You kids today may have your Christian Bales and Ben Afflecks, but for one older generation, there was only one true Batman: Michael Keaton. While the rubber clad superhero role turned Keaton into a superstar, the 2000’s weren’t as kind to him, with most of his filmography since deteriorating into a combination of “Wait, he was in that?” and “I’m not even sure that eTV will air this”. With the exception of his role as the scheming CEO villain in the recent Robocop reboot, he really has seen his career just spiral down.
Which is why him starring in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s (Babel, 21 Grams) new endeavour, Birdman, is just about as perfect as could be. In one of the best cases of “art imitating life” castings since womanizing, hard drinking playboy Robert Downey Jr. was cast to play womanizing, hard drinking playboy Tony Stark, the dark comedy – which, based on this first trailer and Iñárritu’s Oscar nominated track record, will be heavy on the dark, light on the comedy – sees Keaton as a washed up actor, most famous for playing the titular superhero on-screen during his prime, who’s now looking to make a comeback, much to the detriment of his psychological well-being.
There are explosions, giant bird dream monsters, killer tracking shoots and even a bit of a disheveled Keaton running around New York in just his tighty-whities. It looks kind of unhinged, very dark and possibly like the best thing Keaton has done since Tim Burton decided to dress him up as an S&M flying rodent who couldn’t turn his head.
Birdman or “The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance” is a black comedy that tells the story of an actor (Keaton) – famous for portraying an iconic superhero – as he struggles to mount a Broadway play. In the days leading up to opening night, he battles his ego and attempts to recover his family, his career, and himself.
Birdman also stars Lindsay Duncan, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone and Naomi Watts, and is scheduled for release on October 17, 2014.
Last Updated: June 17, 2014