Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The First Annual GeniusboyFiremelon Bi-Coastal 24-Hour (Non-Consecutive) Film Festival: Batman Forever (1995)

None of us at film fest HQ had seen Batman Forever since its original theatrical release, but when it popped up on the spinner rack, in position #1... (okay, who am I kidding? It was the special selection of film fest founder and secretary Richard Oldstate. He of the tweed slacks and the seafoam ascot. One would think he'd be above such superhero spectacle, especially after the disappointment of Gotham Knight, but as he held the Batman Forever dvd in his meaty hands, he giggled like a seven-year-old who'd just found his father's stash of Gary Panter art books).

As we screened this film, we, at film fest HQ, wondered (vocally) why Batman and Robin was thought of as the film that killed the Batman franchise, when Batman Forever was clearly a work of utter horribleness. How the franchise survived this movie--how this movie earned hundreds of millions of dollars worldwide--we could not decipher, as we sat in loud silence watching Nicole Kidman throw herself at a pre-puffy Val Kilmer; as we watched Tommy Lee Jones take cinematic performance in a direction best left to lesser actors; as we watched Jim Carrey give one of the most grating acting lessons of his long and painful career; as we watched Chris O'Donnell do his laundry karate.

This is the worst movie in GeniusboyFiremelon Bi-Coastal 24-Hour (Non-Consecutive) Film Festival history.

Jon Favreau's the best thing in this movie, and he has no lines. Somehow, he survived this monstrosity.

After mocking the crimes against theatricality perpetrated by Joel Schumacher and company, we knew there was only one way to redeem ourselves and save our film festival from the fate of its lesser competitors. We had to go the distance.

Next up: Batman and Robin (1997)

[Note: Richard Oldstate adds, "I am a fan of acting and a fan of the actor, and I chose this film because I so admire the nuances and restraint shown in the performances of Mr. James Carrey and Sir Thomas Lee Jones. I have no comment on Mr. Timothy Callahan's improper impression of the film. He was clearly watching a different movie.]


andy khouri said...

I can't believe you watched this, much less the next one. Once you see Batman & Robin, you will realize just how good a movie Batman Forever is -- in a vacuum, I mean, where only those two films exist.

Timothy Callahan said...

You are wrong, my friend.

B&R reigns supreme in such a horribly skewed vacuum world.

Bill Reed said...

Batman Forever used to be my favorite Batman movie.

I was young.

It's still more watchable than Batman & Robin. By miles. And miles. And miles.