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View Poll Results: Who was the better Batman / Bruce Wayne, and why?
Christian Bale (Batman Begins and The Dark Knight) 265 61.20%
Michael Keaton (B89 and Batman Returns) 168 38.80%
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Old 08-14-2011, 11:12 PM   #101
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

If anyone hasn't read Keaton reminiscing on the Batfilms, you should check out this interview from a couple months back. Lots of great insight into how he chose to act in the role. It's a shame there is this misconception that both he and Burton only scratched the surface of what the character was about. If anything I think much of what they did flew over a lot of people's heads.

Anyway, here is the most interesting quote from that piece. I'd pay a fortune to get a hold of this gem:

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There was a thing that never got in that was really interesting. I went to Tim and said that we should see if we could do a scene that showed the transition and Tim was really great about these things so we tried. I wanted to see and to show that transition when he goes from Bruce Wayne to Batman, the time when he’s about to don the suit and go out and wreak some havoc. That’s not a casual thing, obviously, it’s not putting on a jacket to go out for the evening. So what is that transition like? So there was a thing we did early on that showed him going into a sort of trance and it justified this shift in him. So we did that scene and it never made it into the film but I think helped me in a way. It was part of the way he became this other thing and even if you didn’t see it, it was part of the character and the way we created him. Tim was always open to that. Jack and Kim come to him, too, chipping in with ideas and it was a really creative environment.”
Incidentally this would have helped Bale's performance more, as his portrayal is really out there. Surprised Nolan completely glossed over this, as he painstakingly showed everything else about Batman's creation.

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Old 08-15-2011, 12:03 AM   #102
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

This is fantastic. Makes me love Burton's spooky take even more. I knew before that Burton's batman actually IS psycho and has split personality, kind of like Norman Bates, but this thing about going into a trance is fantastic

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Old 08-15-2011, 12:33 AM   #103
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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This is fantastic. Makes me love Burton's spooky take even more. I knew before that Burton's batman actually IS psycho and has split personality, kind of like Norman Bates, but this thing about going into a trance is fantastic
Agreed!

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Old 08-15-2011, 01:19 AM   #104
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Actually he seemed to be relatively new to Gotham. Knox claimed there had been 8 sightings in just under a month. So he had not been Batman for a good while at all.
So...Burton's Batman was inconsistent. Got it.

I seriously don't see all of the reason for the BatVoice hatred. He's not a whiny beeotch. He's the GD Batman. Deal.

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Old 08-15-2011, 01:22 AM   #105
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Wink Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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I seriously don't see all of the reason for the BatVoice hatred. He's not a whiny beeotch. He's the GD Batman. Deal.
I seriously don't see how you seriously don't see the reasoning for the Bale-Bat-voice hate.

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Old 08-15-2011, 05:22 AM   #106
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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I don't think that was at all intended to be taken that way, but it would make Batman the first superhero psychological thriller. That would be really interesting.



Pretty much.



If you prefer Michael Keaton's Batman, wouldn't be more appropriate since he wore the symbol with the ellipse, while Christian Bale wore the simple black bat? Just saying.
That's just how I see. Perhaps I'm wrong, Burton never intended for people to question whether Bruce is just making this **** up about Jack being his folks' killer in his subconscious mind as he goes along.

But yeah, it would add an extra edge to the whole thing.

Maybe every time he goes out into the night, he goes into a "trance" to remember his past, putting himself outside the false comfort zone of "normal" daylight and switching over to his true comfort zone, that he has to be Batman because he's afraid that his inaction might create another Bruce Wayne.

I sure like my Batman nutty, as opposed to GI-Joe I need more tumblers Stuntman Nolan-Bats.

EDIT: Lately I've been thinking about all the iconic things that have been morphed over by Nolan that were first found in Burton's two films.

Doesn't that Joker vs Batman scene in B89 remind you of Bale charging his bike against Heath's Joker?

What about in Begins, when Bale calls for "backup" and drops an emitter down a few floors for the bats to swarm to? There's a very similar sequence in Returns too.

I'm not sure if these things are just "nods" to the older films or what.


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Old 08-15-2011, 06:48 AM   #107
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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I thought that Michael Keaton was the best Batman of the old franchise. He felt more compelling to me than either Kilmer or Clooney.
Keaton, Kilmer and Clooney all had to contend with bigger stars hogging the spotlight in their Batfilms and yet Michael is the only one who somehow HOLDS your attention on the screen. Val seemed far too stiff even with what character stuff there is in BF and Clooney is just being Clooney with a bad script in B&R.

Back when the American Film Institute held it's 100 Heroes and Villains poll in 2003 (voted for by people in the industry and film critics) I was happy to see Keaton's interpretation of Bats listed in the Heroes section.

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Old 08-15-2011, 08:50 AM   #108
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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What about in Begins, when Bale calls for "backup" and drops an emitter down a few floors for the bats to swarm to? There's a very similar sequence in Returns too.
That's right out of Batman: Year One.

