10 Classic War Films With Incredible Stories

Are you searching for epic war dramas that aren't on every list? We've got you covered. Recently someone asked for classic war movies that tell incredible stories. Here are ten of the top-voted recommendations.

1. The Big Red One (1980)

The Big Red One
Image Credit: United Artists

The Big Red One was written and directed by Samuel Fuller, based on his experiences in World War II. Fuller served in the 1st Infantry Division, also known as The Big Red One, referencing the number one on their division shoulder patch.

During his service, he obtained the Silver Star, Bronze Star, and Purple Heart and witnessed the Falkenau concentration camp's liberation. It stars Lee Marvin and Mark Hamill

2. Patton (1970)

Patton
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

Patton is an epic biographical war movie depicting U.S. General George S. Patton during World War II. Francis Ford Coppola wrote the screenplay, and it won seven Academy Awards. George C. Scott stars as General Patton, and Karl Malden plays General Omar Bradley. The story highlights his wartime activities and accomplishments.

3. Apocalypse Now (1979)

apocalypse now colonel kurtz
Image Credit: United Artists

Apocalypse Now is a psychological war drama co-written and produced by Francis Ford Coppola. Set in Vietnam in 1970, it follows Captain Willard (Martin Sheen) taking a dangerous and increasingly hallucinatory journey upriver.

His mission is to locate and assassinate Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Brando), a former-promising officer who has reportedly gone insane and stands accused of murder. It also stars Robert Duvall, Laurence Fishburne, Dennis Hopper, Frederic Forrest, Albert Hall, and Sam Bottoms.

4. The Deer Hunter (1978)

the-deer-hunter
Image Credit: Universal Pictures

The Deer Hunter is a classic war drama about a trio of Slavic-American steelworkers and lifelong friends, Michael (Robert De Niro), Nick (Christopher Walken), and Steven (John Savage), preparing to ship overseas to Vietnam. Once there, they quickly witness war's inhumanities, and the survivors return home haunted by their experiences. It also stars Meryl Streep and John Cazale. 

5. Empire of The Sun (1987)

Image from the movie Empire of the Sun
Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Empire of the Sun is an epic coming-of-age war movie based on J. G. Ballard's semi-autobiographical 1984 novel. It centers around a young boy, Jamie “Jim” Graham (Christian Bale). Jim transitions from living with his affluent British family in Shanghai to surviving in a Japanese internment camp as a prisoner of war during World War II.

6. The Dogs of War (1980)

The Dogs of War
Image Credit: United Artists

The Dogs of War is a war movie based on Frederick Forsyth's 1974 novel. It follows a small mercenary unit of soldiers (Christopher Walken and Tom Berenger) who are privately hired to overthrow the president of Zangaro, a fictional African country

7. The Great Escape (1963)

the great escape
Image credit: MGM Studios.

The Great Escape is an American war adventure and suspense film based on Paul Brickhill's 1950 non-fiction novel. The story is a firsthand account of a massive escape by British Commonwealth prisoners of war from the German POW camp Stalag Luft III in Sagan in the Nazi Germany province of Lower Silesia.

However, there is a heavily fictionalized inclusion of a heavier American soldier present than reality. The film stars Steve McQueen, James Garner, and Richard Attenborough.

8. Hamburger Hill (1987)

Image from the movie Hamburger Hill
Image Credit: RKO Pictures.

Hamburger Hill is a war film set in 1969 following an infantry squad led by Lt. Frantz (Dylan McDermott). The unit includes new recruits and seasoned soldiers attempting to take a hill during the Vietnam War. Additionally, it depicts the psychological stresses of the war and racial tension between White and Black soldiers. Courtney B. Vance stars as medic Abraham “Doc” Johnson. 

9. Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970)

Tora Tora Tora
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

Tora! Tora! Tora! is an epic war dramatization of the attack on Pearl Harbor, including the details of events leading up to the American tragedy. Air Staff Officer Minoru Genda (Tatsuya Mihashi) plans a pre-emptive attack against the United States. However, despite interceptions of Japanese communication from intelligence agencies, no one believed an attack would ever occur on American soil. 

10. A Bridge Too Far (1977)

A Bridge Too Far
Image Credit: United Artists

A Bridge Too Far is a classic war movie depicting a failed Allied operation known as Operation Market Garden in Nazi-occupied Netherlands during World War II. The story is based on historian Cornelius Ryan's non-fiction book of the same name.

It stars an ensemble cast of Dirk Bogarde, James Caan, Sean Connery, Michael Caine, Edward Fox, Elliott Gould, Gene Hackman, Anthony Hopkins, Laurence Olivier, Hardy Krüger, Ryan O'Neal, Robert Redford, Maximilian Schell, and Liv Ullmann.

We hope you enjoyed this Reddit picks list of classic war movies. Also, check out these top ten war movies based on true stories and events.

This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.