Many of the biggest titles for 2021 are movies that we expected to see in 2020. That these charming British character types are required to react with such sudden ferocity gives the movie a sense of real consequence missing from most homefront films. During the previous decade, films had helped audiences cope with the privations of the Great Depression and the loss of two kings. David Lean’s film was ahead of its time. This movie revealed the previously classified story behind Britain's "bouncing bombs," which the RAF's 617 Squadron used to destroy German dams in 1943. Alec Guinness is superb. Most of them are also available for purchase or rent via digital stores like iTunes, Amazon, VUDU or FandangoNOW. Not really. Fantasia - (1940, James Algar) (Disney Animated film, Deems Taylor - Narrator (1940 original) 22. 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Powell and Pressburger’s film, based on the novel by Rumer Godden, features a wonderful performance from Deborah Kerr and an even better one from Kathleen Byron as the directors cook up an emotional tale of ambition, faith and eroticism. This was a movie made for an audience who knew just how close they had come to fighting the enemy on their home turf. One of the most popular movies of the 1940s Cinema, a timeless classic, and Alfred Hitchcock’s favorite of all of his films. As DoD officials look into reports of military participants, legal experts weigh in on what charges they might face. All rights reserved. The dog is black, and Gibson has given him a truly unfortunate name, one that inspired a pre-title card at the movie's beginning warning audiences that the film reflects cultural attitudes of the era that may no longer be acceptable. He would do the same for Oliver Twist two years later. On its face, the movie looks like it's going to be a heartwarming story about plucky civilians who foil an enemy plot to establish a beachhead for a coming invasion. See the A – Z of films featured on Top 10 Films, Review: “25th Hour” Sees New York City Exposed, Vulnerable & Licking Its Wounds, Top 10 Johnny Depp Performances In The 1990s, Review: “Night Of The Running Man” Reminds Me Why I Can’t Stand Andrew McCarthy, 10 Unforgettable Films About Troubled Adolescents, Review: “Tremors” Finds A Lovable Harmony Between Comedy & Horror, Review: “The Fifth Element” Is A Flawed But Weirdly Attractive Acid Space Dream, Review: “Blinded By The Light” Will Leave You Grinning From Ear To Ear, Review: Jeff Goldblum Experiences An Unconventional Existential Journey “Into The Night”, Review: “Logan Lucky” – Street Savvy & High-Spirited, Review: “A Severed Head” Cuts Off The Sympathy Gene. Film Movement has collected five of these classic films in "Their Finest Hour," a new Blu-ray box that makes high-definition versions available in the U.S. for the first time. In 1944 … Navy Secretary Braithwaite apologized that it took more than 75 years since World War II ended to honor the fallen chaplain. How could I forget?! Laurence Olivier, whilst serving with the British Fleet Air Arm during the second world war, starred in and directed this wholly patriotic film from the play from William Shakespeare. @Max: I don’t think many films reach the level of The Third Man but I would say if you are a fan of that film Odd Man Out is definitely worth seeing, as are all of these films. Deciding instead to create separate lists for the best British and American films of the decade, the following are some of the greatest works to come out of Britain during the 1940s. Charlie Chaplin, Orson Welles, Howard Hawks and Alfred Hitchcock were doing some of their best work. The Great Dictator - (1940, Charles Chaplin) (Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie) 21. 3. A list of 354 films compiled on Letterboxd, including 21 Days (1940), Band Waggon (1940), Busman's Honeymoon (1940), The Case of the Frightened Lady (1940) and Charley's (Big-Hearted) Aunt (1940). It's a movie that deserves a wider audience and, if that requires dubbing in an innocuous name for the dog, let's hope someone gets around to that soon. "The Colditz Story" is also available to stream or buy online. Best Foreign Films. If you like old movies, I hope you'll enjoy this quiz. 5 Classic (But Relatively Unknown) British World War II Movies And though the best British films will arguably always be those led b posh accents, grand English country estates, and Colin Firth, the movies on this list prove there's so … Mills' character, Capt. The Web (1947) – source: Universal Pictures. At times it feels like we have four actors playing their ever-handy archetypes. The Marine Corps hit a milestone when three women completed drill instructor school