Starring Michael Keaton as Batman and Jack Nicholson as the Joker. This is what you get when you mix Batman Begins with the Dark Knight. A story about the two enemies. The emo rich kid that is Bruce Wayne and the insane mobster that is The Joker.
Better than Batman Begins but not as good The Dark Knight, Batman is the only Tim Burton thing I've seen and all the worse for it. Dark, dingy and downright panto in places. The film is slow at first and I really miss Michael Caine and Gary Oldman as Alfred and Jim Gordon. Surprisingly the one person I don't miss is Heath Ledger because while I found his portrayal as a diabolus ex machina interesting Jack Nicholson gives the Joker humanity, giving us his complete story. Michael Keaton has no chin but is otherwise better than Bale in every way.
Batman does the fantasy approach to the less mundane parts of the story with barely a lampshade to explain how Bruce Wayne has so many wonderful toys. This is very much a story where the audience is supposed to either be familiar with the comics or character or just generally be capable of working out that since Jack Napier works for Axis Chemicals and Bruce Wayne is rich enough to have a butler, that's how they get such wonderful toys. Part of me hates this since I do so love exposition but the assumption that the audience can connect the dots is marvelous in an age where fans pick apart lines of dialogue for hidden meanings that just aren't there.
My one major gripe with this film is how 80s it is. When the Joker and the gang raid the museum they look ridiculous in their baggy clothes, dancing to their boombox and dear god the rap music is atrocious. I wouldn't mind something by Eminem or even 50cent but Prince just sounds like a whiny love struck fool.
Overall it's a good film but its time period lets it down.