Best Movies About WW2

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Best Movies About WW2

Ever viewed these Best Movies About WW2? We know for sure you'll find some new films. Here are 22 of the best ones.

Schindler's List (1993)

Schindler's List
★★★★
★★★★
3.6 out of 4 stars

From Steven Spielberg, starring Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Caroline Goodall
Rated R

Schindler's List is a 1993 American historical drama film directed and co-produced by Steven Spielberg. The film is based on the novel Schindler's Ark by Australian novelist Thomas Keneally, which is based on the true story of Oskar Schindler, a German businessman who saved the lives of more than a thousand Polish Jews during the Holocaust by employing them in his factory. Set during World War II, the film follows Schindler (portrayed by Liam Neeson) as he uses his business to protect his Jewish workers from the Nazi concentration camps. The film also stars Ben Kingsley and Ralph Fiennes, with a supporting cast featuring a number of notable actors such as Embeth Davidtz, Caroline Goodall, Jonathan Sagalle, and others. The film received critical acclaim, winning seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, as well as numerous other awards. It is considered to be one of the greatest films ever made, and it is still regarded as one of Spielberg's finest works.

Saving Private Ryan (1998)

Saving Private Ryan
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Steven Spielberg, starring Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns
Rated R

Saving Private Ryan is a 1998 American war film directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Robert Rodat. Set during the Invasion of Normandy in World War II, it follows United States Army Rangers Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks) and a squad (Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Giovanni Ribisi, Adam Goldberg, and Jeremy Davies) as they search for a paratrooper, Private First Class James Francis Ryan (Matt Damon), who is the last-surviving brother of four servicemen. Capt. Miller and his squad make their way through enemy territory and eventually locate Pvt. Ryan at a battlefield cemetery, but due to the intensity of the fighting, they are unable to extract him. After initially refusing to abandon his quest, Miller ultimately orders his squad to retreat, but stays behind to personally escort Ryan to safety. Along the way, the squad suffers heavy casualties and the emotional toll of the mission weighs heavily on the weary soldiers. In the end, only a handful of the squad make it back alive, including Miller and Ryan, who returns to his hometown in the United States.

Casablanca (1942)

Casablanca
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Michael Curtiz, starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains
Rated PG

Casablanca is the classic romantic drama set in unoccupied French Morocco during World War II. It stars Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine, a cynical American expatriate running a nightclub in the city. His world changes when Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman), the woman he loves and lost, suddenly reappears in his life with her husband, the heroic Resistance fighter Victor Laszlo (Paul Henreid). Forced to choose between the love of his life and helping her husband escape the Nazis, Rick finds himself at the center of a very personal moral dilemma. As the fate of Europe hangs in the balance, Rick must ultimately choose between his own heart and a greater good as he discovers himself to be a leader of men.

The Pianist (2002)

The Pianist
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Roman Polanski, starring Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Frank Finlay, Emilia Fox
Rated R

The Pianist is a 2002 biographical drama directed by Roman Polanski and starring Adrien Brody. The film is based on the autobiography of the same name by Polish-Jewish musician and composer Władysław Szpilman. It follows Szpilman's life in Warsaw during World War II as he struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto and the horrors of the Holocaust. The film traces Szpilman's journey through his deportation to the Warsaw Ghetto, his escapes and return to the ghetto, his hiding from the Nazis, and his eventual rescue by a German officer. Throughout the story, Szpilman's incredible will to survive despite his bleak circumstances is depicted and his musical talent is used as a means of comfort and hope. The Pianist is ultimately a story of resilience, faith, and the power of music.

Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Grave of the Fireflies
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Isao Takahata, starring Tsutomu Tatsumi, Ayano Shiraishi, Akemi Yamaguchi, Yoshiko Shinohara
Rated Not Rated

Grave of the Fireflies is an animated film that follows the story of two siblings, Seita and Setsuko, during the final months of World War II in Japan. After their mother is killed in an air raid and their father is away serving in the military, the two children are left to fend for themselves. They move in with an aunt who is cold and unsympathetic to their plight, leading the two to flee and make their home in an abandoned bomb shelter. With no one to turn to, the two struggle to survive and cope with the loss of their loved ones. The film serves as a powerful and heartbreaking reminder of the devastating effects of war.

