Akvilon's Must watch: Recent World War 2 period movies

Movies about world war 2 period and all related to it that you should watch to get the full picture.
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1.
Downfall (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Traudl Junge, the final secretary for Adolf Hitler, tells of the Nazi dictator's final days in his Berlin bunker at the end of WWII. (156 mins.)
“ Absolute masterpiece this movie is. Astounding performance by all actors, especially actor that plays Hitler. Great scenes of war, bunkers, devastating claustrophobia and hopelessness, as Berlin is surrounded. Watch without dubbing. ” - akvilonn
 
2.
Letters from Iwo Jima (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
The story of the battle of Iwo Jima between the United States and Imperial Japan during World War II, as told from the perspective of the Japanese who fought it. (141 mins.)
Director: Clint Eastwood
“ Well, Clint did it again. Totally great production quality and nailed performance, feel, and entertainment. Must watch. From peacefulness of the island to the total devastation and hopelessness. ” - akvilonn
 
3.
Band of Brothers (2001 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.5/10 X  
The story of Easy Company of the US Army 101st Airborne division and their mission in WWII Europe from Operation Overlord through V-J Day. (594 mins.)
“ Another masterpiece about war. Watch every film in the series - it will give you the exact idea what it was like. Spielberg didn't disappoint. ” - akvilonn
 
4.
Hitler: The Rise of Evil (2003 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A unique slant, profiling the life of Adolf Hitler as a child and his rise through the ranks of the National German Workers' Party prior to World War II. (130 mins.)
“ This is a great TV adaptation, done with good budget and good actors. Some nice war scenes too. Hitler's character is exposed, from his early years to the rise to the power. Actor played Hitler very masterfully, this 2 part movie definitely deserves a watch. ” - akvilonn
 
5.
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
“ Good movie, good and realistic war scenes. Film gives you the "I want to live and i love life" feel and at the same time "death is terrible". Price of life is cheap. Japanese vs marines. ” - akvilonn
 
6.
Saving Private Ryan (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
Following the Normandy Landings, a group of U.S. soldiers go behind enemy lines to retrieve a paratrooper whose brothers have been killed in action. (169 mins.)
“ Everyone knows this one. Must watch if never seen it. ” - akvilonn
 
7.
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.)
“ German's submariner perspective on war, Das Boot gives you claustrophobia and spills on you the exact and realistic life of a German U-boater during war. Absolute masterpiece. ” - akvilonn
 
8.
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
“ Too much love story, but this movie deserves a good watch. Huge budget, good special effects, and romantic tale builds up the anticipation to the final scenes of the attack. Too bad it was overdone too much but still a solid watch. ” - akvilonn
 
9.
City of Life and Death (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
In 1937, Japan occupied Nanjing, the Chinese capital. There was a battle and subsequent atrocities against the inhabitants, especially those who took refuge in the International Security Zone. (132 mins.)
Director: Chuan Lu
“ You haven't seen a movie like this, very good take on the Nanking massacre by Japanese. Good production. ” - akvilonn
 
10.
Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A drama about the fate of brothers forced to fight in the Korean War. (140 mins.)
Director: Je-gyu Kang
 
11.
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.)
“ A classic film about the battle of Stalingrad and the sniper war. Very nice cinematics and setting, as well as good storyline make you forget about some inaccuracies and Russians and Germans speaking English. ” - akvilonn
 
12.
Flags of Our Fathers (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
The life stories of the six men who raised the flag at The Battle of Iwo Jima, a turning point in WWII. (135 mins.)
Director: Clint Eastwood
“ An inverse story of "Letters from Iwo Jima" now told from the American soldier's perspective. Great movie, though first one I consider to be better. ” - akvilonn
 
13.
Miracle at St. Anna (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Set in 1944 Italy, the story of four black American soldiers who get trapped in a Tuscan village during WWII. (160 mins.)
Director: Spike Lee
“ Good film in the spirit of realism and band of brothers. Good action sequences and actors do very well. Storyline does not disappoint. ” - akvilonn
 
14.
Stalingrad (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A depiction of the brutal battle of Stalingrad, the Third Reich's 'high water mark', as seen through... (134 mins.)
“ A movie from a perspective of a German soldier. Very good stuff. We follow German soldiers full of triumph and morale in the early years of war, to the harsh reality when they are thrown into the battle of Stalingrad. ” - akvilonn
 
