All Batman Animated Movies Ranked From Worst to Best

All Batman Animated Movies
Even Batman is terrified!

For this list we will examine the official DC Universe Original Animated Movies as released by DC Comics and the Warner Bros. Animation and Premiere studios, including continuations and standalone movies; the Superman and Batman storyline; and the Dark Knight series from Frank Miller’s imagining. With this mammoth task before us, and certainly some divide in opinion, how do the animated Batman movies fare when ranked from worst to best?

 

23. Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts

Knocking down at number 23 is Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts.

Developed primarily to sell the toys of the Batman Unlimited line, the simple plot involves Batman and his band of heroes taking on Batman’s greatest animal-themed enemies which includes the likes of Killer Croc, the Penguin, Man Bat, Cheetah and Silverback. Universally loathed by fans, the film is what it is, a long advertising campaign.

My rating: 2/10

 

22. Son of Batman

If you think that it's his son with Catwoman, well think again and read on.

Based on the DC Comics storyline: Batman and Son, Batman learns that he is the father of Talia Al Ghul’s son, Damien. With the threat of Deathstroke and the League of Assassins looming, Batman must be father and teacher to young Damien, as teaches the boy about what is means to be a hero. The film was generally harshly received by fans, many of them finding the plot strained, ridiculous and poorly executed.

My rating: 3/10

 

21. Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem

A notch better from the first Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts.

The second instalment in the toy-themed Batman Unlimited trilogy, this direct-to-video movie is themed around Batman taking on his spookiest themed enemies. Batman, Cyborg, Green Arrow, Nightwing and Red Robin face off against the Joker, Solomon Grundy, Scarecrow, Clayface and Silver Banshee. Again, regarded as another child-orientated movie designed to sell toys, this movie fares slightly better than its predecessor, but only slightly.

My rating: 3/10

 

20. Batman: Bad Blood

Not to be confused with Taylor Swift's Bad Blood Though.

Bruce Wayne has gone missing. Desperate to hide the truth from the world, Alfred tries to maintain the illusion that Batman is still present, whilst searching out Dick Grayson to find his old mentor. The plot thickens as the Heretic, the Mad Hatter and Talia Al Ghul are revealed to be using brainwashing techniques to keep Bruce Wayne sedated. Family and friends of the Batman come together to save Bruce and the world. Unfortunately, the title resonates with fans’ reactions as the movie was generally despised, many regarding it as an attempt at a ‘PC’ Batman movie.

My rating: 3/10

 

19. Batman vs. Robin

Every son has their rebellious phase, this is Damien's.

Following on from Son of Batman, we see Bruce Wayne battling to instil heroic values in his unruly son. Damien, struggling to make peace with this philosophy, finds himself drawn to criminal network, the Court of Owls. With a mixed reception from fans, many confused by the title alone, the villains were well received but Damien Wayne, not so much.

My rating: 4/10

 

18. Batman Unlimited: Mechs vs. Mutants

The last instalment of the Batman Unlimited trilogy.

Giant monsters require giant robots. In this third instalment to the Unlimited trilogy, Mr.Freeze has transformed Killer Croc and Bane into giant monsters, terrorising and destroying Gotham City. Batman and Robin are forced to come up with their own giant robots to take on the villains. With it’s creature feature feel and cheesy dialogue, this movie is certainly targeted towards the younger fans, however, it is generally regarded as a light-hearted, fun action adventure.

My rating: 5/10

 

17. Batman vs. Two-Face

The Caped Crusader is acted by a couple of actors but this one has a special place.

A somewhat updated re-imagining of a 60s Batman TV episode, this nostalgic movie features the voice of Adam West and Burt Ward voicing their old roles whilst facing off against the dastardly William Shatner as Two-Face. As the last project of the original Caped Crusader before his passing, the movie holds a special place in the hearts of die-hard Batman fans.

My rating: 7/10

 

16. Batman vs. Dracula

Ever wonder what happens if the Batman meets Dracula? Wonder no more!

After the Penguin accidentally resurrects Dracula, whose body had been moved to Gotham City from Transylvania. As Dracula slowly begins to turn the citizens of Gotham into mindless subjects, Batman finds himself going head-to-head with the literary Prince of Darkness. Whilst sounding somewhat gimmicky on first appearances, fans generally enjoyed the film, praising the animation and the opportunity to see their hero take on the first famous Bat.

My rating: 6/10

 

15. Batman: Assault on Arkham

It's like Suicide Squad, but animated.

Taking place in the same universe as the Batman: Arkham video game franchise, Assault on Arkham divides the screen time with the Suicide Squad pursuing information possessed by the Riddler, and Batman trying to locate Joker’s bomb. Rather than a Batman film, fans perceived it to be a Suicide Squad film with a bit of Batman for good measure. Gritty, gruesome and certainly for a mature audience, the film has its fair share of lovers and haters.

My rating: 6/10

 

14. Superman/Batman: Public Enemies

As genius as Lex Luthor is, he really know how to make the people move.

In this storyline, Lex Luthor is president and uses the occurrence of an impending asteroid to frame Superman. With a $1 billion bounty, Luthor declares Superman, and his partner in crime, Batman, public enemies number one. Generally held in warm regard, the movie delivers on fast-paced action but sacrifices a decent storyline to achieve this.

My rating: 6/10

 

13. Batman and Harley Quinn

If you're one of the BatmanXHarley shippers, well, sorry to disappoint.

