American History Filmsby LitCritChas | created - 18 Dec 2012 | updated - 31 Jul 2013 | Public
A list of films spanning American History of all periods, including military, social, and cultural history.
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1. Squanto: A Warrior's Tale (1994)
PG | 102 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama
Historically inaccurate chronicle of Squanto's life prior to and including the arrival of the "Mayflower" in 1620.
Votes: 946 | Gross: $3.34M
2. The New World (2005)
PG-13 | 135 min | Biography, Drama, History
The story of the English exploration of Virginia, and of the changing world and loves of Pocahontas.
Votes: 75,164 | Gross: $12.71M
Animated Hero Classics (1991–2005)
William Bradford: The First Thanksgiving
30 min | Animation
In 1620, John Carver, William Bradford, Captain Standish and 99 pilgrims set sail on the Mayflower toward America in search of religious freedom. As disease and storms hit they are almost ... See full summary »
6. Courageous Mr. Penn (1942)
Approved | 78 min | Drama
William Penn's heroic deeds, on the European and American continents, are told in this portrait of the founding father of both the Quakers and the Pennsylvania colony. Based on C.E. Vulliamy's biography "William Penn."
American Playhouse (1981– )
Three Sovereigns for Sarah: Part I
171 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
This is a true story based on transcripts of the Salem Witch Trials. Sarah (Vanessa Redgrave) and her two sisters are put on trial for suspicion of witchcraft. While her sisters are burned ... See full synopsis »
9. Gospel of Liberty (1996 Video)
Not Rated | 37 min | Short, Drama
The revivals of the Great Awakening shook Britain's North American colonies from spiritual slumber during the 1730s-1750s. In Virginia it touched men and women whose spiritual needs had ... See full summary »
10. The Light in the Forest (1958)
Unrated | 83 min | Adventure, Drama, Family
A young white man who spent his whole life raised by Native Americans is sent to live with his birth family and must learn to fit in with people he was taught to hate.
11. Northwest Passage (1940)
Passed | 126 min | Adventure, Drama, History
Langdon Towne and Hunk Marriner join Major Rogers' Rangers as they wipe out an Indian village. They set out for Fort Wentworth, but when they arrive they find no soldiers and none of the supplies they expected.
13. Emissaries of Peace (2007 TV Movie)
During the turbulent era of the French and Indian War, the Cherokee people struggled to preserve their independence. Follow Cherokee leader Ostenaco and Virginian Henry Timberlake on their ... See full summary »
14. Allegheny Uprising (1939)
Not Rated | 81 min | Adventure, History, Western
In 1759, in Pennsylvania's Allegheny Valley, local settlers and Indian fighters try to persuade the British authorities to ban the trading of alcohol and arms with the marauding Indians.
17. Drums Along the Mohawk (1939)
Approved | 104 min | Drama, History, Romance
Newlyweds Gil and Lana Martin try to establish a farm in the Mohawk Valley but are menaced by Indians and Tories as the Revolutinary War begins.
Votes: 4,506 | Gross: $1.00M
18. Johnny Tremain (1957)
Approved | 80 min | Adventure, Family, History
Johnny Tremain is drawn into the Revolutionary War, and becomes a patriot fighting to free the colonies from England. Along the way he learns about life and about himself.
19. April Morning (1988 TV Movie)
Not Rated | 100 min | Drama, History, War
The "April Morning" here is the famous April 19, 1775 upon which the "Shot heard 'round the world" was fired, signaling the start of the American Revolution. Faithful to author Howard ... See full summary »
22. The Sybil Ludington Story (2012 TV Movie)
27 min | Biography
Based upon the true story of Sybil Ludington's ride to raise the militia during the American Revolution. In response to the British act of burning the town of Danbury, CT, Sybil heroically ... See full summary »
25. The Crossing (2000 TV Movie)
89 min | Biography, Drama, History
A dramatization of George Washington's perilous gamble of crossing the Delaware River and attacking the British forces at Trenton.
27. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (1999 TV Movie)
105 min | Adventure, Horror, Mystery
Ichabod Crane, a Yankee wanderer, arrives in Sleepy Hollow and becomes the new schoolmaster. He meets Katrina Van Tassel, and blissfully fantasizes about how can marry her, ultimately, ... See full summary »
29. Lewis & Clark: Great Journey West (2002)
TV-G | 42 min | Short, Adventure, Drama
This documentary chronicles the Lewis and Clark expedition and breathtaking landscape they crossed while searching for the northwest passage. (Source: Netflix)
30. The President's Lady (1953)
Approved | 96 min | Biography, Drama
The story of president Andrew Jackson from his early years, the film begins when he meets Rachel Donaldson Robards. The plot concentrates on the scandal concerning the legality of their marriage and how they overcame the difficulties.
31. Tecumseh: The Last Warrior (1995 TV Movie)
92 min | Western
This western began in 1812 when the settlers tried to take away more and more territories from the indians. Tecumseh, who is the leader of the Shawnee indians, tries to do something. He ... See full summary »
32. The Buccaneer (1958)
Approved | 119 min | Adventure, Drama, History
During the war of 1812, Louisiana buccaneer Jean Lafitte assists the Americans in defending New Orleans against the attacking British war fleet.
33. Battle of New Orleans (I)
Adventure | Announced
In 1814, Jean Lafitte, better known as the Prince of Pirates, is wanted by all US officials. The elusive Lafitte must convince himself and his buccaneers to embark on a rescue mission in order to save the country that hates him the most.
36. True Women (1997 TV Movie)
PG-13 | 183 min | Action, Adventure, Biography
True Women is a sweeping saga of love, war and adventure. Spanning five decades from the Texas Revolution through the Civil War, Reconstruction and beyond, True Women is the story of the ... See full summary »
37. Amistad (1997)
R | 155 min | Drama, History
In 1839, the revolt of Mende captives aboard a Spanish owned ship causes a major controversy in the United States when the ship is captured off the coast of Long Island. The courts must decide whether the Mende are slaves or legally free.
Votes: 61,300 | Gross: $44.18M
38. The Alamo (1960)
Unrated | 167 min | Adventure, Drama, History
In 1836, a small band of soldiers sacrifice their lives in hopeless combat against a massive army in order to prevent a tyrant from smashing the new Republic of Texas.
Votes: 11,893 | Gross: $17.26M
39. One Man's Hero (1999)
R | 121 min | Action, Drama, History
"One Man's Hero" tells the little-known story of the "St. Patrick's Battalion" or "San Patricios," a group of mostly Irish, and other immigrants of the Catholic religion, who deserted to ... See full summary »
Votes: 946 | Gross: $0.23M
41. They Died with Their Boots On (1941)
Approved | 140 min | Biography, Drama, Romance
A highly fictionalized account of the life of George Armstrong Custer from his arrival at West Point in 1857 to his death at the battle of the Little Big Horn in 1876. He has little ... See full summary »
43. Gods and Generals (2003)
PG-13 | 219 min | Biography, Drama, History
The rise and fall of legendary war hero Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson as he leads the Confederacy to great success against the Union from 1861 to 1863.
Votes: 13,900 | Gross: $12.87M
45. Cold Mountain (2003)
R | 154 min | Adventure, Drama, History
In the waning days of the American Civil War, a wounded soldier embarks on a perilous journey back home to Cold Mountain, North Carolina to reunite with his sweetheart.
Votes: 125,204 | Gross: $95.64M
46. Glory (1989)
R | 122 min | Biography, Drama, History
Robert Gould Shaw leads the U.S. Civil War's first all-black volunteer company, fighting prejudices from both his own Union Army, and the Confederates.
Votes: 107,918 | Gross: $26.83M
48. The Hunley (1999 TV Movie)
94 min | Action, Drama, History
During the siege of Charleston of 1864, Confederate submarine CSS Hunley becomes the first submersible to sink an enemy warship in wartime.
49. East of Eden (1981– )
480 min | Drama
Screen adaptation of John Steinbeck's novel which begins in the years after the American Civil War and, through the story of the Trask family, brings to light a struggle and conflict inherent in the human condition.
