Ranking The DC Animated Films

There are now 24 of these films, guys! No time for an intro. Let’s get started.

DISQUALIFIED FROM THE RUNNING

“Justice League: Gods And Monsters”

Photo by 2015 WB Animation
Photo by 2015 WB Animation

None of us have seen this film, yet. We will update this when we have.

LAST PLACE

“Justice League: Doom”

This is the worst film of the entire franchise. It starts off cool, and then the LOD gets foiled really quickly. You know, because Batman. It takes away all of the stakes. The only upside is that when they try to get to Wonder Woman, they poison her with this weirdly specific poison, which causes her to hallucinate that everyone is her mortal enemy Cheetah.

WW flies around, trouncing all kinds of terrified civilians. It’s hilarious, but for all the wrong reasons.

TWENTY-TWO

“Batman: Gotham Knight” 

I love anthology films, but for some reason, this one didn’t click with me. I’m willing to admit that it could be personal preference, though. That’s the only reason it’s not last on the list. If you ask me, this was way more boring than JL:Doom.

TWENTY-ONE

“Superman/Batman: Apocalypse”

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! I wasn’t into this at all, but I never did care much for Supergirl.

TWENTY NINETEEN

“Green Lantern: Emerald Knights”

This was okay. It’s an anthology, same as, “Gotham Knight.” It’s low on the list because frankly, most of the segments are really boring. The best one is about the legendary Green Lantern, Mogo, starring the late “Rowdy” Roddy Piper as Bolphunga, an inter-galactic bounty hunter.

RIP HOT ROD.

NINETEEN TWENTY

“Justice League: Throne of Atlantis”

What a piece of crap this movie was. Actually, you know what, I don’t feel comfortable ranking Roddy Piper lower than this movie. Give me a second. I’ll fix it.

Done and done. Anyway, I wanted this movie to be good. I really did. I’m actually pretty upset that this was so forgettable. I’ve always thought that Aquaman is an underrated character. Anyone who can sick a shark on a bad guy is a-okay with me.

Granted, he’d have to get said bad guy into the water – BUT STILL! Sharks are badass, man.

EIGHTEEN

“Superman: Unbound”

Straight stinker. That’s all this one gets.

Wait, no – I hated this version of Brainiac. He was boring, and sort of creepy. Sure, he shrunk Metropolis, and put it in a bottle, but he never came off as a threat to me.  The movie plodded along, until Superman finally took care of the green bastard, and then it was over. BOO! BOOOO!

AHHH-BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

SEVENTEEN

“Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths”

This movie is stunningly average. It’s not bad, but it’s not good. It falls right, smack-dab in the middle for me.

To be fair, James Woods is in this, and uh – he’s James Woods. Need I say more?

SIXTEEN

“Batman: Assault on Arkham”

This film is exactly what I hope the upcoming live-action, “Suicide Squad,” isn’t. Blood for the sake of blood, sex for the sake of sex – it’s lame. There are some interesting moments, but it never really gets anywhere, overall.

This trailer is a million times more interesting.

FIFTEEN

“All-Star Superman”

I saw this before I read the comic it was based on. That was a mistake. I had absolutely no idea what was going on. At one point, dinosaur people emerged from the earth’s core, and I was completely baffled.

Now that I’ve read the comic, the movie makes a lot more sense, but it’s still not that great. The stuff cut from the comic would’ve really elevated the film.

FOURTEEN – TWELVE

14. “Justice League: War”

13. “Son of Batman”

12. “Batman vs. Robin”

I have grouped these three together, because they’re all okay, but also incredibly forgettable. Maybe they should’ve been a little lower on the list, but to be honest, we’re only now starting to get near the films that aren’t at least a little bad, in terms of quality. The top 10 is really all that matters.

ELEVEN

“Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox”

This film almost made the top ten, and then I remembered how little I care for the new 52 DC Universe. I know that might not be fair, but screw the new 52. The only thing worthwhile to come from that run is Scott Snyder’s Batman.

His run has been hot fire.

TEN

“Superman vs. The Elite”

I love how Superman is portrayed in this film. He holds back all the time, but then Manchester Black and The Elite push him to his breaking point. The sequence where he takes the gloves off is one of the best in the history of Supes on film.

NINE

“Superman: Doomsday”

This was the beginning. It could have been better, but the fight between Supes and Doomsday was dynamite.

Here, check it out:

EIGHT

“Justice League: The New Frontier”

I loved this one, but I’m a huge Green Lantern and Flash fan. They get the focus of the flick. The biggest problem with it is the totally lame villain.

 

SEVEN

“Green Lantern: First Flight”

Again, my GL fandom had a big part in me liking this. However, this one stands on its own, much more so than New Frontier. There’s no lame villain – there is only Sinestro, and he’s awesome.

SIX

“Superman/Batman: Public Enemies”

This article is running long, so I won’t write too much. It’s better than its follow-up, for one (see number twenty-one). Plus, there’s a fantastic fight scene where Batman and Superman take on a massive array of villains, including Black Manta, Cheetah, Captain Cold, Solomon Grundy, Mongol, and many, many more.

FIVE

“Batman: Year One”

This was the beginning of a new era for these films. They adapted the comic, frame for frame, and it came out beautifully. Bryan Cranston is also phenomenal as Jim Gordon. That needs to happen in live-action. I don’t understand why it hasn’t already.

COME ON!!!

Bryan Cranston in Breaking Bad (Courtesy of whoever owns the rights to this image)
Bryan Cranston in Breaking Bad (Courtesy of whoever owns the rights to this image)

FOUR-THREE

“Batman: The Dark Knight Returns – Part 1 & 2”

What can I say about these films that hasn’t been said before? They’re based on one of the best stories in Batman’s history.

Here’s a little taste of what you’re in for:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDIR_e3XRKM

RUNNER-UP

“Wonder Woman”

This was the biggest surprise of the entire franchise. I couldn’t believe how good it was. I never wanted to see it, because I don’t give a damn about the main character. I finally broke down and watched it after being blown away by the next entry on this list, and I have not regretted that decision once.

Wonder Woman kicks some serious ass in this movie.

FIRST PLACE

“Batman: Under the Red Hood”

This is my personal favorite of the bunch. I’m a huge fan of “Supernatural,” and as such, I was psyched to see (well, hear) Jensen Ackles in a DC film. He didn’t disappoint, either. I may be a bit bias, but his performance has to be up there in this universe.

Who can match the pathos that he brought to the role of Jason Todd/Red Hood?

Joseph Finnegan
finnegan.joseph@yahoo.com