15.
Leningrad (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
When in 1941 Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union, their troops quickly besieged Leningrad. Foreign journalists are evacuated but one of them... (110 mins.)
“ This movie deserves much better score here. Some known actors,
as well as good characterization of Russians, realistic and interesting story, some battle scenes and a little above average effects. ” - akvilonn
 
16.
The Front Line (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A drama centered on the Korean War's final battle that will determine the border between north and south. (133 mins.)
Director: Hun Jang
 
17.
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
“ Everyone knows this movie, very good re-watch value, as well as good production quality and realism, on top of a great story. ” - akvilonn
 
18.
71: Into the Fire (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
The story of student-soldiers trying to protect a middle school during the early days of the Korean War. (120 mins.)
Director: John H. Lee
“ Recent movies out of Asia about the war show realism, good production quality, good effects and good actors. This one is one of them, a very good watch. ” - akvilonn
 
19.
Come and See (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
After finding an old rifle, a young boy joins the Soviet resistance movement against ruthless German forces and experiences the horrors of World War II. (142 mins.)
Director: E. Klimov
“ A pressing and maniacal angle at the war in Russia and Nazi's war crimes there. Might not be for everyone, but this film is considered a great work. ” - akvilonn
 
20.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Set during WWII, a story seen through the innocent eyes of Bruno, the eight-year-old son of the commandant at a German 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
“ Good movie, closed setting of a concentration camp and a boy who lives close by - the son of a Nazi camp director. ” - akvilonn
 
21.
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
“ Very enjoyable movie, and long too. Known actors here, different settings, good play effort to depict Russian characters. Escaping GULAG camp and a long way home... ” - akvilonn
 
22.
Schindler's List (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  
In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans. (195 mins.)
“ Classic must see masterpiece. If you havent seen this you are probably living on Madagascar or any of the two poles. ” - akvilonn
 
23.
Max Manus: Man of War (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The true story about one of the most brilliant saboteurs during World War II and his battle to overcome his inner demons. (118 mins.)
“ Max Manus, the man who jumped out of a window! Absolutely great Norwegian movie, good acting, awesome realism and great story - from real life. Must see, about Norwegian resistance. ” - akvilonn
 
24.
Valkyrie (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A dramatization of the 20 July assassination and political coup plot by desperate renegade German Army officers against Hitler during World War II. (121 mins.)
Director: Bryan Singer
“ We know the plot of this one, nevertheless it is still interesting to watch even we know the ending. High budget, good costumes and tolerable realism as well as Tom's acting. ” - akvilonn
 
25.
Sophie Scholl: The Final Days (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A dramatization of the final days of Sophie Scholl, one of the most famous members of the German World War II anti-Nazi resistance movement, The White Rose. (120 mins.)
Director: Marc Rothemund
“ Very realistic German movie about Sophie Scholl, in fact this is the best movie about her. Totally deserves a watch, and a courage of one woman against the regime. ” - akvilonn
 
26.
The Great Raid (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Taking place towards the end of WWII, 500 American Soldiers have been entrapped in a camp for 3 years. Beginning to give up hope they will ever be rescued, a group of Rangers goes on a dangerous mission to try and save them. (132 mins.)
Director: John Dahl
 
27.
Devils on the Doorstep (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
During the Japanese occupation of China, two prisoners are dumped in a peasant's home in a small town... (139 mins.)
Director: Wen Jiang
 
28.
U-571 (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A German submarine is boarded by disguised American submariners trying to capture their Enigma cipher machine. (116 mins.)
Director: Jonathan Mostow
“ Good submarine movie, and as always Americans are smarter and better than Germans at anything marine. Enjoyable and entertaining, good production quality and effects. Actors act good but not great. ” - akvilonn
 
29.
Saints and Soldiers (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Four American soldiers and one Brit fighting in Europe during World War II struggle to return to Allied territory after being separated from U.S. forces during the historic Malmedy Massacre. (90 mins.)
Director: Ryan Little
“ Battle of the Bulge. Realistic and enjoyable movie, fighting scenes in best traditions of band of brothers. Entertaining story and a very good watch. ” - akvilonn
 
30.
Days of Glory (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
During WWII, four North African men enlist in the French army to liberate that country from Nazi oppression, and to fight French discrimination. (128 mins.)
 
