Justice League is hands down among the most famous superhero groups of all time. Throughout its existence, some of the most powerful DC superheroes have been its members.
Justice League materials have been adapted to many forms of media, most notably animated series. In today’s post, however, were going to be discussing extremely polarizing live-action Justice League films. Let’s see what is the order of Justice League movies & how many are there?
How many Justice League movies are there?
There are three Justice League movies. Of course, we’re talking about Zack Snyder’s Justice League trilogy. Things get confusing because of the whole directing fiasco that happened with the Justice League movie that was released in 2017. The Justice League movie was released 2 times, the first time in 2017, and the second time in 2021 titled Zack Snyder’s Justice League. But we’re going to explain further down the road. For now, let’s see the release order of Justice League movies.
Justice League movies in order – at a glance
As we’ve said, there are only three movies in the trilogy, with the Justice League movie being released 2 times. The watch order starts with Man of Steel released in 2013 and ends with Justice League (2017;2021).
- Man of Steel (2013)
- Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
- Justice League (2017)
- Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021)
We’re not going to mention other movies that belong to the DCEU continuity, like Aquaman, Wonder Woman, etc. Since this watch order is dedicated to the Justice League trilogy only.
What is the best way to watch Justice League movies?
The best way to watch Justice League movies is in order of release. Release order follows the chronological order of events as well som viewing the trilogy is really simple and straightforward.
Justice League movies in order of release
1. Man of Steel (2013)
The movie that opened the trilogy. Man of Steel released in 2013 showed us Superman’s origin story and how he came to earth. Clark Kent’s adoptive parents sacrificed everything to keep his identity and his powers hidden. But things take a turn for the worse when Superman is forced to reveal himself in order to protect humanity from invaders coming from his home planet – Krypton.
Man of Steel is a story about the search for one’s identity, and waging between the “lesser of two evils”. The movie itself had a great cast with many notable names. With Hanry Cavill taking on the role of Superman. The reception of both Cavill’s performance as Superman and the movie itself was somewhat mixed.
On one side many people praised the action scenes and general feel of the movie, and on the other, the movie was criticized as being too serious.
2. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
Batman v Superman serves as a follow-up to Man of Steel (2013). We see Batman (Ben Affleck), feeling that Superman’s actions are not appropriately supervised. His paranoia is further fed by Lex Luthor, hellbent to undermine Superman. They both feel that Superman is too dangerous to act on his own and too volatile. Humanity has too much to lose if Superman decides to turn on them.
In reality, Luthor is simply manipulating Bruce Wayne, and once he figures it out. It will be too late and Superman will be dead. At least one good thing came out of this movie. The first appearance of Wonder Woman in DCEU live-action movies. And also, the fact that Justice League has been founded.
The movie was generally dragged on release. The only performance that received praise was that of Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman).
3. Justice League (2017)
Justice League’s release in 2017 is the last movie in the trilogy. It was originally set to be directed by Zack Snyder, but he sadly had to relinquish his directing duties to Joss Whedon during post-production due to the tragic passing of his daughter. The result was a rushed movie since some of Snyder’s and Whedon’s directing choices were completely different.
The movie plotwise follows the aftermath of Superman’s passing and Earth’s freshly-created vulnerability to supervillains. The movie also features Aquaman, the Flash, and Cyborg in more significant roles.
The movie received generally bad reviews from fans and mixed reviews from critics. Once again, Gal Gadot seemed to be the only saving grace of the movie. After the disastrous performance of the movie when it comes to finances, Warner Bros. decided to focus on stand-alone characters movies only, deciding to ignore the wider shared universe.
4. Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021)
Zack Synder’s vision for Justice League was different than what Joss Whedon delivered. Due to that, fans generated a lot of interest to see the movie Zack Snyder envisioned. Warner Bros. decided to shell out some extra money on CGI and reshooting of some scenes. The product was a highly successful movie that explores the stories of other characters like Aquaman and the Flash in greater detail.
No material shot by Joss Whedon was used in this release, and Snyder himself stated that Whedon’s version is canonical.
This was met by a protest by both Momoa and Patty Jenkins who feel that Snyder’s movie better matches the continuity of their own standalone movies than Whedon’s version.
Are the Justice League movies connected?
Yes, Justice League movies are connected. They are part of the same trilogy, same universe, and follow the same characters in continuity. The Justice League trilogy is part of a much larger DCEU continuity with several other movies expanding on the larger story.
Do you need to watch the Justice League movies in order?
Yes, Justice League movies should be watched in order, starting with the first movie Man of Steel. You can watch both versions of the Justice League movie or you can settle for watching only one version. But keep in mind that Whedon’s version of Justice League is technically considered canon.
Will there be more Justice League movies?
After the poor performance of the Justice League released in 2017, Warner Bros. decided to focus on movies that revolve around individual characters. The sequela for Justice League has been planned, but nothing came out of it. In fact, there are no apparent sequels planned for the near future. The option is still on the table however due to the fact that DCEU is set to expand significantly through upcoming projects. The only thing we can tell for sure is that nothing is being planned at the moment.
Where to watch the Justice League movies?
You can watch all Justice League movies on HBO Max following this provided link.