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The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Movies must take place during World War II

The best World War 2 movies remind us that perhaps no single event has had a greater impact on the future of filmmaking than World War II. It arrived at the dawn of a new era in glossy, professional mainstream filmmaking, and it affected literally every facet of daily life in North America, Europe and Asia, where most of the world's films were being produced. World War 2 has remained a constant subject of fascination for filmmakers from the 1940s to the present day. If you're interested in more movies you can watch right now on Netflix then check out our lists on the best action movies on Netflix, best drama movies and best comedies on Netflix.

Though "WWII Films" could be classified as a separate genre from the general heading of "War Movies," they take on a lot of different styles, forms and tones. There are authentic WWII recreations, epic takes on the history of the entire period, personal stories about the soldiers, spies, revolutionaries and resistance fighters who fought the war and, naturally, sagas about the civilians of the time whose lives were forever changed by the conflict.

Many of the WW2 films on this list - from "Patton" to "Casablanca" to "Saving Private Ryan" - have secured their place among the most iconic films of all time. Which of these good films are the best? Rerank your own list to nominate your favorites for this CrowdRanked collection of the best WWII films, and then be sure to vote on your favorites. Also check out this list of the best war movies ever and the best war movies on Netflix.

list ordered by
1
The Bridge on the River Kwai is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Alec Guinness, William Holden, Jack Hawkins
The Bridge on the River Kwai is a 1957 WWII epic film directed by David Lean, based on the novel Le Pont de la Rivière Kwai by Pierre Boulle. The film is a work of fiction but borrows the ...more
2
Saving Private Ryan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Vin Diesel
Saving Private Ryan is a 1998 American epic drama war film set during the Invasion of Normandy in World War II. Directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Robert Rodat, the film is notable for ...more
3
The Great Escape is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Steve McQueen, Richard Attenborough, James Garner
The Great Escape is a 1963 American WWII epic film based on an escape by British and Commonwealth POW from a German POW camp during WWII, starring Steve McQueen, James Garner, and Richard ...more
4
Schindler's List is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley
Schindler's List is a 1993 American epic historical period drama, directed and co-produced by Steven Spielberg and scripted by Steven Zaillian. It is based on the novel Schindler's Ark by Thomas ...more
5
Patton is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
George C. Scott, Karl Malden, Paul Frees
Patton is a 1970 American epic biographical film about U.S. General George S. Patton during WWII. It stars George C. Scott, Karl Malden, Michael Bates and Karl Michael Vogler. It was directed by ...more
6
The Longest Day is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Sean Connery, John Wayne, Richard Burton
The Longest Day is a 1962 film based on the 1959 history book The Longest Day by Cornelius Ryan, about D-Day, the Normandy landings on June 6, 1944, during WWII. The film was produced by Darryl ...more
7
The Dirty Dozen is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Jim Brown, Donald Sutherland, Charles Bronson
The Dirty Dozen is a 1967 film directed by Robert Aldrich, released by MGM, and starring Lee Marvin. The picture was filmed in England and features an ensemble supporting cast including Ernest ...more
8
Das Boot is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, Uwe Ochsenknecht
Das Boot is a 1981 German epic film written and directed by Wolfgang Petersen, produced by Günter Rohrbach, and starring Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, and Klaus Wennemann. ...more
9
Band of Brothers is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Donnie Wahlberg, Damian Lewis, Dexter Fletcher
Band of Brothers is a 2001 American WWII drama miniseries based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose's 1992 non-fiction book of the same name. The executive producers were Steven Spielberg and Tom ...more
10
Casablanca is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Ingrid Bergman, Humphrey Bogart, Peter Lorre
Casablanca is a 1942 American romantic drama film directed by Michael Curtiz and based on Murray Burnett and Joan Alison's unproduced stage play Everybody Comes to Rick's. The film stars ...more
11
