IMDb Polls

Poll: Patriotic Movies for Independence Day

Each year on July 4th, the US celebrates Independence Day, the anniversary of our country adopting the Declaration of Independence, which announced that the 13 original American colonies were coming together as a new nation, and were no longer part of the British Empire.

Entertainment Weekly magazine has created a list of the "25 Most Patriotic Movies" to celebrate the birth of our nation. Which do you feel is most patriotic?

Discuss the list here

* all text descriptions of the films come directly from the original EW article

Make Your Choice

  1. Vote!

    The Right Stuff (1983)

    #25 - Chuck Yeager and the Mercury Seven astronauts literally strap themselves to engines in the hopes of doing what's never been done before, and summing up the American spirit in a single line: "The best and finest of a man can still be brought out."
  2. Vote!

    Gettysburg (1993)

    #24 - A precision military document filmed on sacred ground, Gettysburg venerates the motives and ideals of both North and South as the two crusades collide on the hilly farms of central Pennsylvania. American history as tragedy and triumph.
  3. Vote!

    Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

    #23 - As "Over There" composer George M. Cohan, James Cagney tap-dances through life in a musical biopic brimming with pageantry and Americana. Released during World War II, the film capitalizes on Cohan's rags-to-riches life and his songs' ability to boost morale with their embodiment of the American spirit.
  4. Vote!

    G.I. Jane (1997)

    #22 - In Ridley Scott's kick-ass action-drama, a military wonder woman (Demi Moore) endures discrimination, misogyny, and brutal macho hazing en route to shaving her head (on camera!) and becoming an elite Navy unit's first female trooper. Top that, Rosie the Riveter.
  5. Vote!

    Superman II (1980)

    #21 - The second Man of Steel film captures one of the superhero genre's most haunting hours — Zod (Terence Stamp) and his sidekicks rip apart the White House and drive the helpless president to "kneel before Zod." Superman is MIA. And though he eventually vanquishes Zod and his minions, the movie's most satisfying moment comes when he restores the American flag to the White House, telling the president, "Sorry I've been away so long. I won't let you down again." A real superman knows how to apologize.
  6. Vote!

    Seabiscuit (2003)

    #20 - With America's spirits—like its 1930s finances—in a deep depression, a small, slightly broken racehorse (and his team of equally damaged humans) became an unlikely champion and a unifying symbol of hope and second chances, right when the country needed it most.
  7. Vote!

    Stripes (1981)

    #19 - Stripes isn't exactly the best recruitment video for the U.S. military. After Bill Murray's unemployed wiseacre, John Winger, joins up, he swiftly butts heads with his Army superiors, especially no-nonsense Sergeant Hulka (Warren Oates). But there's something very American about Winger's anti-authoritarian streak, as well as his ability to improvise a mission to save his unit. It's enough to make you cry. Almost like Old Yeller.
  8. Vote!

    Lone Survivor (2013)

    #18 - Peter Berg's harrowing action drama, based on an ill-fated 2005 Navy SEAL mission to take out a Taliban leader in Afghanistan, is both a testament to the horrors of war and a tribute to the courage of 21st-century warriors.
  9. Vote!

    Private Benjamin (1980)

    #17 - Judy Benjamin's American dream is simple: a house, a husband, a nice dining-room set. But when her dearly beloved (Albert Brooks) dies on their wedding night, she accidentally-on-purpose joins the Army...and finds that fatigue is more than just another word for uniforms. The hell of basic training—and her subsequent transformation from human Pomeranian to battle-ready private—isn't just good patriotism, it's a comedic revelation. (And guess what? It turns out camo is totally her color.)
  10. Vote!

    Lincoln (2012)

    #16 - Of course, Abraham Lincoln (Daniel Day-Lewis) is a paragon of American ideals. But in Steven Spielberg's elegant biopic, he's deceptively so. Honest Abe is forced to scheme, relying on grit and cunning to win the votes to abolish slavery.
  11. Vote!

    Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

    #15 - Definitively answering the question "Who's strong and brave, here to save the American Way?," Marvel Studios' first stand-alone adventure of Steve Rogers isn't simply patriotic in name. The reason this hero has stood above his fellow Avengers is his character—a big guy who never forgets what it's like to be little.
  12. Vote!

    1776 (1972)

    #14 - Two and a half hours of musical man-splaining about the merits of continental emancipation could have gone down like bad molasses, but this sprightly drama (starring William Daniels as the original bad boy of Boston, John Adams) doesn’t just re-tell the story of the Declaration of Independence — it sings to life the debate that laid down the entire spirit of America. Declaratively.
  13. Vote!

