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Batman: Year One- Commemorative Edition 4K UHD Review

The “Batman: Year One” animated movie celebrates its 10th anniversary.

With 2022’s “The Batman” on the horizon (which will allegedly draw from “Batman: Year One)”, WB has re-released the animated feature in a new Commemorative Edition 4K set.

Based on the comic book mini-series by Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli, “Batman: Year One” spans the course of one year as the title suggests. The story revolves around three characters essentially with Bruce Wayne, James Gordon and Selina Kyle. Wayne has returned to Gotham City after being away for 12 years. He has decided to become a vigilante hero in Batman but has a rough start as the cops are after him. James Gordon has recently moved to Gotham with his wife (and a child on the way). Gordon starts out as a Lt. and is dismayed by the state of the police department which is filled with corruption. Selina Kyle is a prostitute who is inspired by Batman to become a costumed burglar (Catwoman). 

“Batman: Year One” has long been one of my favorite comic series and the animated adaptation still stands as one of the best DC animated films. Not only does it get inside the minds of Bruce Wayne and James Gordon, but the story digs deep into Gotham’s police and criminal corruption. In their own ways, Wayne and Gordon are trying to clean up the streets and make a difference and we really see that in their first year. The story culminates in a satisfying manner with a bond forming between the two heroes.

The Selina Kyle arc doesn’t quite work as well mostly because it feels underdeveloped and tacked on to a degree. Still, it’s a different angle for the character to be sure.

Cast wise, Bryan Cranston is absolutely perfect as Gordon. I hope the actor can take on the role in a live-action film someday. The weak link here is Ben McKenzie as Bruce/Batman. His voice work is stiff and he doesn’t compare to other actors who have played the role (especially Kevin Conroy). 

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.78:1 2160p. How does it look? Viewers can expect a nice upgrade here.

Audio Track: 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? Both the 4K and the Blu-ray have the same audio track so there’s no audio upgrade here. Still, this track delivers a satisfactory audio experience on all fronts. 

Extras:
* Blu-ray copy
* Digital copy
* Trailers for “Batman: Soul Of The Dragon” and “Batman: The Long Halloween” Parts 1 and 2.
* Commentary by Andrea Romano, Mike Carlin, Alan Burnett and Sam Liu.
* A “DC Showcase” animated short titled “Catwoman.”
* “Heart Of Vengeance: Returning Batman To His Roots” covers the origins of Batman in the comics and other media.
* “Reinventing Gordon”- A new 22 minute featurette on the history of Jim Gordon in the comics and other media.
* A conversation with Dan DiDio, Scott Snyder, Denny O’Neil and Michael Uslan. Conversations range from Frank Miller’s work to the films.

November 10, 2021 - Posted by | 4K UHD Review | , , , , , ,

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