Cerebrus: Burton's vision (while now arguably dated) had entertaining theatricality and an element of dark perversity to it that best portrays the kind of world Batman is best realized in.
I thought Burton's vision wasn't the best kind for batfans...but it was recognizably his vision and I appreciated it as such (Nolan's world could've been done by, oh, Stephen Norrington, Bryan Singer, etc.). Plus I love it that, as I wrote, the villains, the world itself, even the director seems to be trying to undermine Keaton's perfectly serious Batman.
Cerebrus: Nolan's approach tried to incorporate "suspension of disbelief" with "realism." I appeciated the effort and thought he succeeded in some respects, but the film just couldn't mesh both together well enough. That's why the 1st half of the movie delivered great, and the latter half didn't.
It's kind of hanging in the middle--not all that stylized, not realistic enough. Miller's Batman Year One was not just gritty, but human sized--no Scarecrow, no superscience, just corrupt political figures and a very human, very scared Batman trying to bring it all together. I'd say the streets would look more like the New York of Scorsese's Taxi Driver. That would be truer to Miller's look.kireigonjin: Maybe if they used the voice in the Batman animation series, it would be more effective. That voice is menacing!
Oh--him. Kevin Conroy. They call him The Voice. Yeah, sure. But voice actors' voices are almost always more impressive--that's why they're voice actors.
Keaton didn't need menacing lines; he had that look, like you just woke him up and you better have a very, very good reason for doing so. Didn't waste too much time trying to scare people, just get on with it.
Simply put, Keaton did more with less. That's impressive.
And he didn't need electronic amplification (one idea too many there). Maybe Flass got scared he might catch Bale's sore throat!
Does anyone remember the music? Very important part of a film, especially a comic-book movie. I walked out of Burton's films humming the theme; can remember it still, over ten years later. I forgot the theme in Nolan's picture while walking up the aisle.
jdlc: I remember the Burton's Batman theme. It's more recognizable as it has been used in the animated series. It fit perfectly with what Burton was trying to achieve with "his" Batman.
Batman Begins actually has a theme (after having seen it so many times already) but it's not as obvious nor as "classic" as you may want to put it. However I also think that the theme fits well for the Nolan movie. I don't think Burton's theme would sound right in Batman Begins.
Battousai: Sadly, no. I loved Danny Elfman's score better on the first two Batman films. Altough he was a bit off in Spider-Man. Sayang, Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard pa naman ang composers for Batman Begins. It just didn't do it for me.
I'm thinking Elfman started repeating himself after Batman Returns. It's a classic, and a classic's a classic. If you stuck Nolan's theme in an animated series, I still don't think it'll stick. I mean, the new animated series' theme is more memorable.
I did like Hans Zimmer's score for The Thin Red Line.
I think Burton's Batman films are as dark if not darker, they just aren't as obviously dark. I mean--Bale's Batman stops short of killing people, right? Keaton's Batman just went ahead and sent his Batmobile into the Joker's factory, dropped a bomb, and Boom! thirty to maybe a hundred henchmen dead, just like that, and just to provide a punchline to one of Burton's jokes (small ball, big blast). And Keaton didn't even (heh) bat an eye.
In Batman Returns, he's faced with a flame-throwing fire-eater. What does he do? Turn the Batmobile around, and fry the man in his jet exhaust.
This is not a kindler, gentler Batman--I'd argue he's even crazier than Bale's Batman, a real homicidal maniac.
From Atlantic Refugees:
JC: OK, I just read your review, Noel (I skimmed over it previously).
Honestly, my feeling is they developed the villains suitably enough to serve the story they were determined to tell...which is why they didn't chose a more flamboyant villain (such as Joker) this time around, because it would've bothered audiences more had he gotten short shrift. And Nolan created something that, IMO, Burton never achieved: he created a world I could believe in. Not for one second during "Batman" or "Returns" did it not occur to me that I was watching actors on a soundstage. Which is why the previous Batmobiles drove about as fast as a golf cart...because if they went any faster, they'd run out of set. And yet I still enjoyed them, because they were fun...but I never found them particularly engrossing on a narrative level, because they didn't give me anything to latch onto that wasn't laced with artifice...hell, the Animated Series was more convincing.
I'm not one to believe if an actor gets a lot of lines or has a lot of screentime you know more about his character. Goyer put in a lot of dialogue (most of it functional) but it's as if Bale was talking mostly to functionaries and acquaintances--he didn't have any equals in the picture, even if they are trying to kill him. There's Alfred, faithful servant and father figure, but it's different (and besides, it was mostly Alfred berating Bruce). You don't have the kind of interplay with an opponent that you want to fight and fuck at the same time, like with Catwoman (Katie who?). The movie threw a lot of information at me, but I didn't connect with the character, not emotionally. Whereas there's a mysterious reserve to Keaton's that draws one to him. You can believe (what Oldman says towards the end, that little speech about escalation) that Keaton's Batman draws supervillains almost out of the woodwork, they want to tangle with him.
As for Burton's storytelling--it stops and starts in parts; he's no accomplished storyteller (he's no craftsman). But when it comes to life, it flies; it hits highs. Nolan gets a more even tone--maybe even a monotone (he's no artist). Case to case basis, of course, but I prefer Burton's grand artifice to Nolan's plodding realism.
And Nolan's kind of a humorless director. Noticed it in Following. Insomnia had funny parts, but I suspect it's mostly Robin Williams (it's definitely not Pacino); Memento too, only I suspect it's mostly Pantoliano (it's not the dialogue, it's Pantoliano's delivery). Finding horror in humor seems to be a bit out of his reach, and he has to cast comic actors to achieve a variety in tone.