20 films about World War I

The war, unleashed to satisfy imperial ambitions, led to the collapse of the four largest empires of that time: Austro-Hungarian, Russian, German and Ottoman. We offer you to look at the events of those times through the eyes of modern directors and watch the top 20 feature films about the First World War made in recent years.

1917 (2019)

The sensational novelty of 2019 won 3 Oscars, 2 Golden Globes, and several other prestigious film awards. Events take place in the spring of 1917. Corporal Blake is assigned a responsible task. A man needs to deliver an important order. The fate of 1,600 soldiers depends on the fulfillment of the instructions of the command. The task is complicated by the need to cross enemy territory to carry out the order.

What do you think, is it worth filming a sequel, and what should be in it?
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Original title:
1917

Actors:
George MacKay, Dean-Charles Chapman, Mark Strong, Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch …

Country:
USA, UK, India, Spain, Canada

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 8.0, IMDb – 8.4

Age restrictions:
16+


Tolkien (2019)

The list of the best films about the First World War includes a biopic about Professor John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, the creator of The Lord of the Rings. The movie shows the rise of Tolkien as a writer. John spent his school years among friends, the same outcasts as himself. After the start of the battle, the “brotherhood” breaks up. Sad experiences inspire Professor Tolkien to create fascinating stories about Middle-earth.

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Original title:
Tolkien

Actors:
Lily Collins, Derek Jacobi, Nicholas Hoult…

Country:
USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.8, IMDb – 6.8

Age limits :
12+


Blizzard of Souls (2019)

The events of the new Latvian film take place during the period of political and military upheavals of the First World War, affecting the subsequent struggle for the country’s independence. After burying his dead mother, teenager Arturs volunteers to fight as a Latvian shooter. During the war, the guy loses his brother, father. The civil conflict puts Arthurs in front of a difficult choice.

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Original title:
Dveselu putenis

Actors:
Oto Brantevics, Raimonds Celms, Mārtiņš Wilsons…

Country:
Latvia

Rating:
IMDb – 8.7

Age limit:
16+


Russian boy (2018)

The list of Russian feature films about the First World War of 1914-1918 includes an interesting picture about a simple boy who was looking for fame. As a volunteer, young Alexey leaves to fight. The first attack ends in loss of sight. The brave guy decides to stay and becomes a “hearer”, nailed to the anti-aircraft battery. Now Aleksey warns the rest of the military about the approach of enemy aircraft.

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Actors:
Vladimir Korolev, Mikhail Buturlov, Artem Leshchik …

Country:
Russia

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.1, IMDb – 6.3

Age restrictions:
12+


They will never get older (2018)

A modern documentary film dedicated to the centenary of the end of hostilities. Here, frames of previously unknown historical newsreels are involved. The picture received high ratings from film critics, positive reviews from the audience. The footage shows the stories of young soldiers of the war, called the Great War by Western historians.

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Original title:
They Shall Not Grow Old

Country:
UK, New Zealand

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 8.2, IMDb – 8.3

Age limit:
18+


Goodbye Up There (2017)

French-Canadian cinema about the First World War received 5 César awards. The young artist Edouard and the former accountant Albert are sent to carry out the order of the commander. Edouard saves his comrade from death, he himself remains disfigured. Hiding his appearance under a mask, the artist draws amazing pictures, Albert becomes an impresario.

Original title:
Au revoir là-haut

Actors:
Nahuel Perez Biscayart, Albert Dupontel, Laurent Lafitte …

Country:
France, Canada

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.3, IMDb – 7.5

Age restrictions:
16+


Last Stand (2017)

The action takes place in the spring of 1918, only a few days left before the end of the war. Lieutenant Reilly is sent to fight with an acquaintance, Captain Stanhope. To the surprise of the guy, the man is morally crushed, unable to command the soldiers. Then Lieutenant Reilly decides to independently lead the attack squad in order to win and survive.

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Original title:
Journey’s End

Actors:
Sam Claflin, Asa Butterfield, Paul Bettany …

Country:
United Kingdom

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.4, IMDb – 6.6

Age restrictions:
16+


Trench 11 (2017)

A new Canadian film shows the First World War in a somewhat unexpected light. Fantastic horror film demonstrates the possible consequences of the use of biological weapons. The Allied team is sent to the German base, located deeper than the main trenches. There, scientists have created a virus that makes people crazy killers.

Original title:
Trench 11

Actors:
Rossif Sutherland, Robert Stadlober, Charlie Carrick…

Country:
Canada

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 5.3, IMDb – 5.4

Age restrictions:
18+


Hero (2016)

The domestic film tells about the fate of the Russian lieutenant Andrei Dolmatov and his beloved, Princess Vera Chernysheva. The course of Russian history violates the plans for a happy family life. Lieutenant Dolmatov goes to the front, Princess Vera becomes a sister of mercy. The revolution that followed the war makes it impossible for the lovers to meet.

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Actors:
Dima Bilan, Svetlana Ivanova, Alexander Baluev …

Country:
Russia

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 5.6, IMDb – 4.6

Age restrictions:
12+


Memories of the Future (2014)

An interesting foreign film about the First World War based on real events. The picture describes the fate of the British writer, Christian pacifist Vera Britten. The youth of the girl, dreams, love were destroyed by the outbreak of war, political upheavals. Wanting to stay with loved ones, Vera goes to fight for her beloved. As a sister of mercy, the girl takes care of the British, German soldiers.

