Re: The Official Batman (1989) Thread - Part 3
I agree with CConn. we actually see a full character arc of Bruce through all 4 films.
when he stars, Bruce Wayne doesn;t really exist. he's pretty much Batman all the time,even when out as Bruce. analyzing.vengeful.no time for personal relationships. and what SHOULD be the moment that snaps his darkness - the death of his parent's killer - does not such thing....
as evidenced in BR. he's even more distant. Vickie has left him due to his inability to move on from the night,and to actually HAVE a life as Bruce Wayne. he's murderous,cold,just waiting for the Batsignal to bring him to life. even,again,while out as "Bruce Wayne",he's still Batman. see his scene with Max in the board room. all he's worried about is finding out Max's connection to the Red Triangle Circus Gang.Selina is his mirror image, murderous,full of rage and hurt,unable to get over the trauma in her life. just like him . the same "Split,right down the center." once he sees her,and what basically he has become,is when he has his moment, willing to give it all up (even openly exposing his identity in spite of what it would mean if Max survived,knowing he was Batman) to have them try and put it all behind and save each other. he's becoming HUMAN again,rather than just dwelling in the dark beast of Batman. and he's rejected by Selina's madness and pain,the pit he was in and is just beginning to crawl out of...
Batman Forever IS a sequel. loose,indirect,whatever. it references events from the 1st 2 films and has the same Alfred and Gordon characters. here is the most even split of the character. Batman is now more the "Hero" of Gotham rather than the boogeyman in the alley's and rooftops.He has embraced this role. and Bruce Wayne now actually exists,going on dates,running Wayne Enterprises,even taking in a ward. yet he's still not completely over his parents death,as evidenced by his dreams about the book. Chase and Robin help him with this,firstly by finally confronting the choice he made, and showing him that he can be "Both Bruce Wayne AND Batman. not because i have to be,but because I CHOOSE to be." and Dick shows him he doesn't need to face the night alone anymore,while also grounding him to not go back to being the vengeful,murderous psychopath he was previously cause Dick need guidance,some one to set him on the right path to seek JUSTICE rather than REVENGE.
B & R continues this transformation. Batman is now Bruce's costumed hero alterego,the mask he wears to go out and seek justice. Bruce is the "main" character in the split personality relationship, still running Wayne Enterprises and mentoring dick,engaged to Julie Madison,active in charitable causes,and most of all now part of a FAMILY with Dick, Barbara,and Alfred. something he never had before.
as the movies go along,we start off with a vengeful,in pain Bruce who is fully immersed in the monster he's created, to realizing that revenge has become his whole life and it's the wrong road to travel,to becoming part of the human race again and moving past his need for revenge to ease his pain,to finally becoming a hero to inspire others,a guiding figure in a hurt young man's life,and eventually part of the family he was denied all his life.
it's a pretty good,fully realized character arc in my opinion
"I'm a Professional Crime Fighter!"