Best Military Movies of All Time

Death and Life are just a gunshot away .

We slogged through our own basic training to arrive at the 50 best war movies—and not merely the best action movies with the wildest explosions and movie stunts (though expect plenty of ammo). Rather, here are the most profound statements, pointed and patriotic alike, on the distinctly human condition of fighting. We offer the list to you, our readers, along with our sharpest salute. Why not put on your war face and sound off, in the comments section below?

Just obey the order Sir...

War films acknowledge the horror and heartbreak of war, letting the actual combat fighting or conflict (against nations or humankind) provide the primary plot or background for the action of the film. There are a significant number of influential, important, and milestone war films throughout cinematic history, outlined here, and each with a few screenshots and the title screen from the opening credits.
Typical elements in the action-oriented war plots include POW camp experiences and escapes, historical recreations of major battles or war-related events, submarine warfare, spy or espionage tales, personal heroism, biopics of important war figures, "war is hell" brutalities, air dogfights, tough trench/infantry experiences, resistance movements, pre-war intrigue, veterans returning to the homeland, male-bonding buddy adventures during wartime - even black comedies about warfare.

Themes explored in these war films include combat, survivor and escape stories, tales of gallant sacrifice and struggle, studies of the futility and inhumanity of battle, the effects of war on society, and intelligent and profound explorations of the moral and human issues.


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