2. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)
If you’re looking for a different kind of Batman film, HBO Max also has Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, and many fans would argue this is actually the greatest Batman film ever made, animated or not. Originally planned for a direct-to-video release, the decision to shift to theaters was made on such short notice that Mask of the Phantasm ultimately bombed at the box office, making just $5.8 million compared to its $6 million budget.
Despite that blunder out of the gate, Mask of the Phantasm saw financial success once released on home media, and it has achieved critical acclaim over the years. It’s currently holding an 84% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, as well as an 88 percent Audience Score from over 50,000 ratings.
Over the years, critics have called it “quite possibly the best film adaptation of the Batman character in existence,” “heroic stuff,” “a romantic, flash-back rich narrative,” and “a movie worth celebrating.” Fans of Star Wars animation like The Clone Wars and Rebels could definitely enjoy taking a look at this 1993-outing, and it comes along with a special Star Wars-adjacent treat.
While most Star Wars fans will forever know him as Luke Skywalker, Mark Hamill lends his voice to the infamous Joker in Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. Hamill’s role as the voice actor for The Joker began with Batman: The Animated Series in 1992 and continued for several years, but many see Batman: Mask of the Phantasm as the true highlight of that work.