View Poll Results: who portrayed the best bruce wayne?

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  • michael keaton

    18 23.38%
  • val kilmer

    4 5.19%
  • george clooney

    1 1.30%
  • christian bale

    48 62.34%
  • adam west

    6 7.79%
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  1. #16
    Mattress Tester T Hedge Coke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaronghunter View Post
    Bale... is also the best actor on the list, with the widest range and arguably the greatest dedication.
    I'm gonna have to disagree with that. Keaton's shown both massive range and dedication in his career. I mean, his Batman compared to his Beetlejuice, Mr Mom, and the dude from Desperate Measures?

    Kilmer's a very understated actor, but when you look at things he does to prep for a role, or small things he adds that aren't scripted or directorial decisions, but self-generated, you can appreciate that he was the youngest student ever accepted to Julliard and that he, you know, studied. And, has innovated since then.

    Bale is a serious actor. He's a good actor. But his range seems, at this point, limited to how much muscle he can gain or weight he can lose, with his most memorable moments in flicks being when he's over-emoting or under-emoting. I'm not underselling him, or being negative there; I think there's incredible frisson in those skills, in that niche and range, and he works it. He's a better actor than George Clooney, and I like seeing Clooney in movies, too.

  2. #17
    Senior Member Vidocq's Avatar
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    Ok, I am kind of contrived... if we go simply by who played him better in an adaptation of the comics then Bale. If we ask who played a character in a movie called Bruce Wayne, with the same backstory in the best way possible (I'm confused as well...), then Michael Keaton. Because he gave us a more interesting character than Nolan/Bale's Bruce with his acting alone, using only the language of film (and there are no other signs of this kind of subtly in the movie, so it might have been just Keaton doing his own thing and not the script or Burton's directing).

    BTW, it was apparently also his idea to have a different voice for Bruce Wayne and Batman. But he wouldn't made it a growl but make his voice deeper and raspier so that criminals would think that that was Batman's real voice and not him trying to disguise it.
    ...And does Mr. Goddanm Batman says so much as ''Thanks''? OF COURSE not. That'd hardly be GRIM AND GRITTY, would it?

    The jerk...

    -DKU's Jim Gordon.

  3. #18

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    I heard a really funny story recently about Michael Keaton on the Dennis Miller radio program, in which Miller talked about being in the First Class sectin on a plane that was having bad turbulence problems, and Keaton just happened to be on the flight and sitting near him. He said that Keaton locked eyes with him, and deadpanned in all seriousness, "Hey, don't worry. I'm Batman."

  4. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by T Hedge Coke View Post
    He plays Wayne as soooo desperate not to ever appear crazy or hurt or out of line. He's trying to fit in all the time. To blend.

    Which, since he's both a billionaire and the goddammed Batman, is hilarious and endearing. I remember critics hating on "C'mon, let's get nuts" and when he walks past the bullets during the shooting at City Hall, but that was a very consciously crafted Bruce Wayne.

    Preaching to the choir, friend. I've also got to give a shout-out to the amazing chemistry between Keaton's Bruce Wayne/Batman and Michelle Pfeiffer's Selina Kyle/Catwoman. You can truly believe these are two very damaged individuals who see something of themselves in each other and desperately want to make it work--whereas that urgency was almost nowhere to be found between Bale and Hathaway in Dark Knight Rises (and don't get me wrong, I love Nolan's third Bat-outing and think Bale and Hathaway did fine jobs for their characters...but they didn't convince me they were a couple).

    That scene in Batman Returns during the dance when Keaton and Pfeiffer realize each others' secret identities...Selina's "does this mean we have to start fighting?" One of my favourite superhero movie moments...

  5. #20
    Unreasonably Opinionated Conway's Avatar
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    The idea that Bale even played Wayne is offensive. The guy was Batman in every scene except the one where he gets drunk and tosses everyone out of his mansion. That one scene had the most emotion I've seen from Bale in any movie.

