Reel Picks: Top 10 Most Patriotic Films

by Chris

July 3, 2021

Share with you friends and family.

Welcome to Reel Picks!

Looking for some recommendations for great films, I’ve got them. All out of ideas of what to watch? I’ve got some great ones for you! Wondering if a film is worth the watch and want an opinion about it? I got your opinion right here with the Top 10 Most Patriotic Films.

With Independence Day upon us, it seems fitting to roll out this list. Patriotic films don’t necessarily have to be those that make you stand up and shout ‘Murica Yeah! Some of the great ones are not the ones that slap the Stars and Stripes in your face, and there are some as well that just scream red, white, and blue. You’ll find both on this list. In keeping with a truly awesome top ten list, I’m slapping this one with a SPOILER ALERT. I always try my best not to spoil much but it does happen sometimes…so be warned! So with that being said, read on for my picks of the Top 10 Most Patriotic Films!

**Disclaimer – Some of the links are affiliate links which means I might get paid a small amount. But no worries, it won’t cost you anything extra.

Top 10 Most Patriotic Films

10. National Treasure

For those of you who haven’t seen National Treasure, I would characterize it as a younger kid’s version of The Da Vinci Code, except that it focuses on American history rather than world history. I was actually very pleasantly surprised when I saw this. I went in thinking there’s no way this PG rated movie can really be anything but a little kids adventure movie. I was so glad to be proven wrong. So don’t let its rating fool you, this is quite the suspenseful action adventure ride. Violence and gunplay is at a minimum as it should be for a film aimed at younger audiences. But the melding of history, suspense, comedy, all makes for a really interesting and somewhat educational experience.

9. Air Force One

Four words…Get off my plane! This story of a terrorist takeover of the President’s jet, known as Air Force One, is pretty unbelievable, but who says everything has to be believable and real? Why can’t we have a President step up on national television, tell the world that we are not afraid, and then prove that by singlehandedly fighting off a group of terrorists in order to rescue the hostages and retake his plane? Harrison Ford is perfectly cast and I don’t think anyone could have uttered those four words with as much patriotism and with as much of a “get up and cheer” emotion. Oh, and I can’t forget the fighter pilot who blocked a heat seeking missile from hitting the President’s plane by steering his own fighter jet into the missile itself. Now, that’s bravery.

8. Captain America: The First Avenger

I tend to shy away from putting Marvel movies into my picks, not at all because they are bad. Mainly because I can make entire lists of just Marvel movies. So for that reason, I try and keep my Reel Picks mostly Marvel free unless of course it’s a list solely dedicated to them. But for this list of patriotic films, there’s no way I could leave out the Star Spangled Man With A Plan. With a name like Captain America, you know he bleeds red, white, and blue. Yes, there have been other Captain America movies in the past (we’ll just keep trying to forget them, but if you’re in for a not-in-a-good-way laugh, I’m sure you can find some YouTube clips), but Marvel finally got it right when they introduced Chris Evans’ Captain America to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He will gladly lay down his life to protect his country and fellow countrymen. And that’s not just the super soldier serum talking. Before he became the super soldier of the MCU, there was no other person who, when a decoy grenade was thrown at his squad during training, actually jumped toward and onto it. Tell me that isn’t courageous, I dare you.

7. Independence Day

I don’t know for sure if this would have made my Reel Picks Top 10 if it wasn’t for Bill Pullman’s rallying speech that he gave to the fighter pilots before their final assault on the aliens threatening their world and way of life. America is front and center in this fight, but we are just one of many nations that had to set aside their differences and come together to destroy an enemy that didn’t care about anything except for destruction. Will Smith’s Air Force pilot Captain Steven Hiller leads multiple assaults on these beings showcasing the biggest and baddest special effects filled (at that time) dogfights and citywide destruction scenes that had been put to film. Okay, aside from “The Speech,” what else about this movie screams America? Courage, bravery, innovation, and sheer force of will and inability to back down until the world is safe? I think that’s a good answer.