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Old 08-15-2011, 12:03 PM   #109
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

Yeah...the "backup" scene is straight out of the Year One graphic novel.

I prefer Bale's growl, personally, to the Keaton whisper. If for anything, we're able to hear him yell. Keaton's whisper was great, but if he had to raise it or anything it didn't work for me anymore. Coming across as cold, calculating, unemotional was how I saw it. The growl is all anger. Rage.

And, by the same token...I liked Kilmer's voice because it seemed like he was trying Keaton's whisper.

The Batman Begins outfit is way better than The Dark Knight outfit. The only thing that I think is a major step up, is the cowl being it's own helmet separate from the neck. I would have been interested to see them keep the exact same design, but alter the cowl and neck the way they did in TDK.

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Old 08-15-2011, 12:37 PM   #110
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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I like Kilmer way better than Keaton or Clooney. I think he made a better job of the role and he had a better script to work with for Batman's character.
His Batman was in love with some airheaded shrink and his Bruce Wayne was jealous of Batman attracting Chase more than he did.

Then his Batman acted like a fragile damsel before a stud when he was talking to Chase at the rooftop. Chase kept chasing him and Batman kept avoiding her, running some steps away and turning his back at her.

That's interesting? Heh.

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Old 08-15-2011, 02:38 PM   #111
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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EDIT: Lately I've been thinking about all the iconic things that have been morphed over by Nolan that were first found in Burton's two films.
There are quite a few things, eye makeup, black bodysuit, the cloth-to-glider cape, grapple gun, the mob scene with "youre crazy" comment, saving the girl and taking her back to the cave to give her the antidote for poison to name just a few. I was planning to write about all that at some point but thats in the future, plus I need to find the quote Im looking for from Nolan when he comments on things that B89 inspired in him. As they say, good ideas never get old

He didnt draw from Burton's movies only. Sonar eyes and Two Face's death by falling while the coin falls on the side after his death, there are some nods to Forever as well

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What about in Begins, when Bale calls for "backup" and drops an emitter down a few floors for the bats to swarm to? There's a very similar sequence in Returns too.
Thats a scene from Year One which was the main inspiration for Begins, but it could inspired Returns also

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Old 08-15-2011, 02:50 PM   #112
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Yeah...the "backup" scene is straight out of the Year One graphic novel.

I prefer Bale's growl, personally, to the Keaton whisper. If for anything, we're able to hear him yell. Keaton's whisper was great, but if he had to raise it or anything it didn't work for me anymore. Coming across as cold, calculating, unemotional was how I saw it.
The cold and quiet whisper is what the comic book voice was actually.




Still, whisper was perfect for Keaton, Growl was perfect for Bale

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:20 PM   #113
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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There are quite a few things, eye makeup, black bodysuit, the cloth-to-glider cape, grapple gun, the mob scene with "youre crazy" comment, saving the girl and taking her back to the cave to give her the antidote for poison to name just a few. I was planning to write about all that at some point but thats in the future, plus I need to find the quote Im looking for from Nolan when he comments on things that B89 inspired in him. As they say, good ideas never get old

He didnt draw from Burton's movies only. Sonar eyes and Two Face's death by falling while the coin falls on the side after his death, there are some nods to Forever as well



Thats a scene from Year One which was the main inspiration for Begins, but it could inspired Returns also
Yeah I was thinking about all that.

It just irks me that there are people out there who say that Nolan's Batfilms have no relations at all to the first 4 in terms of borrowing ideas or updating old ideas.

Still, I prefer some of the executions of Burton's films. In B89, when Joker goes "come and get me you gruesome SOB'", he ended up shooting the Batplane down (as unrealistic as that is).

In TDK, the ever so clever and calculating detective that is Batman, decides to possibly ram the Batpod into the Joker, only at the last second, decides that "oh well, I can't kill anybody! That's not what Batman is about" and crashes to unconsciousness.

Is that what Nolan pictures Batman to be? An indecisive guy who has to be so dramatic about killing or not killing that he ends up injuring himself? I can't imagine seeing something like that in the comics, in the cartoons or in any other movie; Batman is a smart guy and not an emotional brute.

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:25 PM   #114
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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I can't imagine seeing something like that in the comics, in the cartoons or in any other movie; Batman is a smart guy and not an emotional brute.
Well in comics he does get carried away sometimes, especially when using physical force. Joker is usually the one who pushes his temper beyond boundaries

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:39 PM   #115
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Well in comics he does get carried away sometimes, especially when using physical force. Joker is usually the one who pushes his temper beyond boundaries
Still it just comes off as unrealistic and inconsistent to even Nolan's own Batman. One minute, he seems like he knows the score then the next he just crashes his bike because he can't get a grip on what he wants to do. Wouldn't it have been easier if he just drove past the Joker and stop? I know it makes for good cinema, you have to be dramatic, but that one scene still bugs me.