31.
Katyn (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
An examination of the Soviet slaughter of thousands of Polish officers and citizens in the Katyn forest in 1940. (122 mins.)
Director: Andrzej Wajda
“ Absolutely astounding film comes from Poland, starting from Hitler's invasion of Poland to final order of Stalin to execute Polish officers in Katyn. Great actors and production quality. ” - akvilonn
 
32.
Defiance (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Jewish brothers in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe escape into the Belarussian forests, where they join Russian resistance fighters and endeavor to build a village in order to protect themselves and about 1,000 Jewish non-combatants. (137 mins.)
Director: Edward Zwick
“ Well, a Hollywood take on the situation. Bunch of men take control of the condemned and desperate amid the holocaust. Good acting, very nice perceptive and forest scenes. Production quality is ok. ” - akvilonn
 
33.
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
“ It is a very tale-like movie. It certainly is for a wider audience. Drama, tears and smiles are all here. Awesome story. You can watch it with a family even. No fighting, no special effects, but the way the movie is told and unfolds - very good watch. ” - akvilonn
 
34.
Europa Europa (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A boy in Nazi Germany, trying to conceal that he is Jewish, joins the Hitler Youth. (112 mins.)
“ We follow a Jewish boy in Nazi Germany, who manages to be perceived as Aryan to escape death. ” - akvilonn
 
35.
As Far as My Feet Will Carry Me (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
At the end of WW2, a German POW doing hard labor in the Soviet Gulag escapes from his Siberian camp to return to Germany but he's pursued by a Soviet NKVD officer. (158 mins.)
Director: Hardy Martins
“ This is a great movie, little known under its English title. It's about German prisoner of war escaping from Siberia's soviet concentration camp after the war. Watch it, you should not be disappointed. Great story of survival and maybe you will have a tear at the end. ” - akvilonn
 
36.
My Way (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
In World War II-era Korea, rival runners, one Korean (Jang Dong-gun) and one Japanese (Joe Odagiri), go to war together against the Soviets. (137 mins.)
Director: Je-gyu Kang
“ This is a good movie about Japanese occupation of Korea, little known under this English title. Despite having some major inaccuracies and plot holes, movie takes your characters from pre-war Korea to the beach of Normandy before the ally invasion in 1944. Has great character development ” - akvilonn
 
37.
The Pacific (2010 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
The intertwined stories of three Marines during America's battle with the Japanese in the Pacific during World War II. (530 mins.)
“ Although it is considered as a follow-up series to band of brothers, these series fall short a bit. Still great production quality and battle realism, though it is overdone too much in my opinion. ” - akvilonn
 
38.
Fortress of War (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A war drama set during the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, in which Soviet troops held on to a border stronghold for nine days. (138 mins.)
Director: Aleksandr Kott
“ This Russian movie deserves a look. Nicely done and with good budget and actors this movie depicts the famous defense of Brest fortress by Russian garrison in 1941. Good stuff. ” - akvilonn
 
39.
Flame and Citron (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A drama centered on two fighters in the Holger Danske World War II resistance group. (130 mins.)
“ Love the Citron lead actor. Realistic, sometimes prolonged scenes, but deserves a good watch and a good story. Resistance to equal Max Manus. ” - akvilonn
 
40.
Ghetto (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In 1942, in Vilnius, the Nazi annihilate 55,000 Jews and squeeze the 15,000 survivors in a seven blocks ghetto... (110 mins.)
Director: Audrius Juzenas
“ Well, below average acting, from this Lithuanian holocaust drama, but story is watchable, they try to go for some brutal-dramatic scenes.. All actors somehow speak accented English too. This movie just tries to get a message across. ” - akvilonn
 
41.
Empire of the Sun (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A young English boy struggles to survive under Japanese occupation during World War II. (153 mins.)
“ Who does not know this classic. An American boy in the Japanese internment camp smarts up and tries to survive the whole ordeal, while movie covers the horrors of the imprisonment. A bit softer on realism as current movies but its a great tale and story. A masterpiece for its time. ” - akvilonn
 
