Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

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GaryChildress
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Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by GaryChildress »

Let's place a special restraint on the movie "that shall not be named", but aside from that one, what would you say was either the best or worst War movie of all time and why do you think so? I know as a kid I eagerly awaited every war movie that came out, because they captured my imagination at a time when I was playing with HO toy soldiers and 1/700 scale "waterline" ship models. So I've seen my share of the oldies, though, I haven't seen hardly any of the newer ones.

For best, I have a special place in my heart for A Bridge Too Far as my number one fav of all time, although Battle of Britain is up there too. I thought they were pretty well done and I remember thinking how cool it was to see Sherman tanks used in ABTF and Bf 109s and He 111s in BoB. Plus I enjoyed the theme music of both movies very much.

For worst, I sort of think of Battle of the Bulge, mostly due to a considerable lack of historical accuracy, although I enjoyed watching all the action. Fireball Forward was kind of hokey too. But again, when I was very young, I enjoyed watching all the action and would take out my toy soldiers and copy what I saw in the movies.

What are your favorites or else least liked and why?
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Bo Rearguard »

Das Boot is certainly the one on the top of my list. Gritty, claustrophobic and riveting. From the captain to the cook, you’re invited along in the U-Boat for the collective demise. But then I was sold on the original novel as well.

However, its polar opposite in the water is U-571. Just thinking about this turkey makes me angry beyond all comprehension, First, because it sucks, Second because it makes a mockery of the British heroes who did the actual work of retrieving the Enigma machine. Its only saving grace is that Jon Bon Jovi buys it in the end.

Tony Blair condemned U-571 in parliament as an insult to the Royal Navy. A far more entertaining response would have been for Britain to fund a big-budget revenge epic, in which a small platoon of foppish yet plucky Brits wanders over to Vietnam in 1968, defeats the Viet-Cong, and wins the war. Moreover, it would be nearly as accurate as U-571 was.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by GaryChildress »

ORIGINAL: Bo Rearguard

Das Boot is certainly the one on the top of my list. Gritty, claustrophobic and riveting. From the captain to the cook, you’re invited along in the U-Boat for the collective demise. But then I was sold on the original novel as well.

However, its polar opposite in the water is U-571. Just thinking about this turkey makes me angry beyond all comprehension, First, because it sucks, Second because it makes a mockery of the British heroes who did the actual work of retrieving the Enigma machine. Its only saving grace is that Jon Bon Jovi buys it in the end.

Tony Blair condemned U-571 in parliament as an insult to the Royal Navy. A far more entertaining response would have been for Britain to fund a big-budget revenge epic, in which a small platoon of foppish yet plucky Brits wanders over to Vietnam in 1968, defeats the Viet-Cong, and wins the war. Moreover, it would be nearly as accurate as U-571 was.

I've heard a lot of good things about Das Boot but have never seen it. Had never heard of a movie about U-571 until now. I guess that's how far behind I am these days on war movies.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Bo Rearguard »

ORIGINAL: GaryChildress
I've heard a lot of good things about Das Boot but have never seen it. Had never heard of a movie about U-571 until now. I guess that's how far behind I am these days on war movies.

It's a 2000 film about a US submarine sent on a mission to steal an Enigma machine from a stranded German U-boat called U-571 by posing as a U-Boat. The film seems to be loosely based on the real story of Operation Primrose in which the German submarine U-110 attacked an allied convoy that included the British destroyer Bulldog. Damaged by depth charges, U-110 surfaced and was boarded by the Bulldog's crew, who collected all the papers they could find (no one spoke German, so they couldn't be selective), and an intact Enigma machine.

What's funny is the director of U-571 actually has the audacity to end the film with a title card dedicating his film to the memory of the actual British sailors who captured the Enigma machines. Yes, that same memory he has just desecrated. This is exactly the most tasteless gesture the film-makers could have made.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by GaryChildress »

ORIGINAL: Bo Rearguard

ORIGINAL: GaryChildress
I've heard a lot of good things about Das Boot but have never seen it. Had never heard of a movie about U-571 until now. I guess that's how far behind I am these days on war movies.

