Friday, May 28, 2010

We who have seen war, will never stop seeing it. In the silence of the night, we will always hear the screams.

Last Memorial Day I got this in an email from my mom: "Memorial Day needs to be changed to War Movies Day."

They, particularly my dad, had been watching war movies all day.

So, I've been sitting on this post for about a year. Some suggestions for your viewing pleasure this weekend ...

Gunny's 10 Favorite War Movies:
  1. Sergeant York - Perhaps my favorite movie of all time because it moves you to think about issues of faith & war and "the using kind of religion."
  2. Patton - George C. Scott is outstanding and the opening speech for the 3rd Army is money. If nothing else, you must watch his opening monologue.
  3. Glory - It sends a powerful and thought-provoking message about the Civil War and war in general.
  4. Apocalypse Now - The first time I saw it I found it just bizarre, but I have grown to really appreciate the movie. Of course, the acting is top notch.
  5. We Were Soldiers - Perhaps I'm biased because my dad knows LTC Moore, but I thought this was one of the Vietnam movies that didn't come off as somewhat anti-soldier, as many anti-war Vietnam movies do. This is an inspiring story about facing insurmountable odds and the value of courageous leadership.
  6. Full Metal Jacket - The greatness of the movie actually happens prior to Private Joker actually arriving in Vietnam. You can't beat R. Lee Ermey as Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, your senior drill instructor.
  7. Schindler's List - Though not laden with a lot of warfare, in the midst of war you learn about good & bad in humanity in this stirring film.
  8. Platoon - This was the first Vietnam War movie I remember seeing and the soundtrack was memorable as well.
  9. Braveheart - It's so quotable and stirring, particularly the motivating Mel Gibson. You'll never take away his freedom.
  10. Saving Private Ryan - Though I don't think it's the best World War II movie ever made, it would be hard to find one made better, particularly the battle scenes.
Honorable Mention: Das Boot, Guns of Navarone, Tora, Tora, Tora, Escape to Victory, and The Longest Day.

Miss any?
UPDATE: The following are some greatly appreciated suggestions received in the comments.
  • Hamburger Hill
  • Taking Chance
  • Band of Brothers (mini-series)
  • Seven Samurai (though not an American war)
  • Flags of Our Fathers
  • Letters from Iwo Jima
  • The Patriot
  • Tears of the Sun
  • The Bridge On the River Kwai
  • Paths of Glory
  • Gods and Generals
  • The Boys in Company C
  • The Lost Battalion
  • Bravo Two Zero
  • The Deer Hunter
  • The Great Escape
  • Midway
  • U-571
  • The Dirty Dozen
  • Hart's War
  • Basic
  • Memphis Belle
  • Bat*21

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14 Comments:

At 28 May, 2010 07:03, Blogger Tom Bryant said...

I agree about the movies you chose. Let me add 2 for your consideration: "Hamburger Hill" about Vietnam and "Taking Chance" about a soldier who accompanies a young man killed in the Gulf back to his family.

 
At 28 May, 2010 08:11, Blogger samurai said...

I have never seen Sergeant York... i think i need to see about that.

For me a good War Movie, even though it is not an American film is Seven Samurai. For me this is about how those with the ability to help, need to help, and that war is not about glory and honor and fame, and it does come at a cost.

 
At 28 May, 2010 09:37, Blogger Chris Barnes said...

I know it's not a "movie" but the mini-series "Band of Brothers" has to be included in this list.

 
At 28 May, 2010 18:36, Blogger etoc said...

Absolutely to the moving film Taking Chance. And, Band of Brothers-absolutely. You haven't come face-to-face with WWII until you watch the episode "Why We Fight" (season 1, episode 9?). As for forgotten movies, I think you have to add Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima.

 
At 28 May, 2010 19:29, Anonymous Lance said...

Ditto on Band of Brothers (technically a mini-series).

I hope to have it back in my hands Monday :)

Love "We Were Soldiers," esp. the final scene.

 
At 29 May, 2010 00:12, Blogger Jade said...

Gunny, how could you call yourself an American and forget The Patriot?! I actually prefer Mel Gibson there than in Brave Heart ...

 
At 29 May, 2010 19:55, Blogger GUNNY said...

Ah ... Jade, you have really exposed me ... Uh ... er ... um ... I haven't actually seen it!

I know. I know. My bad. I'll put it on the list and report back.

;-)

 
At 29 May, 2010 20:05, Blogger Jade said...

Gunny wrote:
Ah ... Jade, you have really exposed me ... Uh ... er ... um ... I haven't actually seen it!


Oh my goodness!!! That's it! Ship Gunny out to China! How could you call yourself an American!?!? ;ob

Young man, you need to go to the video store this instance and rent The Patriot and do your civil duty to watch it! Otherwise, we'll need to ship you off to China! ;ob

 
At 30 May, 2010 17:26, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In no particular oder, other than that of recollection:
The Bridge On the River Kwai
Paths of Glory
Gods and Generals
The Deer Hunter
Das Boot
The Great Escape
Tears of the Sun
Midway
U-571
The Dirty Dozen
Hart's War
Basic
Memphis Belle
Bat*21

-tAnk

 
At 30 May, 2010 19:55, Blogger Reuel Loftus said...

Correct me if I am wrong, you are a pastor? No? A Christian pastor, right? Wow! Looking at the religious inspiration for war! Good Luck on your doctorate!

 
At 31 May, 2010 10:41, OpenID kweenmama said...

I think my dad has seen every one of the movies listed. :-)

 
At 01 June, 2010 17:11, Blogger GUNNY said...

kweenmama, I'm realizing there are a lot more war movies out there than I realized, and recommended ones at that.

Thanks, Reuel, but sometimes I think it will take a supernatural act of a sovereign God to see that PhD completed.

 
At 08 June, 2010 16:35, Blogger Oilcan said...

I guess Gunny doesn't remember The Alamo.

 
At 08 June, 2010 16:45, Blogger Oilcan said...

Just see John Wayne . . .

 

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