I like Batman & Robin more than Batman Forever. They're both stupid, awful movies, but there's more to laugh at in the former.
Batman Forever is horrible, but it TRIED to be a good movie. There were some attempt to dwelve into Bruce's psyche and make Robin's acceptance all dark and angsty -- and it's just complete rubbish. The exchange between Batman and Nicole Kidman on the GCPD rooftop is one of the worst dialogue ever written... possibly the worst. I mean, it's just insanely bad, and not intentionally so. Akiva Goldsman should be shot in the head and wear his Oscar up his ass for writing something like that. "My life's an open book, do you read?" "I don't exactly fit into a family picnic." -- I... Jesus.
Somewhere along the line, I think Schumacher wised up as to how ridiculous Forever was, and decided to just throw good taste out the window when he made Batman & Robin. The result is something that's wonderfully amusing to watch, like Teletubby porn. You can't not enjoy it.
Before Begins came out, it was the only Batman movie I cared enough about to watch over and over. I can quote that movie endlessly, almost as much as I quote Commando and Total Recall.
Robin bursting through a wooden door leaving HIS SYMBOL as a hole on the door? Priceless. How can you not love it?
I think Batman and Robin will always serve as a warning to filmmakers and studios on how not to f*** up an established, beloved character all for the sake of box office success. The closest comparison is Superman IV, but then it was made by Canon Films (makers of high-quality films to be sure) at a time when there were no other superhero film franchises. After the diasppointment of Superman III, nobody really wanted to see another Superman film and those who did, well, got a low-budget, hollow attempt that buried the charm of the Man of Steel.
Batman and Robin was made after the financial success of Batman Forever--and while a lot of Batman fans bitched and moaned, the general public liked it a lot more than Burton's grim and nasty Batman Returns--so the suits figured that camp and an assault on the senses over common sense and storytelling were more important. And everybody--Batman fans and the general public alike--hated it.
I agree that it's fun to watch because it's so bad, but I have to be in that mindset--sometimes it's just painful seeing a genuinely dark character showcased in an awful movie.
i still think joel coulda done a great job, maybe with less umm... well, writers that were less of something but i can't think of what right now. but idk, they should skipped to the mind-f*ck scarecrow story cause then all the neon and psychadelia woulda made some sense, and i mean, flatliners was kinda creepy. skinny cackling insane doctor causing psychotic delusions and hallucinations=really creepy.