at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego. Even if that version kept in the action sequences so effective here, it's the dread created in quieter scenes that make the film so effective. Undoutedly, Great Expectations must be high on the list. Great Expectations, for me, is the finest piece of cinema these shores ever produced, with Fires Were Started coming a very close second. I’ve seen and own 1,2, and 4. A British medical field unit (John Mills, Sylvia Syms and Harry Andrews) tries to cross the desert to Alexandria, Egypt, in a breaking-down jeep. Agree with almost all inclusions – but the order is entirely wrong! If you think you saw it back in the day, the version released theatrically in the United States cut out half the movie. The action scenes are riveting, and much of the movie was shot on location in Libya. The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp ( 1943 ) Where to Watch? The final bombing sequence is shot in a way that should look familiar to fans of the Death Star destruction sequence in the original 1977 "Star Wars" movie. The first of the films made available here are of the “film noir” genre (or style, if you prefer). "The Dam Busters" is not available to stream or purchase digitally, most likely because of that poor dog's name. I would be very interested in seeing the rest especially the David Lean movies. Mrs Miniver, just to name a few. Charles Barton • Starring: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Marjorie … 2. Required fields are marked *. The ultimate in non-lethal riot control devices was a total lie. 1939. If we're being honest with ourselves, Great Britain knew more about the war in Europe and North Africa than Americans ever would. Richard Collins III was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army shortly before his death. There are real consequences for both villagers and troops, and the deaths aren't underplayed. However Goodbye Mr Chips, How Green was my Valley and Mrs Miniver are American films. He is the third of four U.S. service members — two SEALs and two Marines — to face a court martial for the death of Melgar. Cast John Mills, Valerie … The 1940s saw the rise of Technicolor but also of film noir … One of the memorable classics! It quickly becomes apparent when looking at the films released during the decade that many of cinema’s most memorable, timeless and influential works appeared during the ten years between 1940 and 1949. Recently, the film found its way into our Top 10 films to watch before going to film school. Nominate Them For A $1,000 Prize From AARP, Here's What It Was Like to Be a Marine Turned Journalist Capturing the US Capitol Assault, You Can Find These Surprising Artifacts at the Coast Guard's Museum. A popular British classic, this is the sort of movie often found nestling in afternoon schedules on BBC2, its status as cosy nostalgic treat signalled by the casting of John Mills as leading man – the proverbial plucky Tommy personified, the underdog everyman. One left-field choice: John Eldridge’s Waverley Steps, which is a 30-minute ‘city symphony’ through the streets of Edinburgh. Just Great Movies. When you look at the variety and scope of films made in the 1940s, it really is one of the greatest decades for film. Henry V (Olivier, 1944) Laurence Olivier, whilst serving with the British Fleet Air Arm … If you're looking for ways to support businesses likely to be hardest hit but the current crisis, buying this title directly from Film Movement would be a good option to consider. The Magnificent Ambersons - (1942, Orson Welles) (Joseph Cotten, Dolores Costello) 23. British WW2 films by Edna Sweetlove. David Lean masterfully adapts Charles Dickens’ novel for the screen. Director David Lean. I’d also replace Black Narcissus with A Matter of Life and Death and include a second Humphrey Jennings: Listen to Britain, which is just magnificent. The sheer quality of the films featured below highlights the strength of the British film industry during the 1940s, a decade that perhaps has never been matched before or since. Arranging to meet again, the pair soon find their relationship developing into love. Watch these free Classic Mysteries Thru Opera TV, which is on many devices including TiVo. Before Guy Hamilton directed four of the best James Bond movies ("Goldfinger," "Diamonds Are Forever," "Live and Let Die" and "The Man With the Golden Gun"), he made his bones with this based-on-real-life drama about Allied troops trying to escape from a German prisoner-of-war camp housed in the medieval Colditz Castle. Brits really do see Dunkirk as the defeat that won the war, and this movie, made less than a generation after the 1940 evacuation, is a document of that operation made by people