Essential Batman (Ranked)

by aaron-c-gleason | created - 09 Aug 2012 | updated - 09 Aug 2012 | Public
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1. The Dark Knight (2008)

PG-13 | 152 min | Action, Crime, Drama

82 Metascore

When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham, the Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Michael Caine

Votes: 1,912,977 | Gross: $534.86M

2. Batman Begins (2005)

PG-13 | 140 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

70 Metascore

After training with his mentor, Batman begins his fight to free crime-ridden Gotham City from the corruption that Scarecrow and the League of Shadows have cast upon it.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Ken Watanabe, Liam Neeson

Votes: 1,117,512 | Gross: $206.85M

3. The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

PG-13 | 164 min | Action, Thriller

78 Metascore

Eight years after the Joker's reign of anarchy, Batman, with the help of the enigmatic Catwoman, is forced from his exile to save Gotham City, now on the edge of total annihilation, from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Gary Oldman

Votes: 1,300,396 | Gross: $448.14M

4. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)

PG | 76 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

Batman is wrongly implicated in a series of murders of mob bosses actually done by a new vigilante assassin.

Directors: Eric Radomski, Bruce Timm, Kevin Altieri, Boyd Kirkland, Frank Paur, Dan Riba | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Dana Delany, Hart Bochner, Stacy Keach

Votes: 35,059 | Gross: $5.62M

5. Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2000 Video)

PG-13 | 76 min | Animation, Action, Crime

The Joker is back with a vengeance, and Gotham's newest Dark Knight needs answers as he stands alone to face Gotham's most infamous Clown Prince of Crime.

Director: Curt Geda | Stars: Will Friedle, Mark Hamill, Kevin Conroy, Angie Harmon

Votes: 19,327

6. Batman: Arkham City (2011 Video Game)

T | Action, Adventure, Crime

When part of Gotham is turned into a private reserve for criminals known as Arkham City, all hell is sure to break loose, and the Dark Knight is the only one who can stop it.

Director: Sefton Hill | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill, David Kaye, Carlos Alazraqui

Votes: 21,336

7. Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010 Video)

PG-13 | 75 min | Animation, Action, Crime

There's a mystery afoot in Gotham City, and Batman must go toe-to-toe with a mysterious vigilante, who goes by the name of Red Hood. Subsequently, old wounds reopen and old, once buried memories come into the light.

Director: Brandon Vietti | Stars: Bruce Greenwood, Jensen Ackles, John DiMaggio, Neil Patrick Harris

Votes: 44,968

8. Batman: The Animated Series (1992–1995)

TV-PG | 23 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

The Dark Knight battles crime in Gotham City with occasional help from Robin and Batgirl.

Stars: Kevin Conroy, Loren Lester, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Robert Hastings

Votes: 66,170

9. Batman Beyond (1999–2001)

TV-Y7 | 23 min | Adventure, Animation, Action

Fueled by remorse and vengeance, a high schooler named Terry McGinnis revives the role of Batman. Under supervision of an elderly Bruce Wayne, he fights crime in a harsh futuristic Gotham.

Stars: Will Friedle, Kevin Conroy, Lauren Tom, Cree Summer

Votes: 20,192

10. Batman: Arkham Asylum (2009 Video Game)

T | Action, Adventure, Crime

You control Batman as he fights to subdue The Joker and his fellows when they seize control of the Arkham Island.

Directors: Sefton Hill, Paul Boulden | Stars: Mark Hamill, Kevin Conroy, Arleen Sorkin, Tom Kane

Votes: 18,820

11. Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero (1998 Video)

Unrated | 70 min | Animation, Action, Crime

When Mr. Freeze, desperate to save his dying wife, kidnaps Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) as an involuntary organ donor, Batman and Robin must find her before the operation can begin.

Director: Boyd Kirkland | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Michael Ansara, Loren Lester, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.

Votes: 10,670

12. Batman: Gotham Knight (2008 Video)

PG-13 | 75 min | Animation, Action, Crime

A collection of key events mark Bruce Wayne's life, as he journeys from beginner to Dark Knight.

Directors: Yasuhiro Aoki, Futoshi Higashide, Toshiyuki Kubooka, Hiroshi Morioka, Jong-Sik Nam, Shôjirô Nishimi, Yûichirô Hayashi | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Jason Marsden, Scott Menville, George Newbern

Votes: 23,139

13. Batman (1989)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure

69 Metascore

The Dark Knight of Gotham City begins his war on crime with his first major enemy being the clownishly homicidal Joker.

