Saturday, June 18, 2005

Superheroes never get old

We went to see Batman Begins tonight with two other couples. On the way out of the theater, my DH mentioned seeing the first Batman movie in the theater and how we saw it over and over that summer...well, each of the four people we were out with tonight was in grade school when Batman came out. GRADE SCHOOL. Todd and I were in college. COLLEGE. If that don't make you feel old, nothing will. I spent the rest of the evening feeling like we were a mom and dad out with their kids. Ugh.

The movie was okay. Not terrible, but not great, either. I had only skimmed one review, so I was going in with no real preconceived ideas. (My favorite way to see a movie, incidentally.) I was pleasantly surprised to see Michael Caine playing Alfred--I adore Michael Caine, and he was very good. Christian Bale was also good as Bruce Wayne/Batman. I'd love to know the rationale for casting an unknown actor in that part, since the last three guys to play the role have all been big-name stars.

This movie was also far different from the four bombastic blockbuster-type movies that preceded it. Quieter, more character-driven, less cartoony. While I think the first (Michael Keaton) Batman movie was very much of its time, so this latest movie also seemed very much of its time. A definite Spiderman influence, with the hero searching for his role and dealing with the limitations of that role that life has forced upon him.

I love superheroes. I grew up watching "Justice League of America" with Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and Robin, Aquaman, and of course the Wonder Twins. And my siblings and cousins and I played superheroes for years and years. I love the first Superman movie, the first Batman movie, and both Spiderman movies. And I am SO excited about this Fantastic Four movie that's coming out in a few days--I was addicted to Fantastic Four comic books in the sixth grade.

There's a few things I like about superhero characters: they come from comic books, which have always fascinated me. (I wish I had had the money to indulge myself with comic books the way I wanted to when I was a kid. ) Most of the characters are rooted in the era from 1940-1960, which is a time that looms large in my imagination--I feel nostalgia for that era even though I didn't live through it. And then there's just the wonder of being a superhero--who doesn't imagine what it would be like to have superhuman powers? Totally cool, that's what it would be like.

And then of course, there's the very best thing of all about superheroes--they stay young and re-invent themselves every decade or so. I'm gonna have to start thinking like a superhero to get over the trauma of this evening, and figure out how to make myself feel young again.

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