War and Anti-War Films

"War and Anti-War Films" often acknowledge the horror and heartbreak of war, letting the actual combat fighting or conflict (against nations or humankind) provide the primary plot or background for the action of the film. Typical elements in the action-oriented war plots include POW camp experiences and escapes, submarine warfare, espionage, personal heroism, "war is hell" brutalities, air dogfights, tough trench/infantry experiences, or male-bonding buddy adventures during wartime. Themes explored in war films include combat, survivor and escape stories, tales of gallant sacrifice and struggle, studies of the futility and inhumanity of battle, the effects of war on society, and intelligent and profound explorations of the moral and human issues. Listed below are all the very best of this genre. Scroll yer heart out....

Come and See (1985)

Director: Elem Klimov
Starring: Alexei Kravchenko, Olga Mironova, Vladas Bagdonas

The thoroughly mesmerising chronicle of the initiation of a young teen (impressively played by Alexei Kravchenko) into the horror and insanity of war,... Read more

Foyle's War: Series 1 (2002)

Director: Jeremy Silberston
Starring: Charles Dance, Edward Fox, Robert Hardy, Michael Kitchen, Anthony Howell, Julian...

Directed by Jeremy Silberston, this provocative series is a fusion of historical drama and mystery, focusing on the effects of World War II on the vil... Read more

Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Director: Isao Takahata

In the aftermath of a World War II bombing, two orphaned children struggle to survive in the Japanese countryside. To Seita and his four-year-old sist... Read more

Foyle's War: Series 3 (2004)

Director: Gavin Millar, Jeremy Silberston
Starring: Michael Kitchen, Anthony Howell, Julian Ovenden, Honeysuckle Weeks

In early 1941, Foyle is again pursuing a position that will contribute more to the war effort, but he is distracted by a local murder in 'The French D... Read more

Utu (1983)

Director: Geoff Murphy
Starring: Anzac Wallace, Bruno Lawrence, Tim Elliott

Visually beautiful film set in 1870's New Zealand. After the family and village of a Maori tribesman is wiped out in a senseless raid, the tribesman,... Read more

Notorious (1946)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Starring: Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains, Cary Grant

In this brilliant allegory of love and betrayal, Hitchcock fuses two of his favourite elements: suspense and romance. A beautiful woman with a tainted... Read more

Apocalypse Now (1979)

Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Starring: Sam Bottoms, Robert Duvall, Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Laurence Fishburne, Har...

A flawed masterpiece, intended as the definitive Vietnam film, based on Joseph Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'. With Martin Sheen, Robert Duvall, Dennis... Read more

Life is Beautiful (1998)

Director: Roberto Benigni
Starring: Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi

Receiving Oscars for Best Foreign Language Film and Best Actor, Roberto Benigni's celebrated and popular film boldly blends a sentimental and humourou... Read more

Foyle's War: Series 2 (2003)

Director: Giles Foster, Jeremy Silberston
Starring: Michael Kitchen, Anthony Howell, Julian Ovenden, Honeysuckle Weeks

As war rages over Europe Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle (Michael Kitchen), is battling crime on the homefront. All four episodes fr... Read more

Battle Of Britain (1969)

Director: Guy Hamilton
Starring: Michael Caine, Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, Robert Shaw, Trevor Howard...

Featuring a stellar cast, including Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, Michael Redgrave, Robert Shaw and Susannah Yo... Read more