Director: Tim Burton | Stars: Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger, Robert Wuhl

Votes: 297,368 | Gross: $251.19M

14. Batman Returns (1992)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Crime, Fantasy

68 Metascore

When a corrupt businessman and the grotesque Penguin plot to take control of Gotham City, only Batman can stop them, while the Catwoman has her own agenda.

Director: Tim Burton | Stars: Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Michelle Pfeiffer, Christopher Walken

Votes: 239,414 | Gross: $162.83M

15. Batman: The Movie (1966)

PG | 105 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime

The Dynamic Duo faces four supervillains who plan to hold the world for ransom with the help of a secret invention that instantly dehydrates people.

Director: Leslie H. Martinson | Stars: Adam West, Burt Ward, Lee Meriwether, Cesar Romero

Votes: 26,153

16. Batman (1966–1968)

TV-G | 25 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

The Caped Crusader and his young ward battle evildoers in Gotham City.

Stars: Adam West, Burt Ward, Alan Napier, Neil Hamilton

Votes: 15,279

17. Batman Begins (2005 Video Game)

T | Action, Adventure, Crime

You play as Batman and unleash your terror into the heart of criminals battling against foes such as Dr. Crane/Scarecrow, Ras Al Ghul and Carmine Falcone.

Stars: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Katie Holmes

Votes: 11,187

18. The New Batman Adventures (1997–1999)

TV-PG | 30 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

The further and darker adventures of Batman with a new Robin, a closer association with Batgirl and the previous Robin now as Nightwing.

Stars: Kevin Conroy, Tara Strong, Mathew Valencia, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.

Votes: 10,249

19. The Batman Superman Movie: World's Finest (1997 TV Movie)

TV-PG | 64 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

Joker goes to Metropolis with an offer and plan to kill Superman for Lex Luthor while Batman pursues the clown to Superman's turf.

Director: Toshihiko Masuda | Stars: Tim Daly, Dana Delany, Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill

Votes: 7,125

20. Batman: Year One (2011 Video)

PG-13 | 64 min | Animation, Action, Crime

A wealthy playboy and a Chicago cop both return to Gotham City where their lives will intersect in unexpected ways.

Directors: Sam Liu, Lauren Montgomery | Stars: Bryan Cranston, Ben McKenzie, Eliza Dushku, Jon Polito

Votes: 25,756

21. Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman (2003 Video)

PG | 75 min | Animation, Action, Crime

The Dark Knight must contend with a mysterious female vigilante who emulates him, but to a more ruthless degree.

Directors: Curt Geda, Jennifer Graves, Tim Maltby | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Kimberly Brooks, Kelly Ripa, Elisa Gabrielli

Votes: 8,818

22. Batman: The Brave and the Bold (2008–2011)

TV-Y7 | 30 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

An updated animated series centering on the Caped Crusader himself as he partners and deals with his fellow superheroes in the DC Comics universe.

Stars: Diedrich Bader, John DiMaggio, James Arnold Taylor, Dee Bradley Baker

Votes: 6,085

23. Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 (2012 Video)

PG-13 | 76 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

Batman has not been seen for ten years. A new breed of criminal ravages Gotham City, forcing 55-year-old Bruce Wayne back into the cape and cowl. But, does he still have what it takes to fight crime in a new era?

Director: Jay Oliva | Stars: Peter Weller, Ariel Winter, David Selby, Wade Williams

Votes: 43,630

24. Batman: Vengeance (2001 Video Game)

T | Action, Adventure, Crime

When an elaborate scheme conceived by the Joker is set in motion, Batman embarks on a perlious journey to save Gotham from the clutches of his most dangerous adversaries.

Stars: Kevin Conroy, Mark Hamill, Arleen Sorkin, Tara Strong

Votes: 314

25. Lego Batman: The Videogame (2008 Video Game)

E10+ | Action, Adventure

A video game in which players take control of the Dynamic Duo, Batman and Robin, as well as the hero Nightwing to fight Gotham City's most notorious criminals including The Joker, The ... See full summary »

Director: Jon Burton | Stars: Ogie Banks, Steve Blum, Grey DeLisle, Chris Edgerly

Votes: 1,847

26. Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu (2003 Video Game)

T | Action, Adventure, Crime

In Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu, a new villain who feeds off of dominance is in search of a new, difficult opponent. In Asia he hd heard of the Dark Knight of Gotham City, Batman, and has set up... See full summary »

Director: Pascal Colpron | Stars: Kevin Conroy, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Tara Strong, Loren Lester

Votes: 235

27. Batman Returns (1992 Video Game)

Unrated | Action, Crime, Fantasy

The game follows the storyline of the movie. Batman must fight two new criminals, The Penguin and Catwoman, which threaten the peace in Gotham.

Votes: 246