As 2014 draws to a close, so too does Film Club. In the final review of the year, we picked apart Tim Burton’s first entry into the comic book genre with his take on Batman. Deemed a classic at the time of release, and for many years since, but Burton’s Batman is showing its age a little now and has surely been eclipsed by Christopher Nolan’s own take on the Dark Knight.
Below is the updated leaderboard for December, where you can find our thoughts on the previous entries, and what position Batman takes in the overall rankings.
1. Casino Royale (2006): 9.3/10 (↔)
General consensus: James Bond’s 21st outing manages to reboot the franchise for a modern audience, while also keeping the things older fans are familiar with. Casino Royale is a spectacular film full of action and intrigue, and manages that rare thing of being a blockbuster with brains as well as brawn.
2. Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope: 8.8/10 (↔)
General consensus: Star Wars is a film that still stands up strongly even today, 37 years after its initial release. Despite some clunky dialogue and some stiff acting, the essence of the film and the fantastic characters carry the film and still entertain fans of all ages. Along with an iconic score by John Williams that takes this space opera to another level, the film’s influence is still being felt today.
3. The Departed: 8.6/10 (↔)
General consensus: The Departed is a modern crime classic that forgoes the glitz and glamour of Scorsese’s earlier gangster offerings, for a more real and unrelenting look at the life of those who make a living from crime and those who attempt to stop it. However, The Departed is not necessarily a film for everyone, and the level of violence and bad language along with a running time of nearly two and a half hours can be off-putting for some.
4. Batman (1989): 7.6/10 (New entry)
General consensus: Batman is perhaps not the classic it once was, suffering over time from dated effects and the ever popular Dark Knight trilogy. However, it still remains a pulpy ride, that has some great moments and two defining performances from Keaton and Nicholson that carry the film. While also being iconic in helping pave the way for the films we are all clamoring for at the cinema today
5. Taken: 7.4/10 (↓)
General consensus: A cult classic to some, and a passable nights entertainment to others.Taken remains a solid action film, with a great central performance from Liam Neeson, and with reasonable expectations Taken is a fine way to kill an hour and a half.
6. Oldboy (2013): 4.8/10 (↓)
General consensus: If ever you want to spark a debate among film fans then ask them their thoughts on a remake of a beloved classic. Oldboy 2013 seems to split people between those who have seen the original, and dislike the remake, and those who have viewed the remake without any prior knowledge of the 2003 original and can get a little more enjoyment out of it.
With Batman entering the table in a solid fourth position, Taken and Oldboy both move down one spot, while the top three remain unchanged. It seems unlikely, unless we pick Battlefield Earth, that Oldboy will ever be relieved of occupying the bottom of the table. To the same degree, it seems it will take something truly special to knock the James Bond reboot, Casino Royale off its perch. Either way, it will be exciting to see what January brings.