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BATMAN AND ROBIN
Review by Curtis Strickland (12/97)

Release: 1997, Warner Bros.
Starring: George Clooney, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chris O'Donnell, Uma Thurman, Alicia Silverstone, Michael Gough, Elle MacPherson
Director: Joel Schumacher
MPAA Rating: [PG-13] violence
Genre: Superhero Action/Adventure

SUMMARY

Batman (Clooney), Robin (O'Donnell), and Batgirl (Silverstone) must thwart the villainous plans of Mr. Freeze (Schwarzenegger) and Poison Ivy (Thurman).

WHAT'S GOOD

This is actually the strongest silver screen Batman story since the 1989 Michael Keaton vehicle. Unlike Batman Returns and Batman Forever, there is an attempt at story here: the importance of family, and the bonds of trust and loyalty. Legitimate moments of tension between Clooney's Batman and O'Donnell's Robin add a spark of real drama to this movie.

WHAT'S BAD

Unfortunately, the main story gets drowned out by irrelevant subplots and a monstrously large cast. The presence of Thurman's Poison Ivy is borderline to the development of the story, and the inclusion of Bane (a major villain in the comic book, Bane snapped Batman's spine and crippled him for a time) is completely unnecessary. Director Joel Schumacher's vision of Gotham City is a silly compilation of blacklight colors rather than the stark, sleek, grim-gothic edge envisioned by the comic book and Tim Burton, who directed the first two Batman films. Schwarzenegger's Mr. Freeze is too often laughable and goofy.

Rating: 5.5 out of 10 (0=Abysmal, 5=Average, 10=Excellent)






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