– by Daryll Benjamin –
With Justice League upcoming in theaters, once again the drums of how much I “hate” DC/Warner Bros. heroes and movies have started beating again. SO for the umpteenth time, I’m going to give you my favorite DC theatrical releases. The only requirements for this list is that a) I liked the movie and b) it was released as a motion picture first, meaning I paid my money to see it. And with that said, let me begin with my honorable mentions:
RED 2 – The follow-up to hit elder assassin movie
A History of Violence – To many, this film about a cook being forced to face his (possible) criminal past was merely a mob movie but truthfully, this was a Paradox Press/Vertigo book.
Lego Batman Movie – Take almost every Batman trope ever and turn it on its ear as Lego gives the Caped Crusader its wacky but love-filled treatment.
And NOW My Main Event of Top 10 Favorite DC Movies
10) Batman (1966) – Batman and Robin vs most of their villains gallery. Easily one of the most campy superhero movies ever made as it perfectly captures the TV series in tone & fun. Plus, Adam West folks!
9) Superman – The first superhero movie I ever saw in a theater at 3 years old and the one at 8 years old that forever burned my soul with comic booky thoughts. Baby Kal-El arrives on Earth from his doomed Krypton, changing the world.
8) Batman (1989) – Batman vs The Joker as Keaton and Nickelson give iconic performances as the franchise along with Gotham is updated for (then) current times.
7) Red – A retired CIA agent/gun for hire finds himself targeted for death and pulls his old squad back together for protection and revenge. Plus a team of Willis, Malcovich, Freeman and Mirren just sounds all so cool on paper. But to see them going together on screen was amazing!
6) The Dark Knight – Heath Ledger’s iconic performance highlights this movie as Batman’s pushed to the breaking point by The Joker’s machinations within Gotham. Easily the most A-List star studded Bat movie ever.
5) The Losers – A Special Ops unit specializing in doing some very dirty deeds for the United States is betrayed, burned and now is on the run for their lives. Lots of current comic book actor stars show their faces in this movie
4) Batman Forever – My favorite live action Batman movie as a) I think Val Kilmer was the actor who was the closest to getting both Bruce Wayne & Batman right & b) I’m a huge Jim Carrey fan and he plays The Riddler with such a manic energy that it makes up for the mishandling of Tommy Lee Jones’ Two-Face.
3) Wonder Woman – A movie that to be honest I thought never was going to be made and was nearly visually perfect to the vision of Themyscira a.k.a Paradise Island I had always had in my mind. Princess Diana heads to “Man’s World” for the first time after a WWI fighter pilot crashes onto its shores. Still can’t get over how well Patty Jenkins, Gal Gadot and Chris Pine worked to make this movie fun…
2) Superman II – Still for me, the “Godfather” for live action comic book films. Kal-El wants to be happy with Lois Lane but unfortunately 3 prisoners from the Phantom Zone along with Lex Luthor will cut that short. Why? Since the 3 prisoners are from Krypton and Earth is under a yellow sun…yeah. Superman and Earth may be in BIG trouble. This is my number 1 live action DC superhero movie BUT it ISN’T the Daryll #1 DC Superhero movie. That distinction goes to:
1) Batman Mask of The Phantasm – For me, this is the definite Batman movie and quite possibly my #1 superhero movie of all time. Bruce Wayne has finally found his dream gal BUT unbeknownst to him, she also has ties to his greatest foe and the mob. As this is going down a mysterious fog cloaked figure is taking out figures of the underworld. Whenever someone asks me about my DC favorites, this ALWAYS shoots to the top of my list!
And with that, you folks got my favorites. Here’s hoping Justice League does well and I hope you all enjoy the movie.
Thanks For Reading! Until Next Time, Keep Fantasizing!