    Keaton, Kilmer, and West are really the only ones that tried to play Bruce. There are two scenes that define the role though; when Keaton is shot by Joker in Vicki's apartment, and when Keaton and Selina are flirting with each other. No one else Bruce comes close to those.

  6. #21
    Marked for Redemption David Walton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T Hedge Coke View Post
    He plays Wayne as soooo desperate not to ever appear crazy or hurt or out of line. He's trying to fit in all the time. To blend.

    Which, since he's both a billionaire and the goddammed Batman, is hilarious and endearing. I remember critics hating on "C'mon, let's get nuts" and when he walks past the bullets during the shooting at City Hall, but that was a very consciously crafted Bruce Wayne.
    This. The scenes where Bruce interacts with the Joker are the best in the film.

    Like when the Joker attacks the gangsters on the steps of City Hall. I love how Bruce just walks right up to the Joker and stares at him while everyone else is running for their life. And the Joker waves condescendingly, too arrogant to realize he has his arch enemy dead to rights.

    I also love just how damaged and vulnerable Keaton's Wayne is without saying a word. He acts his heart out in both films, expressing everything he needs to with his body language.

    Keaton's Wayne isn't the traditional 'playboy guise' but more of a rich eccentric, a socially awkward guy who hands out a grant to Knox after being the butt of his jokes. Which leads to the great line, "You know why the rich are eccentric, Vale? Because they can afford to be."
    "I came to the conclusion that the optimist thought everything good except the pessimist, and the pessimist thought everything bad, except himself." -- G.K. Chesterton

  7. #22
    New Member BatWatch's Avatar
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    Ha! I'm the only one who thought George Clooney did a good job.

    Look, I don't defend Batman and Robin, and I don't think Clooney did a good job as Batman, but he was the only one who really seemed convincing as a playboy. The rest always seem broody which is not how Bruce Wayne should appear to the general public.
    For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out Batwatch

  8. #23
    Senior Member HXHAlex's Avatar
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    The best Bruce was easily Bale. Keaton did a good/great Bruce/Batman. But Bale was in the overall better and more Bruce centered films, and Bale really shined as Bruce

  9. #24
    Unreasonably Opinionated Conway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HXHAlex View Post
    The best Bruce was easily Bale. Keaton did a good/great Bruce/Batman. But Bale was in the overall better and more Bruce centered films, and Bale really shined as Bruce
    What movies are you talking about? The "Bruce" he played in "Begins" was a whiny kid, or Bruce becoming Batman. It was like watching a plank of wood. The Bruce in TDK didn't really exist, his biggest scene was crashing his Lambo in a very Batman like move. And Knightfall was just a wheezy tortured Batman. I'm willing to admit he was a decent Batman, but as Bruce Wayne; Bale was one dimensional, wooden, tiresome, and dull. If the women actors weren't so bad it would have been even easier to notice.

  10. #25
    Senior Member HXHAlex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conway View Post
    What movies are you talking about? The "Bruce" he played in "Begins" was a whiny kid, or Bruce becoming Batman. It was like watching a plank of wood. The Bruce in TDK didn't really exist, his biggest scene was crashing his Lambo in a very Batman like move. And Knightfall was just a wheezy tortured Batman. I'm willing to admit he was a decent Batman, but as Bruce Wayne; Bale was one dimensional, wooden, tiresome, and dull. If the women actors weren't so bad it would have been even easier to notice.
    In Begins when Bale acts drunk to get everyone to leave his house. I've never seen anyone nail the concept of what Bruce could have become (a bitter, selfish, rich asshole) if he'd chosen that path. And he made himself look like a jerk to protect everyone there. Batman is a selfless person, and I feel that scene is one of the best portrayals of Bruce we've seen on the big screen. He chose to play into the tabloid belief that Bruce is a jerk to help those around him. Its been a bit since I've watched Begins, but there are other great Bruce/Bale moments in that film.



