Box art for Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Part 1

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Part 1

action & adventure, anime & animation

It is ten years after an aging Batman has retired, and Gotham City has sunk deeper into decadence and lawlessness. Now, when his city needs him most, he returns in a blaze of glory.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 14
4 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
2 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
Positive role models
1 out of 5
0 out of 5
4 out of 5

Extremely violent animated addition to the Batman story.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 is extremely violent. Based on the 1986 Frank Miller graphic novel, this Batman is a reflection of a mid-'80s vigilantism mindset as exemplified by Dirty Harry, Rambo, and so many other "tough guy gets even" movies from that era. Even compared to recent Batman films, this one is more violent, even if it's animated. The story is dark, and the complexities of the characters and the violence make it inappropriate for younger viewers. But for teens and parents ready for a superhero story with ambiguity, this is one worth seeing.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about Batman. How has the Batman character evolved over the years? What has remained unchanged about his basic story? Out of all the different Batmans played or voiced by different actors, which one is your favorite?
  • What are your thoughts on the violence in this version of Batman? Does it enhance or detract from the central story?
  • In some ways, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 explores the idea of whether people should take the law in their own hands, or whether they should place their faith in the police and the due process of our court system. How does this debate emerge in the story?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Audience Reviews

4 stars

Great adaptation of the graphic novel, with several lines of dialogues and panels being reproduced exactly, its made with the same skill and intelligence of the batman animated series, its dark, unflinching and not afraid to show the ugly side of the world, while i was used to hearing kevin walker be the voice of bruce wayne/batman, peter weller does a damn good job too, i cant praise this enough, its a must see for anyone who loves the dark knight returns graphic novel or just batman in general

- danielsloyan1, Saturday, January 5, 2013

5 stars

Dark, gritty and everything else you'd want a Batman movie to be. The theatrical division should be seeking out the Direct to DVD division for tips on making good movies.

- bennylwallaceii, Monday, February 4, 2013

3 stars

If you are a Batman Fan, you have already read this. The movie is a good adaptation, very faithful. The problem inherently lies in being faithful. Many of the pieces of the 80's are alive and well in this. Some of the tricks Frank Miller used in the comic books, are not workable here. But as a whole i enjoyed it. And if you are a Bat-Fan you will be excited to see it.

- Unklefreak, Tuesday, December 11, 2012