The Top 50 Most Epic Moviesby D_Marais | created - 30 Jun 2012 | updated - 14 Apr 2015 | Public
The greatest epics of all time. Granted there may be a few missing because (while I have seen alot of movies) I haven't seen everything. I guarantee all these movies are a must see
- Instant Watch Options
- Movies or TV
- IMDb Rating
- In Theaters
- Release Year
1. The Thin Red Line (1998)
R | 170 min | Drama, History, War
Adaptation of James Jones' autobiographical 1962 novel, focusing on the conflict at Guadalcanal during the second World War.
Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Jim Caviezel, Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Kirk Acevedo
Votes: 191,336 | Gross: $36.40M
Don't approach this as a traditional/spielberg-esque war film, but rather a philosophical poem on war.
2. The Ten Commandments (1956)
G | 220 min | Adventure, Drama, Family
Moses, raised as a prince of Egypt in the Pharaoh's household, learns of his true heritage as a Hebrew and his divine mission as the deliverer of his people from slavery.
Director: Cecil B. DeMille | Stars: Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson
Votes: 72,533 | Gross: $93.74M
3. Ben-Hur (1959)
G | 212 min | Adventure, Drama
After a Jewish prince is betrayed and sent into slavery by a Roman friend in 1st-century Jerusalem, he regains his freedom and comes back for revenge.
Director: William Wyler | Stars: Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Stephen Boyd, Haya Harareet
Votes: 243,004 | Gross: $74.70M
4. The Mission (1986)
PG | 125 min | Adventure, Drama, History
Eighteenth-century Spanish Jesuits try to protect a remote South American tribe in danger of falling under the rule of pro-slavery Portugal.
Director: Roland Joffé | Stars: Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, Ray McAnally, Aidan Quinn
Votes: 62,798 | Gross: $17.22M
5. Gladiator (2000)
R | 155 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
A former Roman General sets out to exact vengeance against the corrupt emperor who murdered his family and sent him into slavery.
Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Oliver Reed
Votes: 1,520,651 | Gross: $187.71M
6. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
PG-13 | 201 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Gandalf and Aragorn lead the World of Men against Sauron's army to draw his gaze from Frodo and Sam as they approach Mount Doom with the One Ring.
Director: Peter Jackson | Stars: Elijah Wood, Viggo Mortensen, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom
Votes: 1,869,994 | Gross: $377.85M
7. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
PG-13 | 120 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
A young Chinese warrior steals a sword from a famed swordsman and then escapes into a world of romantic adventure with a mysterious man in the frontier of the nation.
Director: Ang Lee | Stars: Chow Yun-Fat, Michelle Yeoh, Ziyi Zhang, Chang Chen
Votes: 273,844 | Gross: $128.08M
8. Arn (2010)
R | 264 min | Action, Drama, Romance
Arn must endure a great ordeal before he can get the love of his life Cecile, who has been confined to a monastery.
Stars: Joakim Nätterqvist, Sofia Helin, Stellan Skarsgård, Morgan Alling
In the U.S. this was cut down to a 2 hour film, but overseas it was an HBO quality 6 hour mini series. It's on the level of big budget Hollywood films so I give it a pass for this list. Great writing, acting, and production. This is what Kingdom of Heaven should have been. Watch it. You can find the 2 hr version on netflix, but the 6 hr is only 11 bucks to buy on Amazon
9. The Tree of Life (2011)
PG-13 | 139 min | Drama, Fantasy
The story of a family in Waco, Texas in 1956. The eldest son witnesses the loss of innocence and struggles with his parents' conflicting teachings.
Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Jessica Chastain, Hunter McCracken
Votes: 179,544 | Gross: $13.30M
10. Gangs of New York (2002)
R | 167 min | Crime, Drama
In 1862, Amsterdam Vallon returns to the Five Points area of New York City seeking revenge against Bill the Butcher, his father's killer.
Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, Daniel Day-Lewis, Jim Broadbent
Votes: 450,603 | Gross: $77.81M
11. The Last Emperor (1987)
PG-13 | 163 min | Biography, Drama, History
Dramatization of China's last emperor, Puyi.
Director: Bernardo Bertolucci | Stars: John Lone, Joan Chen, Peter O'Toole, Ruocheng Ying
Votes: 106,032 | Gross: $43.98M
12. Sunshine (2007)
R | 107 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller
A team of international astronauts is sent on a dangerous mission to reignite the dying Sun with a nuclear fission bomb in 2057.
Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Cillian Murphy, Rose Byrne, Chris Evans, Cliff Curtis
Votes: 255,068 | Gross: $3.68M
13. Prometheus (I) (2012)
R | 124 min | Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi
Following clues to the origin of mankind, a team finds a structure on a distant moon, but they soon realize they are not alone.
Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Noomi Rapace, Logan Marshall-Green, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron
Votes: 617,762 | Gross: $126.48M
14. Man on Fire (2004)
R | 146 min | Action, Crime, Drama
In Mexico City, a former CIA operative swears vengeance on those who committed an unspeakable act against the family he was hired to protect.
Director: Tony Scott | Stars: Denzel Washington, Christopher Walken, Dakota Fanning, Radha Mitchell
Votes: 369,249 | Gross: $77.91M
15. 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 Native Americans, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.
Director: Kevin Costner | Stars: Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant
Votes: 272,967 | Gross: $184.21M
16. Apollo 13 (I) (1995)
PG | 140 min | Adventure, Drama, History
NASA must devise a strategy to return Apollo 13 to Earth safely after the spacecraft undergoes massive internal damage putting the lives of the three astronauts on board in jeopardy.
Director: Ron Howard | Stars: Tom Hanks, Bill Paxton, Kevin Bacon, Gary Sinise
Votes: 300,853 | Gross: $173.84M
17. Letters from Iwo Jima (2006)
R | 141 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
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.
Director: Clint Eastwood | Stars: Ken Watanabe, Kazunari Ninomiya, Tsuyoshi Ihara, Ryô Kase
Votes: 165,257 | Gross: $13.76M
18. The Last Samurai (2003)
R | 154 min | Action, Drama
An American military advisor embraces the Samurai culture he was hired to destroy after he is captured in battle.
Director: Edward Zwick | Stars: Tom Cruise, Ken Watanabe, Billy Connolly, William Atherton
Votes: 448,667 | Gross: $111.11M
19. The Painted Veil (2006)
PG-13 | 125 min | Drama, Romance
A British medical doctor fights a cholera epidemic in a small Chinese village, while being trapped at home in a loveless marriage to an unfaithful wife.
Director: John Curran | Stars: Naomi Watts, Edward Norton, Liev Schreiber, Catherine An
Votes: 94,074 | Gross: $8.06M
20. The Last of the Mohicans (1992)
R | 112 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Three trappers protect the daughters of a British Colonel in the midst of the French and Indian War.
Director: Michael Mann | Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Madeleine Stowe, Russell Means, Eric Schweig
Votes: 175,362 | Gross: $75.51M
21. The Towering Inferno (1974)
PG | 165 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
At the opening party of a colossal, but poorly constructed, office building, a massive fire breaks out that threatens to destroy the tower and everyone in it.
Director: John Guillermin | Stars: Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, William Holden, Faye Dunaway
Votes: 45,351 | Gross: $116.00M
22. The Warrior (2001)
R | 158 min | Action, Drama, History
1375. Nine Koryo warriors, envoys exiled by Imperial China, battle to protect a Chinese Ming Princess from Mongolian troops.
Director: Sung-su Kim | Stars: Jung Woo-sung, Sung-Ki Ahn, Ju Jin-Mo, Ziyi Zhang
23. Gallipoli (1981)
PG | 110 min | Adventure, Drama, History
Two Australian sprinters face the brutal realities of war when they are sent to fight in the Gallipoli campaign in Turkey during World War I.
Director: Peter Weir | Stars: Mel Gibson, Mark Lee, Bill Kerr, Harold Hopkins
Votes: 40,569 | Gross: $5.73M
24. 28 Days Later (2002)
R | 113 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi
Four weeks after a mysterious, incurable virus spreads throughout the UK, a handful of survivors try to find sanctuary.
Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston, Alex Palmer
Votes: 421,856 | Gross: $45.06M
25. K2 (1991)
R | 104 min | Adventure, Drama, Sport
A U.S. climbing team, funded by millionaire Clairborne is determined to conquer K2.
Director: Franc Roddam | Stars: Michael Biehn, Matt Craven, Annie Grindlay, Elena Wohl
Votes: 6,968 | Gross: $3.11M
26. Black Hawk Down (2001)
R | 144 min | Action, Drama, History
The story of 160 elite U.S. soldiers who dropped into Mogadishu in October 1993 to capture two top lieutenants of a renegade warlord, but found themselves in a desperate battle with a large force of heavily armed Somalis.
Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Tom Sizemore, Eric Bana
Votes: 403,552 | Gross: $108.64M
27. Taken (I) (2008)
PG-13 | 90 min | Action, Crime, Thriller
A retired CIA agent travels across Europe and relies on his old skills to save his estranged daughter, who has been kidnapped while on a trip to Paris.
Director: Pierre Morel | Stars: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen, Leland Orser
Votes: 610,901 | Gross: $145.00M
28. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
Approved | 178 min | Adventure, Western
A bounty hunting scam joins two men in an uneasy alliance against a third in a race to find a fortune in gold buried in a remote cemetery.
