10 War Movies that are a must watch

War is generally considered to be an intense business. Every war movie becomes a lesson in itself. The hatred between people, the agony and lost lives that are shown in these movies is a pointer that teaches us what war does to people. From a distance, a war might seem like a noble fight for freedom. On the frontlines, it is a different story altogether. Here is a list of 10 movies that gives us greater insight about wars.

1.      Boy in striped pyjamas

Directed by Mark Herman, Boy in striped pyjamas is a movie set in the backdrops of Second World War. The movie got its inspiration from a novel of the same name by Irish writer John Boyne. The film stars Vera Farmiga, David Thewlis, Asa Butterfield, and Jack Scanlon. This Holocaust drama shows the life in the concentration camp through two 8-year-old kids which make it intriguing.  One of the kids is the son of a German commandant while the other is the son of an inmate at a concentration camp.  The two pulls out a friendship, that is beyond the logic of hatred spread during that time.

2.      The pianist

A polish film directed by Veteran filmmaker Roman Polanski visualises the struggle that a pianist goes through during the Second World War.  The story is based on an autobiography The Pianist, a World War II memoir by the Polish-Jewish pianist and composer Władysław Szpilman. The film was critically appreciated and won many awards like the academy award for the best director, actor, best picture and best-adapted screenplay. It also won the Palme d’Or award at the Cannes festival that year. The Director having lost both his parents in the perils of war has put a spectacular show of human emotions through this film.

3.      Life is beautiful

This 1997 classic Italian film was directed by and starred Roberto Benigni. It won the academy award for best actor and best foreign language film.  It narrates the story of Guido Orefice, a Jewish bookkeeper. He has a beautiful wife Dora and son Giosue.  As the Second World War breaks out, the entire family is taken to the concentration camp. While in the camp, the father hides the true situation from the kid and tells him that this is a game in which they are supposed to perform certain tasks. The movie is all about love, sacrifice and care.

4.      Schindler’s list

Schindler’s list as you all know is a Stephen Spielberg film. The film was inspired by the novel Schindler’s ark by the Australian novelist Thomas Keneally. The film talks about Schindler who saves many Jews by employing them in his company. It is often considered as one of the best Hollywood movie ever made. It won seven academy awards of the 12 it was nominated for including the Best director. During World War II, Germans sent many of its native polish Jews to the Krakow Ghetto. At around the same time, Oscar Schindler lands up at the same plays hoping to make fortune. He is a friend of Nazi Party, however, he employs many Jewish people in his factory and saves them from going to concentration camps.

5.      Enemy at the gates

Enemy at the gates speaks about the Battle of Stalingrad, fought between The Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. The film was written and directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. Vasili Zetsev a former shepherd in the Ural Mountains has landed up in the Red Army. He exceptionally fights using the tricks taught to him by his grandfather and manages to save himself and a commissar Danilov. Though the film was poorly received in Germany and Russia as it glorified war and simplified history according to its viewers. However, the movie is a definite watch as it narrates about courage, camaraderie and valour. Jude law and Joseph Fiennes played the major role.

6.      Pearl Harbour

What happens when romantic relationship happens mid war? Watch Pearl Harbour to find out. The movie directed by Michael Bay and written by Randall Wallace won four academy awards. Danny and Rafe are two good friends who both grows up to be first lieutenants. Rafe is in love with Evelyn a nurse working with the army. He leaves to join the Eagle Squadron while Evelyn and Danny are shifted with fellow soldiers to Pearl Harbour. Rafe is shot down over the English Channel and is thought to be dead. While Danny and Evelyn develops a romantic relationship. He helps her to get over the presumable death of Rafe. However, it turns out that Rafe isn’t dead and Pearl Harbour attack happens around the same time. Watch to know what happens with the complicated love triangle.

7.      Saving Private Ryan

Another Spielberg film on World War II, Saving Private Ryan has always managed to top the list of War movies. The 1998 movie starred Tom Hanks and Edward Burns. The movie is set in the backdrops of Normandy Invasion. The movie speaks about the suffering of American soldiers during the Normandy invasion. They are grieved seriously from their fight against the German army. Subsequently, the body of a dead soldier lying face down on the beach, with “S. Ryan” stencilled on the back of his pack, is found.

Meanwhile, in Washington, D.C, at the U.S. War Department, General George Marshall is informed that three of the four brothers of the Ryan family were killed in action and that their mother is to receive all three telegrams on the same day. He learns that the fourth son, Private First Class James Francis Ryan, is a paratrooper and is missing in action somewhere in Normandy. Marshall, after reading Abraham Lincoln’s Bixby letter, orders that Ryan must be found and sent home immediately.

8.      Inglorious Basterds

An American-German film directed by Quentin Tarantino starring Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz and Mélanie Laurent. It was nominated for eight academy awards.  It deals with a fictional alternate history of two plots to kill the Nazi Germany’s political leadership. Though the script was ready as early as 1998, it is only in 2009 that the film was released. The movie was screened at the 62nd Cannes film festival.

9.      The Reader

The Reader is mostly known for the acting of Kate Winslet. She won many awards for this movie including the academy award for best actress. It narrates the story of Michael Berg, a German attorney who, as a mid-teenager in 1958, had an affair with an elder female, Hanna Schmitz, who then vanished only to reappear years later as one of the culprits in war crimes hearing stemming from her activities as a protector at a Nazi concentration camp. Michael understands that Hanna is possessing a private secret she trusts is worse than her Nazi past – a secret which, if exposed, could aid her at the trial.

10. The Diary of Anne Frank

Who is here who doesn’t know Anne Frank? All of us grew up reading her diary which made us smile, cry, and frustrated. It cannot be denied that more than any history accounts, it was her book that moved us the most. The movie which was directed by George Stevens and starred Millie Perkins as Anne Frank was released on 1959.



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