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The Best Africa Movies  

Ranker Film
755 votes 146 voters 11.2k views

List Rules Movies about or set in Africa.

Safaris, pyramids, and sphinx’s, blood diamonds, Nelson Mandela, apartheid. This and much more can be found on the continent of Africa. With sweeping landscapes and numerous tales of human drama, many films end up being about or set in Africa, and for good reason. This list features the best of these films, ranked by film lovers everywhere.

Also known as the “Dark Continent,” Africa is the world’s second largest and second most populous continent. It covers a whopping six percent of the Earth’s total surface! Considering its enormous size and historical landmarks such as the Pyramids of Egypt, it’s no wonder that movies like Congo and The Flight of the Phoenix all feature this continent. 

This list has the best movies set in Africa, including: Hotel Rwanda, Blood Diamond, The Lion King, Cry Freedom, The Constant Gardner, The African Queen, The Last King of Scotland, and I Dreamed of Africa.

Vote for your favorite movie below or add one you love that isn't already on the list.
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1
The Lion King is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Africa Movies
Whoopi Goldberg, Jeremy Irons, Matthew Broderick
The Lion King is a 1994 American animated musical epic film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the 32nd animated feature in the Walt Disney ...more

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#1 of 599 The Best Animated Films Everfeaturing The Lion King Is Full Of Baloneylisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

2
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Nick Nolte, Joaquin Phoenix, Don Cheadle
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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#94 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #18 of 717 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #125 of 291 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry

3
Casablanca is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Africa Movies
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

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#14 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #157 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetimelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

4
Zulu is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Africa Movies
Michael Caine, Stanley Baker, Jack Hawkins
Zulu is a 1964 epic film depicting the Battle of Rorke's Drift between the British Army and the Zulus in January 1879. It depicts 150 British soldiers who successfully held off a force of 4,000 ...more

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#285 of 347 The Best Movies Based On Books #43 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #353 of 717 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked

5
Ranker Video
clash1977 added Omar Sharif, Peter O'Toole, Alec Guinness
Lawrence of Arabia is a 1962 British epic adventure drama film based on the life of T. E. Lawrence. It was directed by David Lean and produced by Sam Spiegel. The film stars Peter O'Toole in the ...more

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#5 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #11 of 93 The Very Best Oscar-Winning Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

6
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Katharine Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart, Robert Morley
The African Queen is a 1951 adventure film adapted from the 1935 novel of the same name by C. S. Forester. The film was directed by John Huston and produced by Sam Spiegel and John Woolf. The ...more

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#48 of 207 The Best Adventure Movies #42 of 241 The Most Inspirational Movies Everlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

7
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Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Iman Abdulmajid
Out of Africa is a 1985 American epic romantic drama film directed and produced by Sydney Pollack and starring Robert Redford and Meryl Streep. The film is based loosely on the autobiographical ...more

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#65 of 93 The Very Best Oscar-Winning Movies #159 of 575 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Rankedlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

8
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Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Connelly, Michael Sheen
Blood Diamond is a 2006 American-German political thriller film co-produced and directed by Edward Zwick, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Connelly and Djimon Hounsou. The title refers to ...more

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#151 of 717 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #677 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #84 of 291 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry

9
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Ewan McGregor, Tom Hardy, Orlando Bloom
Black Hawk Down is a 2001 American-British war film directed by Ridley Scott. It is an adaptation of the 1999 book of the same name by Mark Bowden based on his series of articles published in ...more

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#143 of 347 The Best Movies Based On Books #15 of 382 The Best War Movies Everlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

10
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Charlton Heston, Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson
Khartoum is a 1966 film written by Robert Ardrey and directed by Basil Dearden. It stars Charlton Heston as British Gen. Charles "Chinese" Gordon and Laurence Olivier as the Mahdi and ...more
11
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clash1977 added Spencer Tracy, Nancy Kelly, Richard Greene
Stanley and Livingstone is a movie based loosely upon the true story of reporter Sir Henry M. Stanley's quest to find Dr. David Livingstone, a missionary presumed lost in Africa. Spencer Tracy ...more
12
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James Stewart, Richard Attenborough, Ernest Borgnine
The Flight of the Phoenix is a 1965 American drama film starring James Stewart, produced and directed by Robert Aldrich, and based on the 1964 novel The Flight of the Phoenix by Elleston Trevor. ...more