42.
There Be Dragons (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
Arising out of the horror of the Spanish Civil War, a candidate for canonization is investigated by a journalist who discovers his own estranged father had a deep, dark and devastating connection to the saint's life. (122 mins.)
Director: Roland Joffé
“ This movie needs a much better score here. Set during Spanish Civil War, this movie offers very good story and actors. ” - akvilonn
 
43.
Amen. (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
During WWII SS officer Kurt Gerstein tries to inform Pope Pius XII about Jews being sent to extermination camps. Young Jesuit priest Riccardo Fontana helps him in the difficult mission to inform the world. (132 mins.)
Director: Costa-Gavras
 
44.
The Counterfeiters (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
The story of the Operation Bernhard, the largest counterfeiting operation in history, carried out by Germany during WWII. (98 mins.)
 
45.
Fateless (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
14-year-old György's life is torn apart in World War II Hungary as he is sent to a concentration camp where he is forced to become a man, and learns to find happiness in the midst of hatred, and what it really means to be Jewish. (140 mins.)
Director: Lajos Koltai
“ Good watch, very realistic and good production value. ” - akvilonn
 
46.
Bastards (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
A "Hitlerjugend" kind of story, set in the Soviet Union during the Second World War, based on a fictitious... (97 mins.)
“ A Russian movie, deserves a one time watch.
Bunch of street kids with criminal past are picked up and made into a sabotage unit to fight Germans. Interesting characters and story development, not a huge budget. ” - akvilonn
 
47.
A Woman in Berlin (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A woman tries to survive the invasion of Berlin by the Soviet troops during the last days of World War II. (131 mins.)
“ Post war Berlin, occupied by Russians. Very, very realistic drama. Will work well to watch for men and especially for women. ” - akvilonn
 
48.
Conspiracy (2001 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A dramatic recreation of the Wannsee Conference where the Nazi Final Solution phase of the Holocaust was devised. (96 mins.)
Director: Frank Pierson
“ Made for TV movie All Germans speak English and they plot to kill a lot of people. Setting is a big house where they discuss doing it, and be ready for a lot of "Heil Hitler" at the beginning. Still entertaining interesting to find out how the solution started. ” - akvilonn
 
49.
Au Revoir Les Enfants (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A French boarding school run by priests seems to be a haven from World War II until a new student arrives. He becomes the roommate of top student in his class. Rivals at first, the roommates form a bond and share a secret. (104 mins.)
Director: Louis Malle
 
50.
The Sun (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Third part in Aleksandr Sokurov's quadrilogy of Power, following Moloch and Taurus, focuses on Japanese Emperor Hirohito and Japan's defeat in World War II when he is finally confronted by General Douglas MacArthur who offers him to accept a diplomatic defeat for survival. (110 mins.)
“ A take on Japans last emperor and the final years of war. More of a character movie and less of a war. Still it might be a very good watch for people who like this type of biopic. ” - akvilonn
 
51.
To End All Wars (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A true story about four Allied POWs who endure harsh treatment from their Japanese captors during World... (125 mins.)
 
52.
Windtalkers (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Two U.S. Marines in WWII are assigned to protect Navajo Marines who use their native language as an unbreakable radio cypher. (134 mins.)
Director: John Woo
“ An OK movie to watch. Not overly superb but still entertaining. ” - akvilonn
 
53.
Army of Crime (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
The poet Missak Manouchian leads a mixed bag of youngsters and immigrants in a clandestine battle against the Nazi occupation... (139 mins.)
“ Running around and assassinating Nazis. Realistic, good story and effort was put into this movie. Great acting and action scenes. You should not be bored, except for few parts. ” - akvilonn
 
54.
The Cuckoo (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
The beauty of this movie is that you, as the reader of the subtitles, are the only one who knows what is going on. The woman and the two men all speak different languages. It is a comedy of errors up until the end. (99 mins.)
“ Great watch, isolated from war or battle scenes, this is more of a character interaction movie. Realism - almost top notch. Three main characters are each adorable and awesome, storyline and scenery are great. End of war, 1945, three different characters speak different languages - awesome. Hope you got it without dubbing and with good subtitles. Russian character is being dumb and under-acting on purpose though. ” - akvilonn