How Batman Forever: Red Book Edition Transforms a Mediocre Movie into a Masterpiece
Batman Forever: Red Book Edition - A Fan Edit That Deserves Your Attention
If you are a fan of Batman, you probably know that there are many different versions of his cinematic adventures. Some are widely praised, like Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy, while others are widely panned, like Joel Schumacher's Batman & Robin. But what about the movie that falls somewhere in between? The one that tried to balance the dark and gritty tone of Tim Burton's Batman movies with the colorful and campy style of Schumacher's vision? The one that starred Val Kilmer as the Caped Crusader, Jim Carrey as the Riddler, Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face, and Nicole Kidman as Dr. Chase Meridian? Yes, we are talking about Batman Forever, the 1995 blockbuster that divided fans and critics alike.
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But what if we told you that there is a way to watch Batman Forever in a completely different light? A way that enhances its strengths and minimizes its weaknesses? A way that makes it more faithful to the source material and more satisfying as a standalone film? Well, there is such a way, and it is called Batman Forever: Red Book Edition. This is a fan edit that was created by Scaperat in 2007 and revised by INIGHTMARES in 2022. It is a version of Batman Forever that you need to see if you love Batman or fan edits in general. In this article, we will tell you what Batman Forever: Red Book Edition is, why you should watch it, and how you can download it legally and ethically.
What is Batman Forever: Red Book Edition?
Batman Forever: Red Book Edition is a fan edit of Batman Forever that aims to make it a better film by removing or altering some of its scenes, dialogues, music, and sound effects. It is based on the idea that there was a "red book" version of the script that was darker and more complex than the final theatrical cut. The fan edit tries to recreate this hypothetical version by using deleted scenes, alternate takes, color grading, audio mixing, and other editing techniques. To understand what makes this fan edit so special, let's take a look at the original movie and how it was changed by the fan editors.
The original Batman Forever movie
Batman Forever was released in 1995 as the third installment of the Batman film series that began with Tim Burton's Batman in 1989. It was directed by Joel Schumacher, who replaced Burton after he decided not to direct another Batman movie. Schumacher wanted to make a more family-friendly and fun movie than Burton's dark and Gothic ones. He also wanted to explore the psychology of Batman and his villains, especially their dual identities and their childhood traumas. He hired Val Kilmer to play Bruce Wayne/Batman, Jim Carrey to play Edward Nygma/The Riddler, Tommy Lee Jones to play Harvey Dent/Two-Face, Nicole Kidman to play Dr. Chase Meridian, a psychologist and love interest for Batman, and Chris O'Donnell to play Dick Grayson/Robin, a young acrobat who becomes Batman's sidekick after his parents are killed by Two-Face.
The plot of the movie revolves around the Riddler and Two-Face teaming up to destroy Batman and take over Gotham City. The Riddler invents a device that can steal people's brainwaves and use them to power his own intelligence and create a virtual reality world. He also uses the device to learn Batman's secret identity and manipulate him with riddles. Two-Face, who blames Batman for his disfigurement and split personality, joins the Riddler in his quest for revenge and chaos. Batman has to face his own inner demons and decide whether he wants to continue being a vigilante or lead a normal life with Chase. He also has to mentor Robin, who wants to kill Two-Face for his parents' death.
Batman Forever was a commercial success, grossing over $336 million worldwide. It was also nominated for three Academy Awards, for Best Cinematography, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects Editing. However, it received mixed reviews from critics and fans, who praised its performances, action sequences, and production design, but criticized its tone, script, direction, and music. Some felt that it was too light-hearted and silly compared to Burton's movies, while others felt that it was too dark and violent for a family movie. Some also complained that it changed or ignored some aspects of the characters and the continuity of the previous movies. For example, Batman kills some of his enemies without remorse, Two-Face acts more like the Joker than his comic book counterpart, and Robin is introduced as a teenager rather than a child.
