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A Look at the Greatest Military Movies Ever Made

When it comes to enjoying fruitful entertainment that shows a country’s top warriors fighting for what they believe in, military movies are a must. These triumphant films, typically centered around real-life events, create a world much different than what most of us experience from day to day. If you’re thinking that you want to spend an evening enjoying one of the many military movies out there, we suggest starting with some of the greatest below.

Paths of Glory

Paths of Glory

If you’re looking for a raw depiction of warfare, then Paths of Glory is an ideal choice for you. Although this movie was released back in 1957, its relevance stands the test of time. Throughout this feature film, you’ll experience the inhumanity of war and how soldiers are treated as just a tool. This film features amazingly realistic battle scenes that will throw you right on the frontline.

Grand Illusion

Grand Illusion

Another great wartime movie that first hit the scene in 1937 is Grand Illusion. This cinematic feature follows two French aviators who are captured by the Germans. You’ll see them shuffled from prison to prison. As they work on a grand escape plan, you’ll get to learn about the two aviators’ very different social backgrounds. One an aristocrat and the other a fighter against the unfair system.

Full Metal Jacket

Situated at the time of the Vietnam War, Full Metal Jacket features an in-depth look at the journey of new soldiers. From being dehumanized during brutal basic training to blooding the streets in Vietnam, this timeless war film aims to showcase the cruelties of war and its effect on the human mind. This movie surely isn’t for the faint of heart and gives a good view into the development of the ideal soldier.

Sergeant York

Released back in 1941, this wartime film is situated around one soldier in World War I. Sergeant York is a simple guy from Tennessee who holds pacifism and religiosity high. Unable to avoid the draft, this real-life soldier finds himself on the battlefield. It doesn’t take long for him to realize that his talents lie in sharpshooting. You’ll get to watch Sergeant York wrestle with his specialized killing capability and his religious beliefs in this feature drama.

The Hurt Locker

This film was released in 2008 and is centered around fighting against terrorism with modern-day technology. Throughout this film, you’ll follow soldiers in the Iraq War Explosive Ordnance Disposal team who defused Iraq-based bombs, among many other wartime actions. You’ll get to see the characters experience the personal detachment that comes along with being in harm’s way around the clock.



Released in 2017, this wartime film is centered around World War II. This historical war thriller allows you to peek in at the men who were positioned at Dunkirk during the pivotal moment of history. With naval efforts from British and French fleets alongside various civilian vessels, you’ll get to witness how uneasy and unpredictable war can be when you’re surrounded by the enemy and the big blue sea.

The film brilliantly captures the tension and desperation of the Dunkirk evacuation, showcasing not only the strategic battles and heroic rescues but also the profound human moments of fear, bravery, and survival. Directed with a keen eye for historical accuracy, the movie employs minimal dialogue, relying instead on visual storytelling and a gripping soundtrack to convey the intensity of the situation.

The use of real historical ships and period-accurate costumes adds to the authenticity, transporting viewers directly into the heart of the 1940s warzone. The narrative interweaves multiple perspectives — from foot soldiers and pilots to naval commanders and civilian volunteers — highlighting the collective effort required to undertake such a daunting rescue mission. This approach not only deepens the emotional impact but also illustrates the chaotic nature of war and the incredible human spirit that emerges in times of crisis.

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