F. Start of 2nd World War(1938 to 1942)

These are the movies which covered the period immediately preceding the Second World War, until the early portions of the actual conflict.
View:
Log in to copy items to your own lists.
1.
Being Julia (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Set in '30s London, the film involves stage actors and their experiences with love and revenge. (104 mins.)
Director: István Szabó
 
2.
Brief Encounter (1945)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Meeting a stranger in a railway station, a woman is tempted to cheat on her husband. (86 mins.)
Director: David Lean
 
3.
Double Indemnity (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
An insurance representative lets himself be talked into a murder/insurance fraud scheme that arouses an insurance investigator's suspicions. (107 mins.)
Director: Billy Wilder
 
4.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
When Dr. Henry Jones Sr. suddenly goes missing while pursuing the Holy Grail, eminent archaeologist Indiana Jones must follow in his father's footsteps and stop the Nazis. (127 mins.)
 
5.
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A naive man is appointed to fill a vacancy in the United States Senate. His plans promptly collide with political corruption, but he doesn't back down. (129 mins.)
Director: Frank Capra
 
6.
National Velvet (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A jaded former jockey helps a young girl prepare a wild but gifted horse for England's Grand National Sweepstakes. (123 mins.)
Director: Clarence Brown
 
7.
The Sound of Music (1965)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A woman leaves an Austrian convent to become a governess to the children of a Naval officer widower. (174 mins.)
Director: Robert Wise
 
8.
Australia (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Set in northern Australia before World War II, an English aristocrat who inherits a sprawling ranch reluctantly pacts with a stock-man in order to protect her new property from a takeover plot. As the pair drive 2,000 head of cattle over unforgiving landscape, they experience the bombing of Darwin, Australia, by Japanese forces firsthand. (165 mins.)
Director: Baz Luhrmann
 
9.
His Girl Friday (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A newspaper editor uses every trick in the book to keep his ace reporter ex-wife from remarrying. (92 mins.)
Director: Howard Hawks
 
10.
Hope and Glory (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A semi-autobiographical project by John Boorman about a nine year old boy called Bill as he grows up in London during the blitz of World War 2... (113 mins.)
Director: John Boorman
 
11.
How Green Was My Valley (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
At the turn of the century in a Welsh mining village, the Morgans, he stern, she gentle, raise coal-mining sons and hope their youngest will find a better life. (118 mins.)
Director: John Ford
 
12.
Karol: A Man Who Became Pope (2005 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
The life of the pope John-Paul II, from his youth as a writer, actor, and athlete in war-torn occupied Poland to his election as Pope at the age of 58. (186 mins.)
 
13.
Life Is Beautiful (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
When an open-minded Jewish librarian and his son become victims of the Holocaust, he uses a perfect mixture of will, humor and imagination to protect his son from the dangers around their camp. (116 mins.)
Director: Roberto Benigni
 
14.
Rebecca (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A self-conscious bride is tormented by the memory of her husband's dead first wife. (130 mins.)
 
15.
Schindler's List (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  
In Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazis. (195 mins.)
 
16.
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
After New York City receives a series of attacks from giant flying robots, a reporter teams up with a pilot in search of their origin, as well as the reason for the disappearances of famous scientists around the world. (106 mins.)
Director: Kerry Conran
 
17.
Sullivan's Travels (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A director of escapist films goes on the road as a hobo to learn about life, which gives him a rude awakening. (90 mins.)
Director: Preston Sturges
 
18.
The Philadelphia Story (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
When a rich woman's ex-husband and a tabloid-type reporter turn up just before her planned remarriage, she begins to learn the truth about herself. (112 mins.)
Director: George Cukor
 
19.
The Pianist (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A Polish Jewish musician struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw ghetto of World War II. (150 mins.)
Director: Roman Polanski
 
20.
The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Two employees at a gift shop can barely stand one another, without realizing that they're falling in love through the post as each other's anonymous pen pal. (99 mins.)
Director: Ernst Lubitsch
 
21.
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Dorothy Gale is swept away to a magical land in a tornado and embarks on a quest to see the Wizard who can help her return home. (102 mins.)
Director: Victor Fleming
 
22.
Casablanca (1942)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
In Casablanca, Morocco in December 1941, a cynical American expatriate meets a former lover, with unforeseen complications. (102 mins.)
Director: Michael Curtiz
 
23.
Mrs. Miniver (1942)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A British family struggles to survive the first months of World War II. (134 mins.)
Director: William Wyler
 
24.
The Lost Weekend (1945)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
The desperate life of a chronic alcoholic is followed through a four day drinking bout. (101 mins.)
Director: Billy Wilder
 
25.
The Notebook (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A poor and passionate young man falls in love with a rich young woman and gives her a sense of freedom. They soon are separated by their social differences. (123 mins.)
Director: Nick Cassavetes
 
