The Lego Batman Movie is probably a comic book geek’s dream come true. Not only does it reference almost every Batman villain imaginable, but has callbacks to every Batman movie as well, making fun of itself to no end. And realistically, it probably has to in order to fill up time.
Truth be told, the schtick gets old pretty fast, driving the one joke into the ground. While there are funny bits throughout, even up until the end, the majority of laughs eventually become forced and we begin looking at our watches.
In 2014’s The Lego Movie, Batman is a minor character who’s sole job is to provide an added element of comedy, entertaining us each time he’s on screen. However, in his own spinoff he overstays his welcome.
Voiced by Will Arnett, Batman is faced with his usual threats to Gotham City as Joker (Zach Galifianakis) unleashes villains from the Phantom Zone–a realm which has trapped countless creatures from different universes (e.g. Voldemort from Harry Potter, the shark from Jaws, Gremlins).
The main theme of the movie is how Batman is a loner and secretly longs for a family–although he won’t admit it to anyone, including himself. He plays the comedic role of the straight-man. But if a straight-man spends the whole movie telling jokes to himself, it can get pretty boring.
But then enters Batman’s sidekick, Robin (Michael Cera)–an overzealous child-like orphan who Batman “accidentally” adopts. Robin makes the movie about 12 times better, providing a second banana to Batman’s act, balancing out the humor.
The Lego Batman Movie isn’t terrible by any means. It’s actually fairly entertaining. For every two stupid jokes, there’s probably close to one good one. That’s what happens in a movie that shoots out comedic lines at rapid-fire. Some hit, but many of them miss.
If you want a Batman movie that spends more time parodying Batman than actually being a Batman movie (and if you actually get the jokes), then you’ll probably love this one. If you just want to laugh and don’t care about plot holes, this movie will probably do the trick. But in all honestly, the first Lego Movie is much much better. And so are a few other Batman films.