50. Fort Apache (1948)
Approved | 128 min | Action, Adventure, Western
At Fort Apache, an honorable and veteran war captain finds conflict when his regime is placed under the command of a young, glory hungry lieutenant colonel with no respect for the local Indian tribe.
51. Dances with Wolves (1990)
PG-13 | 181 min | Adventure, Drama, Western
Lieutenant John Dunbar, assigned to a remote western Civil War outpost, befriends wolves and Indians, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.
Votes: 203,097 | Gross: $184.21M
54. Washington Square (1997)
PG | 115 min | Drama, Romance
Catherine Sloper has found the man of her dreams in Morris Townsend, but her plans to marry him are strongly opposed by her father, who believes Townsend is only interested in his daughter ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,851 | Gross: $1.71M
55. The Bostonians (1984)
Not Rated | 122 min | Drama, Romance
A Boston feminist and a conservative Southern lawyer contend for the heart and mind of a beautiful and bright girl unsure of her future.
Votes: 1,537 | Gross: $1.01M
56. The Age of Innocence (1993)
PG | 139 min | Drama, Romance
A tale of nineteenth-century New York high society in which a young lawyer falls in love with a woman separated from her husband, while he is engaged to the woman's cousin.
Votes: 39,606 | Gross: $32.20M
58. Tombstone (1993)
R | 130 min | Action, Biography, Drama
A successful lawman's plans to retire anonymously in Tombstone, Arizona, are disrupted by the kind of outlaws he was famous for eliminating.
Votes: 104,795 | Gross: $56.51M
59. Geronimo: An American Legend (1993)
PG-13 | 115 min | Drama, History, Western
The story of the Apache chief and his armed resistance to the U.S. Government's subjugation of his people.
Votes: 7,249 | Gross: $18.64M
61. Show Boat (1936)
Approved | 113 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical
Despite her mother's objections, the naive young daughter of a show boat captain is thrust into the limelight as the company's new leading lady.
65. Posse (1993)
R | 111 min | Western
A group of mostly black infantrymen return from the Spanish-American War with a cache of gold. They travel to the West where their leader searches for the men who lynched his father.
Votes: 3,451 | Gross: $18.29M
66. Belle of the Nineties (1934)
Approved | 73 min | Comedy, Drama
Ruby Carter, the American Beauty queen of the night club-sporting world, shifts her operations from St. Louis to New Orleans (which kind of belies the Western genre designation), mostly to ... See full summary »
69. Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)
Approved | 113 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
In the year leading up to the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair, the four Smith daughters learn lessons of life and love, even as they prepare for a reluctant move to New York.
Votes: 16,449 | Gross: $7.57M
71. Ragtime (1981)
PG | 155 min | Drama
A young black pianist becomes embroiled in the lives of an upper-class white family set among the racial tensions, infidelity, violence, and other nostalgic events in early 1900s New York City.
Votes: 7,158 | Gross: $21.02M
72. The Great Race (1965)
Approved | 160 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy
A grand adventurous race takes place between the heroic Leslie and the despicable Professor Fate across three continents.
Votes: 13,568 | Gross: $25.33M
73. The Color Purple (1985)
PG-13 | 154 min | Drama
A black Southern woman struggles to find her identity after suffering abuse from her father and others over four decades.
Votes: 66,050 | Gross: $98.47M
74. Avalon (1990)
PG | 128 min | Drama
A Polish-Jewish family comes to the USA at the beginning of the Twentieth Century. There, the family and their children try to make themselves a better future in the so-called promised land.
Votes: 5,092 | Gross: $15.74M
75. Somewhere in Time (1980)
PG | 103 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance
A Chicago playwright uses self-hypnosis to travel back in time and meet the actress whose vintage portrait hangs in a grand hotel.