26.
To Have and Have Not (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
During WWII, American expatriate Harry Morgan helps transport a Free French Resistance leader and his beautiful wife to Martinique while romancing a sexy lounge singer. (100 mins.)
Director: Howard Hawks
 
27.
Air Force (1943)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The crew of an Air Force bomber arrives in Pearl Harbor in the aftermath of the Japanese attack and is sent on to Manila to help with the defense of the Philippines. (124 mins.)
Director: Howard Hawks
 
28.
Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A drama critic learns on his wedding day that his beloved maiden aunts are homicidal maniacs, and that insanity runs in his family. (118 mins.)
Director: Frank Capra
 
29.
Cadillac Records (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Chronicles the rise of Chess Records and its recording artists. (109 mins.)
Director: Darnell Martin
 
30.
Closing the Ring (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A young man searches for the proper owner of a ring that belonged to a U.S. World War II bomber gunner who crashed in Belfast, Northern Ireland on June 1, 1944. (118 mins.)
 
31.
From Here to Eternity (1953)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
In Hawaii in 1941, a private is cruelly punished for not boxing on his unit's team, while his captain's wife and second-in-command are falling in love. (118 mins.)
Director: Fred Zinnemann
 
32.
Inglourious Basterds (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
In Nazi-occupied France during World War II, a plan to assassinate Nazi leaders by a group of Jewish U.S. soldiers coincides with a theatre owner's vengeful plans for the same. (153 mins.)
 
33.
Pearl Harbor (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Pearl Harbor follows the story of two best friends, Rafe and Danny, and their love lives as they go off to join the war. (183 mins.)
Director: Michael Bay
 
34.
Raging Bull (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
An emotionally self-destructive boxer's journey through life, as the violence and temper that leads him to the top in the ring destroys his life outside it. (129 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
 
35.
The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
After settling his differences with a Japanese PoW camp commander, a British colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors - while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it. (161 mins.)
Director: David Lean
 
36.
The Maltese Falcon (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A private detective takes on a case that involves him with three eccentric criminals, a gorgeous liar, and their quest for a priceless statuette. (100 mins.)
Director: John Huston
 
37.
The Way Back (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Siberian gulag escapees travel 4,000 miles by foot to freedom in India. (133 mins.)
Director: Peter Weir
 
38.
Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A dramatization of the Japanese attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor and the series of American blunders that allowed it to happen. (144 mins.)
 
39.
A Man Escaped (1956)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Captured French Resistance fighter Andre Devigny awaits a certain death sentence for espionage in a stark Nazi prison... (99 mins.)
Director: Robert Bresson
 
40.
Battle of the Coral Sea (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
In 1942 submarine commander Jeff Conway secretly photographs Japanese aircraft carriers in the Coral Sea but his submarine is damaged and he's forced to surrender. (86 mins.)
Director: Paul Wendkos
 
41.
Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Steve Rogers, a rejected military soldier transforms into Captain America after taking a dose of a "Super-Soldier serum". But being Captain America comes at a price as he attempts to take down a war monger and a terrorist organization. (124 mins.)
Director: Joe Johnston
 
42.
Das Boot (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
The claustrophobic world of a WWII German U-boat; boredom, filth, and sheer terror. (149 mins.)
 
43.
Enemy at the Gates (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A Russian and a German sniper play a game of cat-and-mouse during the Battle of Stalingrad. (131 mins.)
 
44.
Entrusted (2003 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Hoping to entrap Maria von Gall, who runs a courageous underground railroad for Jews in France, the Nazis kidnap her son Thomas... (130 mins.)
 
45.
MacArthur (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
The story of General of the Army Douglas MacArthur, Supreme Allied Commander during World War II and United Nations Commander for the Korean War... (130 mins.)
Director: Joseph Sargent
 
46.
Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A young woman discovers her visiting "Uncle Charlie" may not be the man he seems to be. (108 mins.)
 
47.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Set during World War II, a story seen through the innocent eyes of Bruno, the eight-year-old son of the commandant at a concentration camp, whose forbidden friendship with a Jewish boy on the other side of the camp fence has startling and unexpected consequences. (94 mins.)
Director: Mark Herman
 
48.
The Diary of Anne Frank (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Harrowing story of a young Jewish girl who, with her family and their friends, is forced into hiding in an attic in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam. (180 mins.)
Director: George Stevens
 
49.
The Nun's Story (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
After leaving a wealthy Belgian family to become a nun, Sister Luke struggles with her devotion to her vows during crisis, disappointment, and World War II. (149 mins.)
Director: Fred Zinnemann
 
50.
The Thin Red Line (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Terrence Malick's adaptation of James Jones' autobiographical 1962 novel, focusing on the conflict at Guadalcanal during the second World War. (170 mins.)
Director: Terrence Malick