The Batman director Matt Reeves, recently sat down with CNET for an interview promoting his latest film War For The Planet Of The Apes. Of course, the conversation then steered to Reeves’ next project, the super-anticipated The Batman, in which the director revealed one of his biggest influences in terms of making film: Alfred Hitchcock.
Psycho meets Batman?
Alfred Hitchcock was a great film director that was responsible for such great films as Psycho, Vertigo, The Rear Window, and many others. These films have been viewed and studied by countless fans and aspiring film makers and Matt Reeves, an alum from the renowned USC School of Film, is not immune from the influence of the “Master of Suspense”. Speaking during the interview, Reeves stated:
“For me, point of view is really important. I want to make sure you are experiencing something from the perspective of the main character in the story. I’m a huge Hitchcock fan – I like the idea of being immersed in that perspective.”
Hitchcock is well known for immersing audiences into his films using a plethora of different cinematic techniques. He did so in order to generate all kinds of emotions from his audiences and the world loved him for doing so. It would be difficult to create suspense in a story if fans are not connected to the characters in the movie – if they feel no connection at all (a sign of a bad movie in most cases). One example can be found in the movie Vertigo. Who can forget those iconic shots of James Stewart’s character, John Ferguson, looking down those stairs from his perspective as the camera pulled back and zoomed in while making the audience feel woozy? That is how Hitchcock managed to grab audiences and make them identify with the characters in his films.
It seems that Reeves might want to tap into that magic and make audiences really identify with Batman/Bruce Wayne. Reeves continued:
“Movies for me are about empathy. The idea is to make you, the audience, feel what the character feels.”
The key word here is “empathy” – which some critics of DC’s movies so far have said is sorely lacking. So what are fans suppose to make of this? One can imagine that The Batman will really present the titular character in a more ‘human’ way. Can we expect more point of view shots in the movie? That can be one factor evident in the film but it could just be something as simple as using existing cinematic techniques to place the viewer in the role of Batman; to see the world the way the Dark Knight sees it and feel it the way he does. At the end of the day, who wouldn’t want to be Batman?
You can catch an excerpt from the interview here.