Time: 140 mins.
Academy Award nomination for Best Cinematography.
SYNOPSIS: In the wake of his parents' murder, disillusioned industrial heir Bruce Wayne travels the world seeking the means to fight injustice and turn fear against those who prey on the fearful. He returns to Gotham and unveils his alter-ego: Batman, a masked crusader who uses his strength, intellect and an array of high tech deceptions to fight the sinister forces that threaten the city.
BOTTOM LINE: Batman fans have been waiting a long time for someone to bring depth, intelligence and class to Gotham, along with the requisite kick-ass action, and it's finally happened with this film. Nolan's vision and Bale's portrayal merge seamlessly into an actual movie that's more than just a comic book come to life. Their dark vision explores not only the myth of Batman but the soul of Bruce Wayne. Though fanciful at times, there is no room for cute one-liners or childish sidekicks here. You are either on the side of good or the side of evil. Only in this town, the hero wears black.
I can't pinpoint when I became such a Christian Bale fan, but there's just something about him that makes me wish I was still single. He is perfectly cast as the billionaire playboy/super hero. He's attractive but not pretty, manly without being bulky, charming without being too cute and carries off internally wounded like almost no other actor out there. You sympathize with his pain, but never feel sorry for him. He believes that it's his fault and his fear of bats that is the cause of his parents murder, but life is never that simple, especially for a comic book hero. There are greater forces at work guiding the hands of the minor and major thugs that control the streets of Gotham.
Bruce tries to run away from his destiny and hooks up with an Asian ninja cult, but his inherent need for justice wins out over his training to be a killing machine and he decides to take on the evil embedded in the core of his fair city on his own. Well, with the help of his clever butler Alfred (Caine), a tech-savvy employee Lucius (Freeman), his determined, but unwitting old girlfriend Rachel and a reluctant, yet hopeful cop Inspector Gordon (Oldman). It's not until he takes on mobster Carmine Falcone (Wilkinson) head on that he discovers something far more sinister is being planned for the city than this mindless drug lord is capable of pulling off. It will take every ounce of his intelligence and physical prowess to save the future of Gotham.