When it comes to naming the greatest comic book movies ever made, Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins and The Dark Knight are always in the conversation, which is exactly where they should be. Not only are both of them among the genre’s finest efforts, but they also double as a pair of the most influential blockbusters of the 21st Century.
You can literally pinpoint the effect that Batman Begins had on the industry over the subsequent few years based entirely on the number of dark and gritty reboots that followed in its wake. Hoping that the same formula would yield similar success, countless recognizable or long dormant properties tried to tell a grounded origin story for their central characters, and a lot of them failed miserably.
As for The Dark Knight, it’s widely believed that the only reason the Academy Awards doubled the field of Best Picture nominees from five to ten is down to the furor caused when Nolan’s epic didn’t make the shortlist for the biggest prize in the industry. Indeed, analysts have marked out 2008 as the year that the superhero genre genuinely arrived as a seismic cultural force, with the middle chapter in the trilogy debuting shortly after Iron Man had launched the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Of course, most fans have already seen Batman Begins and The Dark Knight a hundred times over, but many folks are about to revisit them all over again now that they’ve landed in the Netflix library. With Zack Snyder’s Justice League still a few weeks away and The Batman delayed until March 2022, it’ll certainly do the trick and give viewers their fix of the Caped Cruader’s best live-action adventures until new content comes along.