Votes: 22,619 | Gross: $9.71M
77. Long Day's Journey Into Night (1962)
174 min | Drama
Over the course of one day in August 1912, the family of retired actor James Tyrone grapples with the morphine addiction of his wife Mary, the illness of their youngest son Edmund and the ... See full summary »
78. Nickelodeon (1976)
PG | 121 min | Comedy
This homage to the childhood days of the motion pictures starts in 1910, when the young attorney Leo Harrigan by chance meets a motion picture producer. Immediately he's invited to become a... See full summary »
79. On Moonlight Bay (1951)
Approved | 95 min | Comedy, Family, Musical
During World War I, a teenage girl begins a romance with a college student, but his unconventional attitudes cause friction with her father.
80. East of Eden (1955)
PG | 118 min | Drama
A wilful young man contends against his brother for the attention of their religious father while reconnecting with his estranged mother and falling for his brother's girlfriend.
82. A Farewell to Arms (1957)
Approved | 152 min | Drama, Romance, War
An English nurse and an American soldier on the Italian front during World War I fall in love, but the horrors surrounding them test their romance to the limit.
Votes: 2,045 | Gross: $11.00M
83. Johnny Got His Gun (1971)
R | 111 min | Drama, War
A World War I soldier, rendered blind, deaf, limbless, and mute by a horrific artillery shell attack, finds a unique way of communicating with his doctors.
84. A River Runs Through It (1992)
PG | 123 min | Drama
The story about two sons of a stern minister -- one reserved, one rebellious -- growing up in rural Montana while devoted to fly fishing.
Votes: 45,273 | Gross: $43.44M
87. Splendor in the Grass (1961)
Unrated | 124 min | Drama, Romance
A fragile Kansas girl's love for a handsome young man from the town's most powerful family drives her to heartbreak and madness.
Votes: 14,741 | Gross: $8.72M
88. Auntie Mame (1958)
Unrated | 143 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
An orphan goes to live with his free-spirited aunt. Conflict ensues when the executor of his father's estate objects to the aunt's lifestyle.
Votes: 8,768 | Gross: $23.30M
89. Gabriel Over the White House (1933)
Passed | 86 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance
A political hack becomes President during the height of the Depression and undergoes a metamorphosis into an incorruptible statesman after a near-fatal accident.
90. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Not Rated | 129 min | Crime, Drama
Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his children against prejudice.
91. For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943)
Unrated | 170 min | Adventure, Drama, History
During the Spanish Civil War, an American allied with the Republicans finds romance during a desperate mission to blow up a strategically important bridge.
Votes: 6,857 | Gross: $17.80M
92. Paper Moon (1973)
PG | 102 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
During the Great Depression, a con man finds himself saddled with a young girl who may or may not be his daughter, and the two forge an unlikely partnership.
Votes: 27,669 | Gross: $30.93M
94. Bonnie and Clyde (1967)
Approved | 111 min | Action, Biography, Crime
Bonnie Parker, a bored waitress falls in love with an ex-con named Clyde Barrow and together they start a violent crime spree through the country, robbing cars and banks.
95. Where the Red Fern Grows (2003)
PG | 86 min | Drama, Family
Where the Red Fern Grows is the heartwarming and adventurous tale for all ages about a young boy and his quest for his own red-bone hound hunting dogs.
96. The Homecoming (1973)
PG | 111 min | Drama
In a dreary North London flat, the site of perpetual psychological warfare, a philosophy professor visits his family after a nine-year absence, and introduces the four men, father, uncle, and two brothers, to his wife.
97. The Grapes of Wrath (1940)
Not Rated | 129 min | Drama, History
A poor Midwest family is forced off their land. They travel to California, suffering the misfortunes of the homeless in the Great Depression.
98. Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970)
G | 144 min | Action, Drama, History
In 1941, as Japan prepares to open its war against the USA with a pre-emptive strike on Pearl Harbor, a series of American mistakes threatens to inadvertently aggravate its effectiveness.
Votes: 27,128 | Gross: $29.55M
99. Hail the Conquering Hero (1944)
Passed | 101 min | Comedy, War
Woodrow is discharged from the military for hay fever, but fabricates receiving a heroic honorable discharge before returning home.
100. A Bridge Too Far (1977)
PG | 175 min | Drama, History, War
Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.
Votes: 43,668 | Gross: $50.80M