A fairly recent addition to the DC animated series, Batman and Nightwing find themselves forced to team up with Harley Quinn as they pursue Poison Ivy and the Floronic Man who are determined to return all life forms to a plant-like state. Fans have had greatly divided opinions on the movie, some enjoying the standalone plot and humour, others feeling like it’s a cash-in on the recent popularity of Harley Quinn.

My rating: 6/10

 

12. Batman and Mr.Freeze: SubZero

Although the title having the ring of MK, the movie wasn't about MKxBatman crossover.

Following on from Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, Mr.Freeze is hidden away in the Arctic with his ragtag family and the cryogenically stored body of his wife, Nora. After her containment capsule becomes damaged, Mr.Freeze needs an urgent organ donor in order to keep her alive. After finding out Batgirl, Barbara Gordon, is compatible, he kidnaps her to become an unwilling donor. Receiving a warm reception from fans, the animation and well contained plot satisfied hardcore and casual fans alike.

My rating: 7/10

 

11. Batman: The Killing Joke

Who would expect that a well anticipated movie would flop?

After a large fan-based campaign to adapt the graphic novel for the big screen, there was a keen anticipation for The Killing Joke. The movie flashes back and forth from the events that led to the inception of the Joker and his determination to hurt Batman through the Gordon family. Sadly, the movie failed to meet expectations with many fans regarding it as dull, strained and anti-climactic.

My rating: 5/10

 

10. Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker

Give way for the new Caped Crusader.

Set in the future with Terry McGinnis donning the cape, Bruce Wayne has retired from his crime fighting days, having defeated his nemesis the Joker. However, the Joker has reappeared as well as a criminal gang calling themselves the Jokerz. As Bruce Wayne lies injured, the new Batman must solve what really happened between him and the Joker, all those years ago. Heralded by fans as a thoroughly well-written and enjoyable film, the Batman Beyond series garnered the respect of many fans, old and new.

My rating: 7/10

 

9. Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman

A small touch of feminity won't hurt right?

A new caped crusader is in town, and to everyone’s surprise, it’s a lady! Batman finds himself having to contend with a more ruthless femme fatale of himself as the Batwoman causes mayhem and chaos in Gotham. The film garnered mixed reviews, hardcore fans gave a rather lukewarm reception to the movie, viewing it as more suitable to episodic TV portrayals. Casual fans were certainly more open to this portrayal of a new Batwoman.

My rating: 6/10

 

8. Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders

Classic is EPIC!

Holy animated 60s Batman! It’s Adam West and Burt Ward as you’ve never seen them before! The Joker, Penguin, Riddler and Catwoman are up to their old tricks and Batman must deploy every device in his utility belt to save the day. A wonderfully nostalgic and brilliantly animated revival of the 1960s Batman, a true fan would love and appreciate this glorious gem. Fans that don’t are obviously just too young.

My rating: 9/10

 

7. Batman: Gotham by Gaslight

Fans were not totally gaslit by this particular animated movie.

Based on the standalone graphic novel of the same name, this movie is set in a Victorian era Gotham City where Batman must take on Jack the Ripper. Feeling like a steampunk re-imagining of Batman, most fans liked the new concept however the adaptation failed to deliver as it had in the graphic novel.

My rating: 6/10

 

6. Batman: Gotham Knight

Following on from the Batman Begins storyline, this six-part collection follows a chronological timeline of events that lead Bruce Wayne from fledgling to dark knight. While many fans were lukewarm about an anime style Batman, the stories themselves were original, offering a closer look at the development of the other characters in Gotham City.

My rating: 7/10

 

5. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm

A new vigilante has come to Gotham: The mysterious Phantasm begins taking down Gotham’s mob figureheads without impunity. Gotham’s police and city officials, mistaking the Phantasm for Batman, seek to bring down the Caped Crusader, who all the while is trying to find the identity of the newcomer. On the whole, the movie was greatly received by fans, enjoying a new piece of Batman’s origin story in animated form.

My rating: 7/10

 

4. Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

Continuing from Superman/Batman: Public Enemies, Batman and Superman once again must team up to face a greater foe: Darkseid. After the mysterious arrival of Supergirl on earth, forces of both good and evil are determined to gain influence over the young Kryptonian. An enjoyable film for both fans and casual viewers, and utilising an impressive character roster, the movie has proven itself a worthy follow-up in the Superman/Batman series.

My rating: 8/10

 

3. Batman: Year One

Based on the Frank Miller story of the same name, Year One focuses on Bruce Wayne’s and Jim Gordon’s return to Gotham City and how the two are inevitably drawn together as they seek to protect Gotham and its citizens. With its gritty and dark themes, the movie has become a favourite for hardcore animated Batman fans, however younger or newer fans found it somewhat hard-going.

My rating: 7/10

 

2. Batman: Under the Red Hood

Batman finds himself facing off against the Red Hood, a mysterious vigilante who, unlike Batman, is willing to kill. After the Joker appears to stir up old memories, Batman finds himself facing up to painful truths and old wounds. Fans loved the deep storyline and interesting dynamic this new foe brought to Batman and the movie is highly regarded as one of the best animated Batman movies.

My rating: 9/10

 

1. Batman: The Dark Knight Returns

This two-part adaptation follows on Frank Miller’s storyline from Year One. Having hung up his cape, a new threat in the form of a criminal gang called the Mutants forces Bruce Wayne back into his spandex with a new Robin at his side. In part two, Batman is faced with taking on his old nemesis: Joker and more unexpectedly, his old ally: Superman. Generally regarded as one of the best adaptations of a graphic novel, fans loved the build up and climactic end to this two-part series.

My rating: 9/10

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