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Chuckie Sol and his thugs have gathered to exchange some money in the penthouse of a building when they are suddenly busted by Batman, who takes down most of the thugs except for Sol, who manages to get away and makes his way to the parking lot of the building. However, be
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Aliases
Mask of the Phantasm; Batman: The Animated Movie


Movie Details



Composers
Shirley Walker



Running Time
76 min

Rating

Budget
$6 million

Release Date
December 25, 1993

Associated Websites


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Plot

Chuckie Sol and his thugs have gathered to exchange some money in the penthouse of a building when they are suddenly busted by Batman, who takes down most of the thugs except for Sol, who manages to get away and makes his way to the parking lot of the building. However, before he can make it to his car, he is confronted by a mysterious and menacing masked man, who wants to take Sol's life. Sol cowers in fear towards his vehicle and the hooded man attacks the gangster with a hooked blade he keeps in his hand. Using his vehicle, Sol attempts to run over the masked man, but the mysterious shadowy figure vanishes in a burst of smoke, causing Sol to drive his vehicle off the building and drop several storeys below until he crashes against the nearby building, dying. Batman arrives in time to see the unfortunate outcome, but he is unable to catch the attacker and only gets a glimpse of the mysterious man leaving the scene while many witnesses notice Batman's presence at the crime scene.

Later, Bruce Wayne throws a party at Wayne Manor, but an incident with a lady promts Gotham City councilman Arthur Reeves to remind Bruce of his past with a woman called Andrea. Bruce decides to take some time alone in his study, where he remembers his first encounter with Andrea Beaumont.

Andrea Beaumont

Andrea Beaumont

Many years ago, Bruce was visiting his parents' grave as usual when he heard the voice of a woman talking nearby. He approached the lady and asked if she needed anything, to which she replied negatively. Bruce started walking away when he noticed she has started to talk again and this time, she mentioned his name. Bruce returned and inquired who was she talking to and the lady replied that she was talking to her mother, who is buried nearby the Waynes. Bruce understood the situation and apologized for meddling. However, the lady was already leaving the cemetery and Bruce decided to walk along with her and get to know her a little more. She introduced herself as Andrea Beaumont and she admitted she was interested in Bruce, which is how their relationsip started.

However, Bruce was already about to start his quest as crime-fighter and during one of those nights, he went out wearing only a black ski-mask, a black leather jacket and a utility belt to stop a robbery. Despite Bruce's menacing demeanor, the thugs fought back fiercely and Bruce struggled to capture them all. Eventually he stopped them, but he was badly injured. Bruce learned that while his fighting skills were appropriate for his quest, criminals were not afraid of him. Later as her was training in Wayne Manor, Andrea came to visit and the training was postponed in favor of sharing time with her.

However, those days are long gone now and Bruce Wayne returns to his usual activities as well as the investigation of the mystery behind Chuckie Sol's murder. Meanwhile, Buzz Bronski a former associate of Chuckie Sol goes to pay his respects to the deceased at the cemetery, where he is attacked by the same masked figure and murdered in a merciless manner in the graveyard. Bronski's henchmen arrive too late to save their boss, but they spot the masked figure leaving the scene and they come to the conclusion that it is Batman.

Now that Batman is being framed as the responsible of two murders of criminals, Arthur Reeves starts campaigning against Batman, despite Commissioner Gordon's refusal to cooperate to bring the vigilante down. Reeves finds an ally in Harvey Bullock, but their attempts to lure Batman into a trap fail as the Dark Knight knows their intentions and instead, he goes back to the graveyard to investigate the crime scene. While he is there, Batman goes to visit the Waynes gravesite and once there, he notices that Andrea Beaumont is talking to her mother once again. Andrea notices Batman's presence, but the Dark Knight makes haste and leaves the place in his usual disappearing act. Nevertheless, Andrea notices how Batman was looking at her from the Waynes tombstone and she deduces that Batman is Bruce Wayne.

Batman is in shock after learning that Andrea is back in Gotham and he keeps a close eye on her as she goes on a date with Arthur Reeves. While looking at them from the outside on a rainy night, Batman recalls how his relationship with Andrea developed in the past.

