One thing I would never imagine I would say is; “I really connected with the emotional heart of The Lego Batman Movie.” But you know what? I really did.
I’m the kind of person who likes to go to the cinema knowing what to expect. Generally, what will get me into a movie theatre seat, is knowing that the movie I am going to see is either widely accepted to be great, or has a subject or character I really care about. The first instance is a value for money deal; if I am going to pay out for the sometimes ridiculous cost of a cinema trip, I better know it’s going to be worth it! On the other hand, if I’m gonna see Transformers causing Bayhem, you’ll probably get some money out of me too.
The Lego Batman Movie fits neatly into both those categories, again, something I never thought I’d say, which is perhaps unfair for a number of reasons. Firstly, the Lego brand is really struggling to make a mis-step with their digital output these days. Ever since I first played the complete saga of the Lego Star Wars games on the Wii, I have bought many Lego video games, and never been disappointed. In terms of overall game quality, Lego Star Wars probably was the height, but at the very least, every Lego game in the last number of years has been solid, and fun to play.
Secondly, I love Batman. I had never really solidified who my favourite super hero was (let’s not get into the argument about whether he is “super” or not), until the Arkham games made me realise that the Batman history, in particular the villains, was so rich and well thought out, that he shot to the top of the list without anyone else coming close. Bruce Wayne’s heartbreak at losing his parents is so much more relatable than Kal-El losing his entire planet. The psychological battles and use of resources in Batman’s world is easier to comprehend being a part of Spiderman’s enhanced abilities. And [SPOILERS REMOVED] is definitely something I relate to at the moment in my life.
So Batman had everything going for it in order for me to enjoy it – it was widely regarded a great movie, and it included Batman, someone who had been there in my childhood and continued to intrigue me as an adult. I believe the reason I was caught out my the emotional weight of some of it is that it is a kids movie. I mean, of course it is. I keep referring to it as the “emotional heart” and “emotional weight” because I genuinely don’t believe what I took from the movie to be an emotional message. It was simply a something that Batman goes through as part of giving the movie an actual story arc, rather than being an all out soulless bright colour-fest to try and keep the kids happy. Like I said though, it’s something that resonates with me at the moment, and maybe it won’t for others, the important point being; if you don’t react to it the way I did, that doesn’t matter!
Lego Batman, is absolutely fantastic! It is laugh out loud even before [SPOILERS REDACTED]. Ok fair enough, that deserved to be removed. See a future article on spoilers for an explanation. Let’s just say, it is very funny from the very beginning, a very good place to start! It actually got to the point where I was worried I wasn’t going to have the stamina for the whole movie because I was laughing so much, and so hard. My jaw is actually a little sore as I write this! Also the amount of fan service in genuinely baffling, to the point that it beats the Arkham games for having so many references and characters showing up.
It also showed a lot of love and affection for the previous Batman films, and I think that this is where you get that warm fuzzy feeling from The Lego Batman Movie. The production team clearly had a lot of affection for all iterations of Batman up to this point, and [SPOILERS CUT]. Man, this is a hard review to write! I should have just said it was a spoiler review…
As I don’t want to give too much away, and it’s getting late, so I shall reach my conclusion, which is – go see Lego Batman. It has all the bright colours, all out action and visual flair to keep the kids happy, and enough clever jokes to keep adults enjoying themselves too. Just don’t be surprised if at some point you find yourself feeling some feelings.
THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE – 8/10