100 Best War Movies of All Time


Stalag 17 (1953)

Adjusted Score: 101.878%
Critics Consensus: Stalag 17 survives the jump from stage to screen with flying colors, thanks to Billy Wilder's typically sterling direction and a darkly funny script.
Synopsis: The scene is a German POW camp, sometime during the mid-1940s. Stalag 17, exclusively populated by American sergeants, is overseen... [More]
Directed By: Billy Wilder


Das Boot (1981)

Adjusted Score: 101.705%
Critics Consensus: Taut, breathtakingly thrilling, and devastatingly intelligent, Das Boot is one of the greatest war films ever made.
Synopsis: It is 1942 and the German submarine fleet is heavily engaged in the so called "Battle of the Atlantic" to... [More]
Directed By: Wolfgang Petersen


Paths of Glory (1957)

Adjusted Score: 103.366%
Critics Consensus: Paths of Glory is a transcendentally humane war movie from Stanley Kubrick, with impressive, protracted battle sequences and a knock-out ending.
Synopsis: When soldiers in World War I refuse to continue with an impossible attack, their superior officers decide to make an... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Kubrick


Eye In The Sky (2016)

Adjusted Score: 103.203%
Critics Consensus: As taut as it is timely, Eye in the Sky offers a powerfully acted -- and unusually cerebral -- spin on the modern wartime political thriller.
Synopsis: The moral implications of modern warfare are confronted in Bleecker Street's powerful drama, Eye in the Sky, coming to Digital... [More]
Directed By: Gavin Hood


Schindler's List (1993)

Adjusted Score: 105.014%
Critics Consensus: Schindler's List blends the abject horror of the Holocaust with Steven Spielberg's signature tender humanism to create the director's dramatic masterpiece.
Synopsis: Based on a true story, Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List stars Liam Neeson as Oskar Schindler, a German businessman in Poland... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg


Shoah (1985)

Adjusted Score: 102.118%
Critics Consensus: Expansive in its beauty as well as its mind-numbing horror, Shoah is a towering -- and utterly singular -- achievement in cinema.
Synopsis: The creators of the brilliant French documentary Shoah courageously assume that their audience is willing to sit through 570 minutes'... [More]
Directed By: Claude Lanzmann


Zero Dark Thirty (2013)

Adjusted Score: 102.613%
Critics Consensus: Gripping, suspenseful, and brilliantly crafted, Zero Dark Thirty dramatizes the hunt for Osama bin Laden with intelligence and an eye for detail.
Synopsis: For a decade, an elite team of intelligence and military operatives, working in secret across the globe, devoted themselves to... [More]
Directed By: Kathryn Bigelow


Henry V (1989)

Adjusted Score: 102.629%
Critics Consensus: Pehaps Kenneth Branagh's most fully realized Shakespeare adaptation, Henry V is an energetic, passionate, and wonderfully acted film.
Synopsis: Kenneth Branagh makes his feature-film directorial debut with this adaptation of William Shakespeare's +Henry V. After the Chorus (Derek Jacobi)... [More]
Directed By: Kenneth Branagh


Ran (1985)

Adjusted Score: 103.661%
Critics Consensus: Akira Kurosawa's sprawling, epic take on King Lear should be required viewing for fans of westerns, war movies, or period films in general.
Synopsis: Ran is Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa's reinterpretation of William Shakespeare's King Lear. The Lear counterpart is an elderly 16th-century warlord... [More]
Directed By: Akira Kurosawa

Adjusted Score: 105.397%
Critics Consensus: An engrossing look at the triumphs and travails of war veterans, The Best Years of Our Lives is concerned specifically with the aftermath of World War II, but its messages speak to the overall American experience.
Synopsis: A memorable film about the aftermath of World War II in the United States., this film opens with the homecoming... [More]
Directed By: William Wyler


Spartacus (1960)

Adjusted Score: 100.633%
Critics Consensus: Featuring terrific performances and epic action, Kubrick's restored swords-and-sandals epic is a true classic.
Synopsis: Spartacus (Kirk Douglas) is a rebellious slave purchased by Lentulus Batiatus (Peter Ustinov), owner of a school for gladiators. For... [More]
Directed By: Stanley Kubrick

Adjusted Score: 103.374%
Critics Consensus: A patriotic booster, Laurence Olivier's directorial debut and star turn as Henry V result in a sharply realized and resonant take on Shakespeare's deeply British warrior king.
Synopsis: Laurence Olivier's adaptation of Henry V is one of the finest Shakespeare films ever made, full of rousing action, beautiful... [More]


Son of Saul (2015)

Adjusted Score: 104.604%
Critics Consensus: Grimly intense yet thoroughly rewarding, Son of Saul offers an unforgettable viewing experience -- and establishes director László Nemes as a talent to watch.
Synopsis: In this searing drama, a concentration camp inmate tasked with burning the dead discovers the body of his young son,... [More]
Directed By: László Nemes

Adjusted Score: 104.556%
Critics Consensus: A Man Escaped is blockbuster Bresson, a well-acted POW drama that builds with subtle, seat-gripping tension.
Synopsis: French director Robert Bresson drew from his own experiences as a POW to fashion this story of a resistance leader... [More]
Directed By: Robert Bresson

Adjusted Score: 105.063%
Critics Consensus: A complex and timely satire with as much darkness as slapstick, Ernst Lubitsch's To Be or Not To Be delicately balances humor and ethics.
Synopsis: Ernst Lubitsch's To Be or Not to Be is a black comedy about a Polish theater company--led by Joseph and... [More]
Directed By: Ernst Lubitsch

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