    I've never understood the "TDK is a joker movie, bruce was barely in it" argument. Throughout the movie you see a lot of Bruce (and Batman) doing DETECTIVE WORK (another complaint against the nolan films, "We never saw batman doing detective stuff", what about recreating that shooting in his bunker to determine the gun that caused the shooting?) Bruce playing coy with commissioner Gordan in the car crash scene, Bruce keeping up the rich asshole image when he buys the restaurant he, Rachel, and Harvey are eating at. No Batman actor comes close to showing the front Bruce puts on, the front that hides his true character (Batman), like Bale did

    And I'm not even a HUGE fan of Bale or the Nolan movies. I'm not at all. But how can anyone say Keaton (big Keaton fan, love his batman voice, and he was a good Bruce, but Bale was a better Bruce) or someone else did a better live action Bruce? You barely saw any of them as Bruce Wayne. That's one thing that gives Bale a huge edge against the other Batman actors when contrasting who played the best Bruce. Bale had more screen time than any of the other actors as Bruce Wayne.

    It gets a bit iffy with Rises, you'd expect Bruce to not have become a social recluse, he has an image to keep up. Neither Bruce nor Alfred (alfred would never have left wayne manor, and Bruce would have never kicked him out) was written as true to their comic book characters as they could have been
    Last edited by HXHAlex; 12-31-2012 at 01:59 PM.

  11. #26
    Marked for Redemption David Walton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vidocq View Post
    Because he gave us a more interesting character than Nolan/Bale's Bruce with his acting alone, using only the language of film (and there are no other signs of this kind of subtly in the movie, so it might have been just Keaton doing his own thing and not the script or Burton's directing).
    In the Batman commentary, Burton says he was in experienced and horrible communicating what he wanted from his actors, and gave a lot of credit to Nicholson and Keaton for what they brought to the table.
    "I came to the conclusion that the optimist thought everything good except the pessimist, and the pessimist thought everything bad, except himself." -- G.K. Chesterton

  12. #27
    deep green nepenthes's Avatar
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    Ha ha ha http://m.io9.com/5972293/every-batma...ct-bruce-wayne
    Every Batman Actor's Face Morphed into One Perfect Bruce WayneStill debating on which Hollywood representation of Bruce Wayne was the very best? No need to anymore. Here is a shot of every single actor who has played the live action superhero morphed into one perfect Batman

  13. #28
    Unreasonably Opinionated Conway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HXHAlex View Post
    In Begins when Bale acts drunk to get everyone to leave his house. I've never seen anyone nail the concept of what Bruce could have become (a bitter, selfish, rich asshole) if he'd chosen that path. And he made himself look like a jerk to protect everyone there. Batman is a selfless person, and I feel that scene is one of the best portrayals of Bruce we've seen on the big screen. He chose to play into the tabloid belief that Bruce is a jerk to help those around him. Its been a bit since I've watched Begins, but there are other great Bruce/Bale moments in that film.
    I already cited that scene. It is arguably the most emotion I've ever seen from Bale in any film. The scene when he takes back control of his company is good too, but that is good writing more than acting; "Stocks and Securities, it's all very complicated." But two scenes don't make Bruce. In three movies there really are only two scenes where he isn't a kid, or Batman without his mask. Every scene with Keaton in a suit was great. You can't say that about Bale.

  14. #29
    Elder Member The Batman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T Hedge Coke View Post
    I'm gonna have to disagree with that. Keaton's shown both massive range and dedication in his career. I mean, his Batman compared to his Beetlejuice, Mr Mom, and the dude from Desperate Measures?
    Add Clean and Sober to that list. Keaton was fantastic in that.

  15. #30
    Senior Member HXHAlex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conway View Post
    I already cited that scene. It is arguably the most emotion I've ever seen from Bale in any film. The scene when he takes back control of his company is good too, but that is good writing more than acting; "Stocks and Securities, it's all very complicated." But two scenes don't make Bruce. In three movies there really are only two scenes where he isn't a kid, or Batman without his mask. Every scene with Keaton in a suit was great. You can't say that about Bale.
    Fair enough

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