It seems that every Veteran’s and Memorial Day popular cable television stations broadcast marathons of classic war movies. This of course raises the question of which movies are the true classic war films.
“All Quiet on the Western Front”, the 1930’s film of the classic novel is by far the best of all the film versions.
“The Battle of Britain” based on the book “The Narrow Margin” by Derek Wood and Derek Dempster features an international cast including and tells the story of “the Few” that saved Britain in the Fall of 1940
“They Were Expendable” based on a book by Naval Officer and Congressional Medal of Honor Winner John Buckley, this movie is noted for its realism.
“Wake Island” tells the story of the doomed defense of the American Outpost of Wake Island at the start of World War Two is a multiple Oscar Winner.
“Twelve O’Clock High” tells the story of the early days of the Daylight Bombing campaign of the US Air Corps in England. This film stars Gregory Peck as the hard driving Brigadier General Savage commander of the 918th Bomb Group.
Oscar winning “Saving Private Ryan” is well known for its first 27 minutes that depicts the harrowing landing of the 2nd Ranger Battalion on Omaha beach. The story follows eight Army Rangers as they search for the last survivor of a family of four sons; Private Ryan of the title, to send him home after his three brothers have been killed combat.
“The Best Years of Our Lives”. A multiple Oscar winner this movie follows three World War Two Veterans as they return to civilian life and try to adjust to post war America. The veterans and their families must cope with how the war has changed the men and how the men must now move on with their lives.
“Pork Chop Hill” is based on the history book of the same name, written by Brigadier General S.L.A Marshall, is about the bloody fighting on Pork Chop Hill at the end of the Korean War.
“Hamburger Hill” this film tells the story of a platoon in the 3rd of the 187th Infantry as they repeatedly attacked a well fortified North Vietnamese Army position on “Hamburger Hill”.
“We Were Soldiers” this film tells the story of the Battle of the Ia Drang valley in Vietnam, the first major clash between the American Military and the North Vietnamese Army.