It’s hard to believe it was about three years ago that The Lego Movie amazed me with its ability to entertain adults and children alike with the same silly jokes. Time goes by so quickly! The Lego Batman Movie is The Lego Movie’s sequel in spirit but is not tied to the first in any way, except that both feature Will Arnett’s Lego Batman, the ridiculous beat-boxing self-absorbed antihero who always succeeds on the “first try”. Only this time, Batman has to take Michael Cera’s earnest, optimistic Robin along with him on his adventures.
The Lego Batman Movie is every bit as good as the Lego Movie, and that’s high praise. Surprisingly, it is also a remarkably faithful continuation of, and homage to, the whole Batman cinematic universe, including the silly 1966 Batman Movie starring Adam West. If you are a Batman fan you need to see this film. One of my favourite elements was the inclusion of so many forgotten members of Batman’s rogues gallery. This movie has so many ridiculous villains that you will think many must have been made up, but as far as I can tell, every single silly one has been Batman’s enemy over the last 80 years, and I googled as many as I could remember just as Zach Galifianakis’ Joker suggested.
In addition to the inclusion of so many laughable villains, there are so many other references and in-jokes that it is impossible to catch them all on a single viewing. One that stood out for me was the inclusion of the Wonder Twins, if only because they are my most hated “superheroes” of all time, and yet I still thought it was awesome they were given a little place in this movie. I can only guess what I missed, though, and want to watch this one again sometime soon (if I can ever find the time!).
The Lego Batman Movie is another sparkling example of a movie that everyone can enjoy, and another that organically incorporates a positive message within its zaniness. We are in the midst of a golden age for animated films and the Lego Batman Movie is a classic that I will be watching with my nieces and nephews for years to come. It gets a score of nine cans of Shark-Repellent Bat-spray out of ten.