The fan edit by Scaperat
In 2007, a fan editor named Scaperat released a fan edit of Batman Forever called Batman Forever: Red Book Edition. He claimed that he was inspired by a rumor that there was a "red book" version of the script that was darker and more serious than the final cut. He said that he wanted to make a fan edit that would be closer to this version and to Burton's movies. He used various sources to create his fan edit, including the theatrical cut, the workprint, the deleted scenes, the trailers, the TV spots, the soundtrack albums, and other fan edits. He made several changes to the movie, such as:
Removing or reducing most of the comedic moments, such as the Riddler's jokes, Two-Face's coin flips, Alfred's quips, and Bruce's one-liners.
Removing or reducing most of the romantic scenes between Bruce and Chase, such as their first meeting, their date at the circus, their kiss at Wayne Manor, and their final goodbye.
Removing or reducing most of the scenes that show Batman killing or injuring his enemies, such as blowing up Two-Face's henchmen at the bank, throwing a thug into an electric sign at NygmaTech, and dropping Two-Face into his death at Claw Island.
Removing or reducing most of the scenes that show Batman being vulnerable or conflicted, such as having nightmares about his parents' death, being seduced by Chase's perfume, being trapped in a giant blender by the Riddler, and considering giving up his Batman persona.
Adding or extending some of the deleted scenes that show Batman being more heroic or determined, such as saving a security guard at NygmaTech, fighting Two-Face's thugs at Wayne Manor, escaping from Arkham Asylum with Robin's help, and confronting Chase at Claw Island.
Adding or extending some of the deleted scenes that show more backstory or development for the characters, such as Bruce finding his father's red diary that reveals his guilt for their death, Nygma being rejected by Bruce at Wayne Enterprises before becoming the Riddler, Two-Face breaking into Wayne Manor and shooting Bruce in the head (which triggers his amnesia), Dick discovering the Batcave and stealing the Batmobile (which leads to his first encounter with Two-Face), and Chase being kidnapped by the Riddler (which explains how he knows her name).
Adding or extending some of the deleted scenes that show more depth or mystery to the plot, such as Bruce investigating Nygma's device and finding out its effects on people's brains, Nygma sending more riddles to Batman (which are based on his personal history), Two-Face having a conversation with his coin (which reveals his motivation for joining the Riddler), and Batman finding a clue in one of Nygma's riddles (which leads him to Claw Island).
style of the movie. For example, he used Danny Elfman's score from the previous Batman movies instead of Elliot Goldenthal's original score, he used some sound effects from Batman: The Animated Series instead of the original ones, and he added some songs from other artists such as The Pixies and Nine Inch Nails.
Batman Forever: Red Book Edition was well received by most fans and critics who watched it. They praised it for being more faithful to the comics and the Burton movies, for being more coherent and compelling as a story, and for being more enjoyable and satisfying as a film. They also appreciated the technical quality and creativity of the fan edit, especially considering the limited resources and tools that Scaperat had at his disposal. Some even considered it to be the definitive version of Batman Forever and one of the best fan edits ever made.
The 15th anniversary enhanced edition by INIGHTMARES
In 2022, another fan editor named INIGHTMARES released a revised version of Batman Forever: Red Book Edition called Batman Forever: Red Book Edition - The 15th Anniversary Enhanced Edition. He claimed that he was inspired by Scaperat's original vision and wanted to update it with modern technology and aesthetics. He said that he wanted to make the DVD experience feel more like a Blu-ray experience, yet also feel grungy and noir-like. He used various sources and tools to create his fan edit, including the theatrical cut, the workprint, the deleted scenes, the trailers, the TV spots, the soundtrack albums, other fan edits, Topaz Lab's Video Enhance AI, Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Photoshop, Audacity, and others. He made several changes to the fan edit, such as:
Upscaling everything to 1080p resolution using artificial intelligence software.
Enhancing or restoring some of the colors and contrasts using color grading software.
Adding or increasing some of the film grain and noise using film emulation software.
Removing or fixing some of the errors or glitches using video editing software.
Adding or replacing some of the transitions or effects using video editing software.
