Most people remember the catchy hit song “Everything is Awesome,” from the first Lego Movie and that same sentiment can be said for the newest film from Warner Bros. Animation, Lego Batman. Nostalgic and charming, this film encapsulates everything that fans love of the popular DC Comics superhero, Batman. Moody, brooding yet oddly heartwarming, actor, Will Arnett, brings to life the character of Batman and, combined with the great animation from the Warner Bros. team, this movie lives up to its successful predecessor.
The movie combines elements that every other Batman film possesses; a tragic murder of his parents which has scared him into adulthood, an epic and high-tech Batcave and gadgets and a lovable father figure of a butler named Alfred. However, along with all of these classic Batman staples comes the great animation and world of Lego. Each brick and character is delicately designed to look exactly like the real building blocks in real life and that is what makes this such a winning combination of story and nostalgia. Batman himself is full of charisma by often singing songs throughout the film and being over all ridiculously funny.
Batman’s story in this film begins with him being a conceited superhero who only cares about himself and tries to alienate anyone else in his life, for fear of getting attached to them. The Joker (voiced by Zach Galifianakis), tries to get Batman to admit that he wouldn’t be anything without him and that he and Batman wouldn’t be complete without each other, to which Batman responds he doesn’t need anybody and no one is special to him.
Almost like a lover disappointed in their relationship status, the Joker resorts to some serious measures to get Batman to admit that he needs him and goes on to release some of film and TV’s most evil villains from the Phantom Zone. Moviegoers got a great surprise when characters from other properties made cameos in the film such as Sauron from The Lord of the Rings, Daleks from Doctor Who, and Voldemort from the Harry Potter franchise.
Meanwhile, Alfred (voiced by Ralph Fiennes) tries to convince Batman to open his heart to loving other people so he can get over his fear of being a part of a family again. This means trying to convince him to care for Robin (voiced by Michael Cera) his newly, adopted-by-accident son. Batman also has to learn how to work with newly instated police commissioner Barbara Gordon/Batgirl (voiced by Rosario Dawson), instead of taking the law into his own hands.
At first, Batman is reluctant, but over the course of the film he realizes that he needs, and actually enjoys, being a part of a family type group with Robin, Barbara and Alfred. When the four of them combine to fight the villains released from the Phantom Zone, Batman and his fellow Lego heroes save the day and Batman himself learns how to be a true hero and part of a family; he even admits he needs the Joker, by stating “I hate you,” his term of endearment for the super villain.
For hardcore fans of DC Comics and Batman in particular, fans will be delighted to see a huge array of classic Batman villains such as Harley Quinn, The Riddler, Bane, Catwoman and Poison Ivy. The film even goes through a huge list of other B-list and C-list villains that only true fans of the comic books will know, such as the Condiment King and Mothman.
The Justice League also makes a good appearance in which Batman meets them all at The Fortress of Solitude, where he discovers he wasn’t invited to their Justice League party since everyone thinks he is such a moody downer, another motivation for him to become more open to people.
The film also makes reference to all of the previous Batman films such as the Christian Bale films and even the classic Adam West Batman from the 1960s, all while incorporating those cameos into Lego form which was super fun to see.
Overall, the characters were well developed and the actors did a great job of bringing these beloved characters to life. The true star of this film though was definitely Arnett voicing Batman. He was absolutely perfect for the role and sometimes throughout the film you almost forgot you were watching an animated Lego film since the acting was so spot-on.
Any fan of DC Comics, Batman, Lego or just pop-culture in general will surely love this movie for its comedy, story line and nostalgia.