LEGO Batman Movie Hilarious Sendup of Dark Knight

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LEGO Batman Movie Blu-ray and DVD

When watching THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE, one must keep in mind that there are two Batmans. Batmen. Two characters of the same name that are both LEGO. There.

The Batman in THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE, voiced by WILL ARNETT, occupies the universe of THE LEGO MOVIE. The other occupies the LEGO DC SUPER HEROES universe. Both are silly, kid-friendly adventures, but the former really takes advantage of the wider universe of all things LEGO, and isn't afraid to be self-referential.

Batman has a full-time job keepng Gotham City safe from villains like The Joker (ZACH GALIFIANAKIS), Harley Quinn (JENNY SLATE), The Riddler (CONAN O'BRIEN), Two-Face (BILLY DEE WILLIAMS -- genius casting!), Catwoman (ZOE KRAVITZ), and Clayface (KATE MICUCCI -- no, seriously!), but it turns out he never really catches any of them. He just stops them. When the Joker enacts his latest scheme, he discovers that Batman doesn't consider him his arch-enemy, something the Joker dearly wants -- that coveted relationship where he lives rent-free in Batman's head. This is more than he can stand, so he decides to come up with his biggest plan ever.

When Barbara Gordon (ROSARIO DAWSON) takes over the reigns of Gotham City Police Commissioner from her retiring father, Jim Gordon (HECTOR ELIZONDO), Joker puts his plan into motion -- by surrendering. The plan takes all the other Gotham villains by surprise as well, as they are all summarily turned over and remanded to the custody of Arkham Asylum. With nothing left to do, Batman finds himself growing bored until Alfred (RALPH FIENNES) forces him to pay attention to the young orphan boy Bruce accidentally adopted by "accidentally" revealing the secret entrance to the Batcave.

Determining that the Joker can't be held by any ordinary prison, Batman decides the Joker should be placed in the Phantom Zone, where Superman puts all his worst enemies. So he devises a plan to break into the Fortress of Solitude and use the 115% expendable Dick Grayson (MICHAEL CERA), now going by Robin, as a retriever. He gets the device, and uses it on the Joker -- which, coincidentally, had always been the Joker's plan. Because once he's in the Phantom Zone, he recruits all the villains trapped inside -- all of whom happen to be WB characters from other films or franchises, like Lord Voldemort (EDDIE IZZARD), Sauron (JEMAINE CLEMENT), King Kong (SETH GREEN), and "British Robots" that intone "Ex-ter-min-ate." ("Ask your nerd friends," the Joker suggests.)

THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE gives us a Batman who is a loner by choice, completely self-involved, and completely self-aggrandizing. All the things we think of the real Batman (shut up!), he thinks of himself. Being outnumbered to this degree, and forced to be responsible for others and care about them offers an opportunity for character growth and development, without losing any of the off-the-wall LEGO humor.

This home video release includes four original Batman animation shorts done in the LEGO style, a NINJAGO short cartoon, and a ton of making-of featurettes that make THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE fun from opening menu to closing credits.

5.0 / 5.0