    Independence Day (1996)

    #13 - Roland Emmerich's blockbuster may revel in aliens blowing up the White House, but when Bill Pullman's American president urges mankind to unite in the fight for survival, it's one of the most heart-swelling movie speeches ever. Plus, there's that scene of Will Smith punching an alien in the face! America!
  14. Vote!

    Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

    #12 - The depiction of corruption may look quaint by 2017 standards, but in Frank Capra's idealistic film, beleaguered senator Jefferson Smith proves that one man's strong moral compass (and one marathon filibuster) can reclaim the promise of America from the nefarious Beltway machine. "Great principles don't get lost," Smith says. "They're right here. You just have to see them again."
  15. Vote!

    The American President (1995)

    #11 - Aaron Sorkin scripted this West Wing romance that celebrates the nobility of the American Experiment while constantly testing the integrity of its participants. After bookish President Andrew Shepherd's enemies target his environmental-lobbyist girlfriend, POTUS takes to the podium, laying out the rules and stakes of modern American democracy: "America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You gotta want it bad, 'cause it's gonna put up a fight," he thunders, while defending the honor of the two ladies he adores most: his love and liberty.
  16. Vote!

    Air Force One (1997)

    #10 - A president who doesn't like Russian warmongers but enjoys spending time with his wife and young child? Here's a wish-fulfillment political fantasy, with Harrison Ford as a bipartisan bad-ass every American can agree on.
  17. Vote!

    Rocky IV (1985)

    #9 - Nearly a decade after he became America's most beloved underdog, Rocky Balboa faced Dolph Lundgren's politburo punisher, Ivan Drago, the embodiment of robotic Communist zealotry writ (very, very) large. Rocky IV's politics aren't subtle, but then again, neither is our national anthem.
  18. Vote!

    Top Gun (1986)

    #8 - Thanks to one impossibly cocky fighter pilot named Maverick, Reagan-era America never felt better about itself—or its military might. Tom Cruise was the grinning poster boy of red-white-and-blue individualism ("I feel the need...the need for speed"), defying his superiors, toying with his rivals, and, of course, getting the girl.
  19. Vote!

    Hidden Figures (2016)

    #7 - In the dogged space race against the Soviets in the early '60s, three female African-American mathematicians overcame racism and sexism at NASA while helping solve the science that launched American astronauts into history.
  20. Vote!

    Team America: World Police (2004)

    #6 - The South Park creators' puppet satire tracks a team of star-spangled bad-asses on missions of mass destruction. It's a deadpan portrait of American swagger that apexes with the fist-pumping anthem "America, F--- Yeah!" It's the kind of "funny" tune that gets taken seriously. Seek out the uncut version, with an epilogue listing all the things that make America great: sushi, rodeos, Valium, porno, immigrants, Democrats, and Republicans. Celebrating our wild disparity? F--- yeah.
  21. Vote!

    Patton (1970)

    #5 - There's no question that George "Old Blood and Guts" Patton had rough edges, but that serrated personality—pumped with ego and ambition—may have been exactly what was necessary to bring down Nazi Germany.
  22. Vote!

    Miracle (2004)

    #4 - Kurt Russell is medal-worthy as ice-in-his-veins coach Herb Brooks, who leads the scrappy U.S. hockey team against the invincible Soviets at the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. The "U-S-A" chant has never been more earnest, or earned.
  23. Vote!

    Glory (1989)

    #3 - Lincoln emancipated the slaves, but African-Americans weren't truly free until they won the right to fight for their country. In Edward Zwick's tense Civil War drama about the first all-black Army regiment, freedmen and runaway slaves volunteer to prove to white America and themselves that liberty is worth dying for.
  24. Vote!

    Apollo 13 (1995)

    #2 - An ode to a bygone era of space exploration and American optimism, Ron Howard's riveting nail-biter about the doomed 1970 mission to the moon, starring Tom Hanks as astronaut Jim Lovell and Ed Harris as not-on-my-watch Mission Control director Gene Kranz, reminded Americans what they can accomplish when failure isn't an option. "Houston, we have a problem" wasn't a cry for help. It was a call to duty.
  25. Vote!

    Saving Private Ryan (1998)

    #1 - Steven Spielberg's tribute to the Greatest Generation places you in the boots of the D-Day soldiers who fought and died—and others who lived to wonder in the face of such loss, "Why me?" The story of Tom Hanks' Captain Miller and his team's efforts to find and retrieve Matt Damon's GI, who has lost all his brothers in other battles, is fictional. But the valor of the real soldiers who carried the banner of American ideals into the firefight is nonetheless reflected in this story. It puts you where they stood. Where they bled. Where they fell. But something good and decent rose from their sacrifice.

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