Batman: The Dark Knight Returns (film)

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For the comic book miniseries, see Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns is a two-part 2012-2013 animated film featuring the DC Comics character Batman. It stars Peter Weller, Ariel Winter, David Selby, and Wade Williams.

Batman/Bruce Wayne[edit]

  • [thinking to himself, about going back to being Batman] You try to hold me back, but you're weak. You know it in your soul. You're nothing but a hollow shell. A rusty trap. The time has come.
  • [to Mutant Leader] You don't get it, son. This isn't a mud hole. It's an operating table. And I'm the surgeon.
  • [to the "Sons of Batman", after the EMP blast that knocked out power in Gotham] Tonight I am going to maintain order in Gotham City. You are going to help me. But not with these. [takes a gun from one of the gang members] These are loud and clumsy. These are the weapons of cowards. [snaps rifle in half, shows them some batarangs] Our weapons are precise and quiet. In time I will teach them to you. But for tonight, you will rely on your brains and your fists. Tonight, we are the law. Tonight, I am the law.


  • [to beat up Superman] But I didn't have to go easy on you; a different binding agent, a stronger mix, I wanted you to remember that. I wanted to remind you to stay out of my way. In all the years to come and in your most private moments, I want you to remember, the one man who beat you.

The Joker[edit]

  • [coming out of a catatonic state, on hearing of Batman's return] Buh-buh...Ba-Batman... [grins] Darling!
  • So many faces... so few smiles.

Alfred Pennyworth[edit]

  • If it's suicide you're after, I have an old family recipe. It's slow and painful. You'd like it.
  • [finding Bruce in the Batcave] Master Bruce. You set off the alarm, sir. This somnambulism is becoming a problem, especially for those of us with a penchant for sleeping at night.
  • [answering the phone] One moment, it's Commissioner Gordon. No doubt calling for details on the funeral.

Commissioner Gordon[edit]

  • Wife made me quit the cigars.

Other[edit]

  • Mutants: [catchphrase] Slice and Dice!
  • Mutant Leader: We will kill the old man, Gordon. We will chop him, we will grind him. We will bathe in his blood. I, myself, will kill the fool Batman. I will rip the meat from his bones and suck them dry. Don't call us a gang. Don't call us criminals. We are the law. Gotham City belongs to the Mutants.
  • Son of Batman: [former Mutant gang member, after the defeat of their leader] The Mutants are dead. This is the new face of the law. We are the Sons of Batman. And Gotham's criminals are about to enter hell.

Dialogue[edit]

[After surviving a racecar crash, Bruce Wayne - now ten years retired as Batman - meets with his friend, soon-to-retire Police Commissioner James Gordon.]
Commissioner Gordon: That was some stunt you pulled at the racetrack.
Bruce Wayne: Keeps the blood flowing.
Commissioner Gordon: So long as most of it stays inside you.
Bruce Wayne: Worried about me?
Commissioner Gordon: Let's just say I'm glad you survived Batman's retirement and I was hoping you'd keep it that way.

Mutant Leader: Batman! Show yourself! Face me fool, and I will kill you! I will show you who rules Gotham City!
Batman: Okay, son. Show me.

[The White House, Washington, D.C. - the President of the United States meets with somebody who can handle Batman...]
The President: Son, you know I like to keep you out of domestic affairs, what with all the ruckus you stir up.
Superman: Yes, sir.
The President: But, well... it's a ruckus I'd like you to straighten out, involving a friend of yours in Gotham City. It's all well and good to have a wild bronco on the ranch now and then. Does the hands good to break him in. But if the bronco up and kicks over the fence, and gets all the other horses crazy, well, that's bad for business.
Superman: I understand, sir.
The President: Now, I'm not asking you to put him down... not yet, anyway. But settle him. Ride him around the yard a few times, if you have to. You know what I'm asking.
Superman: Sir, I can talk to him, but...
The President: I'd just hate for things to get out of hand. You know how to get in touch with him, don't you, son?
Superman: He's not hard to find, sir.
The President: Good boy.

[Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne are seen on the grounds of Wayne Manor after their encounter with each other the night before.]
Bruce Wayne: You cost me hours of work last night.
Clark Kent: Then I'll get right to it. You have to go back into retirement. You're upsetting too many people.
Bruce Wayne: Mm-hmm.
Clark Kent: Why do you always have to be like this? You played right into their hands last time, when the parents groups and subcommittees came after us, you're the one they pointed to. You act like a criminal.
Bruce Wayne: We are criminals, Clark. We always have been. You're still one too. Only difference is you have a boss.
Clark Kent: And you answer to no one. You know, we almost had this talk ten years ago, when you wouldn't go along with the deal we made. Everyone else agreed. Diana went back to her people. Hal left the planet.
Bruce Wayne: And Oliver? Did he agree?
Clark Kent: That's not how I wanted it to go.
Bruce Wayne: He was all torn up about it too.
Clark Kent: He made it necessary, like...
Bruce Wayne: Like I'm about to?
Clark Kent: Do you even remember why you retired?
Bruce Wayne: I remember.
Clark Kent: Look, either shut it down or one of these days, someone with authority is gonna tell me to come stop you. And when that happens...
Bruce Wayne: When that happens, may the best man win.

[The Joker, recently awakened from ten years in a catatonic state, appears with his psychiatrist, Dr. Bartholomew Wolper, on The David Endochrine Show.]
David Endochrine: Joker, you've asked for a chance to share your side of things. I'm told you've killed about six hundred people. How exactly does your side of that go?
Dr. Bartholomew Wolper: Stop right there! This is a sensitive man, and I won't have him being harassed.
The Joker: [brushes Wolper's hand off his shoulder] That's alright. I want them to get me.
David Endochrine: Alright, then.
The Joker: [sips coffee from one of the show's branded mugs] That's why I'm gonna kill everyone in this room. [the audience murmurs uneasily]
David Endochrine: [nervous] Okay... I think that's a little more insight than we had in mind.
Dr. Bartholomew Wolper: It's okay, he doesn't really mean that. He's just trying to ease the tension.
David Endochrine: Funny way to go about it.
Dr. Bartholomew Wolper: You have to remember, this man isn't responsible for those killings. He's merely a victim of the Batman's psychotic obsession.
The Joker: I thought I was Batman's psychotic obsession. [the audience laughs]
David Endochrine: So you think the Batman's the real sicko here.
Dr. Bartholomew Wolper: Without a doubt. He's an obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic hero-complexed sociopath. I would love a shot at him as a patient.
The Joker: [holds up coffee mug] Do guests get to keep these?
David Endochrine: Heh. Sure, you do whatever you want with it. We got a closet full of them.
[The Joker smashes the coffee mug, then uses the jagged edge to slash Dr. Wolper's throat. The doctor gasps, staggers, and collapses onto Endochrine's desk. The audience reacts in horror.]
The Joker: So long as you won't miss it.
[A pair of robotic dolls flies into the studio, spraying Joker toxin across the entire audience. The audience screams as they try to make their way to the exits, only to find the doors locked. Endocrine tries to cover his mouth, to avoid the gas.]
The Joker: Breathe, David. [inhales deeply, the filters his henchman provided him protecting him from the effects] Breathe.
[The audience members succumb, some laughing with their last breaths, dead with frozen grins. Soon, Endocrine cannot hold his breath any further... and he begins laughing hysterically as the toxin takes hold, before finally killing him.]

