Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Reliving The Past

As Jurassic World continues to stomp on its box office competition, Scott Mendelson recalls how director Joel Schumacher’s Batman Forever arrived in similar style two decades ago and served as the template for the remaining Batman sequels:
Armed with visually dazzling trailers, the high-profile cast, a bunch of merchandising tie-ins (including McDonalds, which bore a chunk of the Batman Returns backlash), and halfway-decent reviews, Batman Forever broke the opening weekend record for the third time in a row, earning $52.7 million on its debut weekend and getting credit with “saving” the franchise. Whether or not you liked the film, Batman Forever looked and felt like the biggest Hollywood spectacular that we had seen in quite some time. At a cost of $100m back when that meant something, it was less a movie and more a coronation of its factory-made blockbuster-ness, with each and every prime ingredient to maximize that all-important opening weekend. It was action-packed without being grimly violent (save Dick Grayson’s family, every onscreen death was a villain), it was baroque without being grotesque, and it was sexy without being sexual. It was less a freak show tragedy and more of a pop candy Batman adventure movie, full of grand action sequences and scenery-chewing supporting characters.”
(Image: Jim Carrey as the Riddler and Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face in Batman Forever. Carrey has stated that Jones was far from amused about working with him. Warner Bros.)

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