The Boat (1981)

The Boat
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Wolfgang Petersen, starring Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, Klaus Wennemann, Hubertus Bengsch
Rated R

The Boat is a 1981 German drama directed by Wolfgang Petersen. Set in the early years of Nazi Germany, the film follows a family of five as they attempt to survive aboard a small fishing boat. After their father is conscripted into the Nazi navy, the family must brave the harsh elements, dwindling supplies, and the threat of danger in order to survive. Along the way, they must also contend with their own feelings, as the eldest son, Johann, begins to sympathize with the Nazi cause. In the end, the family's courage and determination is tested as they struggle to survive and stay together amidst the chaos.

Inglourious Basterds (2009)

Inglourious Basterds
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Quentin Tarantino, starring Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Eli Roth, Mélanie Laurent
Rated R

Inglourious Basterds is a 2009 war film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. Set in Nazi-occupied France during World War II, the film tells the story of two plots to assassinate the Nazi leadership. The first is planned by Shosanna Dreyfus (Mélanie Laurent), a young French Jewish cinema proprietor, and the second by a team of Jewish-American soldiers led by First Lieutenant Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt). The Basterds, as they are known, ambush and brutalize German soldiers in France. Shosanna, meanwhile, carries out her own mission by reopening her cinema, the cinema she inherited from her family, with a plan to lure senior Nazi officers to attend the premiere of a Nazi film. In the chaotic finale, both plots converge, with Shosanna and the Basterds facing off against the Nazis in a climactic showdown. The film stars Brad Pitt, Mélanie Laurent, Christoph Waltz, Eli Roth, Diane Kruger, Daniel Brühl, Til Schweiger, and Michael Fassbender.

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

Pan's Labyrinth
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Guillermo del Toro, starring Ivana Baquero, Ariadna Gil, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú
Rated R

Pan's Labyrinth is a dark fantasy film set in Spain in the year 1944, shortly after the Spanish Civil War. It tells the story of Ofelia, a young girl who moves with her pregnant mother to live with her new stepfather, an oppressive and cruel military captain. Ofelia discovers a mysterious labyrinth and meets the faun Pan, who tells her she is a princess from an underground kingdom and is given three tasks to prove her royalty. As she works to complete these tasks, Ofelia must also navigate the increasingly dangerous world of her stepfather, which includes a rebellious group of rebels who are conspiring against him. Along the way, Ofelia discovers that the lines between fantasy and reality are blurred and that her destiny is intertwined with the fate of her family and the future of Spain.

Downfall (2004)

Downfall
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Oliver Hirschbiegel, starring Bruno Ganz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Ulrich Matthes, Juliane Köhler
Rated R

Downfall (2004) is a German historical war drama directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel. Set in 1945, the film follows the last ten days leading up to the fall of the Third Reich and the death of Adolf Hitler. It follows Hitler's inner circle of Nazi leaders, including Joseph Goebbels, Hermann Goering, Martin Bormann, and Eva Braun, as they try in vain to negotiate a ceasefire with the Allies. In the midst of their intense internal power struggles and a crumbling Nazi Germany, Hitler refuses to accept defeat, instead vowing to fight until the bitter end. As Russian troops close in on the Reich Chancellery in Berlin, Hitler faces the realization that his dream of a thousand-year Reich has come to an end.

To Be or Not to Be (1942)

To Be or Not to Be
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Ernst Lubitsch, starring Carole Lombard, Jack Benny, Robert Stack, Felix Bressart
Rated Passed

To Be or Not to Be is a 1942 black comedy film directed by Ernst Lubitsch and starring Carole Lombard and Jack Benny. The film follows a troupe of actors in Poland during World War II who use their acting skills to try and fool the Nazis. Lombard and Benny play Maria and Joseph Tura, the co-owners of a theatrical company whose production of "Hamlet" is threatened when the Nazis take over Poland. Rather than flee, the couple decide to use their acting talents to outwit the Nazis, pretending to be members of the resistance and using fake documents to make their way out of Warsaw. Along the way, they enlist the help of their fellow actors, as well as the Polish underground, to carry out their daring plan.

The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)

The Bridge on the River Kwai
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From David Lean, starring William Holden, Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins, Sessue Hayakawa
Rated PG

The Bridge on the River Kwai is a 1957 epic war film directed by British filmmaker David Lean. Set during World War II, the film stars Alec Guinness as Colonel Nicholson, a British officer who is ordered by his Japanese captors to construct a bridge on the River Kwai in Thailand. The Colonel is determined to construct the bridge to the best of his abilities, despite the difficult conditions and the apparent futility of his actions. The bridge is finally completed, but is then destroyed by Allied forces in a daring raid. The film is a meditation on the absurdities of war, and how both sides can be equally misguided in their actions.