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Old 03-10-2012, 07:14 PM   #116
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Old 03-11-2012, 11:45 AM   #117
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Still it just comes off as unrealistic and inconsistent to even Nolan's own Batman. One minute, he seems like he knows the score then the next he just crashes his bike because he can't get a grip on what he wants to do. Wouldn't it have been easier if he just drove past the Joker and stop? I know it makes for good cinema, you have to be dramatic, but that one scene still bugs me.
Well, but thats how batman is. He is very smart and a great detective, but once his anger hits him he turns into a beast

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Old 03-11-2012, 11:53 AM   #118
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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His Batman was in love with some airheaded shrink and his Bruce Wayne was jealous of Batman attracting Chase more than he did.

Then his Batman acted like a fragile damsel before a stud when he was talking to Chase at the rooftop. Chase kept chasing him and Batman kept avoiding her, running some steps away and turning his back at her.

That's interesting? Heh.
The aspect of Bruce being jealous about Chase's obsession with Batman is pretty interesting, yea.

Anyway as for the topic, Keaton, easily. It was all in his eyes. No dialogue or exposition needed, you could see in his eyes and his face that this guy was on the edge.

Keaton was more intimidating with a whisper and a cold glance than Bale can ever be with his ridiculously unintimidating Bat voice. The only time it's ever been effective for me was when he was interrogating Flass. Also ironically, when he WHISPERED "Here" in that scene at the docks in Begins.

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Old 03-11-2012, 11:54 AM   #119
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Well, but thats how batman is. He is very smart and a great detective, but once his anger hits him he turns into a beast
No it's not. Batman rarely loses control, if ever. Batman in TDK was, frankly, a naive idiot.

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Old 03-11-2012, 03:43 PM   #120
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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The aspect of Bruce being jealous about Chase's obsession with Batman is pretty interesting, yea.
How so?

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Anyway as for the topic, Keaton, easily. It was all in his eyes. No dialogue or exposition needed, you could see in his eyes and his face that this guy was on the edge.

Keaton was more intimidating with a whisper and a cold glance than Bale can ever be with his ridiculously unintimidating Bat voice. The only time it's ever been effective for me was when he was interrogating Flass. Also ironically, when he WHISPERED "Here" in that scene at the docks in Begins.
I agree.

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Old 03-11-2012, 10:44 PM   #121
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Old 03-11-2012, 11:40 PM   #122
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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No it's not. Batman rarely loses control, if ever. Batman in TDK was, frankly, a naive idiot.
Naive? Yes, at first anyway. An idiot? Absolutely not. An idiot could not take a small technology made by an associate and implement it on a huge scale using a supercomputer by himself right under his associate's nose. There has not been another live action Batman to do something as intelligent that.

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Old 03-12-2012, 12:52 PM   #123
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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No it's not. Batman rarely loses control, if ever. Batman in TDK was, frankly, a naive idiot.
He does lose control and sometimes it takes an outside influence to get him back on track


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Old 03-12-2012, 01:07 PM   #124
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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How so?



I agree.
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Naive? Yes, at first anyway. An idiot? Absolutely not. An idiot could not take a small technology made by an associate and implement it on a huge scale using a supercomputer by himself right under his associate's nose. There has not been another live action Batman to do something as intelligent that.
Because 1. He thinks criminals aren't complicated and that they all have reasons for doing what they do. 2. He thinks giving up being Batman will stop the Joker killing people. 3. He thinks he hasn't broken his "one rule" and seems surprised that Maroni is more frightened of Joker than him. 4. He thinks he has a chance with Rachel even after revealing himself as Batman.

The supercomputer was impressive. Although I don't like the idea of Batman having a "Q" to create all this tech for him. He should be doing it himself. That's part of Batmans "superpower" so to speak.

So I wouldn't actually call him an idiot really. He is very, very naive though. Waaaaay too naive for someone as well travelled and as "apparently" intelligent as Bruce Wayne.

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Old 03-12-2012, 02:37 PM   #125
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Default Re: Christian Bale v.s. Michael Keaton - Part 2

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Because 1. He thinks criminals aren't complicated and that they all have reasons for doing what they do.
That's the teachings he learned from Ra's. It is not naive to think that, especially when you've never encountered someone like the Joker, who was previously seen robbing banks.

It's not foolish to assume he was after something logical like money, and he just wanted Batman out of the way, hence why he was trying to get him to unmask.

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2. He thinks giving up being Batman will stop the Joker killing people.
He doesn't think any such thing. He does it because he feels he has enough blood on his hands because people are being killed because of him.

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3. He thinks he hasn't broken his "one rule" and seems surprised that Maroni is more frightened of Joker than him.
What is naive about that? That in such a short space of time The Joker has instilled more fear in Gotham's underworld than he ever could, even though he took down Falcone, Ra's and forced the mob to change tactics and meet in daylight. That is surprising and impressive.

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4. He thinks he has a chance with Rachel even after revealing himself as Batman.
She did tell him at the end of Begins that they could be together the day he stopped being Batman.

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