The Best Survival Movies Based on True Stories

List Rules
No straight horror movies.

There are hundreds if not thousands of movies about survival, but only a choice few are based on true events. The survival movies based on true stories can offer harrowing examples of people performing extraordinary feats in the most desperate of circumstances, but those films are few and far between. Survival films often depict what really happened to people whose life is told in a story that could be inspirational or end in disaster.

You may think a survival movie like Tom Hanks' Castaway would wind up on a list like this one, but that film was based on multiple survival accounts of people who survived that sort of situation instead of a single, true event. The strict criteria for this list means you'll find the best survival movies - if and only if they are based on true events! Real stories about people surviving or struggling to overcome obstacles offer an interesting and sometimes difficult viewing of struggle, perseverance, and the will to overcome... but not everyone survives and often, these movies end in ways you may not desire...


  • 1
    94 VOTES
    • Released: 1995
    • Directed by: Ron Howard
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  • Alive
    Photo: Alive
    122 VOTES
    • Released: 1993
    • Directed by: Frank Marshall
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  • 127 Hours
    Photo: 127 Hours
    141 VOTES
    • Released: 2010
    • Directed by: Danny Boyle
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  • Touching the Void
    Photo: Pathé
    • Released: 2003
    • Directed by: Kevin Macdonald
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