The Great Escape (1963)

The Great Escape
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From John Sturges, starring Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough, Charles Bronson
Rated Approved

The Great Escape (1963) is a World War II action-adventure film directed by John Sturges. The film centers around the true story of a group of Allied prisoners of war who attempt a daring escape from a Nazi POW camp. Led by the charismatic captain Virgil Hilts (Steve McQueen), the escaping prisoners must first outwit the camp guards and then make their way to freedom. With an all-star cast including James Garner, Richard Attenborough, Charles Bronson, James Coburn, and Donald Pleasence, The Great Escape is a thrilling and inspiring story of courage, friendship, and ingenuity.

The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)

The Best Years of Our Lives
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From William Wyler, starring Myrna Loy, Dana Andrews, Fredric March, Teresa Wright
Rated Approved

The Best Years of Our Lives is an Academy Award-winning drama directed by William Wyler that follows three World War II veterans as they return home and try to rebuild their lives and adjust to civilian life. The film follows Fred Derry (Dana Andrews), an Air Force bombardier; Homer Parrish (Harold Russell), a Navy sailor who lost both his hands in the war; and Al Stephenson (Fredric March), an Army sergeant. As they attempt to re-establish themselves in their respective professions, the men must also grapple with the emotional trauma of their experiences in the war and coming home to a life that has changed drastically in their absence. Throughout their struggles, the men come to rely on, and ultimately lean on, each other for strength and support. The Best Years of Our Lives is a powerful portrait of the human cost of war and the strength of the human spirit.

Hacksaw Ridge (2016)

Hacksaw Ridge
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Mel Gibson, starring Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer
Rated R

Hacksaw Ridge is a 2016 biographical war film directed by Mel Gibson and starring Andrew Garfield. The film follows the story of Desmond Doss, an American pacifist and conscientious objector who, despite his beliefs, enlists in the U.S. Army to serve as a medic during World War II. Despite the opposition he faces from his commanding officers and fellow soldiers, Doss refuses to pick up a weapon, instead choosing to save countless lives on the battlefield by evacuating wounded soldiers. On the front lines at the Battle of Okinawa, Doss and his comrades of the 77th Infantry Division must fight against an entrenched enemy and confront the horrors of war. Despite the odds, Doss is able to save the lives of 75 men with no regard for his own safety. Hacksaw Ridge is a powerful and inspiring story of the true courage and faith of one man in the face of overwhelming adversity.

Goodbye, Children (1987)

Goodbye, Children
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Louis Malle, starring Gaspard Manesse, Raphael Fejtö, Francine Racette, Stanislas Carré de Malberg
Rated PG

Goodbye, Children is set in Nazi-occupied France during World War II and tells the story of Julien Quentin (Gaspard Manesse), a young Jewish boy who is sent by his parents to a Catholic boarding school in the countryside. Julien and his best friend, Jean Bonnet (Raphaël Fejtö), both struggle to fit in, but become close with the headmaster of the school, Father Jacques (Philippe Morier-Genoud). As the war intensifies and anti-Semitism rises, Father Jacques finds himself and his students in a moral conflict when he learns that a German officer has requested to send his own children to the school. Torn between his beliefs and loyalty to the school and his own students, Father Jacques must make a decision that will determine the fate of the children in his care.

Patton (1970)

Patton
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Franklin J. Schaffner, starring George C. Scott, Karl Malden, Stephen Young, Michael Strong
Rated GP

Patton is a biographical war film that follows the life and career of General George S. Patton. The film follows Patton from his service in World War I and his involvement in the Allied invasion of North Africa and Sicily, to his controversial leadership of the Third Army in France and Germany during World War II. The film depicts Patton's personal controversies, including his outspokenness and disregard for military protocol, his anger towards Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany, and his relationship with General Omar Bradley. Through the course of the film, Patton's bravery and determination in battle are shown, and his tactical brilliance is highlighted. The film ends with a stirring tribute to Patton’s legacy and the hard-fought victory against Nazi Germany.

