Did I convince you to maybe give Batman Forever another shot? I hope so.
I don’t think I’m imagining everything that I wrote about. Those themes do seem to be present in the script and in the final movie. How much of it was premeditated is debatable and some of it could have manifested just from unconscious impulses from the filmmakers. But even if that is the case it doesn’t negate anything. It’s still there.
When it comes down to it, Batman Forever was one of my favorite movies as a kid and I was so pleased to find that it still held up as a fun two hours when I watched it 15 years later. The fact that I noticed these other things going on was just icing on the cake. Like I said in the beginning, there’s no complex symbolism or hidden messages in the movie. But the use of thematically coherent visuals and theme (addiction, punishment or mirroring) are simply some of the basic tools that any good film should use. Stuff like “theme” isn’t just for the art house and I think that’s a view that we adopt nowadays: anything playing in the multiplexes is garbage and only what the critical community or the Oscars deem worthy is considered a good film.
I hope you enjoyed the essay, thanks for reading it all the way through. Feel free to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to share your thoughts on the movie/tell me how I wasted my time writing this. And I’ll respond with that old Lennon quote:
Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.