The Greatest DC Comics Movies, According To Fans
The DC universe is a staple of pop culture. From comic books to TV shows and movies, it’s a popular world that keeps getting bigger and bigger. Starting with Batman in 1966, DC has released several films over the years that have shaped the superhero genre. While Marvel may be the juggernaut when it comes to superheroes on film, DC has been pumping out some interesting blockbusters for years.
DC Universe movies have had their ups and downs, though. As time went on since the first Batman movie, DC slowly fell behind in terms of box office performance and critical response, struggling to keep the hype up and regularly release successful movies. This was until 2005, when Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins came out and showed what DC could do when they were at their best. Together with the next two Batman movies, this successful trilogy marked a change of tone for DC movies, with Nolan and Goyer aiming for a darker and more realistic tone. The primary goal was to engage the audience’s emotional investment in both the Batman and Bruce Wayne identities. After The Dark Knight trilogy, DC finally took the right path, releasing success after success, with blockbusters like Aquaman, Wonder Woman, and Shazam!
With so many incredible DC films to choose from, it can be challenging to track which ones are worth watching. Here are the all-time fan-favorite DC Comics movies from DC’s extensive library!
The Dark Knight
2008 | 2h 32m | Directed by Christopher Nolan
Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins was a breath of fresh air in 2005, the first in a spate of superhero origin stories that rethought and redefined what made a good comic book movie. But it’s 2008’s The Dark Knight that stands out as Nolan’s best for several reasons. What makes it so great is how Nolan takes Batman’s story, which is so well known by millions of fans worldwide, and makes it fresh and original. He takes an incredibly popular character and makes fans’ love for him grow even more. He gives us a new take on the superhero while at the same time making him true to his comic book origins. Bale and Oldman are superb in this movie, but the late Heath Ledger gives an award-winning performance as the Joker.
1989 | 2h 6m | Directed by Tim Burton
The film isn’t an accurate depiction of the comics, nor was it intended to be. Tim Burton’s 1989 version of Batman features Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne/Batman and Jack Nicholson as The Joker in this dark take on the character’s origin story. The film set the tone for decades worth of superhero movies to come. It also changed how we see Gotham City and the Joker’s persona.
2017 | 2h 21m | Directed by Patty Jenkins
With 29 wins and 72 nominations, Wonder Woman is the highly acclaimed movie starring Gal Gadot. Gal Gadot almost gave up on her acting career before getting this role. When she was told that she was short-listed to play Wonder Woman, she was floored at the idea of playing the iconic superhero and eagerly agreed to participate. She did an excellent job as Wonder Woman. The supporting cast was terrific at making the story feel fresh again.
2018 | 2h 23m | Directed by James Wan
Released in 2018, Aquaman is the sixth DC movie since the birth of the DC Extended Universe. The film follows Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa), aka Aquaman, who reluctantly leads Atlantis to stop his half-brother from destroying the surface world. Aquaman collected achievement after achievement, becoming the highest-grossing DCEU film, the highest-grossing film based on a DC Comics character, the fifth-highest-grossing film of 2018, and the 24th highest-grossing film of all time.
2019 | 2h 12m | Directed by David F. Sandberg
Here we are with the DC movie dedicated to Shazam, a troubled orphan’s adult superhero alter ego, who possesses “the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the courage of Achilles, and the speed of Mercury”. Originally, this was going to be one film with Shazam and Black Adam meeting and clashing, but the producers decided to split the movie into two origin films for both characters, with Black Adam set for release in 2022.
Batman: Under The Red Hood
2005 | 2h 20m | Directed by Christopher Nolan
Batman Begins takes the viewer back to Batman’s beginnings and explains the emergence of the Dark Knight as the hero who fights for Gotham City. Following his parents’ murder, the now-billionaire Bruce Wayne travels the world searching for a way to fight injustice. Once back in Gotham, he unveils his alter ego: Batman, a masked crusader who uses his brawn, brains, and high-tech tricks to fight the sinister forces threatening the city.
1992 | 2h 6m | Directed by Tim Burton
In 1992, Tim Burton followed up his successful Batman with a sequel that was even darker than the original. Michael Keaton returned as Bruce Wayne/Batman, who must face off against not one, but two villains: The Penguin (Danny DeVito) and Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer). The film is notable for its dark tone and gothic atmosphere, as well as some of Burton’s most iconic imagery.
Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox
Batman: Mask Of The Phantasm
1993 | 1h 16m | Directed by Kevin Altieri, Boyd Kirkland, and Frank Paur
This animated movie follows Batman, wrongly accused of a series of murders of crime lords actually committed by the “Phantasm”, a new vigilante assassin with insane illusionist and martial arts skills. Things are so much more complicated, though, since this mysterious vigilante is actually Andrea Beaumont, the woman Bruce once loved and wanted to marry.
1978 | 2h 23m | Directed by Richard Donner
The original Superman could be regarded as the ancestor of every good superhero movie. Like most origin stories, it’s a bit slow in places, but thanks to an iconic performance from Christopher Reeve, it’s still an all-time classic. This wholesome and optimistic hero had everything, from kindness to a sense of humor, and has been sometimes considered “too good to be true”. But who cares? He’s an icon for a reason!
The Dark Knight Rises
2012 | 2h 44m | Directed by Christopher Nolan
The final installment of Nolan’s trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises has been praised by critics and fans alike for its masterful blend of action, drama, and suspense. The movie is set eight years after the events of The Dark Knight. Gotham City is now enjoying an era of peace following the Dent Act and the disappearance of the city’s greatest vigilante. But when a new terrorist leader known as Bane threatens to cripple Gotham, Batman must resurface from his exile to protect his people once more.
Man Of Steel
Batman Beyond: Return Of The Joker
The LEGO Batman Movie
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns
V For Vendetta
A History Of Violence
Teen Titans: Trouble In Tokyo
LEGO Batman: The Movie - Dc Super Heroes Unite
The Return Of Swamp Thing
The Batman/Superman Movie
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns - Part 2
Batman: Assault On Arkham
Wonder Woman (2009)
Superman/Batman: Public Enemies
Son Of Batman
Justice League: Doom
Teen Titans: The Judas Contract
Justice League: Throne Of Atlantis
Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths
Green Lantern: First Flight
Superman: Brainiac Attacks
The Batman Vs. Dracula
Justice League: War
Justice League Vs. Teen Titans
Note: this post originally had 80 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.