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Watch the DCEU in Chronological Order

January 21st, 2022Watch the DCEU in Chronological Order

Marvel isn’t the only game in town. DC Comics and Warner Bros. launched a shared superhero universe back in 2013, which fans call the “DC Extended Universe,” or DCEU. In the last nine years, these comic book adaptations have explored the iconic DC Comics superheroes, but also have introduced movie fans to new characters and realms within the DC Universe.

This year, fans will get to see the first stand-alone film for Flash and Black Adam, and a sequel for Aquaman. THE FLASH is scheduled to release November 4th and we will get to geek out when Ezra Miller's version of the Flash unites with return of the first big screen adaptation of the Caped Crusader, Michael Keaton. Dwayne Johnson joins the DCEU as the anti-hero BLACK ADAM, and fans are excited to see the Hollywood A-Lister will bring to the DCEU this summer. Wrapping up 2022, Jason Mamoa will reprise his role as King of the Seven Seas in AQUAMAN AND THE LOST KINGDOM. Since these three films are connected with existing films, we thought we would share our preferred viewing order of the DCEU.


WONDER WOMAN (2017)

Wonder Woman

We’re going to watch in chronological order, so first up is WONDER WOMAN, set during the First World War. This adventure, directed by Patty Jenkins and starring Gal Gadot, is one of the strongest films in the franchise, so we’re kicking off the DCEU with a classic. The film introduces Diana, a princess among the isolated race of warrior women known as the Amazons. She learns that the world of man has become consumed by war and leaves her island sanctuary in order to make a difference in human society.

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WONDER WOMAN 1984 (2020)

We’re going to watch in chronological order, so first up is WONDER WOMAN, set during the First World War. This adventure, directed by Patty Jenkins and starring Gal Gadot, is one of the strongest films in the franchise, so we’re kicking off the DCEU with a classic. The film introduces Diana, a princess among the isolated race of warrior women known as the Amazons. She learns that the world of man has become consumed by war and leaves her island sanctuary in order to make a difference in human society.

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MAN OF STEEL (2013)

Man of Steel

Fast forward to the present day, and MAN OF STEEL introduces the DCEU’s version of Superman. Zack Snyder, considered by many to be the godfather of the series, cast Henry Cavill as the namesake superhero. Snyder embraces the sci-fi side of the character’s origin story, spending more time on the planet of Krypton than any previous Superman movie. This is the story of how Superman becomes a reluctant hero — and how the world must decide whether to embrace him or reject him.

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BATMAN v SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE (2016)

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

Zack Snyder also directed the epic showdown BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE. It’s the debut of Ben Affleck’s Batman and of Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. The dark and atmospheric story is beautiful and hard-hitting. It brings the Man of Steel and the Dark Knight into a head-on collision which is ultimately mediated (in part) by Wonder Woman. Diana withdrew from the world of men at some point after her World War I adventure — a decision that is, so far, unexplained — but the battle between DC’s titans reels her back in. Snyder ended this film on a cliffhanger, with Superman seemingly dead and a world in mourning at the loss of a hero.

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SUICIDE SQUAD (2016)

Suicide Squad

Set sometime after the death of Superman, David Ayer’s SUICIDE SQUAD is an action-packed drama in which Amanda Waller, played by Viola Davis, turns a group of hardened criminals into a black ops team. The breakout star is Margot Robbie, who earned popular and critical praise as the unpredictable, possibly insane Harley Quinn. (She’s set to return in BIRDS OF PREY and also voices the character in THE LEGO MOVIE 2.) While this is mostly a spinoff story, Ben Affleck does appear as Batman, to deal with Jared Leto’s boundary-pushing version of the Joker.

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JUSTICE LEAGUE (2017)

Justice League

The world has lost hope after the death of Superman, and a dark threat is approaching. Batman takes the unprecedented step of asking a group of metahumans to band together in order to protect the planet. And so the Justice League is formed with the cooperation of Jason Momoa’s Aquaman, Ezra Miller’s Flash and Ray Fisher’s Cyborg, all of whom are properly introduced in this film. Initially directed by Zack Snyder but extensively reshot by Joss Whedon, JUSTICE LEAGUE is by turns gritty and funny.

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AQUAMAN (2018)

Aquaman

James Wan’s AQUAMAN stars Jason Momoa as a half-human, half-Atlantean who is desperate to stop a war between the forces of land and sea. This phenomenal hit grossed more than $1 billion at the global box office, and thoroughly redeemed a character who had been mocked more than once in popular culture. Momoa and Amber Heard shine as Aquaman and the Atlantean warrior Mera. Wan’s imagination glows in every frame, especially when the story dives below the surface of the ocean.

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SHAZAM! (2019)

Shazam!

While most of the DC Extended Universe titles that have been released to date have been serious affairs, the franchise had a bit of fun in early 2019 with the release of SHAZAM!, the story of a young boy named Billy Batson (Asher Angel) who is given the power to transform into an ultra-powerful adult superhero (Zachary Levi). The film is not only both super funny and surprisingly thrilling, but also features a wonderful collection of supporting players including Mark Strong and IT’s Jack Dylan Grazer.

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HARLEY QUINN: BIRDS OF PREY (2020)

Birds Of Prey (And The Fantabulous Emancipation Of One Harley Quinn)

Following her adventures in SUICIDE SQUAD, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) gets her own special adventure in HARLEY QUINN: BIRDS OF PREY, setting out on her own after a breakup with the Joker. Unfortunately, she only finds serious trouble for herself in Gotham’s underworld. Fortunately, she’s not alone in her problems, and finds companionship with Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Black Canary, Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Huntress and Rosie Perez as Gotham detective Renee Montoya. Ewan McGregor plays the film’s central villain, Roman Sionis aka Black Mask.

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THE SUICIDE SQUAD

They're dying to save the world. Director James Gunn has assembled a collection of the worst Super-Villains, including Bloodsport (Idris Elba), Peacemaker (John Cena), Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney), Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior), Savant (Michael Rooker), King Shark, Blackguard (Pete Davidson), Javelin (Flula Borg) and everyone’s favorite psycho, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie). Then arm them heavily and drop them on the remote, enemy-infused island of Corto Maltese with only Colonel Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) on the ground… and Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) watching from above.

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By the end of 2022, the DCEU will have expanded to a total of thirteen movies. Warner Bros. and DC are working on a wide range of other projects, including SHAZAM! FURY OF THE GODS.

Check back with the AMC Scene for more DCEU updates!