We saw the Lego Batman Movie a couple weeks ago, and I’m not quite sure what to say about it. It was good. We enjoyed it.
It ends up as a pretty good answer to the question of “what is it like in the realm of one of the master builders?” Because that’s how you make a stand-alone movie that’s also a sequel to the Lego Movie. Batman makes for a good hero, since he was a hilarious secondary character in the original.
It also ends up a pretty good movie for exploring the question of, “who is Batman? And who is Batman in relation to others?” What Batman needs is a family. What he has no idea how to deal with is a family. This movie explores that pretty well, with the young ward, with Batgirl and the relationship with the police, and even exploring the relationship with Alfred.
All-in-all, it seems like not much to say. If you’re a Batman fan, check out the movie. If you’re a Lego Movie fan, check out the movie. But all of that also seems pretty obvious. It was good. It didn’t blow me away like the Lego Movie did, but that was probably impossible.
And then, the review circuit gave me something to talk about.
Gay Adoption Undercurrents? Really?
There’s a review that said that a simple running joke in the movie was in fact an insidious hidden political agenda. The joke is simple: when Batman is confronted by Robin about how his adopted father, Bruce Wayne, should be consulted before he runs off to be a superhero… Batman lies. Rather than reveal his secret identity, he claims that he adopted Robin along with Bruce Wayne.
It is mentioned a few times, so it becomes a running joke. There’s not really any discussion of what relationship Bruce Wayne and Batman have – just that Robin has two fathers.
In my opinion, the joke is that Batman tells an obvious lie and Robin buys it hook, line, and sinker. The joke is that he doesn’t get it. And the joke relies on the audience knowing full well what the truth is – so the audience knows, completely, that it’s not true. So any young people who might get brainwashed by any subliminal messaging there… they know it’s a lie.
But still, there’s that thought that – because no one corrects Robin of his belief in his two fathers – it’s normalizing the idea of having two fathers. But the joke relies on the absurdity of that claim – so does it actually normalize anything?
Or is it just a joke playing on the blind trust of Robin, the naivety, and the cold Batman who won’t let anyone in?
I’d love to know what you think, about this or about the movie in general!