The Best Political Films Ever Made Films

The Best Political Films Ever Made

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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. 35
    Up 17
    Down 5
    2007 More
    63
  2. 47
    Up 51
    Down 34

    ranked low on reranks
    The American President

    1995 More
    59
  3. 11
    Up 34
    Down 4
    1961 More
    80
  4. 134
    Up 2
    Down 5
    1927 More
    34
    added by: stubb
  5. 40
    Up 21
    Down 11

    often listed
    The Iron Lady

    2011 More
    62
  6. 101
    Up 3
    Down 2
    2010 More
    37
    added by: sebbzor
  7. 104
    Up 5
    Down 5
    1996 More
    36
  8. 97
    Up 30
    Down 34
    2006 More
    38
  9. 114
    Up 4
    Down 5
    2005 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  10. 84
    Up 17
    Down 22

    ranked high on reranks
    Citizen Ruth

    1996 More
    44
  11. 57
    Up 39
    Down 22

    ranked low on reranks
    Election

    1999 More
    56
  12. 121
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2005 More
    36
    added by: sebbzor
  13. 93
    Up 7
    Down 4
    1997 More
    39
    added by: wiabux
  14. 34
    Up 14
    Down 11

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Invictus

    2009 More
    64
  15. 123
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2008 More
    36
    added by: sebbzor
  16. 116
    Up 3
    Down 4
    1994 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  17. 117
    Up 3
    Down 4
    1969 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  18. 76
    Up 11
    Down 3

    ranked low on reranks
    Duck Soup

    1933 More
    47
  19. 137
    Up 1
    Down 4
    1970 More
    33
    added by: stubb
  20. 45
    Up 7
    Down 7

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Good bye, Lenin!

    2003 More
    59
  21. 90
    Up 7
    Down 2
    1984 More
    40
    added by: stubb
  22. 112
    Up 5
    Down 6
    1957 More
    36
  23. 65
    Up 9
    Down 4
    1985 More
    51
  24. 30
    Up 52
    Down 20
    1964 More
    66
  25. 5
    Up 103
    Down 25
    1940 More
    87
  26. 12
    Up 38
    Down 9
    1988 More
    79
  27. 74
    Up 8
    Down 12

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Argo

    2012 More
    48
    added by: Abbey Grantham
  28. 139
    Up 0
    Down 3
    2012 More
    31
    added by: StacyWolfe
  29. 63
    Up 31
    Down 17
    1969 More
    53
  30. 62
    Up 26
    Down 17
    1993 More
    53
  31. 64
    Up 25
    Down 15

    ranked low on reranks
    Carlos

    2010 More
    53
  32. 124
    Up 2
    Down 3
    2002 More
    36
    added by: sebbzor
  33. 105
    Up 5
    Down 5
    1988 More
    36
    added by: stubb
  34. 79
    Up 10
    Down 7

    ranked low on reranks
    Hoffa

    1992 More
    45
  35. 9
    Up 92
    Down 34
    1997 More
    82
  36. 16
    Up 34
    Down 7

    ranked low on reranks
    American History X

    1998 More
    76
  37. 17
    Up 24
    Down 7

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Three Days of the Condor

    1975 More
    74
  38. 111
    Up 4
    Down 4
    2000 More
    36
    added by: wiabux
  39. 36
    Up 44
    Down 26
    1983 More
    63
  40. 103
    Up 7
    Down 7
    1982 More
    37
  41. 108
    Up 4
    Down 4
    1994 More
    36
    added by: wiabux
  42. 130
    Up 4
    Down 7
    1992 More
    34
    added by: wiabux
  43. 10
    Up 80
    Down 45

    often listed
    Milk

    2008 More
    82
  44. 113
    Up 4
    Down 5
    2011 More
    36
    added by: wiabux
  45. 53
    Up 48
    Down 31

    ranked low on reranks
    Primary Colors

    1998 More
    57
  46. 69
    Up 15
    Down 10

    ranked low on reranks
    Bobby

    2006 More
    49
  47. 52
    Up 6
    Down 7

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Hunger

    2008 More
    57
  48. 89
    Up 4
    Down 8

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    The Good Shepherd

    2006 More
    41
    added by: wiabux
  49. 73
    Up 11
    Down 2

    ranked low on reranks
    Why We Fight

    2005 More
    48
  50. 54
    Up 11
    Down 8

    ranked high on reranks
    The Lives of Others

    2006 More
    57
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