One of the most beautiful things about Alan Moore's "Batman: The Killing Joke" is that it says, accomplishes and does more in 48 pages than most do in hundreds.
This was not the case for the DC Comics Animated Movie of the same title.
It's 76-minutes long and would have been much stronger, and well received, by fans of the source material, had it cut some of the ... uh ... I'm just going to come out and say it ... Bat on Bat action.
Batman can care for Batgirl without getting into her Batcave; he can feel her pain and connect with her without going spelunking.
You know what I'm screaming?
Why must their relationship be sexualized?
It adds nothing of substance other than just about 15-minutes of movie. It doesn't add another layer to the fateful moment where Babs gets shot or lies in the recovery room.
Of the added scenes, Azzarello said: "The thing about this is that it's controversial, so we added more controversy." -- CBR.
That's the last thing this story needed. It was controversial enough. I understand you're trying to make a movie here, but Bat-fans and lovers of the book will cringe at that quote. The added scenes are questionable at best.
While mildly entertaining, it takes away from what people wanted to see, you know, The Killing Joke.
I know they only had 48-pages of brilliant source material to work with, mild sarcasm, but what's so wrong with a 45-60-minute long animated film if it tells the story that it teases audiences that it's actually going to tell. While I'm sure you can sense some of the Nerd Rage coming out, I don't want you to think this film written by Brian Azzarello is a complete disaster, because it's not.
The cast, oh man, the cast is the strongest aspect of this animated flick.
Kevin Conroy once again nails Batman; Mark Hamill adds another layer to his many incarnations of Joker and Tara Strong plays a strong, although unnecessarily over emphasized Batgirl.
And, listen, this is coming from a huge Batgirl fan. Maybe that's why I'm upset, because the only reason Batgirl is featured more in this animated version when compared to the book is to portray her as this lovesick, lonely and egotistical young woman.
It rubbed me the wrong way, even though she got rubbed the right way.
I can't stop and, I won't apologize. I'm trying to add controversy to this review. (That's a hard sentence to even type).
The movie is at its strongest when we're in The Joker's carnival world. This is what had most people excited, to see an extra evil, maniacal Joker who tortures the hell out of people just to prove a point.
Not only is this version portrayed fantastically, but the precursor story as what led this man to insanity is done -- while in time-blocks -- extremely effectively.
Should you see this? Yeah. Should you temper your expectations? Oh, for sure.
For those thinking about bringing a kid to the 'R' rated film, there are some violent scenes, naked (dinger-less, I mean we don't see his dangle, I'm sure he still has one) Jim Gordon, Batgirl in her underwear and bra, and I think they said "shit" once or twice?
The R rating seemed a little strong for an animated movie.
I will leave you with this:
They nailed the ending. The delivery is fantastic, I felt that the scene was set perfect and the big climax scene was paced at just the right speed. Anytime Batman and Joker are interacting in this is gold.