Batman: Assault on Arkham Review


Or rather Suicide Squad the Movie. Why? You’ll see. Anyways the last DC Animated Movie for 2014 is a video game adaptation of the critically acclaimed and the best superhero game ever, Batman Arkham series. This movie is set in that particular universe and takes place between the abysmal Arkham Origins and the magnificent Arkham Asylum. We all love the Arkham games, and having a movie based on that is really awesome right? Well………

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Like I said, this is a Suicide Squad movie, NOT Batman’s.In fact, Batman is a supporting character in this movie, which is a really bat bad thing. I mean, this is a movie about Batman, yet Batman’s barely in it. Heck even Godzilla has a bigger role in his movie compared to Batman!

Instead the movie focuses heavily on the Suicide Squad. Now, being a Marvel fan and only liking DC Animation, I don’t really get why they are pushing Suicide Squad heavily. Yes, the idea is unique, using supervillains as forced expandable agents fighting on the not-so-good side. But seriously they have been pushing it a lot, with teasing it in Arkham Origins, having an episode on Arrow season 2, and now this. And you know what? I enjoyed Suicide Squad on Arrow, but mainly because Diggle has a big role in that episode. I didn’t care about Suicide Squad that much.

I mean, this is a movie based on the Arkham games. I loved the atmosphere of that universe. It’s basically the adult version of Batman The Animated Series. Basically, I want  to see more from that particular universe. But what we got here is like if this is an animated series based on the Arkham games, then this movie is like a story arc later in the season.

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But that’s not all that bad, the movie has some good. The first thing is on the Suicide Squad themselves. The movie did an outstanding job on utilizing B to C-list villains that is Deadshot, Killer Frost, King Shark, Black Spider and Captain Boomerang. Harley Quinn is an exception because she’s an A-list even though she is Joker’s sidekick. Also, they did a good job at mocking these characters, such as blatantly stating that Captain Boomerang is a C-List and perhaps a slap to Batman & Robin, Killer Frost makes some ice puns, only to be mocked.

Being a DC animation, I really loved the style here. It’s closer to the Young Justice style and not as weird as Flashpoint Paradox and Justice League War did with big and wide bodies for the male characters and such. Although I do find out that people claim that the animations in this movie is one of the worst. While I can’t specifically find it, I would like to say it’s still miles better than the shit we got back at the Marvel Animation.

Another good thing is the movie did a good job at making this movie feels like a movie based on Arkham games. Batman interrogates Riddler much like how he interrogates thugs, and his detective vision are here as well. And there’s some familiar faces and placesthat’s from the game, a notable example would be Penguin’s museum. Not to mention that the characters’ suit are exactly the same as they were in the games.

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This movie is obviously not for kids, in case you’re not aware. Lately in DC Animated Movies blood have been everywhere, and this movie takes it further by introducing PG-13 nudity and sex scenes! Seriously, if you think Talia al Ghul in Son of Batman is mouth watering, wait till you see this movie. Amanda Waller is the only female character that doesn’t strip in the whole movie. Harley Quinn nudes twice and Killer frost did once. You know, I got a feeling that 20 years later we will be seeing a softcore hentai in these movies. Damn you Rule 34!!!!!!

Also, the movie is more violent than previous installments. If you think Batman shooting Professor Zoom’s head is violent enough, then this movie features exploding heads in the form of bombs inside the Suicide Squad members’ neck. It really resembles Battle Royale and you know what? The scene where the Suicide Squad wakes up is reminiscent of Battle Royale, and when KGBeast is killed (yeah he was in the movie as a cameo), it’s like where Nobu was killed via the collar. Thank God I’ve warmed up to Battle Royale, because I watched the movie when I was 10. Biggest mistake of my life. That’s why they made it rated R.

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Now let’s move on to the cons of the movie. First, the Suicide Squad themselves. In order to make them memorable, they make the members looked silly in terms of chemistry. I mean when they are fighting among each other it was like they are a group of misfits! Yeah they are misfits, but a different kind of misfits. I was expecting a total chemistry between supervillains forced to work together, but all I got was simple chemistry between them. Heck, Black Spider said that he will never work alongside them, yet he follows orders. Sure, they are forced to due to the bomb, but come on, add some layers to them.

Also, the plot. Joker is hiding the bomb somewhere in Gotham and Riddler has the lead, so Amanda Waller sends in Suicide Squad to infiltrated Arkham to get Riddler’s cane because it supposedly leads to a clue to the bomb. Now, Amanda Waller is a government official. Why the hell can’t she just knock on Arkham’s door and ask to inspect the cane herself, instead of hiring Suicide Squad to do the job? Hell, you could even make it look like when she arrived, chaos ensues and the prisoners escaped Arkham, forcing Batman to fight them, thus making this a movie version of Arkham Asylum? While it would be troublesome because they’re just reusing the same element, it would make Batman the main character because he has to fend for himself!

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While the animation is great and accurate to the games, I can’t help but to criticize the choice of adding pupil on Batman’s eyes. Sure, he has pupils in the games because the signature white was used for Detective Vision and to make it look realistic, as if the game is a live action movie, but here, the pupils are grey colored, makes Batman looked like a blind guy, and in some shot he looks really, really dumb, like the picture above!

Last is the voice acting. This is more like a mixed bag for me. The good is that Kevin Conroy is Batman, Troy Baker still does a great impression as Mark Hamill’s Joker, and Neal McDonough’s Deadshot is terrific that at first I thought it was Roger Craig Smith’s voice. But the bad is that Harley Quinn isn’t voiced by Tara Strong or even Arleen Sorkin. Sure, Hynden Walch is good on her own, but why can’t they get Tara Strong, who’s even easier to get? Also, Riddler. the fact that he did not sound like he was in the games is pissing me off. Now I get DC Animated Movies with their habits on casting actors on the roles but this is a movie based on the game that’s involved by voice actors, why can’t they just get Wally Wingert? His Riddler is iconic.

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Overall, Batman: Assault on Arkham is a huge disappointment. I was expecting this to be the best DC Animated Movie for this year, simply because they’re adapting the Arkham games. But thanks to the genius who decided to shove the Suicide Squad, it ends up becoming a disaster. To add salt to the wound, this is the only Arkham-related thing for this year, since Arkham Knight is sadly but understandibly postponed to 2015. I wish they would adapt the Arkham games again, this time properly.

With that, Batman: Assault on Arkham is Meh, Could’ve Been Better.

 

 

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3 thoughts on “Batman: Assault on Arkham Review”

  1. Anyone who thinks Arkham Origins was abysmal is clearly a moron whose opinion isn’t worth the shit they used to scrawl it with.

    Despite the bugs, for which there is little excuse, the story was actually superior to Arkham City, and the gameplay every bit as good.

    1. Nope, the main complain is that it’s more like an expansion pack to City. The only new thing is the Shock Gloves and the fast travel points, which is a win button and unecessary.

      And the story, they did it way too much with the Joker. I mean the main plot is about Black Mask hiring 8 assassins to hunt Batman but then Joker is the mastermind behind it. I know the Joker is DC’s gold, but give other enemies some spotlight too. Plus, after the attack in the hotel, they dropped the whole assassination thing.

      I liked Origins to especially the Batsuit and Roger Craig Smith and Troy Baker’s performance, but compared to the previous two games it’s not fantastic because it doesn’t feel like a worthy installment.

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