I enjoyed this a lot. The Vicky Vale romance was a always a bit contrived and distracting; likewise Alfred letting her into the Batcave; the removal of the=is subplot was much appreciated and worked well. I did however miss the Jack Napier/ Joker/ Wayne murders link more than I thought I would, and perhaps keeping this -- while ditching the Vale/ Wayne romance -- would make this really good fanedit a great one. Technically, its top-notch: edits are smooth and seamless. Thanks again!
As a fan of the comics, the intent of the cut is obvious, but the editor ends up tearing the heart from the original movie and creates a sterile watch.
Firstly, there is no compelling reason to cut the Bruce Wayne / Vickie Vale relationship. Without it, Bruce becomes a one-dimensional character with little development. Without Vickie providing a background to it in her investigation, the death of his parents is utterly without place within the context of the story. The absence of a romantic relationship also creates an oddness in the edit's continuity at times (Vicki goes to the museum and waits for nobody in particular, for example). Alfred is almost pointless if he cannot coax Bruce to pursue Vickie, as is Knox (as the "other" man).
Secondly, the Batman / Joker relationship in this story is shallow without the parent connection, even if that connection is distasteful to a comics purist. Batman passionately beats the hell out of the Joker in the climactic scene in the belfry, with no dialogue in a jarring manner. Without that verbal back and forth, the scene lacks tension. There is little to underpin Bruce's obvious anger aimed towards him.
The editor tries to paint Batman as an invincible monolith, as he sometimes is shown in the comics, but I would argue Batman's best interpretations show him as vulnerable and human. Even when Batman is brought crashing down in the Batwing, we are not allowed to see his injuries as per the original cut, nor his struggle against the Joker's goons in the belfry. There is never any fear that this Batman might fail, which in combination with Bruce's stunted character development, makes him uninteresting.
Besides this, the cut is impeccable in terms of the visual cuts, though the edit is not stellar in terms of visual quality (the blacks were at times pixelated), and the audio transitions on occasion were too sudden, such as when Bruce remembers his parents' death from the preceding scene. The volume of the cut seemed very low.
I really loved this edit of the movie. At first, I really missed the Prince song Party Man, but as the movie went forward I realized how out of place that scene would have been in this cut--and we got Prince's "Trust" a little later. (I'm a Prince fan. He wrote a song called 200 Balloons for that scene, and it's a on a CD Single. If I ever re-edit this, I've always wanted to use that track.).
In general, there isn't any one thing I can point to that is "wrong" with this edit. The problem is that there isn't much emotional investment with anyone. The things you cut, I agree with. And yet if the Joker didn't kill Batman's parents, that fight in the belltower doesn't have much power to it, IMO. I mean, Batman seems super-pissed and taking the whole Joker-trying-to-kill-everyone-in-Gotham-including-Vikki-Vale thing personally. It just felt a little emotionally hollow.
I still have to say it was a really fun ride, perfect editing. The Joker was great--I found myself speaking dialogue out loud with him. I was glad none of the lines I remembered so well were gone.
In many ways this is much more fun than the original. Much tighter and the Joker is menacing and charismatic. Also, I thought the picture and sound were very very good on my tv, much better than I remembered it. This seemed to fly by!