Jojo Rabbit (2019)

Jojo Rabbit
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Taika Waititi, starring Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie, Scarlett Johansson, Taika Waititi
Rated PG-13

Jojo Rabbit is a satirical comedy-drama directed by Taika Waititi and set in Nazi Germany during the end of World War II. The story follows a 10-year-old German boy, Johannes “Jojo” Betzler, who is joined in his imaginary world by an idiotic version of Adolf Hitler. Jojo’s naive patriotism is challenged when he meets Elsa, a young Jewish girl hiding in his attic. As their relationship develops, Jojo must confront his blind nationalism and learn to embrace humanity and tolerance. The film follows Jojo’s journey of self-discovery and growth as he learns the importance of empathy and understanding.

Letters from Iwo Jima (2006)

Letters from Iwo Jima
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Clint Eastwood, starring Ken Watanabe, Kazunari Ninomiya, Tsuyoshi Ihara, Ryô Kase
Rated R

Letters from Iwo Jima is a 2006 World War II drama film directed by Clint Eastwood, starring Ken Watanabe and Kazunari Ninomiya. The film tells the story of the Battle of Iwo Jima from the perspective of the Japanese soldiers who fought in it. It follows two soldiers, Saigo and Baron Nishi, as they each write letters to their loved ones back home. Through the letters, the soldiers express their hopes, fears, and conflicting emotions about their situation. As the battle progresses, the two become close friends and experience a range of emotions, from courage and determination to sadness and loss. Despite the odds, they ultimately face their destiny with honor and courage. Ultimately, Letters from Iwo Jima is a powerful examination of the human cost of war.

Atonement (2007)

Atonement
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Joe Wright, starring Keira Knightley, James McAvoy, Brenda Blethyn, Saoirse Ronan
Rated R

Atonement is a romantic World War II drama directed by Joe Wright and starring Saoirse Ronan, James McAvoy, and Keira Knightley. The story follows Briony Tallis (Ronan), a 13-year old girl who makes a devastating mistake when she accuses her older sister's lover (McAvoy) of a crime he didn't commit. As a result, her sister and her lover are separated, and Briony is left to deal with the consequences of her actions. The story follows Briony as she grows up and attempts to make amends for her mistake, and her sister and her lover as they are forced apart by the war. The film culminates in a heartbreaking finale as Briony's attempt to make amends meets with a tragic outcome.

Dunkirk (2017)

Dunkirk
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Christopher Nolan, starring Fionn Whitehead, Barry Keoghan, Mark Rylance, Tom Hardy
Rated PG-13

Dunkirk is a 2017 war film written, co-produced and directed by Christopher Nolan. It tells the story of the Dunkirk evacuation, which took place during World War II. The film focuses on the evacuation of Allied soldiers from the beaches and harbor of Dunkirk, France, between May 26 and June 4, 1940. The evacuation was a critical turning point in the war and ended in a victory for the Allies. The film stars Fionn Whitehead, Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh, and Cillian Murphy. The film is set in three distinct timelines: a week, a day, and an hour. The story follows the struggles of the British, French and Belgian troops to survive on the beaches of Dunkirk, and the efforts of the civilians who came to rescue them. The film is a meditation on courage, survival and resilience in the face of overwhelming odds. The film was a critical and commercial success, earning praise for its visuals, writing, direction, and performances.

The Dirty Dozen (1967)

The Dirty Dozen
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Robert Aldrich, starring Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, John Cassavetes
Rated Approved

The Dirty Dozen is a 1967 action war film directed by Robert Aldrich, starring Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine. Based on the novel by E. M. Nathanson, the story follows a group of convicted military prisoners who are given the chance to participate in a suicide mission during World War II in exchange for their freedom. Led by the tough, seasoned Major Reisman (Marvin), the group of misfits, dubbed “The Dirty Dozen”, are sent behind enemy lines to destroy a strategic chateau where German generals are gathering for an important meeting. The men must battle their own inner demons, as well as the German forces, in order to complete their mission.

The Thin Red Line (1998)

The Thin Red Line
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Terrence Malick, starring Jim Caviezel, Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Kirk Acevedo
Rated R

The Thin Red Line is a 1998 American war film written and directed by Terrence Malick. It tells the story of a group of U.S. Army soldiers during the Battle of Mount Austen, which was part of the Guadalcanal Campaign in World War II. The film follows several men from the C-for-Charlie Company, as they face the harsh realities of war, from death, violence, and fear, to moments of beauty, camaraderie, and hope. Through the characters, the film explores themes of faith, courage, and survival in the face of adversity. With an all-star cast including Sean Penn, Adrien Brody, George Clooney, and Jim Caviezel, The Thin Red Line is an acclaimed classic of World War II cinema.

 



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