|Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts|
|Directed by||Butch Lukic|
|Screenplay by||Heath Corson|
|Produced by||Butch Lukic|
|Starring||Roger Craig Smith|
|Edited by||Bruce A. King|
|Music by||Kevin Riepl|
|Distributed by||Warner Home Video|
Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts is a direct-to-video animated superhero film and the first entry in the Batman Unlimited series. It was released on May 12, 2015 on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD.
The film starts with an announcement of Gotham City's "newest and tallest building", the Aviary built by the Penguin as well as an asteroid called the Midas Heart passing by earth once every 77 years and Batman on patrol. However, a robotic wolf overtakes the guards and breaks into S.T.A.R. Labs to steal a power generator until Batman show up to stop it, but the wolf gets away. Over at the Gotham Jewelry Store, Nightwing (Dick Grayson) sees Cheetah steal some jewelry they start to fight until Killer Croc joins in. Right when they're about to leave, the Flash (Barry Allen) shows up to help even if Nightwing rejects him. Flash throws a flurry of punches on Croc, but Croc thinks they tickle and KO Flash. Once the 2 villains leave, Flash states he's been tracking Croc after he robbed a copper quarry.
Meanwhile, a gorilla named Silverback robs the Gotham Bank, but Green Arrow rips his bag with an arrow to make the silver bars fall out. Nightwing reports Croc and Cheetah's crime to Batman who finds it strange, and Alfred alerts him of Silverback's crime happening. After fighting for a while, Man-Bat appears, and Silverback refers to themselves as the "Animalitia" until Batman shows up to help, but then Silverback calls in a robotic tiger and bat for backup. The animals take off, and so does Batman. A group of street thugs scare a couple to steal their groceries when the Penguin walks by, and they make fun of the way he walks and talks. He knocks some loose bricks on a thug's head starting a fight which he wins. In the Batcave, Red Robin (Tim Drake) fights 2 robots for training, and Batman discovers that all the animal crimes form a perfect circle around the Aviary where Bruce Wayne's expected that night. Bruce attends and meets Commissioner James Gordon who's tired of old women asking him to fix potholes in their roads; Gladys Windsmere showing up is no help. She shows her dislike towards Oswald Cobblepot by calling him odd, but fetches him anyway. The Penguin eavesdrops on everyone's rude comments about him much to his chagrin.
When he leaves, Bruce runs into Oliver Queen who asks him if he found any info on the animals when Oswald starts a ceremony on "Bumbershoot Mechanics" who makes the robots committing crimes around town. He then introduces Dr. Kirk Langstrom who gave the designs for them. Batman pulls out a minuscule tracking device that Oliver flicks onto Langstrom's pants with no one noticing. Penguin concludes the ceremony with fireworks but chases everyone out with the robots while taking off backstage. Red Robin watches the whole thing with Batman's gadget. Back at the Batcave, Batman finds a gap at Gotham Zoo where they have rare california condors on display meaning that's where they'll strike next. The Animalitia take the sewers to break into the zoo where Man-Bat hears Batman, Red Robin, Nightwing, Green Arrow, and Flash come for them. Batman goes after Cheetah in the lion's den and outsmarts her with explosives. Green Arrow follows Croc into the crocodile swamp where none of his arrows work until he uses sleeping gas on him. Flash goes after Silverback in the gorilla exhibit where he gets tripped up in rope and toyed with by the gorillas until he cuts it with his foot. He then uses his speed to confuse Silverback and KO him with applause from the gorillas.
Nightwing and Red Robin follow Man-Bat into a cave filled with bats. Red Robin wakes him, and he carries Red Robin into the sky until Nightwing shocks him making him fall into a lagoon filled with flamingoes. Man-Bat spits goo Flash making him tumble into the Python Pit and frees the other villains and they all take off. The robots show up again and the heroes attempt to take them down. Green Arrow takes out the bat by firing a surprise arrow out of a tunnel, Nightwing uses a crane to crush the wolf with girders, and Flash, after getting unstuck, tricks the tiger into skidding into a building and breaking. They take the robots to the Batcave for analysis where they discover that they have copper wires explaining why Croc was at the copper quarry, but they need Langstrom to hack them. They also find out that the animals left something at their last 3 crime scenes instead of taking something. They use the tracking device to find Langstrom at Bumbershoot Mechanics. Batman has Red Robin stay behind and analyze the robots and Flash discover what they left behind at their crime scenes. Penguin appears at the Animalitia's hideout and notifies them of the arrival of the Midas Heart. As a distraction, Green Arrow fires an arrow at Penguin's top hat.
Penguin fires back, but Arrow ensnares him with a net arrow making him order the animals to attack. Cheetah and Silverback go after Arrow, and Batman and Nightwing break in to face Croc and Man-Bat. Batman hangs onto Man-Bat but sees the tracker on him meaning that Langstrom is Man-Bat. Batman stuns him with a sonic device. Nightwing fights Croc, but Penguin breaks out of the net and shocks Nightwing. Croc throws Nightwing out the window, but Flash runs up the building and saves him. Green Arrow uses an explosion on Silverback revealing that he's actually a robot. Flash joins in the fight, but Penguin orders the animals to follow him. Batman shows that he captured Man-Bat, and they analyze his DNA in the Batcave showing that he is Langstrom. They give him a serum to revert him to human form for 3 hours. Langstrom reveals that Penguin assigned him to build the robots for a retrieval mission.
Meanwhile, the Anilmalitia build a tractor beam and red force field to protect them while they make the Midas Heart fall into Gotham and get the gold at the center. The heroes see the force field erect and tractor beam shoot letting Batman discover their plan. They end up locking up Langstrom who reverts to Man-Bat after the serum wears off. Batman and Flash use a transmitter Langstrom gave him to match the frequency of force field. Batman walks through it, while Flash runs through. Penguin has Silverback send out an army of animal robots to take him out. Batman has Red Robin upload a bug to revert the robots, but Man-Bat breaks out of his containment capsule. Flash runs to a beam to take out a power generator and stop the force field, but some robo-tigers tangle him up with their tails. One takes the others out, and Flash throws it the power generator for it to take out. The other robots turn to the heroes' side after the bug is uploaded. Penguin takes off in an escape pod leaving the animals behind. Red Robin rides Man-Bat trying to reach him, but is unsuccessful until he sees Red Robin falling showing that he came to senses by rescuing him. The heroes take out the villains with the robots, and Red Robin and Man-Bat show up to help revert the Midas Heart. Flash and Nightwing collect robot parts, and they use Silverback as a power source.
Unable to reverse the Midas Heart, Batman has Flash move the generators outside of Gotham and Man-Bat take the robot parts above the city to make a green force field to keep Gotham safe. The Midas Heart smashes into the force field with Gotham unharmed, and Man-Bat permanently returns to Langstrom. The villains are taken to prison, and the heroes go their separate ways. Penguin' pod got an arrow in it making him crash into Antarctica where he's hounded by a waddle of penguins as the film ends.
The film's name and character designs are taken from Mattel's toy line. As such, several releases of the video include a small "Bat-Flyer" toy that can be used with the Batman figures from the line (said toy is pictured above for the special Blu-Ray/DVD/Digital release).
Alastair Duncan, who voices Alfred Pennyworth in the film, reprises this role from The Batman.
It was followed by a sequel, Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem, which was released on August 18, 2015, and 22 short cartoons. A mobile application was released as well.