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on 14 February 2007
What I don't understand is why the guys that made this movie (who also made the superb Batman Animated Series, Superman Animated Series and Justice League shows among others) weren't ever allowed to make a live action movie, or at least get to pen one.

This movie is stunning, from the animation, to the fact this movie was produced and rushed out the door and still ended up being arguably the finest Batman story ever put on screen.

It is an absolute travesty that Warner Brothers really do seem intent on burying talent, but talent shines through regardless. It's a crying shame that Mark Hamills Joker was culled from the Justice League show due to the fact Warner didn't want ickle kiddies to get confused with their unrelated and terrible "The Batman" show.

Anyway, this DVD is here, along with the original Batman Animated Series, Batman Beyond, plus Mask Of The Phantasm, to showcase what I think is the definitive editions of Batman.

Kevin Conroy IS Batman. Christian Bale plays the character amazingly in Begins, but to me the voice of Kevin Conroy as Batman is definitive.

It's great how Bruce Timm and co really turned their fortunes around when the studios asked for a "young" Batman to reach younger audiences, in typical know-nothing executive style. They considerred walking out, but instead came up with the Batman Beyond concept, which would mean they'd be able to essentially continue their work and play out a "possible future" of the character, while also introducing a new character, Terry McGinnis, as Bruce Waynes "Batman agent in the field". We saw Bruce tutor Terry and guide him through his missions, and we'd see Terry mature and change and grow, all the while the show would always have that storng Batman vibe to it. They luckily got the green light and were able to make the incredible Batman Beyond TV Show which pushed all the right buttons, for older fans, for kids, and for the executives.

Then came this movie, which showcases the incredible Mark Hamill as The Joker once more. Just as Conroy IS Batman, Hamill IS The Joker, and in this film I think he delivers the ultimate performance. The Joker in this film is just as scary and freaky as Nicholsons Joker. Part of that success must also be attributed to the art team, which is full of anime specialists and give the characters a look and movement so fluid you'd often think you were watching a top of the line anime movie. They also show The Joker at his most frightening and sinister. Even more of that success goes to Mark Hamill for his delivery and he really brings The Joker kicking and screaming to life with cackling menace.

There's a flashback scene where we go back in time and see Batman and Jokers last fight. The Joker is on top form, deliverring genuinely funny yet ultimately pretty sick jokes that you can't help but chuckle at. It is worth getting the DVD just for this scene because I don't think there is any scene in any superhero movie so far which has as much emotion, tragedy and sheer rage involved all at once.

As charasmatic and as wonderful as Joker is, when Batman lays into the Joker and says "I'll break you in two!" at that point you really want Bruce to do just that. This is one movie where as an audience member, you really do think Joker has crossed the line this time.

Bruce Timm & Co have done wonders for the Batman character. They reinvented Mr Freeze, winning an Emmy for their efforts, introduced the wonderful Harley Quinn, who is now a favourite in the actual comics, and even made a successful "Future" character spin-off of a much-loved hero(which is practically unheard of).

The soundtrack is also fantastic. Kris Carter does an amazing job of making a spooky, sinister and powerful electro/rock/instrumental soundtrack.

It's overlooked because it's animated. That's just life. If it was ever adapted in a live action movie (and I hope to God sometime in the future they do decide to make a Batman Beyond live action movie sometime) it would be easily considerred as one of the best, because it is.
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on 23 June 2001
Although I enjoy the Batkman of the Future series I never really considered Terry Mc Guinness worthy of the mantle of the bat (he's too young and his training has been fairly minimal). This movie however totally changed my opinion. The action is first rate, the animation has a cool anime feel to it and the voice acting is superb. Even if you dont like batman of the future I'd still recommend this video to any batman fan (You also get to see some cool footage of Bruce back in the day)!! I think this is intended for a more mature audience, although not as violent as Mask of the Phantasm the Joker is portrayed as the deranged monster he is supposed to be and the Arkham asylum scene is the most sinister scene I've seen in any animated movie (even Manga). In short if you like batman buy this!!!!!
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on 3 June 2005
Thank God, Warner Bros released a Director's Cut of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker because you get the chance to see the bits which were removed in the edited version seeing as some scenes were too disturbing and upsetting to watch.
This version really does the film justice, it's aimed at older/teenage audiences, the youngsters should stick to the tame and cut version because it's less frightening.
Here is some things which had to be taken out and replaced with alternative scenes such as the Joker shooting one of his henchmen with a dart gun rather than laughing gas.
The Batcave walls are spray painted red instead of purple, an extended look at Robin's transformation in the flashback, the Joker referring to Bruce Wayne as a "bat fart" instead of "bat coot", the camera sprinning 360 degrees when Batman fights the Jokerz gang and applying more uppercuts to different henchmen.
The film gets a widescreen presentation and has a 5.1 surround soundtrack to offer you the ultimate Batman animated movie experience, all in all it's well worth the money, just try and avoid the edited version because if you do, you'll be missing out and throwing good money away!
Don't miss out on this fantastic DVD filled with some excellent special features such as making of and interviews with the cast!
I reccommend this to all Batman fans old and new, heed the calling and purchase this film today!
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on 7 August 2013
This American blu-ray is all zone

Ratio of the feature film:
1.33:1

Languages of the feature film:
- DTS Master Audio 5.1: English
- Dolby 2.0: European French, German, Swedish, Latin Spanish and Audio Commentary

