“The Batman” (PG-13), “Lucy and Desi” (PG)

The Dark Knight continues to get darker and darker. In his first appearance as “The Batman” Robert Pattinson takes the brooding caped crusader to a new level of bleakness.


“The Batman” is an extremely well-made movie that plays more like a gangster film noir than a superhero flick. In addition to giving us a new Batman, we get an origin story for Catwoman, memorably played by Zoë Kravitz. We’re also offered a new take on The Penguin, played by Colin Farrell under pounds of makeup that make him utterly unrecognizable. But most impressive and most disturbing is Paul Dano as the brilliant psychopath Edward Nashton, better known as The Riddler. Writer/director Matt Reeves, best known as the filmmaker who successfully resurrected the “Planet of the Apes” franchise, pulls out all the chilly stops, even though he doesn’t know when to stop. “The Batman” times in at over three hours.


The morality and ethics of “The Batman” are murkier than the movie’s dreary and violent atmosphere…and it probably deserves an “R” rating instead of “PG-13.” Just what Reeves and company are trying to tell us may be the movie’s biggest mystery. Still, “The Batman” is an ambitious and involving movie that proudly wears its heart on its pitch-black cape.


The Amazon Prime documentary “Lucy and Desi” marks the directorial debut of comedian Amy Poehler. It’s an intriguing and comprehensive backstage look at the ups and downs of America’s favorite TV couple of the 1950s, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, the stars of “I Love Lucy.” Thanks to the help of the Arnaz family, Poehler gained access to a treasure trove of the family’s home movies as well as personal insights. If you’ve seen the current drama “Being the Ricardos,” “Lucy and Desi” provides a fitting companion piece.

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