Enhancing or replacing some of the music or sound effects using audio editing software.
Adding or updating some of the credits or logos using graphic design software.
Batman Forever: Red Book Edition - The 15th Anniversary Enhanced Edition was also well received by most fans and critics who watched it. They praised it for being a faithful and respectful tribute to Scaperat's original fan edit, for being a visually stunning and immersive experience, and for being a technically impressive and artistic achievement. They also acknowledged the hard work and dedication that INIGHTMARES put into his fan edit, especially considering the challenges and limitations that he faced. Some even considered it to be an improvement over Scaperat's version and one of the best fan edits ever made.
Why should you watch Batman Forever: Red Book Edition?
Now that you know what Batman Forever: Red Book Edition is and how it was made, you might be wondering why you should watch it. After all, you might be perfectly happy with the original movie or you might not be interested in Batman at all. Well, here are some reasons why you should give this fan edit a chance:
It restores the darker tone of the previous Batman movies
If you are a fan of Tim Burton's Batman movies or Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy, you might find Joel Schumacher's Batman movies too bright and cheerful for your taste. You might prefer a darker and grittier portrayal of Gotham City and its inhabitants, one that reflects the grim and violent nature of Batman's world. Well, Batman Forever: Red Book Edition does exactly that. It removes or reduces most of the humor and romance that Schumacher added to make his movie more appealing to a wider audience. It also adds or extends some of the scenes that show more violence and tragedy that Schumacher cut to avoid an R rating. It makes Batman Forever feel more like a continuation of Burton's movies rather than a departure from them.
It improves the characterization of Batman and his villains
If you are a fan of Batman comics or cartoons, you might find Joel Schumacher's Batman movies too shallow and inconsistent for your taste. You might prefer a deeper and more faithful portrayal of Batman and his villains, one that respects their personalities and motivations, one that explores their complexities and conflicts. Well, Batman Forever: Red Book Edition does exactly that. It removes or reduces most of the scenes that show Batman being weak or conflicted, or killing or injuring his enemies. It also adds or extends some of the scenes that show Batman being more heroic or determined, or investigating or solving his enemies' riddles. It makes Batman more like a detective and a protector rather than a killer and a lover. It also removes or reduces most of the scenes that show the Riddler and Two-Face being silly or over-the-top, or working together without any tension or disagreement. It also adds or extends some of the scenes that show the Riddler and Two-Face being more menacing or cunning, or having more backstory or development. It makes the Riddler and Two-Face more like their comic book counterparts rather than caricatures of them.
It adds more depth and mystery to the plot
If you are a fan of Batman stories or mysteries, you might find Joel Schumacher's Batman movies too simple and predictable for your taste. You might prefer a more complex and intriguing plot, one that challenges your intellect and curiosity, one that surprises you with twists and turns. Well, Batman Forever: Red Book Edition does exactly that. It removes or reduces most of the scenes that reveal too much information or spoil the suspense, such as the Riddler learning Batman's identity or Batman finding the Riddler's lair. It also adds or extends some of the scenes that provide more clues or riddles, such as Bruce finding his father's diary or Nygma sending more riddles to Batman. It makes Batman Forever more like a puzzle and a mystery rather than a spectacle and a comedy.
It features a new soundtrack and sound design
If you are a fan of music or sound, you might find Joel Schumacher's Batman movies too loud and noisy for your taste. You might prefer a more subtle and atmospheric soundtrack and sound design, one that enhances the mood and emotion of the scenes, one that fits the tone and style of the movie. Well, Batman Forever: Red Book Edition does exactly that. It removes or replaces most of the music and sound effects that were composed by Elliot Goldenthal or added by Schumacher, such as the rock songs, the orchestral cues, the cartoonish noises, and the voice-overs. It also adds or uses some of the music and sound effects that were composed by Danny Elfman or taken from other sources, such as the themes from the previous Batman movies, the songs from other artists, the sound effects from Batman: The Animated Series, and the ambient noises from Gotham City. It makes Batman Forever more like a film noir and a thriller rather than a musical and a slapstick.
