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The Lego Ninjago trailer hints at another block-filled blockbuster

Q: Who is Batman's dependable sidekick?

Having stolen the show in the original Lego Movie, the legendary crime fighter is now in the throes of a mid-life funk.

Apparently, unbeknownst to everyone, Warner Bros' animation department has been hard at work crafting an entire shared universe of Lego movies.

The Lego Movie made $469m worldwide while analysts are expecting The Lego Batman Movie to open with $60m this weekend.

While "The Dark Knight" won't be supplanted anytime soon as tops among Bat-movies, the new film makes a strong argument for second-best simply by taking time to explore the core of Batman that others haven't: He's a complicated mess who can't get out of his own way long enough for the greater good. A host of comedy writers contributed to the screenplay as well, so the jokes are densely packed and fast and furious. Why is it so hard to keep a director for The Flash?

The film's self-referential nature is present from the start, with Arnett huskily describing the opening credits, logos and all. That cowl masks more than just his identity. Zach Galifianakis as The Joker; Michael Cera as the orphan Dick Grayson; Rosario Dawson as Barbara Gordon and Ralph Fiennes as Alfred. What's different is that this time, Batman actually accepts them into his world. That we all need companionship - even crimefighting billionaires dressed as nocturnal mammals - is a point the film proceeds to make, even as the chuckles are stacked higher than an enormous pile of tiny, dimpled bricks. That's the main idea to take away from "LEGO Batman" - no one is beyond redemption or evolution. He talked about making the movie, if the script changed a lot during production, his favorite villain in the film and why, and more. The movie is truly hysterically amusing, cute and very lovable.

Raleigh: North Hills, Carmike 15, Carmike Blue Ridge 14, Brier Creek, Raleigh Grande, Wakefield.

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