This remains for me one of the best Batman films ever made. The film ties in with the first season of Batman: The Animated Series, but it also has some clever references and allusions to the first two Tim Burton films as well as some of the Batman comics (most notably Batman: Year One). The tone is pretty dark and there's a bit more action and violence than one might expect to find in a PG film, but I think that for most fans, myself included, that this is part of what made the film so great. It's the Batman film that hadn't been done up until that point. Unlike previous films which just took Batman characters and stuck them awkwardly on the screen with little reverence or knowledge to the comics or the stories, this film is full of little moments that fans will cherish (note the multiple references to Denny O'Neil and Neal Adams).
I also particularly like that they made Gotham so atmospheric and anachronistic. The vehicles and buildings all look like those found in New York and Chicago during the 1930s and 1940s, but the technology seems to be much more modern in most regards.
The voice cast is super and I still hold that Tim Conway and Mark Hamill are easily two of the best actors to have portrayed the iconic hero/villain dichotomy of Batman and The Joker. Directed by Bruce (W.) Timm and Eric Radomski, both of who are mainly responsible for the great surge of animated series based on the DC Universe, the film manages to have both action and suspense, but also more characterization than some of the Batman's televised animated adventures... and thankfully Robin and Batgirl are nowhere to be found. While the love story seems to be a bit more melodramatic than necessary, I do like the Andrea character and the concept of the Phantasm. It gives the whole story an urban Gothic romance style that was very nice.
In 1992, Batman The Animated Series came around and changed just about everything we knew about animated television shows. Especially those based off comic books. The show itself has left a much bigger legacy than anyone could remember, including being commonly referred to as the greatest animated television series ever made. It's a shame then that the movie it spawned never achieved that same amount of attention or acclaim. Batman Mask of the Phantasm came out into theaters … more
Despite being less-known than the Batman movies directed by Tim Burton, Joel Shumacher, and Christopher Nolan, I think Batman: Mask of the Phantasm beats all of them (especially the Schumacher movies, which are needless to say, blights to cinema). Being made by the same geniuses that created Batman: The Animated Series, all the strokes of genius in that show have carried over into this film. Just about everything in this movie is perfect, whether it be … more
I missed this movie when it first came out. Within the last few years, I've gotten back into watching my favorite cartoons from my childhood. Batman: TAS is one of them. I've seen all the other animated movies on Cartoon Network (Subzero, Mystery of the Batwoman, Gotham Knight, Return of the Joker). This is, by far, the best. The story line is compelling & the animation is top notch. We get to see a young Bruce Wayne as he begins his career as Batman. Very interesting. … more
Batman - Mask of the Phantasm is one of the best productions to come from producers Paul Dini and Bruce Timm, following the first season of Batman - The Animated Series. The animation here is solid, the voice acting is some of the best around, and of course the story is enough to keep any fan of the series concentrated. This may be a cartoon, but in no ways is it a film generated specifically for the entertainment of children (mature themes are given, though not directly). Batman … more
When the city's most feared gangsters are systematically eliminated, the Caped Crusader is blamed. But prowling the Gotham night is a shadowy new villain, the Phantasm, a sinister figure with some link to Batman's past. Can the Dark Knight elude the police, capture the Phantasm and clear his name?
Unmasking the Phantasm is just one of the twists in this dazzling animated feature. Discover all-new revelations about Batman's past, his archrival the Joker and Batman's most grueling battle ever - the choice between his love of a beautiful woman and his vow to be the defender of right. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm is a "mystery that is genuinely absorbing, suspenseful and moving" (Cincinnati Enquirer).