Original title:
Testament of Youth

Actors:
Alicia Vikander, Kit Harington, Taron Egerton…

Country:
Great Britain, Denmark

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.6, IMDb – 7.3

Age restrictions:
16+


Battalion (2014)

The Russian feature film is dedicated to the women’s death battalion, created by the Russian government during the period of political upheaval at the beginning of the last century to strengthen the morale of the soldiers. The battalion is commanded by Cavalier of St. George Maria Bochkareva. By participating in battles, women set an example of courage, calmness, and prove their right to bear the title of a warrior of the Russian army.

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Actors:
Maria Aronova, Maria Kozhevnikova, Irina Rakhmanova …

Country:
Russia

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.1, IMDb – 6.5

Age restrictions:
12+


Silent Mountain (2014)

The foreign film tells about the little-known pages of the history of the First World War. Before the war, the exemplary Austrian Ander Gruber marries an Italian. The Italian engineer is chosen by her sister Lisa as her husband. The outbreak of war destroys the peaceful idyll. Now Italy and Austria become enemies. Ander goes to war. The guy is fighting in the Alps against the Italians.

Original title:
Der stille Berg

Actors:
William Moseley, Evgenia Costantini, Claudia Cardinale …

Country:
Austria, Italy, USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 5.4, IMDb – 5.5

Age restrictions:
16+


Wounds of War (2013)

Another attack on heavily fortified German positions leaves a field littered with corpses. Three Englishmen manage to survive. On the morning after yesterday’s battle, the soldiers are hiding in a crater in no man’s land. The chances of escaping are decreasing every hour, because soon the enemy will rush into a counterattack. The intrigue is revealed only in the finale.

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Original title:
Forbidden Ground

Actors:
Johan Earl, Tim Pakok, Martin Copping…

Country:
Australia

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.0, IMDb – 4.9

Age restrictions:
16+


Bird Song (2012)

The story of the forbidden love of an English soldier and a married French woman. Isabelle’s marriage resembles a dull penal servitude. The woman had long forgotten about sublime love, until a foreign soldier entered the house. The English lieutenant falls in love with the Frenchwoman at once. Lovers understand the hopelessness of feelings.

Original title:
Birdsong

Actors:
Eddie Redmayne, Clemence Poesy, Matthew Good…

Country:
United Kingdom

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.4, IMDb – 7.4

Age limits :
16+


Warhorse (2011)

The American film tells about the friendship of a boy named Albert and a horse named Joey during the First World War. After the outbreak of hostilities, the thoroughbred horse Joey is taken by the cavalry regiment. Not wanting to leave a friend without support, Albert also goes to fight as a volunteer, despite being too young. After going through all the hardships of the war, Albert finds a comrade at the cost of incredible efforts.

Original title:
War Horse

Actors:
Jeremy Irwin, Peter Mullan, Emily Watson, Benedict Cumberbatch…

Country:
USA, India

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.7, IMDb – 7.2

Age restrictions:
12+


Paschendal: The Last Stand (2008)

The Battle of Passchendal proved to be one of the most brutal battles of the First World War. Hundreds of thousands of soldiers died then. Heavy rains lasting several months turned the battlefield into impassable mud, in which even tank tracks got stuck. Many soldiers drowned in the swamp before the enemy bullet caught them. The historical film is based on real events of that period.

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Original title:
Passchendaele

Actors:
Paul Gross, Michael Greyeyes, James Kot…

Country:
Canada

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.8, IMDb – 6.4

Age restrictions:
18+


Red Baron (2008)

Biographical film about the famous German pilot of the First World War, Baron Manfred von Richthofen. At first, the pilot perceives military operations as a sporting event, a technical challenge. The arrival of love changes the views of the guy. Manfred’s sense of responsibility for the fighter squad makes him return to flying again.

Original title:
Der Rote Baron

Actors:
Matthias Schweighöfer, Volker Bruch, Lina Headey, Til Schweiger …

Country:
Germany, UK

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.0, IMDb – 6.4

Age restrictions:
18+


Squadron Lafayette (2006)

The dramatic film tells the story of the famous squadron that took part in air battles. The pilots of the unit represented countries that were neutral with Germany. The main characters are Americans, graduates of the aviation school. Young pilots thought they were going to a French resort to relax, but the reality turned out to be much harsher.

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Original title:
Flyboys

Actors:
James Franco, Martin Henderson, David Ellison …

Country:
UK, USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.4, IMDb – 6.5

Age restrictions:
16+


Merry Christmas (2005)

The action of the drama takes place on the eve of Christmas 1914 on the Western Front. Scottish, French, German military leave the frozen trenches. Soldiers celebrate the saddest Christmas in no man’s land. Despite the war and the difference in cultures, the enemies unite for the sake of meeting the holy holiday. The foreign film, which received high ratings and positive reviews from the audience, is considered one of the best films about the First World War.

Original title:
Joyeux Noël

Actors:
Diane Kruger, Benno Furman, Guillaume Canet…

Country:
France, Germany, Great Britain, Belgium, Romania, Norway, Japan, USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.8, IMDb – 7.7

Age restrictions:
12+


Forgotten Company (2001)

The action of the dramatic action movie develops in the autumn of 1918. America joins the Allies against Germany. Experienced Major Wittsley is ordered to capture the strategically important object of the Argonne Forest. After a fierce battle, Major Wittsley’s detachment manages to complete the task. The American unit had advanced too far, being trapped.

Original title:
The Lost Battalion

Actors:
Rick Schroder, Phil McKee, Jamie Harris …

Country:
USA, Luxembourg

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.9, IMDb – 7.0

Age restrictions:
16+


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Jared Lambert/ author of the article

I’ve been writing about movies, TV shows and anime for over 3 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.

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