If you’re a fan of Batman, you know about the Batmobile. The iconic battle vehicle has gone through several iterations over the years, but the version created for the latest movie, The Batman, shows a scrapped-together muscle car that would make Max Rockatansky proud.
The Batman is a new movie starring Robert Pattison as Batman and Zoë Kravitz as Batwoman. As with all other Batman movies, the DC Comics superhero fights crime in Gotham City thanks to a host of gadgets and acrobatics.
But one thing really stuck out to me in this new movie: the Batmobile. While it was first revealed in photos back in early 2020, its full glory isn’t realized until you see it on the big screen and hear its engine rattle the entire theater.
Director Matt Reeves said that he created this new Batmobile to pay homage to the gearhead in Bruce Wayne. “The Nolan films established the Batmobile as a tank, which was a brilliant idea,” Reeves told Esquire. “But I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if this guy is a loner and a gearhead and fashioning these things by himself, taking parts of other cars and kit cars? So it’s recognizable as a car this time. But it’s like a muscle car. One that he’s made himself.”
And I’d have to say, that came through loud and clear. Based on a late 60s Dodge Charger body, this new Batmobile is also meant to evoke a horror aesthetic beyond what we’ve seen in the shinier Batmobiles of the past. “[The Batmobile] has to make an appearance out of the shadows to intimidate, so I thought of it almost like Stephen King’s Christine,” Reeves said in an interview with Empire. “I liked the idea of the car itself as a horror figure, making an animalistic appearance to really scare the hell out of the people Batman’s pursuing. There is absolutely a horror-genre aspect to this movie.”
Further than that, the Batmobile is and always has been an extension of Batman. Since this Batman is more of a pieced-together result of years of fighting crime, Reeves wanted to portray that through his car, too. ” Car culture is an important part of who and what Batman is,” Reeves told GQ. “My first Batmobile was the Lincoln Futura, from the ’60s television series. I was obsessed with it, had the little Corgi model. We’d seen the Batmobile as a Gothic rocket, we’d seen it as a tank, and this was a Batman in year two who doesn’t have a Lucius Fox figure helping him. I wanted him to be a gearhead in his garage, working on a kind of bashed-up kit car.
“I wanted the car to look somehow retro and familiar, like a Dodge Charger or Challenger, but also unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.”
The Batman released in theaters on March 4, 2022.
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