Subtitles for all the videos:
- French, Latin Spanish, German, Swedish and English for the Hard of Hearing

Verdict:
Not only, the picture is presented in its original ratio but also, we have the definite and original cut of the film with the 4 extra minutes.
The picture and sound are excellent for this uncut version of the story.
A few shots are a little bit pixelated but apart from that, this presentation is prefect.
The good part is that we can hear our favorite voices:
- Kevin Conroy is Bruce Wayne as usual
- Mark Hamill dubs the Joker and also Jordan Price, the want-to-be CEO of Wayne's Enterprises, a clue maybe...
- Michael Rosenbaum, the Lex Luthor of Smallville and who also dubs Flash in the Justice League lends his voice for Ghoul, the bad guy who resembles Scarecrow

As a bonus, the DVD of the uncut feature film:
- All zone DVD, 4/3 encoding but 1.78:1 ratio picture.
- Dolby 5.1: English
- Subtitles: English and French.

A very good edition for this futuristic adventure of Batman with a good story where we wonder who the Joker is.
NB: the German and Swedish soundtracks have some English dialogues as only the censored version was dubbed, hence the added scenes are in English.

Enjoy the Dark Knight !
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on 23 July 2014
As a huge batman fan i liked the direction that was taken with the Batman Beyond idea, the series is up there as one of my favourite iterations of the charactor, and this film, to me, sums up this new Batman perfectly by throwing in the iconic Joker as a test of the new batmans resolve compared to Bruce Wayne.
The story is masterful with the revelations and ending handled very well indeed, and is is always a pleasure to hear Mark Hamill voicing the Joker again as he brings great depth to the joker in a way that other voice actors have not always managed. Harley quinn has a fine extended cameo in the film, and as she is one of my favourite charactors that automatically gets an extra mark from me.
The animation is fluid, colourful and exciting and the action scenes are slick and well put together. The story is a little bit dark for younger viewers, with some disturbing pschological issues exposed and subject matter that may take a little explaining away to little ones. I would recommend this film to all Batman fans as a worthy addition to any collection, and if it makes you want to explore the series of Batman Beyond then even better!
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on 19 September 2009
The film is incredible, to anyone wishing to buy the DVD, this film is all regions and will work on any DVD player, despite Amazon saying different
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on 25 November 2014
I bought this for my son as he is a big fan of Batman of the Future (the British name of the cartoon). He thoroughly enjoyed it - so did the rest of the family - and has watched it numerous times since.

If you're a fan of the Batman of the Future cartoon and concept, I highly recommend this movie.
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on 22 August 2005
Having not been the biggest fan of the Batman Beyond series i approached this movie spin off with much reluctance. Bringing back the Joker just reeked of desperation to force the fans of the oringinal Batman Animated Series to accept this new incarnation. But thanks to great writing, acting and an amazing flashback to the final Batman/Joker face-off firmly puts a full stop on the original show and its spin-off, Gotham Adventures. We finally get under the skin of the new Batman, Terry McGinnis and a new insight into the team dynamics of the old Batman/Batgirl/Robin/Nightwing family. This movie really unites the old with the new in a highly satisfying manner while delivering all the action and setpieces we expect from an animated Batman movie. I really dont want to spoil the plot details of this extremely enjoyable feature as i myself went in blind and feel that this the best way to view it. The DVD features a brilliantly engaging commentary and enough behind the scenes features to make most cartoon DVDs blush. Highly recommended.
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on 23 January 2006
Does anyone have a clue what is the difference between this 2005 edition and the previous uncut edition released in 2002?
The major flaw I could see with the '02 version is that it is in 1.78 letterbox format. It still has a DD5.1 soundtrack. (The 2000 release was censored and had 1.33 full-frame).
Is this the "ultimate" release in anamorphic picture format? DTS soundtrack (wish...) Cheers for any ideas.
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VINE VOICEon 7 October 2007
Since the first Batman cartoons in the early 1990s, the DC Comics Animated Universe or DCAU has produced a wealth of extraordinarily high quality cartoons that appeal to kids but are also smart, funny and dark enough to appeal to adults; indeed, I'd say they're mostly adult shows geared towards kids. Batman Beyond is probably the least popular of all these shows, the one that contained the most original material from the regular team. However if I had to pick out one point as the individual peak of the entire DCAU, it would be Return Of The Joker.

All of the Batman animated feature-lengths are fantastic, beautifully animated, excellently written and voiced to perfection by Kevin Conroy and his fellow regulars. But this - note, the proper version, not the sanitised version - is the best Batman film of them all. We get the still great voice talents of Conroy, as well as the incomparable Mark Hamill as The Joker, showing that his true masterwork is in animation, not in Star Wars.

The writing is still razor-sharp, witty but splendidly dark, and the imagery of the distopian future is masterful. Not only that, but the minor swearing and violence allowed due to this being the unrated version make this the most adult, and best of the Batman films; never mind the fact that simply at this level of maturity, it is one of the most terrifying films you well ever see, Hamill's psychotic performance as the Joker combined with the fate of Tim Drake chilling to the very core.

That, and the incredibly original ending that allows the new Batman to truly become his own man instead of just a shadow of Bruce Wayne, make this the best thing the DCAU ever did; and with such a high standard, you know how good that makes it.
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