Bruce and Andrea shared various normal activities for a young couple, but the most fond memory was the day when they visited the World of the Future Fair and Andrea asked Bruce to meet with her father. Bruce agreed, but after talking to Carl Beaumont, the couple were forced to leave the man to deal with some business. On their way out, Bruce and Andrea witnessed a robbery and Bruce tried to help, but he was outnumbered and the thieves got away. This failure put Bruce's mission in perspective and that night, he went to the cemetery where he apologized to his parents' grave as he could no longer keep up his promise now that he has found happiness. The thought of dropping the promise was torturing him, but Andrea comes to him during the rain and tells him that maybe she was sent by his parents to show him that they forgive him and to help him overcome this moment. Bruce and Andrea embrace on a loving hug under the thunder, but the rain brings Batman back to the present, where he watches as Andrea has apparently started a serious relationship with Reeves.

The next day, Sal Valestra seeks help of Arthur Reeves to prevent "Batman" from killing him too, as he is the next member of the old gang, but Reeves refuses to give him any help.

Meanwhile, Batman decides to continue his investigation and after looking through the belongings of the criminals killed by the mysterious man, he finds a picture of the criminals gathered with Andrea's father. The sight of Carl Beaumont triggers in Batman the last memory he had about Andrea. Bruce had abandoned his promise to avenge his parents and in order to start a new life, he proposed to Andrea. She gladly agreed to marry him, but during their moment, a flock of bats emerged from a crack underneath the cliff below Wayne Manor. Later that night, Bruce took Andrea home to tell her father the good news, but much to their dismay, Carl Beaumont was having a meeting with his "associates". Andrea told Bruce that they should better wait to tell him about the engagement, but that was the last time Bruce saw her. The next day, Bruce went to investigate the place from where the bats had come and realized there was a big cave under Wayne Manor. As Bruce ended his exploration, Alfred gave Bruce a note from Andrea along with the engament ring. In the note, Andrea explained that she and her father must leave Gotham and their engagement was cancelled. Andrea was gone and with her, the reason why Bruce wouldn't keep his promise. It wasn't long before Bruce adapted the cave beneath Wayne Manor as his base of operations and wore the Mantle of the Bat for the first time, becoming The Batman, much to Alfred's shock. The memories fade out and in the present, Bruce decides that it's time to interrogate Andrea about her father's connection to all the criminals that have been murdered.

Elsewhere, Valestra has no choice but to turn to the Joker, who is hiding at the abandoned World of the Future Fair, and ask for help against the killer. The Joker has a past connection with the gang, which is why Valestra demands that Joker protects him or he could be the next criminal murdered. Joker doesn't take the threat lightly, but he agrees to help Valestra, under his own terms...

At that moment, Andrea returns home from a date with Reeves and Batman is waiting for her inside the apartment. He interrogates her about her father's whereabouts, explaining that he might be involved in the murders of the gangsters. Andrea doesn't give Batman the information he needs and Batman implies that she is following her father's wishes, to which she replies that he is the only one doing that, revealing that she knows the truth. As Batman leaves her apartment, Andrea breaks down and cries in solitude.

Later that night, the Phantasm goes to Sal Valestra's place to murder the old gangster, only to find the man's corpse in the living room, clearly exposed to the Joker Venom. A camera has been placed in the corpse's lap and Joker learns that the killer is not Batman. Regardless, he has placed a number of explosives on Valestra's place, forcing the Phantasm to escape from the place before it is blown to bits. The explosion draws the attention of Batman, who jumps from the Batwing and starts chasing the Phantasm across the rooftops of Gotham City. However, the villain uses his burst of smoke to escape from Batman and the Dark Knight is left at mercy of the Gotham City Police Department, who want to take Batman as he is the primary suspect of the murders. Batman tries to escape by running through narrow alleys and hiding in building's ledges, but the entire GCPD is looking for him. Batman reaches a construction site, where the confrontation with the police leaves him badly injured. Batman is forced to drop his cape and cowl and run for safety as the GCPD is still chasing him. Andrea comes out of nowhere and takes Bruce in her car, allowing him to escape from what would've been the end of the Batman.

