Batman faces his ultimate challenge as the mysterious Red Hood takes Gotham City by firestorm. One part vigilante, one part criminal kingpin, Red Hood begins cleaning up Gotham with the efficiency of Batman, but without following the same ethical code. Killing is an option. And when the Joker falls in the balance between the two, hard truths are revealed and old wounds are reopened.
movie review of Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010)
There are several things that need to be said right off the bat about Batman: Under the Red Hood:
- This is not a children’s cartoon. It’s extremely violent, including the beating to death of a young Jason Todd by the Joker — with a crowbar.
- It’s extremely faithful to the comic series of the same name, with some modifications. I would say improvements, to make it a self-contained story.
- It relies on the history of the Batman. For example, most comic book geeks know that the original Red Hood was the Joker’s first alias. It was while wearing the Red Hood guise that he dived into the chemical vat that dyed his hair and skin. Driving him insane, all in an effort to escape from the Batman. This is covered in the story. But prior knowledge of things like this, or Ras Al Ghul’s Lazarus Pits, certainly help.
Is it a good story? Absolutely. It’s gripping, action-packed, character-driven, at times heart-breaking and at other times gut-wrenching. It’s an excellent movie, one of the best animated movies made to date. But it’s not for children. Take its’ PG-13 rating seriously.
Trivia for Batman: Under the Red Hood
- The story is based on the 1988 Batman Comics storyline ‘A Death in the Family’. Readers voted via a 1-900 number to either save or kill off the second Robin, Jason Todd. Over 10,000 votes were cast. With only a 72 vote majority, the decision was made to kill him. Todd was later brought back in 2005 as part of the Under the Hood storyline.
- The opening sequence where Batman carries Jason’s dead body out of the rubble is taken directly from the comic book.
- The Joker’s prison ID number that is on his jumpsuit is 11940. The Joker first appeared in Batman #1 …. Which was released in 1940.
Cast of characters
- Bruce Greenwood (I, Robot) … Batman / Bruce Wayne (voice)
- Jensen Ackles (Supernatural; Legion of Super-Heroes) … Jason Todd / Red Hood (voice)
- John DiMaggio (Superman: Doomsday) … Joker (voice)
- Neil Patrick Harris (The Muppets) … Dick Grayson / Nightwing (voice)
- Jason Isaacs (The Patriot; Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) … Ra’s al Ghul (voice)
- Wade Williams (The Dark Knight Rises) … Black Mask (voice)
- Carlos Alazraqui (The Fairly Odd Parents) … Chi Chi / Thug #1 / Baton (voice)
- Robert Clotworthy (The Curse of Oak Island) … Leon / Thug (voice)
- Gary Cole (An American Carol) … Bobo / Commissioner Gordon / Shot / Guard (voice)
- Brian George Brian George … Ra’s Assistant (voice)
- Kelly Hu (The Scorpion King) … Ms. Li (voice)
- Phil LaMarr … Rick / Bulk (voice)
- Alexander Martella … Young Robin / Jason Todd (voice)
- Vincent Martella (Phineas and Serb) … Robin / Jason Todd (voice)
- Jim Piddock (Independence Day) … Alfred Pennyworth (voice)
- Kevin Michael Richardson (Planet Hulk) … Tyler Bramford (voice)
- Andrea Romano (Batman – Mask of the Phantasm) … Reporter #1 (voice)
- Dwight Schultz (Star Trek: First Contact; The A-Team) … Freddie / Drug Dealer (voice)
- Fred Tatasciore (Kung Fu Panda 2) … Mercenary #1 / Amazo / Guard (voice)
- Bruce Timm (All-Star Superman) … The Riddler (voice)