100 Great War Movies: The Real History Behind the Films


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This book serves as a fascinating guide to 100 war films from 1930 to the present. Readers interested in war movies will learn surprising anecdotes about these films and will have all their questions about the films’ historical accuracy answered.

This cinematic guide to war movies spans 800 years in its analysis of films from those set in the 13th century Scottish Wars of Independence (Braveheart) to those taking place during the 21st-century war in Afghanistan (Lone Survivor). World War II has produced the largest number of war movies and continues to spawn recently released films such as Dunkirk. This book explores those, but also examines films set during such conflicts as the Napoleonic Wars, the American Civil War, World War I, the Vietnam War, and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.


The book is organized alphabetically by film title, making it easy to navigate. Each entry is divided into five sections: Background (a brief discussion of the film’s genesis and financing); Production (information about how, where, and when the film was shot); Synopsis (a detailed plot summary); Reception (how the film did in terms of box office, awards, and reviews) and “Reel History vs. Real History” (a brief analysis of the film’s historical accuracy). This book is ideal for readers looking to get a vivid behind-the-scenes look at the greatest war movies ever made.




    • Applies an internationalist perspective to the war film through entries from countries including Britain, France, Germany, Russia, Australia, Japan, Poland, Finland, and Latvia



    • Defines great war films as the most artistically accomplished, politically subversive, and thought-provoking, not merely as the most popular or commercially successful, and is therefore a relevant reference for students and film and history buffs



    • Provides clearly written and informative histories of the films themselves as well as of the cultural context surrounding the making and reception of them



  • Recounts critical controversies and analyzes the ideological biases implicit in these films in its examination of how the films shaped their source material and what they included, distorted, and added or left out


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