooney was terrible as the caped crusader and this film killed the franchise for 8 years until the much darker and more realistic reboot Batman Begins in 2005.
#4 Batman: The Movie (1966) Adam West
The Campy classic version of Batman is sadly far superior to the Clooney and Schumacher disaster 30 years later. Based on the similarly campy TV show starring Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward as Robin the Boy Wonder. In this version of Batman, the dynamic duo waged battles with explosive rubber Sharks, killer Pirates, Catwoman, The Penguin, Riddler and their greatest villain The Joker all in a single movie. Adam West gives a classic campy portrayal of The Dark Knight carried over from the hit TV series.
#3 Batman Forever (1995) Val Kilmer
This film was the beginning of the downfall of the 90’s Batman. Val Kilmer took over as Batman while Schumacher replaced Tim Burton to create a neon lit Gotham City and a return to the 60’s campy portrayal. This film introduced us once again to The Riddler (Jim Carrey), Two Face (Tommy Lee Jones) and unfortunately brought Robin (Chris O’Donnell) back into the picture. Not as bad as the followup Batman & Robin but still an embarrassing portrayal of the Caped Crusader. Val Kilmer would only portray Batman in this one film and was mediocre at best.
#2 Batman (1989) Michael Keaton
This is by all account the film that introduced the dark Batman to a whole new generation of fans in the late 80’s. Although Michael Keaton was terribly miscast as Batman and Tim Burton clearly had never read any Batman comics but Jack Nicholson gave a great performance as the Joker. Even for all of its shortcomings the Monkey still has a soft spot for this film since it was the first big screen version of Batman to hit the screen during my younger years. The 1992 darker version Batman Returns followed with a sexy Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman and a deranged Danny Devito playing The Penguin. Tim Burton would direct these two films before Joel Schumacher took over and destroyed the franchise.
#1 Batman Begins (2005) Christian Bale
The film that made Batman a dark, bad ass vigilante again. After the shameful Batman & Robin, director Christopher Nolan decided that Batman had to once again return to his roots as a dark and menacing vigilante. Christian Bale surely did not disappoint and portrayed the best Batman to date also starring in the even more successful sequel The Dark Knight and will finish the trilogy with 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises.