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Batman - Mask of the Phantasm

4.7 out of 5 stars 423 customer reviews

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(Dec 21, 1999)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Unmasking the Phantasm is just one of the twists in Batman: Mask of Phantasm, "one of the most imaginative films of the past year" (Chuck Rich, Westwood One). Only here will you discover all-new revelations about Batman's past, his archrival the Joker and the most grueling battle of Batman's life - the choice between his love of a beautiful woman and his vow to be the defender of right. Batman: Mask of Phantasm is a "mystery that is genuinely absorbing, suspenseful and moving" (Cincinnati Enquirer) and a film no fan should be without! Can the Dark Knight elude the police, capture the Phantasm and clear his name? Year: 1993 Director: Eric Radomski Starring: Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill, Dana Delany, Hart Bochner, Abe Vigoda

Amazon.com

Although the live-action Batman franchise faltered artistically after Tim Burton gave up control, the slack was taken up by the Saturday morning cartoon show, whose creators are responsible for this feature film. Though a cartoon, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm is less cartoonish than the popular '60s TV show (which spawned its own movie, Batman: The Movie). Mask of the Phantasm combines the noir of the original comic book, the violence and dark humor of the Dark Knight comic book revision, and Burton's two movies.

In Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, everyone's favorite schizophrenic billionaire crime fighter is investigating the murders of several prominent gangsters. Meanwhile, his ex-fiancée and her father are back in town. Through flashbacks, these two death-obsessed kids are shown falling in love (she lost her mother; he lost both parents--of course, they meet in a graveyard), until she leaves quickly and mysteriously. Along the way, there's a short course in the origins of the Batman costume and the origins of the Joker (voice of Star Wars' Mark Hamill!), a big fight with the smoke-enshrouded Phantasm character, who is suspected of killing the gangsters, and an even bigger fight with the Joker at the abandoned Gotham World's Fair grounds. Altogether, a good ride. --Andy Spletzer


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Kevin Conroy, Dana Delany, Hart Bochner, Stacy Keach, Abe Vigoda
  • Directors: Boyd Kirkland, Bruce W. Timm, Dan Riba, Eric Radomski, Frank Paur
  • Writers: Alan Burnett, Archie Goodwin
  • Format: Anamorphic, Animated, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, Full Screen, HiFi Sound, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: December 21, 1999
  • Run Time: 76 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (423 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000399WH
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,748 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Batman - Mask of the Phantasm" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Steven Myers VINE VOICE on November 6, 2000
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It's unfortunate that an animated series rarely gets serious attention, even when made into a movie, like Mask of the Phantasm. The writing is superior to the live action Batman movies, and the movie has more self-respect. We delve into Batman's past: not his why-I-became-Batman past which everyone knows; rather, we learn why he remains Batman despite the intense personal cost. This is a great movie, with a great voice cast (including Mark Hamill <yes, Luke Skywalker> who is just perfect as the Joker). The score is wonderful, playing a little with the score from the first Michael Keaton Batman movie, then proceeding along its own course.
The movie is, of course, not for everyone. If all you want to see are fists hitting the bad guys in the gut, you'll be disappointed (or perhaps, your kids will be). There is romance, sorrow, and introspection, in addition to the violence of Batman's confrontation with villains. This is simply a far more thoughtful movie than one might expect, and though it is well-done in this regard, it may not be what you are expecting.
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Format: VHS Tape
When I was younger, I used to brush off Batman: The Animated Series as stupid, and for little kids. Now at the age of seventeen, I see that I was gravely mistaken. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm would have to be my favorite movie of all time. How can I even begin to count all the things I love about it? It's gripping, exciting, witty, funny, sad... Needless to say, it's head over heals over any other Batman movie I've ever seen before. Unlike the live-action movies, it's not about appealing to the audience with predictable James Bond action sequences and famous actors. This movie truely does justice to the comic and to Bob Kane. Each character is portrayed perfectly, with wonderful animation and amazing voice acting. I absolutely love the dark deco art style as well. And the plot is one of the best I've seen. It really keeps you interested. I'd recommend this movie to anyone, Batman fan or not! Definately try this one out!
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I grew up on Batman the Animated Series. It was amazing. Many would cite my recollection of that show (And others such as Spider-Man and X-Men the Animated Series) as being blinded by simple nostalgia, which is a fair, though overused, judgement. However, I have rewatched the entirety of the series a total of two times in the last five years, and I can say that rating my opinion of the show has far more to do with just nostalgia. The music, the gothic look of the setting, the animation, the storyline's of individual episodes, all were consistently good, which isn't something that can be said for many cartoon shows. And so it's really only fitting that Batman Mask of the Phantasm manage to carry on all the great traits from the series, while at the same time creating a larger stage to present them on. This film is epic in every way, and at the same time somewhat lowkey. The overall plot when all is said and done is really just a story of mystery, murder, and love, which when you compare it to the character that would later go on to fight right beside the likes of Superman, Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman to save the world time and again seems fairly average. That is part of the film's charm however. Because Batman doesn't need to be facing some world conquering aliens or visiting a hidden city of intelligent gorillas in order to be entertaining. This film goes back to the characters roots, citing the reason for his war against crime, while at the same time showing that he's not made of hard, unfeeling stone. This latter showing makes his decision to become Batman that much more tragic.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
This is probably the greatest recreation of the Batman characters ever, Tim Burton's spectacular flick included. Gotham's simplistic but dark, tall, and gothic (pun VERY MUCH intended) style, the way that most of the scenes in "the present" were never during the day, the ingenious use of flashbacks, all came together to make a visually stunning movie. And this was a cartoon that didn't pull its punches. It was one of the only "kid-oriented" animated films to recieve a PG rating back in the 90's.
The voice cast was spectacular. The characters of Comissioner Gordan, Detective Bullock, Alfred; all are wonderfully cast (I would argue that this movie has the best Alfred of any Batman film EVER). And of course, the casting of Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill (Batman and The Joker respectively) in a reprise of their roles on the show couldn't have happened any other way, simply because they embody these characters so well, and put far more heart into their performances than you get from many live-action parts (read: the last two live-action Batmans).
The story is both simple and complicated at the same time. Sure, some kids won't get all of it, but the thing is rated PG for a reason. A killer has shown up in Gotham, a murderer who is offing mob bosses with brutal efficiancy. The D.A. blames Batman, and starts a city-wide manhunt. On the Bruce Wayne side of things, an old flame has returned to Gotham (voiced by Dana Delany, the same dame who did Lois Lane in the Superman animated series; funny ol' world, in' it?), who is, in a roundabout way, the reason Batman was able to exist. Bruce is torn between his love, and the responsibilities of, and new dangers to, his secret identity.
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