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Not every superhero movie is bound for greatness; some create a lot of buzz before release and end up being flops. The following are flops—the worst DC Comics movies of all time, according to Rotten Tomatoes.
On the heels of the Worst Marvel Studios Movies of All Time, it’s time to dig into the genesis of the modern superhero, DC Comics. In fact, the company created the first costumed superhero when Superman debuted in 1938’s Action Comics #1. Two decades before the Fantastic Four signaled the beginning of the Marvel Age, DC was cranking out some of the most famous characters in all of comics.
DC’s characters have been gracing screens since the theatrical serials of the 1940s, and the first official DC movie is credited as 1951’s Superman and the Mole Men. With eight decades of cinematic tradition, DC’s characters have starred in many groundbreaking films that continue to capture imaginations. There’s also a long list of silver screen dudes.
To get to the bottom of this barrel, we will take the average scores from Rotten Tomatoes’ critical and audience ratings. When you have been making movies for more than six decades, you will have a long list of movies. Between both live-action and animated varieties, DC boasts over 100 feature films. To narrow the list, these rankings are based on movies with theatrical releases.
Out of all those films, which one is ranked as the worst of the worst? It’s time to find out.
10. suicide squad (2016)
It’s a formula that had worked for five decades when Lee Marvin led The Dirty Dozen in 1967. Put together a group of bad guys with selfish agendas, give them something worth fighting for, and watch them save the day in style. It’s practically foolproof…well, almost.
suicide squad director David Ayers contends that his dramatic, mature movie deserves a director’s cut after the Warner Bros. executives disagreed on the tone. From the first notes of the many pop songs littered throughout the story as well as the hit-or-miss humor, suicide squad came across as a poor man’s Guardians of the Galaxy. No wonder WB hired James Gunn to write and direct the much-improved follow up.
9. Green Lantern (2011)
This movie has a cult classic written all over it, but that’s not because it’s secretly a great movie. It’s quite the opposite, as this is such a bad movie that it has much unintentional hilarity, ranking alongside such Oscar snubs as surf ninja, Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot, and basically every movie Hulk Hogan ever made. Ryan Reynolds acknowledges the Green Lantern fiasco, taking jabs at it in both dead pool entries.
8. batmanforever (nineteen ninety five)
In 1989’s BatmanTim Burton proved that not all superhero movies have to be lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek affairs. He doubled down on the dark tone and aesthetic with batman returns, and it was another huge box office success. Unfortunately, this is WB, and the studio can’t help but get in its own way. Joel Schumacher was hired to fill Burton’s shoes for the third installment, and he wanted to rewind the Bat-clock to the 1960s Adam West era. Earlier this year, Michael Keaton divulged that he chose to leave the iconic role when Schumacher couldn’t understand why Batman had to be so dark and gloomy. With a perspective like that, Schumacher would have gotten along great with Kevin Feige.
7. Superman III (1983)
The 1978 Superman movie ranks first on many all-time best comic adaptations. Not only did director Richard Donner capture the essence of what makes Superman an inspiration to generations, but the film proved that superhero movies are box office gold. Five years later, WB did what WB does best by completely misunderstanding the assignment.
Reportedly, the original Superman III script included classic Man of Steel villains Brainiac and Mr. Mxyzptlk. Then the studio executives stepped in, and what we got was a nonsensical adventure co-starring comedian Richard Pryor. This movie has many weird moments, but the most infamous has to be a drunk Superman in a bar breaking liquor bottles and melting a mirror before fighting Clark Kent in a junkyard. Actually, that pretty much sums up the weirdness of the entire movie.
6. super girl (1984)
If it wasn’t for the audience score raising the average, super girl would have tied for the worst DC movie of all time. That doesn’t mean fans actually liked this movie; they just didn’t hate it quite as passionately as the critics. It had only been a year since audiences were treated to one of the all-time blunders in Superman III, but the bar wasn’t dropped quite low enough. Whether it’s the bad special effects, the horribly campy performances, or an uninspired story, there’s a lot to hate here.
5. Jonah Hex (2010)
In yet another tale of WB making bad creative decisions, Jonah Hex could have been an R-rated, supernatural/horror action extravaganza. The word on the internet is that the first two drafts of the script were more true to the actual character who is not family friendly. Reportedly, when actor Josh Brolin read the screenplay, he hated it. To convince him to star in the movie, WB overhauled the script, and the result is a silly romp that most fans would rather forget.
Four. Steel (1997)
Back in the late-1990s, Shaquille O’Neal was one of the most famous athletes in the world. Shaq had endorsement deals galore, and he was ready to take his superstardom into the entertainment industry. He recorded rap albums, slow his name and likeness to the infamous Shaqfu video game, and starred in his first movie, Kazaam in 1996. A year later, I moved to Los Angeles to play for the Lakers and suited up as DC’s substitute Superman, Steel. While his time with the Lakers produced three NBA championships, Steel was an epic dude.
3. batman and robin (1997)
Despite Joel Schumacher’s classic ’80s movies St. Elmo’s Fire and The LostBoyshe’s mostly remembered for undoing Tim Burton’s Batman franchise. Between both movies, I have derailed Batman for almost a decade. despues de batmanforeverSchumacher went full Adam West Batman camp, and we learned that fans don’t want their Dark Knight to be a joke.
two. Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987)
You would think that after Superman III and super girl, WB would have taken a breather from the Superman franchise. At the least, they could have waited for a better story. Instead, the green flag was waved over Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. Modern critics complain that the actors mostly phoned in their performances and that the special effects looked cheaper than ever. This was the way the Christopher Reeve Superman was ended, not with a bang, but a whimper.
1. cat woman (2004)
At the time, it must have sounded like a good idea. Between Blade and the X-Men, superheroes were proving they remained box office heavyweights. In the early 2000s, Halle Berry was riding high from her Best Actress Oscar win for Monster’s Ball. Putting one of the hottest stars in the world in a Batman spinoff movie complete with sexy costume, what could go wrong? Apparently everything. In 2018, cat woman screenwriter John Rogers posted on Twitter that the story had gone through several writers before it reached his hands. Although Roger’s script got the green light, he tweeted that he was fired when he rejected the WB’s suggestions for rewrites. In the end, the studio executives got what they wanted, and cat woman it was a disaster.