The Best Political Films Ever Made Films

The Best Political Films Ever Made

13,397 views 140 items 5,163 votes 323 voters 25 followers 19reranks
Political movies can approach the notion of politics and government from numerous perspectives, and with many wildly divergent purposes. Some of the earliest and best-remembered films were essentially propaganda tools being used by a political party or ideological group, hoping that the new media of cinema could be useful in helping to persuade or mollify the masses. (In some cases, as with the Nazi documentary "Triumph of the Will" or Sergei Eisenstein's massively influential "Battleship Potemkin," they were undeniable successful, at least initially.)

Political films can also serve the opposite purpose, encouraging people to distrust or even fear their government, or attacking an individual politician or political movement specifically. The paranoia thrillers of the 1970s, for example, reflected America's distrust in its own leaders following the Watergate and other corruption scandals. More recently, George Clooney's "Good Night, and Good Luck" told a true story about journalist Edward R. Murrow facing off against Joseph McCarthy, but as a way of discussing political issues that remained relevant even upon its release in 2005.

Many Americans' understanding of complex political situations, both in their homeland and in other countries, as well, comes from watching popular films. For example, the satirical take on the politics of war in "Wag the Dog," the insights into Greek politics provided by Costa-Gavras "Z" or the look at Bolivian elections in the documentary "Our Brand is Crisis."

This list includes notable and significant political movies from throughout cinema history from all different styles and genres. It is VoteRanked and Open, so be sure to vote up your favorites, vote down the movies you don't think belong on the list and add any other suggestions you have at the bottom of the page.

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  Name
Score
  1. 24
    Up 86
    Down 45
    1991 More
    69
  2. 7
    Up 42
    Down 3
    2004 More
    84
  3. 134
    Up 2
    Down 5
    1927 More
    34
    added by: stubb
  4. 14
    Up 49
    Down 18
    1995 More
    76
  5. 57
    Up 39
    Down 22

    ranked low on reranks
    Election

    1999 More
    56
  6. 114
    Up 4
    Down 5
    2005 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  7. 118
    Up 3
    Down 4
    2004 More
    36
    added by: Joie
  8. 13
    Up 72
    Down 26
    1979 More
    76
  9. 66
    Up 5
    Down 3

    ranked high on reranks
    The Battle of Algiers

    1966 More
    51
    added by: stubb
  10. 93
    Up 7
    Down 4
    1997 More
    39
    added by: wiabux
  11. 65
    Up 9
    Down 4
    1985 More
    51
  12. 75
    Up 19
    Down 17
    No image

    ranked high on reranks
    Where the Buffalo Roam

    1980 More
    48
  13. 101
    Up 3
    Down 2
    2010 More
    37
    added by: sebbzor
  14. 72
    Up 3
    Down 5

    ranked high on reranks
    Harlan County, USA

    1976 More
    49
    added by: stubb
  15. 47
    Up 51
    Down 34

    ranked low on reranks
    The American President

    1995 More
    59
  16. 100
    Up 11
    Down 17

    often listed
    The Argentine

    2008 More
    37
  17. 70
    Up 17
    Down 13

    ranked low on reranks
    The Baader Meinhof Complex

    2008 More
    49
  18. 4
    Up 55
    Down 11

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Schindler's List

    1993 More
    92
  19. 113
    Up 4
    Down 5
    2011 More
    36
    added by: wiabux
  20. 10
    Up 80
    Down 45

    often listed
    Milk

    2008 More
    82
  21. 84
    Up 17
    Down 22

    ranked high on reranks
    Citizen Ruth

    1996 More
    44
  22. 77
    Up 25
    Down 28

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Bowling for Columbine

    2002 More
    47
  23. 61
    Up 8
    Down 2
    2006 More
    54
    added by: wiabux
  24. 5
    Up 103
    Down 25
    1940 More
    87
  25. 15
    Up 58
    Down 25
    2006 More
    76
  26. 139
    Up 0
    Down 3
    2012 More
    31
    added by: StacyWolfe
  27. 122
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2003 More
    36
    added by: wiabux
  28. 40
    Up 21
    Down 11

    often listed
    The Iron Lady

    2011 More
    62
  29. 46
    Up 52
    Down 29

    ranked low on reranks
    Nixon

    1995 More
    59
  30. 129
    Up 2
    Down 4
    1964 More
    35
    added by: stubb
  31. 64
    Up 25
    Down 15

    ranked low on reranks
    Carlos

    2010 More
    53
  32. 79
    Up 10
    Down 7

    ranked low on reranks
    Hoffa

    1992 More
    45
  33. 22
    Up 69
    Down 26

    ranked low on reranks
    Thank You for Smoking

    2005 More
    72
  34. 90
    Up 7
    Down 2
    1984 More
    40
    added by: stubb
  35. 105
    Up 5
    Down 5
    1988 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  36. 30
    Up 52
    Down 20
    1964 More
    66
  37. 23
    Up 69
    Down 37

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Traffic

    2001 More
    72
  38. 112
    Up 5
    Down 6
    1957 More
    36
  39. 135
    Up 1
    Down 4
    2010 More
    33
    added by: sebbzor
  40. 140
    Up 0
    Down 4

    about to drop off
    Salvatore Giuliano

    1962 More
    29
    added by: stubb
  41. 8
    Up 102
    Down 17
    1939 More
    83
  42. 62
    Up 26
    Down 17
    1993 More
    53
  43. 81
    Up 19
    Down 23

    ranked high on reranks
    Dick

    1999 More
    44
  44. 33
    Up 24
    Down 8
    2000 More
    64
  45. 56
    Up 7
    Down 3

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Syriana

    2005 More
    56
    added by: wiabux
  46. 19
    Up 70
    Down 29
    2005 More
    73
  47. 74
    Up 8
    Down 12

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Argo

    2012 More
    48
    added by: Abbey Grantham
  48. 67
    Up 28
    Down 22

    ranked low on reranks
    The Ides of March

    2011 More
    50
  49. 124
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2002 More
    36
    added by: sebbzor
  50. 80
    Up 17
    Down 15
    1969 More
    45
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