Much like Bruce Wayne coming out of retirement in the conclusion of the Dark Knight Trilogy, I have come out of recluse to drink beer and review things again. Because I'm not the blogger the Internet deserves, but I'm the one that it needs right now. To get the ball rolling, I'll be reviewing a slew independent short films set in everyone's favorite crime ridden city: Gotham. Let's start with Puppet Master. Puppet Master is an interquel that takes place between The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. The tone and story fit neatly into the Nolan's trilogy, a blend of crime thriller and comic book movie. They may not have a star studded cast or $500,000 cameras, but this film manages to match the look and feel of the latest Batman movies very accurately through the sets, the score, and even the cinematography. But let's not be superficial. This film looks good AND it has a great personality. My favorite thing about this 15-minute flick is that it gives us the Nolanverse version of three interesting Bat-Rouges: Zsasz, Scarface, and The Riddler. Zsasz is just as chilling and psychopathic as we'd expect. And Scarface is great. John DiCrosta nails the voice and Frank Birney's Wesker is my favorite character in Puppet Master.
And the main character, Mr. Edward Nygma, an FBI agent assigned to bring in Batman for the murder of Harvey Dent. Wil Daniels's plays this FBI-agent gone rouge like a less insane Jonathan Crane and my favorite part of his portrayal is Riddler's superiority complex. He's right, if Gotham is willing to let themselves be victimized by clowns and scarecrows, why should he save them? As a Riddler fan, I would've liked to have seen cleverer riddles and more obsessive compulsive behavior, but the condescending looks he gives Wesker and the talking down he gives Batman and his calculated smugness throughout is quite enjoyable.
This short film is a great premise for a full length feature or a mini-series that brings other psychopaths from the Batmythos into Nolan's world of dark and gritty freaks, so hopefully we will see more from this team. If you haven't already watched it, take a look here or here.