Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham [4K Ultra HD]
Directors: Sam Liu, Christopher Berkeley
Cast: David Giuntoli, Tati Gabrielle, Christopher Gorham (VOICES)
Release Date: March 28, 2023
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 6.5/10
Disc Rating: 7/10
Inspired by the comic book series by Mike Mignola, Richard Pace and Troy Nixey, Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham is a 1920s-based tale that finds explorer Bruce Wayne accidentally unleashing an ancient evil, expediting his return to Gotham City after a two-decade hiatus. The logic/science-driven Batman must battle Lovecraftian supernatural forces threatening the sheer existence of Gotham, along the way being aided and confronted by reimagined versions of his well-known allies and enemies, including Green Arrow, Ra’s al Ghul, Mr. Freeze, Killer Croc, Two-Face, James Gordon and Bruce’s beloved wards. Prepare for a mystical, often terrifying Batman adventure unlike any other.
Please Note: Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ introduces viewers to a different take on Batman and picks up in the late 1920’s as we join explorer Bruce Wayne who along with his three wards that he took in amid his journeys accidentally unleash a terrifying evil during an expedition. Now Bruce and his young charges will have to return to his hometown of Gotham City after leaving twenty years prior where Bruce will utilize everything he’s been training for to become the Batman and attempt everything in his power to try and stop the evil before the city and everyone he loves is forced to pay the price. But the darkness and evil that he’ll be forced to confront along the way will try even Batman.
‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ serves up a vastly different Batman tale than we’re generally accustomed to and is inspired by the comic book series by Mike Mignola, Richard Pace and Troy Nixey. Equal parts old school horror tale, Batman adventure and period piece in its own right, the animated film takes viewers back to the 1920’s where Bruce and his young adopted charges from his exploring expedition of the last twenty years are forced to return to Gotham and take on a terrifying evil unlike anything they could have fathomed, and for which they’re at least partly responsible for unleashing, albeit accidentally. The animated film is capable guided along by co-directors Sam Liu and Christopher Berkeley from a screenplay by Jase Ricci. The film’s voice cast includes David Giuntoli, Tati Gabrielle, Christopher Gorham, Patrick Fabian, John DiMaggio and David Dastmalchian along with more who each do their own part to help bring this tale to life.
Featuring a unique, familiar yet also strangely different approach on various well-known characters from the Bat-verse (and general DC Universe overall) including Oliver Queen, Harvey Dent, Jim Gordon and of course Bruce’s three wards which all serve as various iterations of Robin, all set to the backdrop of 1920’s Gotham with inspirations from countless classic horror tales. It then meshes everything together into this curious adventure that keeps you guessing almost every step of the way while also throwing out countless nods to the characters within in its own unique way. It’s a Batman tale rooted deep in horror although one that takes a bit to adapt to as a result of such an alternate take on these characters and it can become slightly convoluted as it repeatedly introduces more characters along its course and struggles to find an adequate balance for everything to work within. It definitely offers up a fascinating and notably dark story that does struggle with a pacing that never quite seems to click, but it still has plenty of rewarding elements to contribute if you can stick with it.
Overall, ‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ is an intriguing and adequately dark Elseworlds tale that follows a very different Bruce Wayne who returns to his hometown after twenty years when he and his three young wards accidentally unleash a terrifying evil with connections to Gotham. The film almost works as a mashup of the Batman and DC Characters we know but with a slight edge and difference to each that are thrown into an old-school horror tale rich with monsters, dark magic and struggle. It’s an enjoyable tale thanks to the unique approach it takes but the film does have trouble finding a pace that doesn’t drag and stumble at times and it becomes a bit overloaded with all of the new interpretations of characters that it attempts to introduce throughout. ‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ is recommended for any diehard Batman and DC fans, as well as fans of old school horror and monster tales who should all find something to appreciate here, but unless you collect all of these DC Animated Movies it might not hurt to rent this one prior to making a purchase.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ features a full 2160p Ultra High Definition presentation with HDR-10, presented in its original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty good altogether and provides a clean, sharp and nicely detailed presentation from start to finish. The presentation is in line with the other DC Animated Movies on the 4K UHD format and occasionally suffers from minor artifacts and similar elements, but still serves up a more than capable presentation that offers some noticeable improvements compared to its Blu-ray counterpart with vibrant colors, clear texture and detail as well as some deep, rich blacks throughout. Overall, this is a solid Ultra High Definition video presentation that shouldn’t have any trouble pleasing fans of these animated DC films that tend to be satisfied with what the 4K releases typically deliver.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release features a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This multichannel soundtrack offers a clean, crisp and at times hard hitting audio presentation that nicely complements the film. It repeatedly takes advantage of all five available channels in order to send some dialogue, chanting and creepy effects, along with action content, music and plenty more regularly whipping throughout the various speakers whenever appropriate and never allowing any dialogue or other audio elements that may be occurring simultaneously to clash with one another or become problematic along the way. Overall, this is a great 5.1 DTS-HD MA soundtrack that sounds good throughout and should not disappoint.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham’ includes a few extras which can all be found on the included Blu-ray disc (oddly enough not even the commentary track is included on the 4K UHD disc). The Blu-ray disc includes an ‘Audio Commentary with Producer/Co-Director Sam Liu, Writer Jase Ricci, DC Creative Director Mike Carlin and Producer Tim Krieg’, in addition to the Featurette ‘Batman: Shadows of Gotham’ (running approximately 13 minutes in length) which includes interviews/comments with the creative team and more discussing the new film and its roots. We are also treated to ‘2 Bonus Cartoons from the DC Vault’ which this time around are both parts of the ‘Batman The Animated Series’ 2-parter “The Demon’s Quest, Part 1” (running approximately 22 minutes) and “The Demon’s Quest, Part 2” (approximately 22 minutes). 2 previously released Sneak Preview looks are also included: ‘Batman: Gotham by Gaslight’ (8 minutes) and ‘Superman: Red Son’ (11 minutes).
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray disc included in the 4K UHD Combo Pack and resized. They do not represent the quality of the 4K Ultra HD disc itself and will additionally suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on the 4K UHD & Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Film Rating: 6.5/10
Disc Rating: 7/10
‘Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham’ Arrives Home on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray & Digital March 28, 2023 from DC Comics & Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment
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