Back in the eighties, there were a lot of films (and television shows) that tried to cash in on the success of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Who would have thought that this breezy trifle, written years before Raiders, would come closer to capturing the spirit of the original film than Spielberg’s sequel of the very same year?
Following the huge success of Tim Burton’s Batman, a sequel was inevitable. It’s also clear that Burton was allowed a lot more creative leeway in directing Batman Returns than he had on the first film. The 1989 film had scattered touches of the director’s off-center visual sensibilities, but the 1992 sequel was set in a world that was Burton-esque from wall to wall.
To try to top Jack Nicholson’s balls-to-the-wall portrayal of the Joker, Returns gives us three, count ’em, three villains for our movie-going bucks. The Penguin (Danny DeVito), Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer) and Max Shreck (Christopher Walken). You would think with this kind of A-List talent on hand, however, that Batman Returns would bat better than .333 in the villain department. Of the three, only Catwoman manages to emerge as a full-blooded character.