May 29, 2018
Batman & Robin (1997) (part 13 of 13)
We see Batman and the scientists on the telescope in the middle of their ten-hour plunge. Batman fires off a Mega Platinum Super-Duper Bat Rope™ and tells the scientists to grab his belt. And then he tells them to pull his finger.
The Mega Platinum Super-Duper Bat Rope™ connects with something and Batman pulls them off just moments before the telescope hits the ground and goes up in a giant ball of flame [?]. Please don’t ask me what could be inside of a telescope that would cause it to be this combustible.
Batman sets the scientists down on a ledge, then pulls himself back up towards the observatory. They call out, “Thank you, Batman!” as he flies away. Yeah, thanks for just leaving us on the damn telescope while you were aiming it. Batman swoops past Robin and Batgirl and says, “Need a ride?” They both grab onto him, and despite Batgirl’s weight, Batman pulls all three of them back up to the observatory.
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When they get there, it’s almost midnight and the telescope is gone, so it seems like there’s no way to thaw the city now. Batman says the Dues Ex Machina Satellites could be positioned to do it, but it would “take a computer genius!”
Accordingly, Batgirl gets on the case, but Robin butts in and points out that the computer is now flipped over and that “we’re gonna have to do this upside down!” Batgirl sneers, “Men! Everything the hard way!” They get the computer display up and running again, but it’s right side up. Um, okay. So the stupid lines don’t match the props, yet they left them in anyway. Whatever.
Robin tells her that she’s “Pretty good at this, little girl!” to which Batgirl retorts, “Watch and learn, little boy!” I’m sure there’s a parallel universe somewhere where this passes for creative banter. She then dinks around with the computer and two seconds later has it all done. We watch as all the Dues Ex Machina Satellites in orbit reflect beams of sunlight down to Gotham.
Eventually, all the people are thawed, and we watch them just shake off the slush and move on. No frostbite, no hypothermia, not even trench foot. Damn Comic Book Movie.
Then we see the guy in the phone booth get thawed out. Oh, thank God. I can now sleep easy knowing that Phone Booth Guy survived. Then we see the cops all thawed out, but for some reason they still have really fake-looking icicles on their car doors. The icicles even bounce back and forth like rubber [!] as one cop gets out.
We then see one guy get thawed out who was apparently in the middle of buying something from a street vendor. The guy doesn’t know what just happened, but the newly thawed street vendor just continues to grab at his money. Hilarious! And the money-grubbing street vendor is Asian, too! Komedy!
Then we see the bulldog thaw out and just walk off [?]. Okay, I give up. Was this supposed to be funny? True comedy would have been Batman putting the frozen dog next to Freeze so that it ended up taking a leak on his head as soon as it thawed out. Now that would have been a hundred times more hilarious than anything in this movie.
Our three heroes smile upon this golden tableau for a while, and then Batman goes over to the subdued Freeze. He tells him he’s going back to Arkham, but Freeze asks to be killed the way Batman killed his wife. Batman says he didn’t kill Nora Fries, and as proof, he pulls out a mini Bat TV showing Ivy saying her line about pulling the plug on lady Fries. Oddly, it’s from the same angle that we saw it happen, and not from way up above, which is where Batman was when she said it. Whatever. Comic Book Movie. Et cetera.
Upon seeing this, Freeze howls in anger, and poor Arnie is actually forced to act here. It’s not a pretty picture. However, Batman reveals that they conveniently saved his wife and she’s still “frozen, alive”.
“But vengeance isn’t power,” Batman lectures. “Anyone can take a life. But to give life, that’s true power!” And knowing is half the battle! Batman pleads to Freeze’s inner scientist, calling him “Victor” and asking for the cure to MacGregor’s Syndrome Stage 1. Batman fronts like he’s just looking to save the lives of random MacGregor’s sufferers, but we know he’s just trying to hook up his boy Alfred.
In response, Freeze opens up a compartment in the arm of his suit and pulls out two blue, glowing test tubes. So, the Day-Glo Skulls in Ivy’s hideout were drinking the cure for MacGregor’s? “Tek two uff dese,” Freeze says, “An cawl meh inneh mohning!” Batman takes the serum and promises to have Nora Fries moved to Arkham so Freeze can continue his “research” there. Geez, first we let prisoners have HBO, now this?
We then cut to Bruce connecting one of the blue test tubes to Alfred’s IV drip. Please don’t ask me how. Then a blue light is reflected right into Alfred face, which is meant to represent him being “cured”, I guess. Bruce tells Dick and Barbara that all they can do now is wait. For a couple of scenes, at least.
Back at Arkham, we find Poison Ivy, now the Prison Bitch all done up in black and white stripes as she picks the petals off a flower. She recites “He loves me, he loves me not,” then eats a petal [?] and says, “He loves me…”
Freeze’s voice suddenly booms, “Not!” In the shadows, he lights up his cryo-suit, which does come close to actually looking menacing. Alas, too little, too late. He tells her that he’s now her cellmate. Wow! A co-ed jail! I’ve always thought that would be a great idea. But why did they let him keep his suit this time?
He says, “I’ve come to make your life a living hell!” He’s going to keep trying to act, I guess. Ivy’s face glows blue as she grows terrified. Or sleepy. At this point it could go either way, really.
It’s dawn the next day at Wayne Manor, and we see that Bruce has been waiting up all night. Alfred walks in and clears his throat, and Dick and Barbara instantly wake up and run to him. Alfred finally gets his own opportunity to make a dumb wisecrack, pretending to be grumpy and saying something about how the place is just a big mess now. Is Alfred always this OCD, or what? Come to think of it, maybe him having MacGregor’s wasn’t so bad after all.
He smiles and they all embrace, except for Bruce, who stands near Dick and pats him on the back. See, it’s time for Bruce and Dick to have a heart to heart and resolve their own stupid little subplot.
Dick asks why Bruce didn’t try to save him when he fell off the telescope. Bruce says, “I figured you could handle it.” Aw, isn’t this touching? Or, at least, more touching than what Bruce is really thinking, which is “I hoped you would die a horrible death.” Wait, that’s what I’m thinking. Sorry.
“Sometimes,” Bruce sermonizes, “Counting on someone else is the only way to win.” And if you’re not careful, you might learn something before we’re done! Barbara interrupts, pointing out that she’s the one who “kicked Ivy’s botanical butt!”. She then proceeds to repeat “That was me!” over and over again in a really irritating, smug voice.
Bruce says he’s shipping her back to “Oxbridge”, but Dick tells him he’s “never gonna win this argument!” Which I guess means they’re stuck with her now. Barbara offers forth a hand and says, “Partners?” They do a three-handed handshake and Dick and Bruce both say, “Partners.” Alfred then says that “We’re going to need a bigger cave!” Geez, would people stop picking on Alicia Silverstone’s weight already?
Since even a retard can tell you this is a weak ending for a supposed action movie, we get one final useless shot of their three silhouettes running towards the camera with capes flapping, and the Bat Signal behind them. Fade to black.
In closing, I’d just like to point out that less than a year after audiences heard Uma Thurman’s Poison Ivy voice, the FDA approved Viagra to treat male impotence. Coincidence?
(Also, please note that at no time in this recap did I belittle the Oscar that Akiva “Is your thumb the only part of you that’s green?” Goldsman won for his A Beautiful Mind screenplay. This was a laudible accomplishment, and who knows, one day he might even get a lifetime acheivement award from the Academy. Just like Dino De Laurentiis.)