Freshmen find ‘The Lego Batman Movie’ cringe-worthy, clichéd

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The “Lego Batman Movie” logo

On Feb. 12, freshmen Anna Frankel and Emma Boersma saw “The Lego Batman Movie,” a spinoff of “The Lego Movie.” The film describes Batman’s (Will Arnett) life as a lone vigilante. When all the villains in Gotham City suddenly turn themselves in, Batman plays into Joker’s (Zach Galifianakis) evil plans, forcing him to team up with Barbara Gordon (Rosario Dawson), the new police commissioner; Dick Grayson (Michael Cera), his accidentally adopted son; and Alfred Pennyworth (Ralph Fiennes), his butler/father figure, to fix his mess – and his attitude.

Emma: I liked the first Lego movie better. This one was cringe-worthy.

The preview made the movie look so good. I was actually really excited about it.

Anna: That was exactly what I was thinking.

I actually liked the first Lego movie’s plot. It was interesting and different. This film’s plot was kind of confusing.

E: I thought the plot made sense. But maybe the execution was off. The jokes felt really corny and forced. In “The Lego Movie,” the jokes and humor came more naturally.

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The Batman (Will Arnett) and Dick Grayson (Michael Cera) action figures

A: The jokes also weren’t that funny. My least favorite scene was when Batman and Dick tried to enter the jail. Batman was hinting about how if he found the right girl, he would want to settle down. That conversation was just so awkward. I couldn’t stand it.

E: Oh my god, yeah. And when Batman and Dick started beatboxing through the jail-cell wall, I wanted to melt into my seat.

I didn’t like any of the corny scenes, such as when Batman and Joker were like, “I hate you,” “I hate you more,” “I hate you most.” That was so weird.

A: And most of the movie was like that. All of the scenes were either super cringe-worthy or way too dramatic.

The action scenes actually hurt my eyes. They were so bright and flashy. And the blocky Lego animation didn’t help.

E: I agree about the flashiness. I have a headache as I type this.

The first Lego movie didn’t have as many explosions.

A: Definitely. The first Lego movie was at least bearable. I wouldn’t watch this again.

Batman was so rude. I couldn’t empathize with him at all, even though he was scarred from being an orphan.

Dick was also really, really annoying, like when he kept on calling Batman “Padre.”

E: I don’t really have a strong opinion on Dick. The most I can say is that he was dumb. I can’t believe he put his life at risk for Batman – he didn’t even need convincing – and he believed Batman when he said that he and Bruce Wayne were both Dick’s dads.

I feel like Batman was supposed to give off that vibe. And I actually didn’t have a problem with that.

But I did have a problem with the clichés. Every scene was a cliché: a secluded hero who wants to stay alone finally gets close to people, then he pushes them away “for their own safety” (but really it’s to hide his fear of losing them), and in the end everything works out and said hero ends up with tight friends.

I could tell that the movie tried to put a unique spin on it all, but it really didn’t turn out well.

A: My least favorite character was the Joker. He was supposed to be the villain! Why was he being all emotional about his and Batman’s relationship?

He was also so whiny. He acted like a middle child who would do anything to get their parents’ attention.

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The Joker

E: I think you mean lack of relationship.

Again, I think they tried to put a new spin on the Joker, but it obviously didn’t turn out well. Honestly, the Joker was kind of cute – like a scrawny cat, not like a true villain. It was a little unsettling.

I also didn’t like Barbara. She was trying too hard to team up with Batman, who was a complete stranger at the time. I really didn’t understand why she put so much effort into breaking through Batman’s shell, especially when he was nothing but rude to her.

A: Barbara’s overconfidence was also  annoying. She thought of herself as such a heroine. That joke about how she went to such a good police school that it was called “Harvard for police” was probably the worst in the movie. And that is saying something.

E: Holy cow, I forgot about that joke! You’re totally right. That was the worst in the movie.

She was a heroine, though; she was the only one in the movie. That actually says something. She was surrounded by three other guys and a ton of male villains. But I can’t decide if that makes her tough and capable, or that she just happened to be the only heroine.

A: Emma, think about it. She never actually did anything that heroic. She took over her dad’s job of pushing the Batman-signal button when the city was in trouble. Then all of the villains randomly surrendered to her, and she took all of the credit. I don’t even remember her fighting in the action scenes.

E: Yeah, you’re right.

I guess the only character left is Alfred, the butler. I honestly have nothing to say about him. But when he gave Batman a timeout in the middle of a fight scene? That was messed-up and just plain weird.

A: Didn’t Alfred work for Batman? Their whole relationship didn’t really make any sense to me. I can’t figure out who had more authority. Batman was his boss, but Alfred was the father figure. Batman seemed like a misbehaving child in most – if not all – scenes.

E: The music was obnoxious, too. I hope none of the songs become popular enough to be played on the radio, like “Everything Is Awesome.” But that song was a timeless classic compared to this movie’s soundtrack.

A:  At least the soundtrack fit well with this movie’s theme. The songs  were as overly dramatic as the scenes.

E: Ooh, burn!

By Emma Boersma and Anna Frankel

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