FILM: The League of Bats (Ranking the Caped Crusader) - #4

A lot was made when Gal Gadot was cast as Wonder Woman.  This is nothing new.  Ben Affleck experienced the same WTFs, and before him Heath Ledger, and before him Michael Keaton… not even Adam West was the popular first choice to take on the cowl.  Quite a bit of skinny shaming came along, and an almost political acquisition of the role from just about everyone with an opinion.
"That better be your utility belt I'm feeling."
What we get from Diana Prince is tantalizingly short.  She’s 16 lines of dialogue in the movie but not only does she own them, but she lets her physicality do her talking.  Gadot has a gorgeous cat-and-mouse back and forth over two scenes with Ben Affleck (Bruce Wayne) that makes you jump up and down with giddy excitement at what could be in store for us.  Her scenes with Doomsday and even better!  She takes to arms against the ancient Kryptonian with a glee unmatched in the DC Universe… unmatched in any/all of the Marvel movies.  When he knocks her down and she rolls for miles before colliding with a downed building she dusts herself down and smiles, as though to say “I’ve missed this” and we have.  For too long Diana of Themyscira has sat on the sidelines as Batman, Superman, even a Hal Jordan Green Lantern played in the sun.  Marvel might not know how to make a female hero movie work, (Black Widow), but it appears that DC do and I can’t wait to see it.

4. The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Christian Bale || Batman

In a lot of ways The Dark Knight Rises suffered from the passing of Heath Ledger in the same way The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus did.  After his mesmerizing performance in The Dark Knight the logical jumping off point for the third movie in the trilogy is a continuation of the Batman-Joker relationship.  As it stands Nolan jumps forward eight years, Batman has won the war on crime, made himself the outcast of Gotham and retired.  Then from somewhere deep in South America a great evil rises leading “America’s Greatest City” to its hour of judgment.
These buildings were like this when I got here.

There’s a lot to like about The Dark Knight Rises.  Nolan takes a lot from The Dark Knight Returns and we do see an older Bruce Wayne but not a more jaded Bruce Wayne.  Where his body has been ravaged, his soul remains fresh.  Tom Hardy’s Bane is excellent (despite problems with his voice), and Anne Hathaway gives the most faithful rendering of Selina Kyle the Batman universe has seen but it a lot of the dots don’t connect.  Alfred is gotten rid of because there’s nothing for him to do; John Blake is a grown-up Tim Drake by another name and though Bruce Wayne spends about the same amount of time out of his suit as Tony Stark does in Iron Man 3, he doesn’t seem to have the same level of self-discovery.

Heroes of Hollywood Boulevard is available on Amazon in paperback and on Amazon Kindle in the mass market "Stars & Bars" cover and an Amazon Exclusive "blank variant".

Stu Hogan is idolized by every child walking Hollywood Boulevard apart from his own.  Working the star-studded street as a Batman impersonator alongside good pal Brian (Superman) and steroid shooting Ricky (The Incredible Hulk), Stu's love of alcohol, gambling and strippers have left him behind with his alimony, down on his luck and looking for a quick fix for both.

Seeing an opportunity to change his circumstances, Stu enlists his fellow superheroes for a daring heist that has the impersonators fall short of their counterparts' lofty standards causing friendships to fracture and divisions to become deadly.

Click [here] for the FREE zero chapter.


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