Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)

batman mask of the phantasm poster 1993 movie
8.5 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 9/10

Love the look of Batman: The Animated Series, good story

Modern animation is a bit slicker and smoother

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm

Studio:  Warner Bros. Animation

Genre(s):  Animated/Comic Book/Action/Adventure

Release Date(s):  December 17, 1993

MPAA Rating:  PG

batman mask of the phantasm bruce wayne proposes andrea beaumont

Oh yeah…this will go well…

There is a new player in Gotham, and Batman is being blamed for the murders being committed.  The Phantasm is offing made men but the police and criminals think Batman is responsible.  Batman is being hunted as he deals with the return of his former lover Andrea Beaumont.  The Phantasm must be stopped, and Batman finds that the Joker is in the Phantasm’s sites.

Directed by Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm, Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm is a spin-off film from Batman: The Animated Series.  The movie was originally planned for straight-to-video but received a theatrical release.  Despite strong reviews, the movie performed poorly, but since its release Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm has gained a cult following and is often considered one of the stronger Batman films.

batman mask of the phantasm andrea beaumont costume

The Phantasm is coming for you!!!

I was a big fan of Batman:  The Animated Series.  Despite this, when Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm was released, I paid little attention to it.   The series was still on and it felt a lot like early ’80s cartoon films like G.I. Joe:  The Movie, The Transformers:  The Movie, and other cartoons that tried to get an extra buck out of the fans.  Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm however takes the best elements of Batman:  The Animated Series and combines it with a grander story like that of the theatrical Batman films.

Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm is a bit of an origin film.  The movie bounces around between flashbacks of Bruce and Andrea’s romance and shows how Andrea ended up influencing Batman’s attack on crime.  The story takes some of its elements from the Batman:  Year One storyline and Batman:  Year Two, and the strong backstory helps raise this film above a simple episode of the cartoon series.

I liked the Phantasm character.  The femme fatale nature of Catwoman is the opposite of the Phantasm.  Catwoman’s relationship is primarily with Batman with Selina and Bruce being secondary.  Here, Andrea’s relationship with Bruce is primary with Batman and Phantasm being secondary.  It is a nice switch up for the series and leads to some great moments between the characters.

batman mask of the phantasm joker andrea beaumont

Joker does have a thing for redheads…

The noir style of film also fits with the femme fatale character.  The series bases its imagery on the animated series, but it feels like it is a bit bigger scale.  Part of what attracted me to the original animated series was this classic style art which has an almost Max Fleischer feel to them.

Batman:  Mask of the Phantasm is a solid animated feature.  It isn’t necessary to have watched Batman:  The Animated Series, but those who did will find this film enriches it.  If you didn’t watch Batman:  The Animated Series, watch this film and you’ll find you’ll probably want to see out more.  Two more full length animated features based on Batman:  The Animated Series were released straight-to-video after this film Batman & Mr. Freeze:  SubZero (1998) and Batman:  Mystery of the Batwoman (2003).

Related Links:

The New Batman Adventures—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

The New Batman Adventures—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Batman:  Mystery of the Batwoman (2003)

Batman Beyond—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Batman Beyond—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Batman Beyond—Season 3 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Batman Beyond:  Return of the Joker (2000)

 

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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