Franchises.  Film franchises are nothing new but for Warner Brothers Studios it is all about the franchises these days.  The DC Cinematic Universe.  Continuing the Harry Potter universe.  And after the monster success of The Lego Movie the WB saw a whole new franchise they could continue to crank films out for.

The Lego Movie was one hell of a film which touched on individuality, conformity, and believing in yourself.  It also had a Tegan and Sara song that you couldn’t get out of your heads for about twenty weeks after you saw the film.  The flick was pretty fun and witty with some great cameos.  It was the type of kids film that if your kid wanted to watch it over and over again you really didn’t mind.

We are getting a sequel to The Lego Movie but until then WB will continue to release more Lego films.  The next one?  The Lego Batman Movie.

Now the trailers for this film killed me.  I laughed my butt off.  I love Will Arnett’s voice as Batman and just having this Batman being a loner who saves the city then goes home to eat lobster alone just appealed to me.  I couldn’t wait to see this film.

I didn’t want to see the film Sing and it turned out to be one of last year’s best animated films.  Bad trailers – great film.  In the case of Lego Batman it had some great trailers and a film that just turned out to be boring.  Tedious.  It was a one note film that got old really quick.

I will point out that I am not the intended audience for this film.  The intended audience are the kids.  Take my kid for example – he had already seen the movie once.  But he loved it so much he wanted to see it again.  So we went.  He loved it again.  I was bored out of my mind.  I nearly fell asleep at the end.  I was drifting.  Looking back I really wish I did just fall asleep.  This might have been the worst animated film I’ve seen since Trolls.  And I thought Trolls could be used as a torture device for prisoners at Guantanamo Bay

In this film Batman is basically called out for never really catching the bad guys.  This film has a wide assortment of Batman villains to include comic book villains, characters from the 1960s TV show, and the Animated Series.  The entire film plays around with Batman’s very long 80 year history along with acknowledging all of the Batman films that have come before (to include the 60s movie and even a nod to the old Batman serials).

Commissioner Gordon is retiring and the role is taken over by his daughter Barbara.  Barbara sees Gotham City as needing less Batman and better police techniques to take down bad guys.  Meanwhile the Joker is feeling very unappreciated.  Joker feels that he is Batman’s arch-enemy but Batman doesn’t even care that he has to stop Joker over and over.  It is what it is for Batman.  And the Joker launches a plan to feel appreciated…or just kill everyone in Gotham City off.  Or both.  It’s the Joker – he’s not made to make sense.  He is able to assemble an army of non-Batman baddies and the characters he was able to join him was actually quite humorous.

On top of that Bruce Wayne accidentally adopts an orphan named Dick Grayson who quickly becomes Batman’s teammate when Batman uses the kid to help take something that isn’t his.  Great job Batman – way to put an untrained kid in danger while showing that stealing is GOOD.  Basically the entire plot hinges on Batman accepting the help of others and not being a loner – like he usually is in these movies.  Sorry Chris O’Donnell but you were a HORRIBLE Robin and I can see why the filmmakers just stay away from the Robin character.  I like how later films simply allude to Robin (ending of Dark Knight Rises or the costume in Batman v Superman) and don’t show him.  In actuality Robin was probably one of the better parts of this film thanks to the way the characters moves around on-screen and his voice acting.

Now the voice acting overall was pretty great.  Arnett returns from The Lego Movie as Batman and is joined by his Arrested Development cast mate Michael Cera as Robin.  Cera’s vocal performance knocked it right out of the park and he was the best cast, even beating Arnett.  Other voices include Rosario Dawson as Barbara Gordon (I didn’t know she did the film but from the moment I heard Barbara’s voice I picked that voice right out), Ralph Fiennes as Alfred, Zach Galifianakis as the Joker, and (the awesomely super cute with the amazing voice) Jenny Slate as Harley Quinn.  Jenny really seems to be the go-to voice for animated features these days. Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill reprised their voice roles as Superman and Green Lantern respectively.  Plus there are some other great voices like Garfunkel and Oates stars Riki Lindhorne and Kate Micucci, Mariah Carey, Seth Green, Adam Devine, iPhone’s Siri, and Conan O’Brien.

The best villain of them all?  Two-Face.  Two-Face was BLACK and voiced by BILLY DEE WILLIAMS.  After being cast as Harvey Dent in 1989’s Batman film we all waited to see Billy Dee as the live action Two-Face only to get Tommy Lee Jones in the role (in what would turn out to be a horrible, terrible film).  It is good to see that Billy Dee finally got his chance to be Two-Face, even if it is in an animated Lego movie.

I love The Lego Movie and find it to be a film I can watch over and over again.  I do like the Lego animation – I’ve watched many of the Lego Star Wars cartoon series they’ve had and have had some great enjoyment from all of them.  But The Lego Batman Movie was not for me.  Not one single bit.  And like Batman Forever and Batman & Robin it is a Batman film that I doubt I will ever watch again.  I can say never say never because if my kid begs me to watch it a year from now he might just relent.  Hopefully by then I can get him to watch the Nolan Batman films and have him forgetting all about this flick.  Or I’ll just let him watch it…and get some much needed nap time.


P.S.  They played the trailer for The Lego Ninjango movie before this film.  The kid seemed disinterested.  I am rejoicing.