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The Best 2000s War Movies 

Ranker Film
Updated September 23, 2019 2k votes 417 voters 13.2k views 43 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite war films that were released between 2000-2010.

What are the best '00s war movies? The decade has examples from ancient history (300, Troy) as well as depictions of more contemporary conflicts (Jarhead, Hurt Locker). The top combat films of the 2000s include some modern classics from brilliant directors, such as Quentin Tarantino, Kathryn Bigelow, Michael Bay, and many more. 

There are many great '00s war movies to consider. Flags of our Fathers tells the story of the battle of Iwo Jima from the American perspective, while Letters from Iwo Jima tells the story from the Japanese side. Clint Eastwood directed both films, offering unique perspectives from both sides that fought. Also of interest among the top ’00s war movies is The Pianist, set during WWII, The Patriot, which takes place during the Revolution), and Tigerland, set in Vietnam. 

Vote up the best war movies from the '00s, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 

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1
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Mel Gibson, Lyndon B. Johnson, Jon Hamm

Released: 2002

Directed by: Randall Wallace

We Were Soldiers is a 2002 film that dramatizes the Battle of Ia Drang on November 14, 1965. The film was directed by Randall Wallace and stars Mel Gibson. It is based on the book We Were ...more

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Mel Gibson, Heath Ledger, Logan Lerman

Released: 2000

Directed by: Roland Emmerich

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial The Patriot is a 2000 American epic historical fiction film directed by Roland Emmerich. Peaceful farmer Benjamin Martin (Mel Gibson) is driven to lead the his own group of men during the ...more

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Rachel Weisz, Jude Law, Ed Harris

Released: 2001

Directed by: Jean-Jacques Annaud

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

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#11 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #10 of 12 The 12 Most Inaccurate War Movies Ever Made #3 of 12 Historical Movies You Most Want To Change The Ending Of

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Tom Cruise, Billy Connolly, Timothy Spall

Released: 2003

Directed by: Edward Zwick

The Last Samurai is a 2003 American epic film directed and co-produced by Edward Zwick, who also co-wrote the screenplay with John Logan. The film stars Tom Cruise, who also co-produced, as well ...more

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#51 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #169 of 347 Movies with the Best Soundtracks

5
Gladiator is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best 2000s War Movies
Egzon Dervishi added Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Sheen

Released: 2000

Directed by: Ridley Scott

Gladiator is a 2000 American-British epic historical drama film directed by Ridley Scott, starring Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Ralf Möller, Oliver Reed, Djimon Hounsou, ...more

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The Bizarre Sequel To 'Gladiator' That Almost Got Made #13 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Rankedlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Brad Pitt, Eric Bana, Orlando Bloom

Released: 2004

Directed by: Wolfgang Petersen

Troy is a 2004 epic period war film directed by Wolfgang Petersen, loosely based on Homer's Iliad. After Paris smuggles Queen Helen to Troy, Achilles leads his Myrmidons along with the rest of ...more

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The Film Version Of 'Troy' Doesn't Even Come Close To The Brutality Of The Source Texts #81 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #63 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made

7
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Russell Crowe, Paul Bettany, Joseph Morgan

Released: 2003

Directed by: Peter Weir

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World is a 2003 epic historical drama film co-written and directed by Peter Weir, starring Russell Crowe as Jack Aubrey, with Paul Bettany as Stephen ...more

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Ken Watanabe, Ryan Kelley, Kazunari Ninomiya

Released: 2006

Directed by: Clint Eastwood

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

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#31 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #15 of 221 The Greatest World War II Movies of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Paul Walker, Ryan Phillippe, Jamie Bell

Released: 2006

Directed by: Clint Eastwood

Flags of Our Fathers is a 2006 American film directed, co-produced and scored by Clint Eastwood and written by William Broyles, Jr. and Paul Haggis. It is based on the book of the same name ...more

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Evangeline Lilly, Ralph Fiennes, Jeremy Renner

Released: 2008

Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow

The Hurt Locker is a 2008 American film about a three-man Explosive Ordnance Disposal team during the conflict in Iraq. The film was produced and directed by Kathryn Bigelow and the screenplay ...more

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#37 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #139 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guyslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Tom Cruise, Kenneth Branagh, Eddie Izzard

Released: 2008

Directed by: Bryan Singer

Valkyrie is a 2008 American-German historical thriller film set in Nazi Germany during WWII. The film depicts the 20 July plot in 1944 by German army officers to take down Adolf Hitler and to ...more

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Gerard Butler, Michael Fassbender, Lena Headey