[Final confrontation between Batman and the Joker, in the tunnel of love at the Gotham Fairgrounds]
Batman: No more! [hurls Joker against the wall] All the people I've murdered... by letting you live.
The Joker: [spits blood] I never kept count.
Batman: [lifting Joker by the scruff of the neck] I did!
The Joker: I know. [pulls a knife from his sleeve into his hand and slashes at Batman, who jumps back] And I love you for it. [slashes Batman's chest] It's finally here, isn't it? [tackles Batman to the ground, raising his knife to stab] The moment we've both dreamed about! [As the Joker is about to stab Batman through the eye, Batman's vision blurs.] Oh, don't tell me you're gonna fall asleep before we finish! You have gotten old, haven't you? [Batman punches the Joker off him and throws him against a wall, choking him] Not quite how I imagined it, but we can still end on a high note! [The Joker stabs Batman in the torso three times while laughing maniacally. Batman twists the Joker's head in his hands, snapping his neck - paralyzing him, but not killing him. The paralyzed Joker twists around and collapses against the wall, as two witnesses scream in horror and run away.] [chuckling, in a sing-song voice] You're in trouble now... [Batman stands over him] Go ahead. Say this has never happened to you before.
Batman: Shut up.
The Joker: Make me! Come on, finish me. [Batman steps away from him, and collapses to his knees.] Ahh, doesn't matter... I win. I made you lose control... [laughing] ...and they'll kill you for it. [laughs] See you... in hell!
[The Joker laughs hysterically as he twists his neck and completely severs his spinal cord, killing himself. Batman collapses against the wall next to him, wounded and exhausted; looking over at the lifeless, frozen grin of the Joker, he sighs, closing his eyes.]

Superman: We don't have to do this.
Batman: Sure we do.
Superman: Bruce, be reasonable. You know what my orders are.
Batman: Your orders? [shocks Superman]

Batman: You say you answer to some sort of authority. They only want me dead because I'm an embarrassment. Because I do what they can't. What kind of authority is that?
Superman: It doesn't matter. It's their world and they won't stand for you anymore. If it isn't me it'll just be someone else.
Batman: Really? Who do they send after you?

Superman: What are you doing? Do you want me to kill you?
Batman: Oh, you're not going to kill me. Now!
[Green Arrow shoots kryptonite arrow at Superman]]
Batman: It wasn't easy to make, Clark. It took years and cost a fortune. Luckily, I had both.

Batman: You're feeling it now, aren't you? What the rest of us live with every day. Your own mortality. Don't worry, you'll survive. The kryptonite will work its way out of your lungs soon enough.
Superman: Bruce. Your heart.
[Batman kicks Superman]
Batman: But I didn't have to go easy on you. A different binding agent, a stronger mix. I want you to remember that, I wanted to remind you to stay out of my way. In all the years to come in your most private moments, I want you to remember the one man who beat you.

Cast[edit]

External links[edit]

Batman
  Creators     Bob Kane · Bill Finger  
  Characters     Anarky · Batgirl · Barbara Gordon · Dick Grayson · The Joker  
  Live‑action television     Batman · Legends of the Superheroes · Birds of Prey · Return to the Batcave: The Misadventures of Adam and Burt · Gotham  
  Live-action  
  serials and films  
  Batman (1943) · Batman and Robin · Batman (1966)  
  1989 film series     Batman (1989) · Batman Returns · Batman Forever · Batman & Robin  
  The Dark Knight Trilogy     Batman Begins · The Dark Knight · The Dark Knight Rises  
  DC Extended Universe     Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice  
  Animated television     The Adventures of Batman · The Batman/Superman Hour · The Batman/Tarzan Adventure Hour · The New Adventures of Batman · Batman: The Animated Series · The  
  New Batman Adventures
· Batman Beyond · The Batman · Batman: The Brave and the Bold · Beware the Batman  
  Animated films     Featuring Batman     Mask of the Phantasm · SubZero · Return of the Joker · Mystery of the Batwoman · The Batman vs. Dracula · Under the Red Hood · Year One ·  
  The Dark Knight Returns · DC Super Heroes Unite · Son of Batman · Assault on Arkham · Batman vs. Robin · Batman: Bad Blood · The Killing Joke  
  With other heroes     Justice League: The New Frontier · Superman/Batman: Public Enemies · Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths · Superman/Batman:
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· Justice League: Doom · Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox · JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time · Justice League: War · The
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· Justice League: Throne of Atlantis · Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts · Justice League: Gods and Monsters · Batman
  Unlimited: Monster Mayhem
 
  Animated shorts     Chase Me · Gotham Knight  
  Novels     Dead White · Fear Itself · Inferno · The Ultimate Evil · Enemies & Allies · Wayne of Gotham  
  Related topics     Batkid Begins · Bat-Manga!: The Secret History of Batman in Japan