6. The Majestic

When this film was released in December of 2021, it came out of nowhere. Jim Carrey had been starting to stretch his legs and dip into more dramatic roles with The Truman Show and Man on the Moon. Trying to get out of the shadow of Ace Ventura and The Mask was no easy task, and this was one of those films that showed he is more than up to the task. This film is centered around Peter Appleton (Carrey), a Hollywood screenwriter who was blacklisted after he was accused of being a communist. After suffering amnesia as a result of an automobile crash, he is taken by the citizens of the small town of Lawson as they mistakenly think he is one of their townspeople who went missing in action while serving overseas in World War II. As he has amnesia and knows no different, he accepts this. After coming to know everybody in the town and eventually regaining his memory, he is discovered and summoned to a Congressional hearing in Los Angeles where he decides it’s time to make a stand. And what follows is a brilliant display of what America was supposed to be and what the brave soldiers of World War II fought and died for. Just take my advice and check this one out, it really is one of Carrey’s best.

5. Lincoln

Anytime you have Daniel Day Lewis attached to a film, you know it’s going to be something special. This film isn’t heavy on action or war or anything like that, but rather takes its suspense and story from one of the years of President Abraham Lincoln’s term. The year that he finally abolished slavery. Lewis’s portrayal of Lincoln is very different than I was expecting. His voice, mannerisms, just not what I thought they would be. But I’m not an historian and my knowledge of Lincoln I’m ashamed to say is not what it should be. All the aside, this is actually one of the more historically accurate films about this historical time (from what I’ve read). It is not an entire life story, but rather a small point in time where he accomplished something in no way small at all: the ratification of the amendment that ended slavery. Our history is not always pretty, sometimes it’s downright ugly. But it’s our history and it’s our country and through everything bad that has happened, there is always some good that has happened as well. Check this one out if you’re looking for a great historical film.

4. Forrest Gump

Forrest Gump IS America. And Tom Hanks simply IS Forrest Gump. I don’t think I could see anyone else making this role so memorable. Following Gump from his childhood in Greenbow, Alabama all the way through his adult life seeing his young boy off to his first day of school, he has definitely lived a red, white, and blue life. Becoming an All American football player, joining the Army and becoming a Medal of Honor recipient for bravery in Vietnam, becoming a world champion ping pong player (yes, that happened). And in between it all, he manages to come across most every iconic or important figure of the 50s, 60s, and 70s. Naive at times and always optimistic, it’s a great story about a man who did everything and achieved what the American Dream was meant to be.

3. Cinderella Man

I don’t think there’s a better real life story of hope, determination, and second chances than that of American boxer James J. Braddock. Mostly set during the early years of The Great Depression, this story about the light heavyweight boxing contender is filled with highs and lows. He and his family’s struggles during the depression really resonate with anyone who has come on hard times. And it is this that lights a fire in Braddock that had not been seen in a very long time as he literally fights his way back to top, realizing more and more that it’s his life and his family’s life on the line and that he’s not just fighting for himself. An awesome redemption story about never losing hope and never giving up.

2. Apollo 13

“Houston, we have a problem.” Whether you’ve seen this film or not, you know the line. The story about the Apollo 13 space flight and eventual rescue of the astronauts after an explosion cripples their spacecraft, this incredible true story is the very definition of courage and determination. It shows not only the astronauts trials and tribulations but also the actions of the men behind the scenes at NASA as they work tirelessly to make sure that their brothers in space make it home alive. One of the best lines in the movie belongs to Ed Harris’ Gene Kranz. When told that this was going to be the worst disaster NASA has ever experienced, without hesitation he just returns saying “With all due respect sir, I believe this is going to be our finest hour.” It’s not about failure, because failure isn’t an option. It’s about working together to save three men and bring them home safely. Spoiler alert, they made it home. Oops, I said it. Regardless, see the movie anyway!

1. Miracle

Do you believe in miracles?! You certainly will after seeing this ultimate true underdog story about the 1980 Winter Olympics. Herb Brooks decided not to assemble the normal “Dream Team” for the Lake Placid games, opting to go with a group of college kids instead. Why? Because as he said, Dream Teams fail because they rely solely on the talent of the individual players. He picked players that he knew and that he knew would work perfectly together to beat the seemingly invincible Soviets, gold medal champions in the last four Olympic Games. No one thought the USA had a chance. But they stepped up and brought a country together and triumphed over a team that, to them, represented the times they were in. This us against them mentality. It was more than just a game, and as Brooks said before the final game started, if we played them ten times they might win nine…but not this game, not tonight. If this doesn’t find you brimming with patriotism, I don’t know what will.

So there you have it! Being only a Top 10 list I know I left some out so feel free to comment below with your favorites! Stay tuned for the next Reel Picks Top 10 and in the meantime, don’t forget to check out the other films that I have reviewed!

Share with you friends and family.

You May Also Like…


error: Content is protected !!