Director: Sergio Leone | Stars: Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach, Lee Van Cleef, Aldo Giuffrè
Votes: 770,848 | Gross: $6.10M
29. Unbreakable (2000)
PG-13 | 106 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
A man learns something extraordinary about himself after a devastating accident.
Director: M. Night Shyamalan | Stars: Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Robin Wright, Spencer Treat Clark
Votes: 424,733 | Gross: $95.01M
30. Gettysburg (1993)
PG | 271 min | Drama, History, War
In 1863, the Northern and Southern forces fight at Gettysburg in the decisive battle of the American Civil War.
Director: Ron Maxwell | Stars: Tom Berenger, Martin Sheen, Stephen Lang, Richard Jordan
Votes: 29,921 | Gross: $10.77M
31. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
PG-13 | 165 min | Western
A mysterious stranger with a harmonica joins forces with a notorious desperado to protect a beautiful widow from a ruthless assassin working for the railroad.
Director: Sergio Leone | Stars: Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Claudia Cardinale, Jason Robards
Votes: 334,388 | Gross: $5.32M
32. The Count of Monte Cristo (2002)
PG-13 | 131 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
A young man, falsely imprisoned by his jealous "friend", escapes and uses a hidden treasure to exact his revenge.
Director: Kevin Reynolds | Stars: Jim Caviezel, Guy Pearce, Christopher Adamson, JB Blanc
Votes: 141,195 | Gross: $54.23M
33. Aliens (1986)
R | 137 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Decades after surviving the Nostromo incident, Ellen Ripley is sent out to re-establish contact with a terraforming colony but finds herself battling the Alien Queen and her offspring.
Director: James Cameron | Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Carrie Henn, Paul Reiser
Votes: 726,707 | Gross: $85.16M
34. Braveheart (1995)
R | 178 min | Biography, Drama, History
Scottish warrior William Wallace leads his countrymen in a rebellion to free his homeland from the tyranny of King Edward I of England.
Director: Mel Gibson | Stars: Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau, Patrick McGoohan, Angus Macfadyen
Votes: 1,048,646 | Gross: $75.60M
35. 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.
Director: Richard Attenborough | Stars: Sean Connery, Ryan O'Neal, Michael Caine, Laurence Olivier
Votes: 58,207 | Gross: $50.80M
36. Knowing (2009)
PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Mystery, Sci-Fi
M.I.T. professor John Koestler links a mysterious list of numbers from a time capsule to past and future disasters and sets out to prevent the ultimate catastrophe.
Director: Alex Proyas | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Chandler Canterbury, Rose Byrne, Lara Robinson
Votes: 238,277 | Gross: $79.96M
37. Inception (2010)
PG-13 | 148 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A thief who steals corporate secrets through the use of dream-sharing technology is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a C.E.O., but his tragic past may doom the project and his team to disaster.
Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Elliot Page, Ken Watanabe
Votes: 2,387,669 | Gross: $292.58M
38. Blade Runner (1982)
R | 117 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
A blade runner must pursue and terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.
Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos
Votes: 780,975 | Gross: $32.87M
39. The Road Warrior (1981)
R | 96 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
In the post-apocalyptic Australian wasteland, a cynical drifter agrees to help a small, gasoline-rich community escape a horde of bandits.
Director: George Miller | Stars: Mel Gibson, Bruce Spence, Michael Preston, Max Phipps
Votes: 184,566 | Gross: $12.47M
40. Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)
PG | 131 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
After rescuing Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt, the Rebels attempt to destroy the second Death Star, while Luke struggles to help Darth Vader back from the dark side.
Director: Richard Marquand | Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams
Votes: 1,067,228 | Gross: $309.13M
41. The Ghost and the Darkness (1996)
R | 110 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller
A bridge engineer and an experienced old hunter begin a hunt for two lions after they start attacking local construction workers.
Director: Stephen Hopkins | Stars: Michael Douglas, Val Kilmer, Tom Wilkinson, John Kani
Votes: 63,587 | Gross: $38.62M
42. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
PG | 118 min | Action, Adventure
In 1935, Indiana Jones is tasked by Indian villagers with reclaiming a rock stolen from them by a secret cult beneath the catacombs of an ancient palace.
Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Harrison Ford, Kate Capshaw, Ke Huy Quan, Amrish Puri
Votes: 498,070 | Gross: $179.87M
43. Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)
PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Robin Hood decides to fight back as an outlaw when faced with the tyranny of the Sheriff of Nottingham.
Director: Kevin Reynolds | Stars: Kevin Costner, Morgan Freeman, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Christian Slater
Votes: 198,682 | Gross: $165.50M
44. Jurassic Park (1993)
PG-13 | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi