Since the early days of Hollywood, war has often featured prominently in film. Initially, war was an ideal form for patriotic propaganda through war epics and public service announcements, but it has become a genre in its own right in cinema.
In such a dire and morally difficult climate to bear, storylines are driven at breakneck speed through high-stakes action sequences and psychological struggles.
Beyond people's fascination with military heroism and sacrifice, the war film genre has begun to allow us to look more closely at the deep ethical complications of war itself. While many films focus on glorification and romanticization, filmmakers have also used a medium's subjectivity as a deeper, humanized lens of true wartime atrocities. Through these stories, we can attempt to connect with a machination that often seems so emotionally distant.
From action-packed re-enactments to moving biographical dramas, commentary pranks and more, here are the best war movies to watch on Netflix.
“The Siege of Jadotville”
Based on Declan Powers' book, The Siege of Jadotville: The Irish Army's Forgotten Battle. This war drama tells the story of the UN peacekeeping mission in the Congo, led by an Irish army unit in 1961. The film directed by Richie Smyth has been acclaimed on the Irish festival circuit .
Inglourious Basterds, Quentin Tarantino's multi-award-winning alternative history film, follows two converging plots to kill Nazi leaders occupying France, forged by Jewish soldiers and a vindictive theater owner. The success of this film is due to the performances of Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz, Diane Kruger and Mélanie Laurent.
Christian Bale plays a late 19th century U.S. Army cavalry officer who reluctantly accepts an order to escort a dying Cheyenne chief from Fort Beringer to his tribal lands in Montana.The two men, along with the chief's family, face the upheavals of a wild and unforgiving nature, and make an unexpected alliance with a young widow, played by Rosamund Pike.
Based on a true story, Defiance tells the story of the three Bielski brothers, played by Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber and Jamie Bells.
As a family of Polish Jews during World War II, the brothers flee to the forest where they played as children, marking the site as their new battleground for the rebellion against the Nazis. The Bielskis are soon joined by their comrades in arms, forming a single, united coalition.
“The boy in the striped pajamas”
Set in Germany during World War II, this film explores an unlikely friendship between two young boys, Bruno, the son of a Nazi commander, and Shmuel, a young Jewish boy currently imprisoned.
Their friendship unfolds beyond the barrier of a concentration camp, as Bruno gradually becomes aware of the cruel reality unfolding on the other side. While moving, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is not to be sought out for its high historical accuracy. The film received its fair share of criticism for its clumsy melo-dramatizations and twists.
“Beast Of No Nation”
A young boy named Agu is forced to join a team of rebels to fight in a bloody civil war that has torn his unnamed West African country apart. Idris Elba plays the charismatic leader of the rebels, known only as Commander, who leads Agu and his comrades in arms down a dark and violent path.
“The Dirty Dozen”
An impressive ensemble - including Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, John Cassavetes and Donald Sutherland - have come together to star in this action classic about a US Army major who must lead a team of convicts. on an assassination mission during World War II.
In this Steven Spielberg adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's 1982 novel, Joey, a thoroughbred racehorse, is commissioned by the British Army during World War I and embroiled in the tragedy of the conflict, including the bloody Second World War. Battle of the Somme . The 2011 film was nominated for six Oscars, including Best Picture.
“They killed my father first”
Angelina Jolie directed this drama, based on the true story of Cambodian human rights activist Loung Ung, who lived his childhood under the Khmer Rouge regime in the 1970s, during which his family was forced to going to a labor camp by the communist regime.
Chris Pine stars as Robert the Bruce, the crowned King of Scotland who is exiled from his country and assembles a team of fellow outlaws to aid him in his efforts to reclaim his throne.