The Batman didn’t show us the Caped Crusader’s first day on the job. But it did provide a different live-action take on the Dark Knight than what we’ve seen before. Only two years into his life as a vigilante, Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne was far from the polished superhero we know he’ll eventually become. His inexperience is what led him to some difficult situations. That included when he found himself in a room with a group that seemingly should have been on his side, officers of the Gotham City Police Department. That close call led to one of the film’s most intense sequences. It also ended with a devastating thump. And director Matt Reeves explained why all of that was important in a video breaking down Bruce’s unplanned flight.
If you’re nearly going to have your secret identity revealed, before jumping off a skyscraper and crash landing, you better make it count. That’s what Matt Reeves’ did when his Batman took to the sky. The writer and director analyzed how he did that in a video for The New York Times. That included covering the scene’s technical aspects. Reeves talked about where he put the camera and why. He also said he wanted viewers to experience the chaotic moment from Batman’s point-of-view. To accomplish that during the climactic jump he watched real videos of wingsuiters.
But Reeves also got into how this scene contributed to the development of the character. This Batman is not in control. At this point he’s, ahem, winging it. From the moment Jim Gordon tells him how to escape, the Dark Knight is running while figuring out what to do next. And reaching the top of the building was clearly not part of his plan, which Pattinson conveys when he reaches the top. Batman was also clearly not ready for his big leap—which, in the non-elevated reality of this Gotham, probably should have killed him.
After a few more years on the job, we trust this Bruce Wayne will get better at flying. But probably not until he can avoid flying by the seat of his pants.