The Batman is close to the horizon, and fans cannot wait. The upcoming Matt Reeves-directed take on DC's Dark Knight has been years in the making and is mere weeks away from hitting theaters worldwide. The film stars Robert Pattinson as Bruce Wayne this time around and looks to be a darker take on the world of Gotham City, more akin to something from famed director David Fincher than the typical comic book fare.
Throughout the project's nearly three-hour runtime, Pattinson's caped crusader will go up against The Riddler (played by Paul Dano), a deranged serial killer who is playing head games with The Dark Knight.
The exact specifics of the Riddler's villainous plan are still up in the air, but it will all somehow wrap up in the likes of Selina Kyle (Zoe Kravitz), Commissioner Jim Gordon (Jeffrey Wright), and The Penguin (Colin Farrell).
Despite this lack of any plot specifics being out into the world, fans have latched onto the marketing material for The Batman. And things are only just getting started as the first substantial piece of footage for the film has just been released.
Take Us to Church, Batman
The first clip from Matt Reeves' The Batman has made its way online, playing for some fans as a YouTube ad before its official release by Warner Bros. The clip depicts the funeral sequence that has been seen in multiple trailers released for the film.
The brief sequence sees Robert Pattinson's Bruce Wayne and Jayme Lawson's Bella Reál taking in a celebration of life. Then, after a brief bit of exposition about the missing district attorney, an out-of-control vehicle dispatched by The Riddler comes crashing through the walls of the church and into the crowd. If that was not enough, from out of the driver's side of the rigged-up SUV comes that missing attorney, strapped to a bomb with a letter for the Batman secured to his chest.
The full clip can be seen below:
Riddler Bursts Through the Wall
While it is unclear as to when this small funeral sequence takes place in the long runtime of The Batman, it does feel like it could be quite early on.
This is likely not the first time Gotham PD and Bruce Wayne come into contact with the antics of Paul Dano's riddling villain, but judging from the reaction to the whole situation there is an element of unfamiliarity running through this whole set-piece. These characters may know of The Riddler at this point in the film, but they have not yet fully grasped just who they are dealing with.
In the brief clip, Pattinson's Wayne looks up at the first balcony of this church and sees a mysterious figure standing alone among the chaos. One can assume that this silhouette is Edward Nigma himself. The character disappears quickly enough for no one to get a good enough look at the culprit. But that would be fitting for the Riddler to stand at the scene of his own crime, looking on to know he got the better of the people below.
One interesting aspect seen in this sequence doesn't have to do with the action at all, it's the characters Bruce Wayne is interacting with. Yes, Gotham's golden son gets a hello from a couple of police officers, but when the clip opens, Wayne is seen chitchatting with Bella Reál (played by Jayme Lawson). Reál is an original character in this film, but she is talking about running for office in Gotham City.
Something that has only briefly been touched on in the lead-up to The Batman is the idea of Gotham going through a time of governmental change in this movie. If this is as it seems and a municipal race is happening when the events of the film transpire, then it could hint at what fans could see next from Paul Dano's Riddler.
What better time to cause the chaos that he will be than one when government officials have their sights set elsewhere? Whether this election is just set dressing playing into the minutia of this version of Gotham or something more integral to the plot at play is anyone's guess, but it could prove to be an important detail.
The Batman swoops into theaters on March 4, 2022.