It's a 2000 film about a US submarine sent on a mission to steal an Enigma machine from a stranded German U-boat called U-571 by posing as a U-Boat. The film seems to be loosely based on the real story of Operation Primrose in which the German submarine U-110 attacked an allied convoy that included the British destroyer Bulldog. Damaged by depth charges, U-110 surfaced and was boarded by the Bulldog's crew, who collected all the papers they could find (no one spoke German, so they couldn't be selective), and an intact Enigma machine.

What's funny is the director of U-571 actually has the audacity to end the film with a title card dedicating his film to the memory of the actual British sailors who captured the Enigma machines. Yes, that same memory he has just desecrated. This is exactly the most tasteless gesture the film-makers could have made.

It certainly doesn't sound like all that great of a movie. It sounds a bit like Battle of the Bulge, getting way too liberal with the facts. I don't understand the point of movies that completely warp history and yet claim to be dedicated to the heroes of a battle. Although, I guess the message of BotB wasn't such a bad one--about the useless waste in lives of the German offensive which could never have won to begin with. And it didn't give credit to the British for winning the battle or something. Did the movies have some sort of reason or theme behind it for depicting the capture of the enigma machine as an American victory? That's just ridiculous. It probably would have been better off had it not tried to dedicate itself.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Bo Rearguard »

ORIGINAL: GaryChildress
Did the movies have some sort of reason or theme behind it for depicting the capture of the enigma machine as an American victory? That's just ridiculous. It probably would have been better off had it not tried to dedicate itself.

Probably because the producers had the burning desire to create a sort of World War Two quasi-version of the action movie, The Hunt for Red October. God knows. Apparently, history as it actually happened is too dull for these guys so that have to warp it out of all reality.

It's sort of like that ridiculous underground war room the Germans had in the Battle of the Bulge complete with toy tanks to move across the planning map and the big clock on the wall complete with a countdown to start the operation. Somebody probably saw something like that in a Bond film and said, "We gotta have one of those in our movie"!
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

As kids, sitting down to watch a war classic on our small black and white TV was a big thing chez warspite - particularly on a Sunday evening or at Christmas [:)].

The ones that stood out were probably: Dam Busters, Waterloo, Tora, Tora, Tora, 633 Squadron, Battle of the Bulge, Zulu, Battle of Britain, Operation Daybreak and The Great Escape.

No longer being a kid, and actually understanding something about the war meant that the likes of 633 Squadron and Battle of the Bulge quickly fell off that list. While Cross of Iron, Memphis Belle and A Bridge Too Far replaced them.

Later came the likes of Das Boot, Gallipoli, Downfall, Conspiracy (if that counts) and Schindler’s List – the latter kind of knocked everything else into a cocked hat.

Worst films – I don’t really concentrate on those, largely because I tend to avoid dross by looking at reviews first. Never seen U-571 and never will. Seen bits of the Dany-and-Rafe-go-porking-nurses show, but only to laugh at, and I can’t think of too many others. I did accidently watch Dywizjon 303 thinking it was Hurricane. Now that was pretty bloody awful and 90 minutes I’ll never get back….

Favourite War Films? What have I re-watched – and by that I don’t mean because it’s on telly, but because I actively set out to want to re-watch a film (I guess that is as good a test as any)?

Well on that basis I suppose a top 10 would be:

Schindler’s List
Conspiracy
Battle of Britain
Operation Daybreak
Waterloo
Das Boot
Downfall
Gallipoli
Tora Tora Tora
Zulu
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by FOARP »

ORIGINAL: Bo Rearguard

Das Boot is certainly the one on the top of my list. Gritty, claustrophobic and riveting. From the captain to the cook, you’re invited along in the U-Boat for the collective demise. But then I was sold on the original novel as well.

However, its polar opposite in the water is U-571. Just thinking about this turkey makes me angry beyond all comprehension, First, because it sucks, Second because it makes a mockery of the British heroes who did the actual work of retrieving the Enigma machine. Its only saving grace is that Jon Bon Jovi buys it in the end.

