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Best War Movies of All Time

Updated on November 12, 2016

Great War Movies

Full Metal Jacket was a dramatic Marine movie and it focused on soldiers during The Vietnam War.
Full Metal Jacket was a dramatic Marine movie and it focused on soldiers during The Vietnam War. | Source
Platoon was based on events from the Vietnam war and it had a great cast including: Charlie Sheen and Tom Baringer.
Platoon was based on events from the Vietnam war and it had a great cast including: Charlie Sheen and Tom Baringer. | Source
Saving Private Ryan starred Tom Hanks and was based on WW 2. This film has some very graphic war scenes.
Saving Private Ryan starred Tom Hanks and was based on WW 2. This film has some very graphic war scenes. | Source
Hamburger Hill is a very popular war film that was made in the 1980s. It shows many of the horrors of war and, it has a great soundtrack.
Hamburger Hill is a very popular war film that was made in the 1980s. It shows many of the horrors of war and, it has a great soundtrack. | Source
Patton, stars George C. Scott as General Patton in the movie about World War 2.
Patton, stars George C. Scott as General Patton in the movie about World War 2. | Source
The Deer Hunter, stars Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken. The Vietnam War is at the center of this movie.
The Deer Hunter, stars Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken. The Vietnam War is at the center of this movie. | Source

My Favorite War Films

1. Platoon: Platoon is a movie that has Charlie Sheen as the star and it showed the dark side of War during Vietnam. It has some great explosions and battle scenes that make the film worth watching. Also, Charlie Sheen's character narrates the movie as it unfolds. It is rated "R" and the violence and personal issues of these soldiers is riveting. This movie makes you feel as if you there experiencing it for yourself.

2. Full Metal Jacket: This film follows Marines in Vietnam during the Tet Offensive. It shows many horrific scenes detailing the horrors of war. The film is very intense and dramatic and the scene with the Sargent and the crazy G.I. is very memorable indeed. This is another movie that is very realistic.

3. Saving Private Ryan: Tom Hanks shines in this personal war story that took place during WWII. Hanks and his infantry are sent to save Private Ryan in the middle of Germany during WWII. The opening scene of this movie is one of the best scenes you will ever see in a military war film. This movie is very graphic at times but, it is good to watch at the same time because, it will make let you know what war is really like.

4. The Deer Hunter: Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken's take on Saigon and The Vietnam War. This film has lots of drama and intense fight scenes throughout the entire movie. The soundtrack and special effects are outstanding in this war film. Even though this movie is a war film. This movie shows first hand the effects of war on a man.

5. Apocalypse Now: Marlon Brando and Martin Sheen bring Vietnam to life in a very dramatic way. This film shows the war zone up close and very personal. This was the final great performance of Marlon Brando's illustrious career. Marlon Brando and Martin Sheen are both great actors so, this is a great movie. The both of them have great roles.

6. Schindler's List: WWII film which focuses on Hitler and The Holocaust. It stars Liam Neesen and it takes place in Europe. It is the true horrors of the Nazi regime leading up to WWII. This is truly a sad, sad story. It shows the horrible things that the Jews had to endure during The Holocaust. This movie shows the horror that Hitler put on his country and the Jews each and every day.

7. Braveheart: Mel Gibson dramatically brings the Scottish-British conflict to life. The musical score goes great with this film as does the country side where the movie took place. Mel Gibson plays a phenomenal role in this movie. It is very dramatic and also very graphic.

8. Inglorious Bastards: A whole new look at WWII thanks to Quinton Tarantino. This movie stars Brad Pitt. Although Germans are killing innocent people, there are some innocent people killing them back. The language in this movie is really rough, I guess this is to portray how the people were of that day.

9. Glory: Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman show the other side of the south during the Civil War. Slaves turned to soldiers to fight for the south. Both actors give a brilliant performances and you can not help but feel sorry for his character who had a rough life. These are two of my favorite male actors so, this movie is one of my favorites.

10. The Dirty Dozen: Dooms Day invasion during WWII featuring Charles Bronson and Jim Brown. This film set the standard for all WWII films. In this film, it is quite graphic with lots of killing and a lot of deaths.

11. Born on the 4th of July: Tom Cruise stars in this film about the Vietnam War and won many awards. It was filmed in the Philippines. It was very intense and dramatic throughout with a fabulous music soundtrack.

12. Three Kings: This film has Ice Cube and Mark Wahlberg playing as soldiers during the Persian Gulf War. The movie is from the 1990s. The film picks up directly after the end of the Gulf War conflict.

13. The Thin Red Line: This fictional WWII story is still a great film to watch nonetheless. It shows the violence of war up close and personal. This movie stars George Clooney and Sean Penn. The movie is based in the 1940s, and it is based on The Battle of Guadalcanal.

14. MASH: This film is more or less a comedy film about U.S. Soldiers during the Korean War. Based on the 1970s television show which was a major hit. All of the characters that were on MASH became just regular household names.

15. Army of Shadows: This film follows the French during the Nazi uprising before and during WWII. This is a very sad film but, it is an unfortunate sign of the times at the this time in our history.

I know that many other great war films are out there but, these titles are the best as far as realism, drama and acting skill.

Please let me know what your all time favorite war film is by commenting in the capsule located at the bottom of this page.

Location of Platoon

Which is the Best?

Which is your Favorite War Film?

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Best Selling War Films Ever

1. Schindler's List (1993)

2. The Human Condition 3 (1961)

3. Casablanca (1942)

4. Apocalypse Now (1979)

5. Saving Private Ryan (1998)

6. Paths of Glory (1957)

7. The Pianist (2002)

8. Life is Beautiful (1997)

9. The Great Dictator (1940)

10. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

11. Das Boot (1981)

12. Full Metal Jacket (1987)

13. Braveheart (1995)

14. The General (1926)

15. Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

The Thin Red Line

The Thin Red Line was a very vivid and dramatic account of the war. It was very realistic and graphic to say the least.
The Thin Red Line was a very vivid and dramatic account of the war. It was very realistic and graphic to say the least. | Source

Movie Ranking

Cast your vote for Full Metal Jacket

Schindler's List

Saving Private Ryan Trailer

© 2012 Buster Johnson

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    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 2 years ago from Auburn, WA

      From a technical standpoint, Private Ryan rises above all others. Might b the greatest opening 15 minute of all time. I loved Full Metal Jacket. Had never seen boot camp depicted in that way (the TV move "Tribes" came close w/Jan Michael Vincent). There are couple of old forgotten ones that I recommend : Between Heaven and Hell as well as Decision Before Dawn. Great work. Voted up.

    • rjbatty profile image

      rjbatty 2 years ago from Irvine

      I'd have to add "The Great Escape", "A Bridge Too Far", "The Longest Day", "Paths of Glory". There are others but if I wanted to build out from here, I'd do my own Hub on the subject. You caught many of the essentials, although I'm not sure "Saving Private Ryan" was a great war film. If the first 10-15 minutes of the film could have continued in its intensity then I'd list it; otherwise, the rest of the film was fairly bland -- except the excellent ending.

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