Superheroes dominate new entertainment options this week.
“The Batman” Grade 2 ½ stars: Robert Pattinson hits all the dark notes whether he is Batman or Bruce Wayne. When Bruce Wayne delivers the line that he is not afraid of dying, it rings with chilling truth.
Co-writer/director Matt Reeves had to come up with a story that would give Batman more to do that brood and then brood some more. This version of the Batman story has him in the early stages of his career. He has been stalking the streets of Gotham City for more than a year and has earned some street cred.
The first two hours of “The Batman” are a rather ordinary story of Batman’s wavering between vigilante justice and his street code. Not only does the central plot feel like a rehashing of other films and comic books, the entire movie plays like a patchwork quilt of past works.
This sounds like big problems but Reeves and company do benefit from the last Batman movie being such a monumental failure. Pattinson’s work is properly depressing and the story interesting enough to make most of it work. Add in a great new Batmobile and a visual style by Reeves that looks more like a “Blade Runner” movie than a Batman film and there are pluses.
What hurts the production is that the script by Reeves and Peter Craig would have been pushed to its limits if the movie only ran two hours. The fact it runs for three hours leaves the overall story feeling bloated. It would have been better had the last 45 minutes been cut.
“Teen Titans Go! & DC Super Hero Girls: Mayhem in the Multiverse” Grade B: Lex Luthor uses an ancient Kryptonian power to unite the world’s Super-Villains to capture all of Earth’s superheroes until only the DC Super Hero Girls are left to stop the Legion of Doom. A rescue mission to the Phantom Zone leads Supergirl, Batgirl and other members of the team to Titans Tower where they find much-needed allies in the Teen Titans.
“Teen Titans Go!” and “DC Super Hero Girls” are animated series that air on Cartoon Network. The two series filled with superhero characters from the DC Universe have come together for the feature film. The biggest flaw is that while it is a crossover movie, the Teen Titans provide little more than a major cameo. Even the Titans make a joke about how little they are in the film.
Despite the odd mixing of the two very different types of animated superhero shows, “Mayhem in the Multiverse” is a lot of fun.
Also new on DVD and Blu-ray as of May 24
“The Burning Sea”: Disaster unfolds in an oil field located in the North Sea.
“The Eden Theory”: Tom Edwards’ (Jesse Charles) world unravels after his best friend disappears and he’s investigated relentlessly by a detective.
“Presagio”: Writer deals with personal trauma and the demands to finish his latest book at all costs.
“Studio 666”: The Foo Fighters face real terror in trying to finish their latest album.
“Moonshot”: Two very different college students sneak onboard a space shuttle to the red planet in order to be united with their significant others.
Available through digital platforms
“Captors”: A woman must face her past that includes an escape from human traffickers.
“The Quest: Nepal”: An examination of why people climb the most iconic mountain in the world, Everest, while unveiling the fascinating culture, history and nature of Nepal.
“Sayo”: Strange taxi driver takes a woman to another world, the land of the souls, where she goes on a journey to reach out to her sister one last time.