Tony Blair condemned U-571 in parliament as an insult to the Royal Navy. A far more entertaining response would have been for Britain to fund a big-budget revenge epic, in which a small platoon of foppish yet plucky Brits wanders over to Vietnam in 1968, defeats the Viet-Cong, and wins the war. Moreover, it would be nearly as accurate as U-571 was.

This is exactly how I feel as a Brit about UK complaints that Hollywood movies don't give the UK/Commonwealth enough credit for what we did during the war: if we want those stories told properly we have to tell them ourselves. Thankfully in recent years we've started to do that a bit - in the past it was seen as just not OK for some reason to show Britain as ever having done anything heroic.

As far as recent war movies go, Dunkirk was a legitimately good movie. For bad, well, Fury just wasn't very good, which was a crying shame given what it could have been like (i.e., like Battle of Britain but with tanks) - they should have dialled down the nihilism in the script and revised that whole ridiculous last scene where a single tank takes out a company of Volkssturm in the dark. I haven't seen 1917 but am looking forward to catching it when I get a chance.
ORIGINAL: warspite1

Gallipoli

Eh...stop right there. Gallipoli, just like certain other Mel Gibson movies (particularly the ridiculous Patriot but also Braveheart even if I like the battle-scenes), play very fast and loose with the facts and given other things Gibson has done it's not hard to see why.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

ORIGINAL: FOARP

....if we want those stories told properly we have to tell them ourselves.
warspite1

I agree, we can't expect others to spend their money telling others about us. The world doesn't work that way and they have their own stories to tell.

Sadly though, three things tend to get in the way:

1. There rarely seems to be the money around to tell 'our side'
2. Even if there is, what is 'our side'? I find that sometimes when stories that affect us are made they are not necessarily how I personally think they should be told
3. The reality is that a film has to be successful in the States or the economics don't work. So American characters are required to 'sell the film'.

The worst example I can recall of idiots moaning about a perceived slight was when Saving Private Ryan came out. An American story about an American rule involving American servicemen that happened to be set with D-Day as a background. And these morons were moaning the Britsh were being 'written out'. You couldn't make it up....[8|]
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

ORIGINAL: FOARP

Eh...stop right there. Gallipoli, just like certain other Mel Gibson movies (particularly the ridiculous Patriot but also Braveheart even if I like the battle-scenes), play very fast and loose with the facts and given other things Gibson has done it's not hard to see why.
warspite1

Gallipoli was from an acting/cast point of view, from a screen play point of view, from a war film-specific point of view, from a music point of view (Albinoni meets Jean-Michel Jarre) and above all, from an emotional roller-coaster point of view, one very fine film.

Yes, the gloss was taken off the film slightly by Rupert Murdoch's insistence on an anti-British sentiment, but that, sadly, is part and parcel of the whole Gallipoli thing and the stupid myths that have built up around it in certain uneducated quarters. I ignore that load of old toss and just enjoy the film for what it is. If I got upset at every brickbat the movie industry likes to throw at the British then I wouldn't watch very much - and let's be honest, sometimes we deserve it [;)]
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by FOARP »

ORIGINAL: warspite1

ORIGINAL: FOARP

....if we want those stories told properly we have to tell them ourselves.
warspite1

I agree, we can't expect others to spend their money telling others about us. The world doesn't work that way and they have their own stories to tell.

Sadly though, three things tend to get in the way:

1. There rarely seems to be the money around to tell 'our side'
2. Even if there is, what is 'our side'? I find that sometimes when stories that affect us are made they are not necessarily how I personally think they should be told
3. The reality is that a film has to be successful in the States or the economics don't work. So American characters are required to 'sell the film'.

The worst example I can recall of idiots moaning about a perceived slight was when Saving Private Ryan came out. An American story about an American rule involving American servicemen that happened to be set with D-Day as a background. And these morons were moaning the Britsh were being 'written out'. You couldn't make it up....[8|]

I remember the thing about Saving Private Ryan and it truly was silly: yeah, the film didn't tell the story of the British sailors who landed the US troops on the beach... because the film wasn't about them?

Also: NEWS FLASH - US troops didn't think much of General Montgomery!?!? I mean, how dare they represent accurately the opinions of low-level US troops about the British general who led them! It's almost like people tend to prefer leadership from their own country or something, and anyway grumble about their leaders in every situation where they are allowed to do so and not brainwashed.

