This May is “Masterclass Revisited” month at Catching Up On Cinema!
All month long, we’ll be revisiting the subjects of Masterclass months we’ve done over the years to review films that may have slipped through the cracks.
First up this month is another tour of Gotham City, as we sit down to review Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski’s, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)!
Based on the groundbreaking Batman: The Animated Series cartoon, the film is the first feature length animated film in the long history of the character.
Initially planned as a direct-to-video project that was later fast tracked and released on Christmas day in 1993, the film would ultimately be critically adored, but sadly a total bomb at the box office.
Completed and released within a ludicrous 8 month production cycle, the film is fairly pedestrian in terms of cinematography and fluidity of animation, however most will agree it’s “dark deco” aesthetic and glorious score by composer Shirley Walker more than make up for whatever technical shortcomings it may have.
Boasting the same voice cast as the animated series, including the one-two punch of the inimitable Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill as Bats and Joker respectively, the film is a mature and focused affair, exploring aspects of the characters that would not be revisited in earnest for over a decade.
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