Oh, Batman and Robin. This is a flick that’s gone down in history as one of the worst films ever made. Yes, you have movies like Fantastic Four and Green Lantern that people love to hate, but even those movies are g***amn Citizen Kane compared to the likes of Batman and Robin. Coming off of the likes of Batman Forever, fans definitely expected it to have more of a light tone, but no one could prepare them for the flurry of ice puns, bat nipples, sloppy filmmaking, and even sloppier writing.
Director Joel Schumacher has already gone on the record over a decade ago that he was sorry to those who hated the film, but fandom doesn’t forget atrocities like Batman and Robin. Speaking in an interview with Vice, Schumacher and the interviewer got blunt about the film and why it crashed and burned the way it did, but as they got started, Schumacher began by giving another apology to fans.
“Look, I apologize. I want to apologize to every fan that was disappointed because I think I owe them that.”
When asked about what it was that led to the movie being so bad, Schumacher agreed that his ego coming off of several hits is partially what led to the film being what it was.
“Look, I’m a very big boy. I take full responsibility. I walked into it with my eyes open and what I really feel bad about is the crew. We all know how great movie crews are. The special effects, stunt people, and everybody that breaks their asses along with the cast. Everybody worked really hard under very long hours. So I feel like their work wasn’t acknowledged like it could have been.”
Perhaps one of the biggest question marks fans had with the film had to do with the Bat Nipples. The costumes up to that point had been rubber and form-fitting, but with Batman and Robin, Schumacher saw the opportunity to allow the most anatomically correct suits to date. And for some reason, he thought that should extend to the nipples. Why, you ask?
“Well, it was made by Jose Fernandez, who was our brilliant lead sculpture. If you look at Batman and Batman Returns, it was the genius, Bob Ringwood that created those suits, so by the time we got to Batman Forever, the rubber and techniques had gotten so sophisticated. If you look at when Michael Keaton appears in the first suit, you’ll notice how large it is. It was brilliant but the best they could do at the time. By the time Batman Forever came around, rubber molding had become so much more advanced. So I said, let’s make it anatomical and gave photos of those Greek status and those incredible anatomical drawings you see in medical books. He did the nipples and when I looked at them, I thought, that’s cool.”
I’m ashamed to say that when he says it like that, I can kind of see where he’s coming from, though that obviously doesn’t stop it from being a bad idea. Complaints about the film aside, we can look back at it in retrospect and appreciate that without it we would never have gotten Christopher Nolan’s amazing Dark Knight Trilogy. In order for there to be a knee-jerk reaction to make things more real, there needed to be something like Batman and Robin to scare studios away from that approach.
Apology accepted, Joel Schumacher. You seem like a cool and reasonable dude.
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