Batman (1989)

Rating: ***
Director: Tim Burton
Music: Danny Elfman
Cast: Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Kim Bassinger, Billy Dee Williams, Jack Palance

Tim Burton tackles the Dark Knight and gives it his trademark touch of the bizarre. In his obsessed crusade against crime, Batman (Michael Keaton) inadvertantly brings about the birth of his greatest nemesis, the Joker (Jack Nicholson). It also turns out that the Joker was responsible for killing Bruce Wayne's parents, so the bat has a serious score to settle with the maniacal madman. And journalist Vicki Vale (Kim Basinger) is on hand to play the damsel in distress and scream a lot. A good film, but Batman purists will find plenty of problems with it. All of the players are excellent, and Gotham City is appropriately dark and gloomy. Unfortunately, many of the special effects are tacky, silly, or poorly executed, but even with its quirks the film is still a lot of fun to watch.