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I consider these sequels the best of their respective, independent series. It truly is difficult. Two fantastic takes on the same concept. It's killing me, but I'm going with 'Returns.' I think its overall tone was more consistent.
TDK destroys even Burton's Batman movies. I still very much like Burton's Batman movies, but this is not even close.
No contest. Ledger destroys Devito.
But does Ledger destroy Walken?
For me Batman Returns easily.TDK is a tad bit overrated.
I really think that The Dark Knight is overhyped, but it's still a great movie. Thus, this is no real contest because Batman Returns, while still being fairly good, doesn't come close to the original Burton Batman, Batman Begins or The Dark Knight. It's just too bizarre at times to be considered a truly great Batman movie.
I have to admit that it's been far too long since I've seen Batman Returns. I'm actually ding to see it again....
I've never liked DeVito's Penguin, and I found Walken oddly under-whelming. "The Dark Knight" wins.
Both awesome. Refuse to participate.
@slvs:Yes. Yes, he does. I love Burton's stuff, but TDK makes just about EVERY superhero movie look silly by comparison.
I liked De'Vito's penguin but Ledger's Joker was legendary ( "why so serious"). TDK makes other super hero films seem like child's play. (I loved the child's play fantasy of Spider-man 2 though.)
Another thing that gives TDK the edge over, well, just about any action movie is its dangerous villain. Ledger made me nervous whenever the Joker was onscreen. Like something extremely violent could happen at any moment. Some of my favorite villains, guys like Oldman in The Professional, didn't make me nervous. Ledger's Joker did.
Batman Returns has the talents of Michelle Pfeiffer and Michael Keaton going for it, and it's the only other Batman flick that I have a fondness for other than The Dark Knight. Well, I don't really have a "fondness" for The Dark Knight, because it's not fun or fantastical like Batman Returns. No, instead The Dark Knight is grimmer and grittier, and a meaner machine all around. I think The Dark Knight delivers the action and intensity far better, but Batman Returns does appeal to me more on a human sort of level. I didn't really relate to any of the characters as strongly in The Dark Knight because they lacked the same damaged melancholy of the characters in Burton's movie. Still, The Dark Knight does kick more ass. Both movies have their excesses, but The Dark Knight manages to deliver the most thrills and feelings of awe despite its weaknesses.
Batman Returns, definitely. While Dark Knight is a very good film, it's insanely overrated, overlong and wouldn't be half as memorable without Ledger's performance for it to lean on.
@kingofpain: you hit the nail squarely on the head. I still think Returns is the best of the 1st four Batman films, but The Dark Knight...and especially Batman Begins, for that matter...are leaner, grittier, more realistic films with MUCH better action and plots that are much more thought out. Plus, Nolan's films are cast very, very well, from Bale as Batman to Caine as Alfred.
Particpation I hardly knew ye. Going with the symbolism of Returns over TDK's transparent assertions on humanity and ethics.
I love Batman Returns a lot. The Dark Knight is good, but it doesn't have any of the magic, and is notable primarily for a single performance.
Returns is garbage, pure and simple. A terribly written mess with a plethora of plot holes, contrivances, ridiculous backstories, motivations that are either bland or make no sense, and for a film that many describe as "emo", it seems to also be dealing with a great amount of attention deficit disorder. Giving Burton complete control was just as much of a mistake as giving Michael Bay full control over Revenge of the Fallen. The Dark Knight wins in a landslide.
Squaremaster couldn't have said it better. Dark Knight by far.
No question here. Dark Knight buries Batman Returns...
I do much enjoy Burton's two Batman movies. Their miles ahead of the other two, pre-Nolan Batman movies. But TDK is still infinitely better.
The Dark Knight is one of the best Batman stories ever told and one of the greatest movies of its era. It was so good that after it was snubbed for a best picture nomination the Academy had to to change the nomination rules. Batman Returns is a disappointing sequel that has become more and more overrated with the increase of Burton's deserved fame and growing fan base.
Comparing Batman Returns to the Dark Knight is like comparing...No, there is no comparison. Dark Knight for the overkill.
The Dark Knight is garbage, pure and simple. A terribly written mess with a plethora of plot holes, contrivances, ridiculous backstories, motivations that are either bland or make no sense, and for a film that many describe as "emo", it seems to also be dealing with a great amount of attention deficit disorder. Giving Nolan complete control was just as much of a mistake as giving Michael Bay full control over Revenge of the Fallen. Returns wins in a landslide.
The Dark Knight wins in a landslide. The Dark Knight has epic storytelling, character motivations that actually make sense, character development, tons of emotion, amazing acting, and fun action sequences. The Dark Knight is not only the best Batman movie but the best superhero movie of all time. Batman Returns, however, is complete garbage. It is one of the worst Superhero movies out there. The storytelling is laughably bad. The character motivations make absolutely no sense. The Penguin, who just learned his name, dresses poorly, eats raw fish in public, looks ugly, and bites a guys nose in public runs for mayor. And people actually think he's capable of running for mayor. Seriously? There's almost no character development in this movie. The only character development that exist is revolved around Batman and Catwoman's cringeworthy romance. Every time this movie tried to have an emotional moment, it was handled in a laughably bad way. The acting is terrible. The only redeeming quality are decent action scenes.
The Dark Knights stomps over Batman Returns, and that's an understatement.
Dark Knight makes Batman Returns look like Romper Room.
Woah! MysticSpoon up there calmly agreeing with SquareMaster. 2012 was a fucked up time I tell you.
Michelle Pfeiffer in that cat suit may be the greatest thing mankind has ever done!
Batman Returns is really good but Dark Knight is masterful
Batman Returns is crap compared to TDK. Lol at the salty marvel fanboy who believes that TFA is > TDK above. Whining about TDK's greatness.
batman returns is a good film, but it's nothing compared to the dark knight
The dark knight for sure.
The Dark Knight by miles.
Batman returns is good but the dark knight is simply better
The Dark knight is one of the most overrated films I have ever seen. I liked batman returns more.
on Apr 15
Batman Returns has gotten better in rewatches but it doesn’t come close to Nolan’s Batman trilogy