Whats the best WWII film ever?


  • Official Q&A 2007 AAR League

    Nolte was the best thing in “The Thin Red Line.” I need to take the time to watch that again. I was disappointed with it as well. Individual parts tended to be pretty spectacular but as a whole it didn’t ‘work.’ I don’t consider it ‘best’ but I wouldn’t say it doesn’t ‘fit’ the same way “Basterds” doesn’t fit.


  • '10

    @frimmel:

    Well one of the things I encounter quite often is a confusion about liking a movie or enjoying a movie and the movie actually being any good. I’m not suggesting that my opinion for example carry more weight than yours or any one elses. But it seemed an interesting exercise to create a list and a list should have some finer level criteria for inclusion.

    I won’t try to deny that “Inglorious Basterds” is a fine film but does it really belong on the same list as “The Longest Day” or “Das Boot” or even a far more inferior film like “Valkyrie” when we talk of Best WWII Film? Which begs the question of what would constitute Best WWII Film in the first place?

    I posted my choices based on at least some degree of realism.



  • saving private ryan or enemy at the gates



  • @450thMSAF:

    saving private ryan or enemy at the gates

    In my opinion, they are two in the same. I would watch either one right now.



  • Right now, it seems to be between Das boot and The longest day.



  • I didn’t see anyone mention the ‘Dirty Dozen’

    Too many movies to group together into one list.

    What about documentaries/propaganda like Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight”
    Just bought those DVD’s from Borders for like $4.


  • Official Q&A 2007 AAR League

    @axis_roll:

    I didn’t see anyone mention the ‘Dirty Dozen’

    Too many movies to group together into one list.

    I love “The Dirty Dozen” but it is far from the best WWII film I’ve ever seen.

    What about documentaries/propaganda like Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight”
    Just bought those DVD’s from Borders for like $4.

    I think for our exercise we should stick with dramatizations and leave off anything that is full on propaganda (could “Inglorious Basterds” be considered propaganda?) or straight up documentary.



  • @frimmel:

    @axis_roll:

    I didn’t see anyone mention the ‘Dirty Dozen’

    Too many movies to group together into one list.

    I love “The Dirty Dozen” but it is far from the best WWII film I’ve ever seen.

    What about documentaries/propaganda like Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight”
    Just bought those DVD’s from Borders for like $4.

    I think for our exercise we should stick with dramatizations and leave off anything that is full on propaganda (could “Inglorious Basterds” be considered propaganda?) or straight up documentary.

    I agree.



  • inglorious bastards sucked


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Two movies (not previously mentioned) which rate well on the realism scale are “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo” (1944) and “Battleground” (1949) – coincidentally, both starring the same actor, Van Johnson. “Battleground”, although it depicts a fictional company of the 101st Airborne during the Battle of the Bulge, is for the most part very accurate from a historical point of view.  “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo” was based on the memoirs of Ted Lawson, the Doolittle Raid pilot played by Johnson; Lawson worked closely with the production crew, which further helped its accuracy.  (As a contrast, compare this film to “Destination Tokyo”, with Cary Grant, made in 1943, which also deals with the Doolittle Raid.  Very entertaining and watchable, but 99% fictional and full of nonsense and inaccuracies.  For example, the references to dates and events made in the film would only make sense if the Doolittle Raid had occurred in 1943 rather than 1942!)


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @Young:

    I also liked fat boy and little man, with Paul Newman.

    “Fat Man and Little Boy”, actually.

    “Sahara” (1943), with Humphrey Bogart, is another wartime classic.  It was based on a Soviet film (The Thirteen) which was itself based on the film The Lost Patrol (originally made in Britain 1929, remade in the U.S. in 1934).  “Sahara” was itself remade under the same title in 1995, and as “Last of the Comanches” in 1953.  I haven’t seen any of the earlier or later versions, but I’ve watched the Bogart one a dozen times.


  • Moderator

    Non Military would be Schindler’s List. That one is one of my favorites of all time. As far as War (historically accurate), I’m going with The Longest Day.

    GG


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    Any list of this kind is highly subjective, especially given the huge number of WWII films out there.  Breaking the question down into subject categories simplifies the problem a bit, though it still means making difficult choices.  Some examples of category nominations (using films not already mentioned)

    Best submarine movie:

    • The Enemy Below (1957)
    • Run Silent, Run Deep (1958)

    Best convoy / escort movie:

    • The Cruel Sea (1953)
    • Action in the North Atlantic (1943)

    Best film about the responsibilities of command (in both cases, of a bomber group):

    • Twelve O’Clock High (1949)
    • Command Decision (1948)

    Best film about planning and executing an “impossible mission”:

    • The Dam Busters (1954)
    • The Guns of Navarone (1961)

    Best film about the Resistance:

    • The Train (1964)

    Most frightening Invasion-of-England film:

    • Went The Day Well?


  • how bout Memphis Belle?


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @450thMSAF:

    how bout Memphis Belle?

    The original or the remake?



  • im not actully sure asked my dad and he said there was no remake


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017 '16 '15 '14 Customizer '13 '12 '11 '10

    @450thMSAF:

    im not actully sure asked my dad and he said there was no remake

    The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress (1944)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0036152/

    Memphis Belle (1990)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100133/


  • '10

    @450thMSAF:

    im not actully sure asked my dad and he said there was no remake

    @CWO:

    @450thMSAF:

    im not actully sure asked my dad and he said there was no remake

    The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress (1944)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0036152/

    Memphis Belle (1990)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100133/

    Yes the 1944 version was a documentary and the 1990 version is the only movie (drama) that I know of.



  • @450thMSAF:

    how bout Memphis Belle?

    Inglorious Basterds sucked, but you nominate this? Please tell me you are trolling.


  • 2020 2019 2018 2017

    My vote, obviously, went to Das Boot. As for the others in the poll - my next choice would probably be Tora! Tora! Tora!

    But as mentioned by many, there are lots and lots of WW II movies. Someone compiled a list on IMDB with nearly 900 of them: http://www.imdb.com/list/RA6D_dhsP-Y/


  • '10

    @Jermofoot:

    @450thMSAF:

    how bout Memphis Belle?

    Inglorious Basterds sucked, but you nominate this? Please tell me you are trolling.

    Agree.  Can not be taken seriously as a WW2 movie.


  • '10

    @FieldMarshalGames:

    @Jermofoot:

    @450thMSAF:

    how bout Memphis Belle?

    Inglorious Basterds sucked, but you nominate this? Please tell me you are trolling.

    Agree.  Can not be taken seriously as a WW2 movie.

    It was more of a comedy and it failed at that!



  • its the 1990 one i belive



  • Yes… Likely… The easier, the better… All ingenious is simple.


  • '16 '15 '10

    From the poll choices I will go with a “Thin Red Line”, but that’s pretty subjective cause I haven’t seen all the choices and its been years since I saw “Das Boot”.

    The first 90 minutes of “Thin Red Line” is pretty much the best war movie I’ve ever seen.  However, after they finally storm and take the Japanese camp (possibly the best scene in the film) the movie begins to meander.  I think some folks might be disappointed by the end that wouldn’t have been disappointed if the story had resolved itself a bit earlier.  The novel was too big for one feature film–they should have attempted a mini-series.

    Idk if anyone has mentioned “Bridge of River Kwai” but that is also a very interesting WW2 film.  I also rate “Untergang”, especially the performance of Bruno Ganz.


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