By Skylar Brown, Contributing Writer (‘25)
There have been many Batman films and television shows produced. It may seem hard to stand out or create a new, exciting story that differentiates itself from the many other versions of the character. Also, more importantly, a story that produces mainstream success in a world where the Marvel Cinematic Universe dominates the superhero film space, but director Matt Reeves seems to have done it with The Batman.
Having been out over three weeks, Matt Reeves’ The Batman box office receipts have begun to finally fall by almost half compared to an initial couple of weeks after its release. Regardless, the title exceeded and continues to exceed market expectations, ranking it at $25.3 million. The film comes in second behind Sandra Bullock-starting debut The Lost City, ranking $31 million and kicking The Batman from the top earnings spot for the first time since its release.
The Batman, the biggest hit of 2022 so far, is the first film since Spider-Man: No Way Home to make more than $300 million at the domestic box office. It has accumulated over $650 million in box office revenue, leading it to be in the top 150 grossing movies of all time. The movie went as far as to surpass its fellow DC blockbuster, Justice League, which grossed $657.9 million since its release in 2017.
As a director and co-writer, Reeves took a decent, well-known tale and made it so much more while still maintaining the familiar eeriness of the franchise. The movie will scare you, excite you, indulge you in its mystery. Reeves commits to telling a gritty and dark tale of the true corruption found in Gotham, making the movie both thrilling and grounding. His work is point of view driven, often putting you in the shoes of the characters and showing their interpretation of the city confining them.
Robert Pattinson brings forth a different take on Bruce Wayne, portraying him to be an enigmatic and eccentric, though righteous, man. Between Pattinson’s appearances in Twilight, The Lighthouse, and various other works, the actor has an inherent knack for playing characters who are in parts both eerie and peculiar. Pattinson’s depiction of Wayne’s persona in The Batman helps the story to edge into a murder mystery thriller more so than an action movie. Nevertheless, The Batman is not a good story because it’s an indulging murder mystery, but because it allows the characters within to change and grow as well. Batman is forced to question his past as well as confront and redefine his purpose. In doing so, an opening is created, allowing viewers to challenge their own narratives.
Reeves’ The Batman constantly defies everything that those who avidly watch or read the stories know of his character. Symbolic items such as Batman’s Batmobile are not staple pieces in this film, though the movie remains viscerally gripping nonetheless. This movie is one of the most paradoxical and indulgent of all of the Batman movies, even though it’s scarcely a Batman movie at all.