Rendering the iconic origin story on to screen for the first time, Batman Begins goes beyond what the comics ever have to deliver an insight into the psychology of the man who would be Batman. It also does something the films never had: respect his human qualities, rather than labour his inhuman ones. Covering 20 years of his life, in a non-linear narrative, Bruce Wayne easily becomes the most sympathetic, the most complex and the most human of superhero film protagonists. The themes are ingeniously chosen to get at the core of the concept and provide a framework of smartly interwoven plot points, character development and set pieces that make us believe why a man would say 'I shall become a bat'. By changing Bruce's mission from a never-ending battle trying to stop his tragedy from happening to others to the definable goal of ending the corruption in Gotham that caused it, the focus of the mythos is subtly shifted to work onscreen and within this interpretation. This is impressive, not just for creating one of the best Batman stories in any medium, but in the way it provides the backbone for one of the most satisfying trilogies in film history. The sequels take this conception of Gotham to more interesting places; with more thematic depth and greater exploration of both the world and the ensemble set up here, and they enhance this film with how they build on it. However, as a character study it is Batman Begins that most strongly distils the eternal essence of one of the greatest fictional characters of all time, conveying it with appropriately mythological levels of symbolism while still delivering a satisfying movie experience.