Back at Wayne Manor, Andrea finally explains the reason why she abandoned Bruce in the past. Her father was being blackmailed by Valestra, Sol and Bronski and they had to leave the city to avoid being murdered. Bruce then comes to the conclusion that the Phantasm is Carl Beaumont getting revenge of the gangsters and Andrea feels bad for ruining everything a second time.
Young Joker

Young Joker
However, Bruce finally understands and the two of them resume their lost relationship. Bruce tells her that the Phantasm still needs to be stopped, but Andrea explains that her father's activities are none of her concern anymore. Bruce takes a look at the old photos of him and Andrea, but among them he also notices one of Valestra's old gang and focuses his attention in the only remaining member of the gang: a young enforcer who was always working for the gangsters. Bruce finds the face familiar and after drawing a smile with a red pen, he realizes this man is his worst foe.

The Joker is now looking for the man responsible for the killings of all the members of the old gang and he goes to Arthur Reeves as the main suspect. Joker believes that Reeves has an interest in eliminating them all, but while talking to him, Joker also learns of Andrea's presence in Gotham. Reeves is taken to the hospital much later when he was found intoxicated with Joker venom and unable to stop laughing. Thanks to the sedatives, Reeves is barely able to contain the laughter and it is then that he is interrogated by Batman, who learns that he is responsible for selling Beaumont to the mob many years ago.

Batman then goes to Andrea's apartment to warn her about The Joker, but he finds the place empty and the phone starts ringing. Batman picks up the phone and the Joker addresses him as if he was Andrea. At that moment a bomb approaches the apartment through the window and Batman uses a batarang to blow it before it reaches the place. The explosion is strong enough to knock Batman to the ground while Joker laughs maniacally from the other side of the phone. However, Andrea is safe and sound listening to the Joker's laugh from outside of his hideout at the ruins of the World of the Future Fair. Andrea is The Phantasm and she remembers the fateful day when the enforcer of Sal Valestra found their home and murdered her father in cold blood. That was the moment that drove Andrea over the edge and she became The Phantasm to avenge her father's death.

The Phantasm breaks into Joker's hideout and a confrontation between the two of them start. Joker knows her identity and she has no reason to use the mask anymore. The fight is even, but Joker decides to take the confrontation to the main area of the abandoned fair, where he activates a giant plane engine that creates a deadly vacuum to which Andrea is dragged towards. Batman arrives in time and drives the Batcycle towards the engine, destroying the turbine and saving Andrea. Batman asks her to leave and let him deal with the Joker and reluctantly, Andrea agrees.

Batman starts looking for the Joker among the ruins of the fair and he is attacked in a miniature model of the Gotham City from the future. Batman and Joker deliver their best blows to each other, but Joker decides to run and leads Batman on a wild chase. Joker reveals that the whole place is wired with explosives and he intends to leave Batman to die in the explosion as he escapes using a jetpack.
The Last Laugh

The Last Laugh
Batman runs toward the madman and prevents him from getting far by breaking the jetpack and causing the two of them to fall down to the ground. Both of them are badly injured and Andrea approaches Joker, grabbing him by his clothes. Batman can only watch as the whole place explodes and turns into a fiery red nightmare while Andrea stands amidst the chaos, still holding the Joker, who simply laughs in the most deranged manner. As Batman approaches them, Andrea uses her smoke trick to disappear, taking the Joker with her and Batman is pushed by the explosion waves into the river nearby the fair.

Back in the Batcave, Bruce finds small comfort for his loss in the words of Alfred, who tells him that Andrea had gone too far into the path of vengeance and that it was impossible to save her. As Alfred expresses his gratitude for Bruce never going down that path, Bruce notices a shiny object in the cave and upon a closer inspection, he realizes it is Andrea's locket with a picture of them, which she kept for many years and now she has left behind as a memento of their love.

Elsewhere, a ship is leaving Gotham and Andrea is there, taking her sorrow and solitude with her while in Gotham, the Bat-Signal is activated and Batman goes to action once again and forever.

Cast

Character Actor
Batman (Bruce Wayne) Kevin Conroy
Alfred Pennyworth Efrem Zimbalist, Jr.
Andrea Beaumont Dana Delany
Commissioner James Gordon Bob Hastings
Detective Harvey Bullock Robert Costanzo
Joker Mark Hamill
Phantasm
Carl Beaumont
Stacy Keach
Chucky Sol Dick Miller
Buzz Bronski John P. Ryan
Salvatore Valestra Abe Vigoda
Arthur Reeves Hart Bochner

Notes

  • No special notes.

Trivia

  • Batman: Mask of the Phantasm's domestic total gross was $5,617,391.


See Also


Links and References

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