Earnigns: Batman Returns - Michael Keaton 1992 Costume

Batman Returns 1992

Catwoman Michelle Pfieffer

Tim Burton directed sequel to his 1989 Batman film.

Screenplay by Daniel Waters

Starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Michael Keaton, Christopher Walken and Danny DeVito.

Released June 19, 1992

Production budget: $80 million

Gross worldwide earnings: $266,822,354

Earnings: American domestic market $162,831,698 + Foreign market $103,990,656. Only Disney's Aladdin and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York made more money in 1992. Source: Boxofficemojo

Michael Keaton Batman


Michelle Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman - Selina Kyle


Batman Returns Review

Tim Burton's sequel to his huge hit of Batman (which was the #2 highest earning film around the world for 1989, making $411 million), came in as a slightly different kind of movie, and placed as #6 for the highest earning film of 1992 (with $266 million worldwide). (Note: these gross totals reflect that the average movie ticket price in 1992 was only $4.15.)

Michelle Pfieffer

Burton's Batman II is arguably a much darker film, with a much more obsessive attention to art director spectacle (a peculiar Tim Burton dilemma haunting most of his films) than the first film, which was a sleeker, easier to follow adventure film with all of the mental anxiety shared between Jack Nicholson's Joker, and to a lesser extent, the Michael Keaton Bruce Wayne/Batman). The story in Batman Returns goes further down that road, stuffing the tale with more villain characters with major mental issues, setting a standard that was followed in the also over-stuffed Batman 3 (Batman Forever) and Batman 4 (Batman and Robin) films. (Batman and Robin, though, drops the mental obsession angle concerning Batman, with George Clooney essentially playing 'Bat-Dad,' and his character is probably the most mentally healthy person in the cast, a far cry from Michael Keaton's "almost crazy" Batman of the first film.)

Selina Kyle - Michelle Pfeiffer

Batman Returns' Villains

Despite cramming the screen with characters, Burton makes sure to give Michelle Pfeiffer (Catwoman), Danny DeVito (Penguin) and Christopher Walken (Max Shreck) solo turns before the camera, sans Batman, so that we can learn about them and have some sort of reaction to each of them. Daniel Waters' screenplay steers us toward general sympathy for the Cat and Penguin, but none for the brutally cruel Max Shreck.

Christopher Walken

Batman Returns

Danny Devito Penguin Batman Returns

Burton uses the comic book adventure story to present a satiric take on American election culture (with DeVito's Penguin running for mayor of Gotham) and for the most part, Burton uses this odd angle as a way to darken the tale even further, because his two sympathetic villains (Catwoman and Penguin) are both portrayed as victims to the short-comings and mercilessness of the Gotham society we see in action as Penguin's campaign goes through its paces.

Michelle Pfeiffer Batman Returns 1992

In this way, Catwoman, Penguin and Batman are more or less on one side in the morality of the story, and Max Shreck is on the other side. Burton does allow one redeeming character trait to be extended to Shreck, which is a soft and caring attitude toward his son, but otherwise, Shreck is a ruthlessly brutal businessman with no regard for human life.

Michael Keaton - Batman Returns

Michelle Pfeiffer and Michael Keaton

Batman Returns Poster

Batman ReturnsBatman ReturnsBatman ReturnsBatman Returns


Batman Returns 1992

Catwoman - Michelle Pfeiffer

Batman - 1989 - Directed by Tim Burton


Top Earning World Wide Superhero Films

List Updated July 17, 2017

*Currently in release in movie theatres

  1. The Avengers (2012 Marvel Studios) $1,511,757,910 Billion
  2. Avengers Age of Ultron (2015 Marvel Studios) $1.402 Billion
  3. Iron Man 3 (2013 Marvel Studios) $1,212,795,474 Billion
  4. Captain America Civil War: $1,153,294,011
  5. Dark Knight Rises (2012 Warners) 1,081,036,828 Billion
  6. The Dark Knight (2008 Warners Bros) $1,004,558,444 Billion
  7. Spiderman 3 (2007 Sony) $890.9 Million
  8. Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice (Warners 2016) $872,662,631
  9. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 (2017 Marvel-Disney) $859,305,145 Million
  10. Spiderman (2002 Sony) $821.7 Million

15. Wonder Woman (2017 Warners) $764,886,078 Million

33. Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017 Sony) $469,370,314 Million


Original Page April 2014 | Updated May 2016



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