“The Lego Batman Movie”
The entire cultural history of Batman bursts forth as a satire of human pride mixed with media references that take in everything from every Batman movie or television show ever made, to Gymkata, and even Gleaming the Cube.
Don’t worry there won’t be a test afterwards. Yet you’re entire cosmology will be in question after only one viewing. You cannot have lived a life without some exposure to the Batman mythos. The Lego Batman Movie seems to exist to remind everyone that everything is awesome. I don’t think even Joe Dante would’ve come up with a way to reference every bad guy in the Batman/DC playbook in one sequence, much less one film.
Like The Lego Movie that preceded this incarnation of Lego animation, the whole affair seems to lampoon societal mores while chucking in as many catch phrases as you can imagine. The Lego Batman Movie fires a joke on a second by second basis with a zinger per minute.
But don’t take that as surefire thumbs up if you have a conservative bent. The message sublimated in the movie suggests a lead character with the kind of narcissistic personality of a certain current president. Batman invents his own truths and wants to work alone.
In the end Batgirl, Alfred the Butler, and Robin form a nuclear family bond that goes against everything Batman believes. At the beginning Batman is a Donald Trump style prognosticator who promotes his big lie by endlessly repeating the same slogan. Batman acts pompous but his home life reflects a loner existence. By the end of the flick he’s been won over by love and happiness from those around him.
When first meeting Bruce Wayne, Robin exclaims: “Hi, I’m Richard Grayson from the Children’s Academy. But all the orphans call me Dick.”
To which Batman replies: “Kids can be so cruel.” That bon mot represents the kind of mile a minute humor that flies over the heads of kids and lands square in the lap of adults. I could never second guess who was doing each voice; stick around for the credit roll to see the vocal talent.
The Lego Batman Movie opens wide Thursday evening.