The Guns of Navarone is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Gregory Peck, David Niven, Anthony Quinn
The Guns of Navarone is a 1961 British-American action/adventure film directed by J. Lee Thompson. The screenplay by producer Carl Foreman was based on Alistair MacLean's 1957 novel The Guns of ...more
12
Sands of Iwo Jima is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
John Wayne, Forrest Tucker, Richard Jaeckel
Sands of Iwo Jima is a 1949 film starring John Wayne that follows a group of United States Marines from training to the Battle of Iwo Jima during WWII. The movie also features John Agar, Adele ...more
13
Tora! Tora! Tora! is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Jason Robards Jr., Martin Balsam, Joseph Cotten
Tora! Tora! Tora! is a 1970 American–Japanese film directed by Richard Fleischer and stars an ensemble cast, including Martin Balsam, Joseph Cotten, Sō Yamamura, E. G. Marshall, James Whitmore ...more
14
A Bridge Too Far is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Sean Connery, Anthony Hopkins, Robert Redford
A Bridge Too Far is a 1977 epic film based on the 1974 book of the same name by Cornelius Ryan, adapted by William Goldman. It was produced by Joseph E. Levine and Richard P. Levine and directed ...more
15
Letters from Iwo Jima is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Ken Watanabe, Ryan Kelley, Kazunari Ninomiya
Letters from Iwo Jima is a 2006 Japanese-American film directed and co-produced by Clint Eastwood, starring Ken Watanabe and Kazunari Ninomiya. The film portrays the Battle of Iwo Jima from the ...more
16
Stalag 17 is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
William Holden, Peter Graves, Otto Preminger
Stalag 17 is a 1953 film which tells the story of a group of American airmen held in a German WWII prisoner camp, who come to suspect that one of their number is an informant. It was adapted ...more
17
Midway is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Tom Selleck, Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda
Midway, released in the United Kingdom as Battle of Midway and in the US on video as The Battle of Midway, is a 1976 Technicolor film directed by Jack Smight and produced by Walter Mirisch from ...more
18
Kelly's Heroes is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland, Don Rickles
Kelly's Heroes is a 1970 comedy film directed by Brian G. Hutton, about a group of WWII soldiers who go AWOL to rob a bank behind enemy lines. The film stars Clint Eastwood, Telly Savalas, Don ...more
19
Where Eagles Dare is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Clint Eastwood, Richard Burton, Michael Hordern
Where Eagles Dare is a 1968 WWII action film starring Richard Burton, Clint Eastwood and Mary Ure. It was directed by Brian G. Hutton and shot on location in Austria and Bavaria. Alistair ...more
20
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Robert Mitchum, Spencer Tracy, Van Johnson
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo is a 1944 American war film released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. It is based on the true story of the Doolittle Raid, America's first retaliatory air strike against Japan ...more
21
Enemy at the Gates is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Rachel Weisz, Jude Law, Ed Harris
Enemy at the Gates is a 2001 film directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. The film's title is taken from William Craig's 1973 nonfiction book Enemy at the Gates: The Battle for Stalingrad, which ...more
22
Memphis Belle is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
John Lithgow, Sean Astin, Harry Connick
Memphis Belle is a 1990 film directed by Michael Caton-Jones and written by Monte Merrick. The film featured an all-star cast with Matthew Modine, Eric Stoltz and Harry Connick Jr. in leading ...more
23
Run Silent, Run Deep is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Clark Gable, Burt Lancaster, Don Rickles
Run Silent, Run Deep is a 1958 film starring Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster, based on the novel of the same name by Commander Edward L. Beach, Jr.. The title refers to "silent ...more
24
Battle of the Bulge is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Robert Shaw
Battle of the Bulge is an American widescreen epic film produced in Spain that was released in 1965. It was directed by Ken Annakin. It starred Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw, Telly Savalas, Robert ...more
25
The Pacific is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time
KimBruce added James Badge Dale, Joseph Mazzello, Jon Seda
The Pacific is a 2010 television series produced by HBO, Seven Network Australia, Sky Movies, Playtone and DreamWorks that premiered in the United States on 14 March 2010. The series is a ...more