The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise is clearly in trouble. The recent animated film was a failure. Children no longer recognize the turtles as the ultimate crime-fighting machines that they are. The live-action films of the early 90s are largely forgotten, and are often disappointing in many ways.
But there is hope. Enter Bale.
The original fans of Ninja Turtles are now adults. Thus, it only makes sense to re-imagine the series as a darker, more mature scenario. The other thing that has to happen is that the Ninja Turtles themselves must be played down in the new film, while the character who Bale will play must become the centerpiece of the new film: Casey Jones.
Casey Jones was certainly the most compelling ally of the turtles. He is also a perfect character for Bale to play. He is in many ways a classic hero, but with depths that only Bale’s acting abilities could bring to light.
In this film, Casey Jones is a homeless man living in the sewers of New York. He occasionally ventures into Central Park for acts of vigilante justice. However, this vigilantism is marked by his paranoid belief that all the criminals he is attacking are working for the Foot Clan – an organization which may or may not exist. It is likely that the Foot Clan is nothing more than something he imagined in his schizophrenic paranoia – and that the people he attacks are merely harmless pedestrians.
The existence of the Foot Clan seems to be verified by Splinter (Ben Kingsley), an old Chinese chef who Jones meets when scrounging for food through dumpsters in an alley. Splinter has also encountered the Clan, and he begins training Jones to defeat the Clan, not through fighting but rather through meditation and civil disobediance. Together, they plan a psychological attack on the Foot Clan and its leader, Shredder, a shrewd CEO who appears to be an ordinary family man, but the two are convinced that he is the mastermind of this organization. He is played by Morgan Freeman.
The turtles appear once in the film, when seen in an aquarium in the kitchen of the Chinese restaurant, next to an Encyclopedia of Renaissance artists.