Coming from someone who is not a fan of any superhero character, I could immediately give my thumbs-up to The LEGO Batman Movie for making me more curious about the world of the Caped Crusader (whose only movie I’ve seen is Batman v. Superman plus some cartoons). It’s quite nostalgic to watch this spin-off with The LEGO Movie in mind—the entirety of which I enjoyed thoroughly back in 2014. I can’t think of any other animated movie filled with such spellbound fun that leaves an enjoyable aftertaste even after some time. It might have been terrible for me to look for one adorable song from The LEGO Batman to equal the first movie’s Everything is Awesome but everything else just works sufficiently to keep me entertained.
The story is more laugh-inducing with Batman’s indifference towards his ‘greatest enemy’—The Joker. It builds up tension between the archenemies and provides a good picture of both character’s soft spots. Will Arnett’s Batman may seem serious but his character develops for the better. On the other hand, Zach Galifianakis’ Joker is simply hilarious however much he tries to look evil or plot against Gotham City. When the Joker asks Batman if he seriously feels nothing special about their relationship, the latter just cracks with a soon-to-be-classic quote, “Batman doesn’t do ships. As in relationships… You mean nothing to me. No one does.” When these lines are followed by a closeup of Joker’s flabbergasted reaction, it’s a tough feat not to laugh out loud seeing how Batman’s words have shattered the Joker’s feelings.
Batman’s character in this film is as lonely as it could get. It is painful to watch how this is stressed with everyone else partying and celebrating without minding the hero of their city. He lives in a mansion with Alfred (Ralph Fiennes) as his butler and Apple’s Siri as his sentient supercomputer—a bountiful living, indeed—but he is a sad, lonely man. Things change when he meets the playful Dick Grayson (Michael Sera) who would become his adoptive son and sidekick, Robin. Not to mention, the entrance of Rosario Dawson’s Barbara Gordon into Batman’s life made him realize the importance of teamwork, let alone companionship. All of these could be your typical framework of a family-oriented movie but The LEGO Batman appears to have set these standards to make things more familiar and more accessible.
With a number of jokes and comic book references and an abundance of characters (villains and allies alike) to serve the fans, The LEGO Batman Movie goes beyond the expectation of delivering visual treats all throughout. The ride is all worth it. Should this be the direction Warner Animations Group intends to go, we are all off to see more memorable adventures with The LEGO Ninjago Movie opening this September and the sequel to The Lego Movie in 2018.