Released: 2006

Directed by: Zack Snyder

300 is a 2006 American fantasy war film based on the 1998 comic series of the same name by Frank Miller and Lynn Varley. Both are fictionalized retellings of the Battle of Thermopylae which took ...more

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Owen Wilson, Gene Hackman, Gabriel Macht

Released: 2001

Directed by: John Moore

Behind Enemy Lines is a 2001 action film directed by John Moore in his directorial debut, and starring Owen Wilson and Gene Hackman. The film tells the story of Lieutenant Chris Burnett, an ...more

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#113 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #10 of 53 The Best Movies "Loosely" Based on True Stories #395 of 735 The Greatest Action Movies of All Time

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Jake Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx, John Krasinski

Released: 2005

Directed by: Sam Mendes

Jarhead is a 2005 biographical drama film based on U.S. Marine Anthony Swofford's 2003 memoir of the same name, directed by Sam Mendes, starring Jake Gyllenhaal as Swofford with Jamie Foxx, ...more

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#20 of 82 The Best Movies Based on Non-Fiction Books #84 of 239 The Best Movies Based on True Storieslisted on The Best Movies About the Gulf War

15
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Matthew McConaughey, Jon Bon Jovi, Bill Paxton

Released: 2000

Directed by: Jonathan Mostow

U-571 is a 2000 film directed by Jonathan Mostow, and starring Matthew McConaughey, Bill Paxton, Harvey Keitel, Thomas Kretschmann, Jon Bon Jovi, Jack Noseworthy, Will Estes and Tom Guiry. In ...more

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#85 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #55 of 221 The Greatest World War II Movies of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Nicolas Cage, Mark Ruffalo, Christian Slater

Released: 2002

Directed by: John Woo

Windtalkers is a 2002 American film directed and produced by John Woo, and starring Nicolas Cage and Adam Beach. The film was released in the United States on June 14, 2002.

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Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Emilia Fox

Released: 2002

Directed by: Roman Polanski

The Pianist is a 2002 historical drama film co-produced and directed by Roman Polanski, scripted by Ronald Harwood, and starring Adrien Brody. It is based on the autobiographical book The ...more

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#81 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #28 of 157 The Best Movies You Never Want to Watch Againlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Nick Nolte, Joaquin Phoenix, Don Cheadle

Released: 2004

Directed by: Terry George

Hotel Rwanda is a 2004 American historical drama film directed by Terry George. It was adapted from a screenplay written by both George and Keir Pearson. It stars Don Cheadle and Sophie Okonedo ...more

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Alexandra Lara, Bruno Ganz, Thomas Kretschmann

Released: 2004

Directed by: Oliver Hirschbiegel

Downfall is a 2004 German film directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel, depicting the final ten days of Adolf Hitler's reign over Nazi Germany in 1945. The film is written and produced by Bernd ...more

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Kate Beckinsale, Jennifer Garner, Ben Affleck

Released: 2001

Directed by: Michael Bay

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Pearl Harbor is a 2001 American war film with romance and action elements directed by Michael Bay, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and written by Randall Wallace. It features an ensemble cast, ...more

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The Most Memorable 'Pearl Harbor' Quotes #125 of 374 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Rankedlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

21
The Lord of the Rings: T... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best 2000s War Movies
Tom Islava added Cate Blanchett, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler

Released: 2001

Directed by: Peter Jackson

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is a 2001 epic fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson based on the first volume of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. It is the first ...more

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22
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Samuel L. Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones, Ben Kingsley

Released: 2000

Directed by: William Friedkin

Rules of Engagement is a 2000 American drama film directed by William Friedkin and starring Tommy Lee Jones and Samuel L. Jackson. Jackson plays U.S. Marine Colonel Terry Childers. James Webb, ...more
23
The Lord of the Rings: T... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best 2000s War Movies
Tom Islava added Cate Blanchett, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler

Released: 2003

Directed by: Peter Jackson

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is a 2003 epic fantasy drama film directed by Peter Jackson based on the second and third volumes of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. It is ...more

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The Lord of the Rings: T... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best 2000s War Movies
Tom Islava added Cate Blanchett, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler

Released: 2002

Directed by: Peter Jackson

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is a 2002 epic fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson and based on the second volume of J. R. R. Tolkien's novel The Lord of the Rings. It is the second ...more

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Christian Bale, Steve Zahn, Jeremy Davies

Released: 2006

Directed by: Werner Herzog

Rescue Dawn is a 2006 American drama film directed by Werner Herzog, based on an adapted screenplay written from his 1997 documentary film Little Dieter Needs to Fly. The film stars Christian ...more

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