How can you download Batman Forever: Red Book Edition?
By now, you might be convinced that Batman Forever: Red Book Edition is worth watching. But how can you get your hands on it? How can you download it legally and ethically? Well, here are some ways to do it:
The legal and ethical issues of fan edits
Before we tell you how to download Batman Forever: Red Book Edition, we need to address some of the legal and ethical issues that surround fan edits in general. Fan edits are unauthorized modifications of existing films that are made by fans for fans. They are not intended to replace or compete with the original films, but to offer alternative versions that appeal to different tastes or preferences. They are also not intended to profit from or infringe on the rights of the original filmmakers, but to express their admiration and appreciation for their work.
the original films and their creators. They also raise some ethical questions about the respect and integrity of the original films and their creators. Some people might argue that fan edits are disrespectful or dishonest, as they alter or remove the artistic vision and intention of the original filmmakers. Some people might also argue that fan edits are harmful or unfair, as they deprive the original filmmakers of their deserved recognition and revenue.
Therefore, fan editors and fan edit viewers need to be aware of these issues and act accordingly. They need to follow some rules and guidelines that ensure that their fan edits are legal and ethical. Some of these rules and guidelines are:
Fan editors should not sell or distribute their fan edits for profit or commercial purposes. They should only share them for free or for donations with other fans who already own the original films.
Fan editors should not claim or imply that their fan edits are official or endorsed by the original filmmakers or studios. They should clearly state that their fan edits are unofficial and unauthorized modifications of the original films.
Fan editors should not use or include any material that is illegal or offensive in their fan edits. They should respect the laws and norms of their countries and communities.
Fan editors should give proper credit and acknowledgment to the original filmmakers and sources of their fan edits. They should also give proper credit and acknowledgment to any other fan editors or contributors who helped them with their fan edits.
Fan edit viewers should not download or watch any fan edit that they do not already own the original film of. They should support the original filmmakers and studios by buying or renting their films legally.
Fan edit viewers should not share or distribute any fan edit that they download or watch with anyone who does not already own the original film of. They should respect the rights and wishes of the original filmmakers and studios.
Fan edit viewers should not judge or compare any fan edit with the original film. They should appreciate each version for what it is and what it offers.
By following these rules and guidelines, fan editors and fan edit viewers can enjoy their hobby without breaking the law or hurting anyone.
The official sources and links for the fan edit
The best way to download Batman Forever: Red Book Edition is to get it from the official sources and links that are provided by the fan editors themselves. These sources and links are usually found on websites or forums that are dedicated to fan editing, such as Fanedit.org, OriginalTrilogy.com, Reddit.com/r/fanedits, etc. These websites or forums usually have a database or a list of fan edits that are available for download, along with their information, reviews, ratings, screenshots, trailers, etc. They also have a community of fan editors and fan edit viewers who can help you with any questions or issues that you might have regarding fan editing.
However, these websites or forums do not host or provide the actual files of the fan edits themselves. They only provide links or instructions on how to get them from other sources, such as file-sharing services, torrent sites, private messages, etc. These sources might require you to register, verify, donate, request, etc. before you can access them. These sources might also have different formats, qualities, sizes, etc. of the fan edits that you need to check before you download them.
For example, here are some of the official sources and links for Batman Forever: Red Book Edition:
The Fanedit.org Database page for Batman Forever: Red Book Edition - The 15th Anniversary Enhanced Edition by INIGHTMARES: https://ifdb.fanedit.org/batman-forever-red-book-edition-the-15th-anniversary-enhanced-edition/
The Fanedit.org Forum thread for Batman Forever: Red Book Edition - The 15th Anniversary Enhanced Edition by INIGHTMARES: https://forums.fanedit.org/showthread.php?tid=23363
The Fanedit.org Database page for Batman Forever: Red Book Edition by Scaperat: https://ifdb.fanedit.org/batman-forever-red-book-edition/