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Top 20 Greatest War Movies

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Heroism, camaraderie, psychological trauma… You’ll find it all in these iconic war movies. These 20 films were voted on by aMC Network viewers. Do you agree? Disagree? Have another favorite? Let us know at

20. Good Morning, Vietnam (1987) Robin Williams is arguably at his best in this Vietnam War dramady about irreverent radio DJ Adrian Cronauer stationed in Saigon.

19. Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944) After the Japanese invade Pearl Harbor, an Air Force colonel (Spencer Tracy) leads a secret retaliatory attack with volunteer airmen.

18. The Green Berets (1968) John Wayne stars as a no-nonsense Colonel leading his Green Beret squad on an important mission. And Wayne directed the movie, too.

17. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) A group of German schoolboys are roused to fight by their jingoistic teacher. On the front lines, they learn good and evil aren’t clear-cut.The film is not about heroism but about drudgery and futility and the gulf between the concept of war and the actuality.

16. The Big Red One (1980) A veteran soldier (Lee Marvin) leads his beleaguered squad through the battles of World War II. Also stars Mark Hamill, of Star Wars fame.

15. Kelly’s Heroes (1970) A group of U.S. soldiers sneaks across enemy lines to get their hands on a secret stash of Nazi treasure. Released in the same year as MASH and Catch-22, this Clint Eastwood WWII movie is really about Vietnam.

14. Stalag 17 (1953) When two escaping American World War II prisoners are killed, the German POW camp barracks black marketeer, J.J. Sefton (William Holden), is suspected of being an informer. Billy Wilder directed this classic.

13. Letters from Iwo Jima (2006) Clint Eastwood’s pic takes a rare look at the other side of WWII in this thoughtful story of the Japanese forces occupying Iwo Jima.

12. A Bridge Too Far (1977) This WWII pic about Operation Market Garden in September 1944 has a starry cast, including Michael Caine, Anthony Hopkins, Gene Hackman, Robert Redford, Sean O’Connery and Ryan O’Nea.l

11. Sergeant York (1941) Alvin C. York (Gary Cooper) is a pacifist sharpshooter who becomes one of the most celebrated American heroes of WWI when he single-handedly attacks and captures a German position using the same strategy as in turkey shoot.

10. Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970) This Japanese-American film follows the days leading up to the Pearl Harbor attack from both the U.S. and Japanese perspectives.

9. The Dirty Dozen (1967) Twelve felons, led by an unruly major (Lee Marvin), are sent on a suicide mission: infiltrate a Nazi retreat and kill high-ranking officers.

8. Midway (1976) Charlton Heston stars as Capt. Matt Garth in this blockbuster war epic, which spectacularly recreates the famed battle that was widely heralded as a turning point of the Pacific Theatre of World War II.

7. Apocalypse Now (1979) Francis Ford Coppola directs this dark tale about a Green Beret colonel (Marlon Brando), who has gone rogue in Cambodia during the Vietnam War and the captain (Martin Sheen) sent to kill him.

6. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) A captured World War II officer (Alec Guinness) leads prisoners in a morale-boosting construction project. His passion turns into obsession.

5. Patton (1970) From northern Africa to Germany, this film memorializes the controversial and outspoken World War II general George S. Patton Jr. (George C. Scott).

4. Platoon (1986) One of the first movies to show the tense psychology of guerrilla warfare, where there are no clear battle lines nor enemy.

3. Full Metal Jacket (1987) Director Stanley Kubrick delves into Marine Corps psychology in this Vietnam War movie about a team of new recruits.

2. Black Hawk Down (2001) After two helicopters are shot down in Somalia, a team of U.S. Army Rangers led by SSG Eversman (Josh Hartnett) is sent on a rescue mission. Based on the best-selling book detailing a mission in Somalia on Oct. 3, 1993.

1. Saving Private Ryan (1998) Captain Miller (Tom Hanks) is a World War II Army officer whose mission is to save paratrooper Private Ryan (Matt Damon), whose three brothers have been killed in action.