There are specific things every comic fan needs to bear witness to while watching a Batman movie. We need to see the dark knight beating seven shades out of the worst criminals that Gotham has to offer. Bats needs to have a chase sequence in his Batmobile and show off some of his wonderful toys. Every movie must culminate with the spandex-sporting superhero squaring off with an iconic villain like Ra's Al Ghul, the Scarecrow, or the nefarious Crazy Quilt.
But another thing that's crucial when it comes to bringing the Caped Crusader to the big screen is the resolution. Does the conclusion tease a sequel or does it let the story stand on its own? Does the last shot fill you with hope, dread, or despair? More importantly, is the ending any good? Does it do justice to one of the greatest heroes in all of fiction... or is it Batman & Robin?
What's interesting is how the climax's quality can be very different from the movie itself. Some of the weaker instalments in the franchise draw the curtain in a satisfying manner, while the best movies fail to tie up the most basic loose ends.
But the big question is, which Batman movie had the best ending ever?
12. Batman & Robin
Look, nobody wants to talk about Batman & Robin, so let's keep this brief.
In the final showdown, Batman, Robin, and Batgirl defeat Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze, and stop Gotham from being frozen. The nippled-armoured superhero then has a heart-to-heart with Mr. Freeze, convincing the pun-spewing scientist to give him the cure for Alfred's illness.
After Alfred makes a full recovery, the quartet say they look forward to protecting the city together, with their butler declaring, "We're gonna need a bigger cave." The final shot shows the trio of superheroes striding triumphantly towards the camera, with the Bat-Signal gleaming in the background.
In theory, this climax can work. But the final battle is so cartoonishly over-the-top, it looks like a bunch of action figures smashing together inside a toy set. Even though Barbara's introduction as Batgirl is meant to be an epic moment, it feels like she was forced in, just to satisfy the female demographic.
Even though there's nothing wrong with the final shot conceptually, the fact that it's a copy-and-paste of how Batman Forever ended further demonstrates how lacking Batman & Robin was in terms of creativity.