in about 100 words or less
USA 126m, Colour
Director: Tim Burton; Cast: Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger, Robert Wuhl, Jack Palance
Tim Burton set a new standard for the film adaptation of the comic book hero with his critically and commercially successful 1989 adaptation of Batman. As the unlikely hero, Michael Keaton was unexpectedly fitting for the title role, however, the star of the film and the underlying reason for its success lay with Jack Nicholson’s portrayal of the Joker – who brought a depth of character previously not seen in the genre. While Danny Elfman’s score was near perfect, the film suffers from Prince’s musical numbers, which are beyond terrible and remain an embarrassing accompaniment to what otherwise was an excellent film (Klaus Ming August 2010).