Dunkirk was a success in the US despite not having any American characters in it so maybe this is changing a bit.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

ORIGINAL: FOARP

Also: NEWS FLASH - US troops didn't think much of General Montgomery!?!?
warspite1

I've been on these forums for well over 10 years and you are seriously telling me that Americans don't have much time for Monty?? Really? Well they kept those feelings well hidden [:)][:D][;)][:D]
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by demyansk »

How about Where Eagles Dare
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Where_Eagles_Dare

It's a novel but it has my favorite actor Clint Eastwood.

Best - tough one, I watched the movie Katyn with subtitles and it's about the massacre of the Polish elite by USSR. Very chilling descriptions.

I also liked the movie with James Mason playing Rommel.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Zorch »

I can't believe no one has mentioned this classic.

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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

ORIGINAL: Zorch

I can't believe no one has mentioned this classic.

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warspite1

I did mention the Dany-and-Rafe-go-porking-nurses show in post 7. Great Film.


Rafe: Not anxious to die sir, just anxious to matter.

Danny: I think World War II just started.

Evelyn: Do you ever wonder if this war's going to catch up with us?


Brilliant!!
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Zorch »

ORIGINAL: warspite1

ORIGINAL: Zorch

I can't believe no one has mentioned this classic.

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warspite1

I did mention the Dany-and-Rafe-go-porking-nurses show in post 7. Great Film.


Rafe: Not anxious to die sir, just anxious to matter.

Danny: I think World War II just started.

Evelyn: Do you ever wonder if this war's going to catch up with us?


Brilliant!!
My bad. [:(]

I wonder how many young people realize how ahistorical it is.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

ORIGINAL: Zorch

ORIGINAL: warspite1

ORIGINAL: Zorch

I can't believe no one has mentioned this classic.

Image
warspite1

I did mention the Dany-and-Rafe-go-porking-nurses show in post 7. Great Film.


Rafe: Not anxious to die sir, just anxious to matter.

Danny: I think World War II just started.

Evelyn: Do you ever wonder if this war's going to catch up with us?


Brilliant!!
My bad. [:(]

I wonder how many young people realize how ahistorical it is.
warspite1

Ahistorical? Which bit? Seemed pretty true to life to me.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by warspite1 »

Dany: I've got three observations Cap

Baldwin: Sure, shoot hotshot

Dany: Firstly, why are we standing on a nuclear aircraft carrier?

Baldwin: Dunno.... next

Dany: Secondly, can you not stand like that please Captain. I am getting strangely aroused here.

Baldwin: Er....

Dany: Thir.....

Rafe: Never mind that old cobblers, what time are the nurses coming on board?


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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by MrsWargamer »

I won't mention a best or worst, often I'm just offering opinion and little fact.

I will mention I think it is sad, how Hollywood routinely, if not continuously insults Joe Public by just making it plain, they don't think Joe Public would know any better, if not outright calling Joe Public STUPID.

They list consultants, who clearly were paid, but not listened to.
In an age of awesome CGI, they still can't get the visuals accurate. All they need is someone that makes models to tell them what was and wasn't used and precisely what it looked like. Models makers can be extremely obsessed with accuracy.

In an age of easy free access to anything via the internet, I don't need covid to make me avoid a theatre. I'm not paying to watch insulting films.
I watched Midway in my living room. I watched Greyhound in my living room. If you want incredible videos, I suggest checking out Dust, on YouTube (not military, just saying, you don't need millions to make great films). Good or bad, I'm not risking my scarse funds in a theatre. The only people getting paid to let me watch movies, is my internet provider.
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RE: Best or Worst War Movies of All Time

Post by Platoonist »

ORIGINAL: FOARP
I haven't seen 1917 but am looking forward to catching it when I get a chance.

An excellent movie in my humble opinion. The entire film is done in one long tracking shot. Some thought it gimmicky, I found it fascinating and it drew me in.

However, I'll probably always remember it as the last film I saw at an actual cinema before the virus took over the world.
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