Batman: Assault on Arkham (Blu-ray review)

batman assault arkham

Batman-Assault on Arkham

Batman: Assault on Arkham is the latest DC Universe animated film that takes place in the Batman Arkham video game universe. If you aren’t caught up with the DC animated films, the quality of these films are pretty good for direct-to-video, and the target audience is mainly the older DC fanboy type. This one is no different, as we get to see some dark violence and some fan service. Instead of following Batman or the Justice League, the story is focused on the Suicide Squad, a group of villains forced to do “good”. Not following orders can lead to death, thanks to a bomb implanted inside them.

Right off the “bat” we’re introduced to the villains who will be part of the Suicide Squad. These include Deadshot (Neal McDonough), Harley Quinn (Hynden Walch), Killer Frost (Jennifer Hale), King Shark (John DiMaggio), Captain Boomerang (Greg Ellis), and Black Spider (Giancarlo Esposito). They are forced to work as a team, no thanks to Amanda Waller (CCH Pounder), a government official who wants them to retrieve something from the Riddler (Matthew Gray Gubler). The problem? He’s being held captive inside Arkham Asylum. Now the team has to infiltrate the insane asylum and reach their target without getting caught. Easier said than done.

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Don’t go expecting anything thought-provoking or deep, since the movie is focused on the Suicide Squad interacting with each other as they try to infiltrate the asylum. With villains at the forefront, that means we get some violent action. We get plenty of heads exploding and arms being broken. This could definitely pass as an R-rated film. Then there’s the nudity (either showing the backside or covered up) with Harley Quinn and Killer Frost. The girls also seem to love kissing guys and doing them harm, as we can see from Killer Frost and a cameo by another DC villain.

This is by far one of my favorite character design and animation in the DC Animated Universe to date. Harley Quinn is definitely eye candy, and the Joker also looks crazy and cool at the same time. With Kevin Conroy as Batman, you know you’re in good hands, as he pulls off one of the best, if not THE best, Batman/Bruce Wane voices of all time. Troy Baker also does a good job as the Joker, as he be a stand-in for Mark Hamill. The film is very entertaining with the pacing never dull.

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Extras

Batman: Assault on Arkham includes audio commentary. We get some good insight on inspiration and style. For example, The Raid influenced the fight scenes. Here are the other extras:

  • Arkham Analyzed: The Secrets Behind the Asylum – This short documentary talks about why Arkham Asylum is so interesting. We get a brief history and the inhabitants that occupy it.
  • The Joker’s Queen: Harley Quinn – This documentary is all about the Joker’s main squeeze. Co-creator Paul Dini and others talk about the psychotic girlfriend and her changes through the history.
  • Justice League: Throne of Atlantis Sneak Peek – We get a preview of the upcoming DC animated film starring Aquaman. It’ll be an origin story that takes place after the events of Justice League War.
  • Four episodes from the DC Comics Vault – These are various episodes from different DC animated TV series.

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Final Reaction

This is another great addition to the DC Universe Animated movie lineup. It’s a nice change of pace from all the superhero stories and features a fun interaction with the DC villains as they try to work together as a team. The animation and art design are one of the best yet from the studio. The film is entertaining and fun, and it is definitely recommended for DC or comic book fans.

Overall Rating: 4/5 Atoms

NR 4 Atoms - B

 

 

Batman: Assault on Arkham is now available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD.

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John Nguyen
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