Is it just me or is there something wrong with a hero who has to bow
twice in four movies to the villains in first billing? Jack Nicholson got
billed first over Michael Keaton in 1989 and now Arnold Schwarzenegger has it
over George Clooney.
It took at least five movies before there was a change in who would play
James Bond and now we have our third actor in four movies playing Batman.
Val Kilmer was nothing more than a totem pole and Michael Keaton was a
better Bruce Wayne than he was Batman but Keaton is still the best at both to
this point in the series.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is Mr. Freeze, a man who became a criminal after
an accident occurred in his laboratory trying to develop cryogenics to freeze
his terminally ill wife. Uma Thurman is Poison Ivy, a woman whose noble
efforts as an environmental chemist go awry after a criminal act against her
in South America causes her chemicals to work at making her an evil
temptress. Both villains are bent on revenge against the system and their
motivation is certainly nothing new for the criminal mind.
Simply put, 'Batman and Robin' is one of the worst films of 1997 to this
point and has one of the worst screenplays I've ever seen in the history of
cinema. Cliche ridden dialogue and incoherent situations are bad enough and
on the technical end there is sloppy editing and badly choreographed action
sequnces which are repetitive and boring. Uma Thurman does the best job with
this awful movie but Arnold Schwarzenegger is laughably bad as Mr. Freeze and
you won't buy his attempt at a menacing presence for a second.
Alicia Silverstone is sadly miscast as Batgirl. Her character is a
cross between a girl scout and a high school student. Believing she can beat
up criminals is a belly laugh in itself. Chris O'Donnell's Robin is more of
a spoiled brat than a crime fighter and Clooney's Batman is sorely under
The first 'Superman' movie in 1978 was better than the last two Batman
movies put together and Tim Burton's clever and visionary style from the
first two Batman films is missing and director Joel Schumacher and writer
Akiva Goldsman are academic amateurs at best.
Batman is a legendary crime fighting hero and now he is reduced to
taking a back seat to light shows, computerized special effects and art
direction done with over kill. Doomed from the beginning, 'Batman and Robin'
is machine tooled junk.
Copyright © 1997 Walter Frith