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#939 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #55 of 194 The Best Movies of the '60s #103 of 569 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time

13
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Jean Martin, Saadi Yacef, Gene Wesson
The Battle of Algiers is a 1966 film based on occurrences against the French government in North Africa, the most prominent being the titular Battle of Algiers. An Italo-Algerian production, it ...more

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#151 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #84 of 194 The Best Movies of the '60s #29 of 318 The Best Political Films Ever Made

14
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clash1977 added Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon, Langley Kirkwood
"From director Clint Eastwood, “Invictus” tells the inspiring true story of how Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) joined forces with the captain of South Africa’s rugby team, Francois Pienaar ...more

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#16 of 39 Great Historical Black Movies Based On True Stories #64 of 180 The Best Sports Movies Ever Made #28 of 33 The Most Inspirational Black Movies

15
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Val Kilmer, Michael Douglas, Emily Mortimer
The Ghost and the Darkness is a 1996 historical adventure film starring Val Kilmer and Michael Douglas set in Africa at the end of the 19th century. It was directed by Stephen Hopkins and the ...more

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#139 of 304 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time #213 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

16
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Ava Gardner, Gregory Peck, Susan Hayward
The Snows of Kilimanjaro is a 1952 American Technicolor film based on the short story of the same name by Ernest Hemingway. The film version of the short story was directed by Henry King, ...more
17
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Matthias Habich, Juliane Köhler, Mechthild Grossmann
Nowhere in Africa is a 2001 German film that was written and directed by Caroline Link. The screenplay is based on the 1995 autobiographical novel of the same name by Stefanie Zweig. It tells ...more
18
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Geoffrey Keen, Bill Travers, Virginia McKenna
Born Free is a 1966 Technicolor British drama film starring Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers as Joy and George Adamson, a real-life couple who raised Elsa the Lioness, an orphaned lion cub, to ...more
19
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Ben Johnson, Terry Moore, Regis Toomey
Mighty Joe Young is a 1949 American black-and-white fantasy film from RKO Radio Pictures made by the same creative team responsible for King Kong. Produced and written by Merian C. Cooper, who ...more

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#55 of 116 The Scariest Giant Monster Movies #66 of 80 The Best Live Action Animal Movies for Kids #77 of 178 The Greatest Animal Movies Ever Made

20
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Sigourney Weaver, Iain Glen, Bryan Brown
Gorillas in the Mist is a 1988 American drama film directed by Michael Apted and starring Sigourney Weaver as naturalist Dian Fossey. It tells the true story of her work in Rwanda with Mountain ...more

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#10 of 54 The Best Biopics About Women #94 of 178 The Greatest Animal Movies Ever Made #11 of 21 The Best Movies About Real Scientists

21
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Rachel Weisz, Ralph Fiennes, Bill Nighy
The Constant Gardener is a 2005 drama thriller film directed by Fernando Meirelles. The screenplay by Jeffrey Caine is based on the John le Carré novel of the same name. The film follows ...more

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#110 of 241 Critically Acclaimed Movies That Kinda Suck #415 of 710 The Best Movies Roger Ebert Gave Four Starslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

22
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Mollevangsvagen added Oumarou Ganda, Alassane Maiga, Seydou Guede
Moi, un noir is a 1958 French ethnofiction film directed by Jean Rouch. The film is set in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
23
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Willem Dafoe, Ralph Fiennes, Colin Firth
The English Patient is a 1996 romantic drama directed by Anthony Minghella from his own script based on the novel of the same name by Michael Ondaatje and produced by Saul Zaentz. The film was ...more

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#181 of 382 The Best War Movies Ever #93 of 220 The Greatest World War II Movies of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

24
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Kim Basinger, Daniel Craig, Eva Marie Saint
I Dreamed of Africa is a 2000 adventure film starring Kim Basinger, Vincent Perez, Eva Marie Saint, Garrett Strommen, Liam Aiken and Daniel Craig, and directed by Hugh Hudson. It is based on the ...more
25
Mountains of the Moon is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Africa Movies
scjames added Omar Sharif, Iain Glen, Richard E. Grant

The story of Captain Richard Francis Burton and Lt. John Hanning Speke's expedition to find the source of the Nile river in the name of Queen Victoria's British Empire.

Mountains of the Moon is a 1990 Rankcolor theatrical film depicting the 1857–58 journey of Richard Francis Burton and John Hanning Speke in their expedition to central Africa – the project that ...more