with direct connections to the war. See the A – Z of films featured on Top 10 Films / Check out our film review database, HENRY V is the only one I watched from this list, but you know epics and historical films are my absolute favourite! Journeyman director J. Lee Thompson warmed up for his early 1960s career peak (the consecutive one-two punch of "The Guns of Navarone" and "Cape Fear") with this North Africa adventure tale that's every bit as good as those two better-known films. Probably not. The British film industry was very active in the 1940s, and not only with comedies such as those featured in my recent Ealing Comedies game. One of the most popular films Gainsborough Studios ever released, this costume melodrama, for which British cinema became renowned for during the middle part of the century, follows the lives of two women (Phyllis Calvert, Margaret Lockwood) who pursue fateful relationships with two unscrupulous men (James Mason, Stewart Granger). Gaslight (1940) 1940s (3) 20th Century Literature On Screen (3) Bar (3) Bare Chested Male (3) British Humoristic Literature On Screen (3) British Literature On Screen (3) Car Crash (3) Cemetery (3) Class Differences (3) Deception (3) England (3) European Literature On Screen (3) Explosion (3) Gun (3) Hotel (3) Humoristic Literature On Screen (3) Literature On Screen (3) Pistol (3) Police (3) North Korea displayed new submarine-launched ballistic missiles under development and other military hardware. Search our collection of Top 10 lists sorted by type: Probably trumped by the Powell and Pressburger comic fantasies during World War II, Humphrey Jennings’ film is a more sombre look at British life in the face of conflict. All fine films. It is BAD that I haven’t seen any of these isn’t it? But, as they are both married, they find that the relationship cannot go on if they are to avoid hurting their families. Never heard of ‘Odd Man Out’. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Argued by many as the greatest film ever made, Carol Reed’s The Third Man follows an American searching for the killer of his best friend in war-torn Vienna. Colditz was supposed to be escape-proof and was used to house prisoners who made repeated escape attempts from other camps. Explore the archive Odd Man Out is one of my favourite films starring James Mason. I miss the old golden age of Hollywood with dramatic and luxurious epics. Is the US Losing the Fight for Arctic Dominance? What are your favourite British films from the 1940s? "Dunkirk" is also available to stream or buy online. While that does describe the plot, it doesn't suggest the violence and brutality the movie depicts. Carol Reed • Starring: Joseph Cotten, Alida Valli, Orson Welles. Search Suspended for Boat that Left Bahamas with 20 on Board, 7 Things to Know About Being a Military Veterinarian, How a Suburban Housewife Became a Pioneer of Military Intelligence. British Council film archive Take a trip down memory lane with this rights-free collection of over 100 short documentaries about wartime Britain, made by us during the 1940s. 1940s (22) Doctor (22) Marriage (22) Father Daughter Relationship (21) Police (21) Dancing (19) Femme Fatale (19) Friendship (19) Kiss (19) Death (18) Father Son Relationship (18) Psychotronic Film (18) Telephone Call (18) Bar (17) Chase (17) Hotel (17) Love Triangle (17) Maid (17) Photograph (17) Song (17) Escape (16) Face Slap (16) Flashback (16) Jealousy (16) Marriage Proposal (16) There's probably a good reason for that inspiration, since the special effects shots were overseen by Gilbert Taylor, whose long career included a job as cinematographer on "Star Wars.". Free Classic Movies from the 1920's,1930's, 1940's and 1950's of the Crime,Detective or Film-Noir Genre all in the Public Domain, edited to reduce video noise. Put a group of French, British and Polish men determined to escape in one place, and they're going to come up with a series of ingenious plans. I haven’t seen all of these, but glad to see Black Narcissus and The Red Shoes included. . One of my personal faves is “Goodbye Mr Chips”! Does it come any where close to achieving the greatness of ‘The Third Man’? Emond O’Brien is the astute lawyer, Ella Raines a flirtatious working girl, Vincent Price the glowering businessman hiding behind his charisma, and William Bendix a straight-laced cop. Written, directed and produced by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, The Red Shoes is based on Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tale and follows the story of a ballerina who must choose between her life on the stage and true love. © Copyright 2021 Military.com. It is given further resonance thanks to a thoughtful script that intelligently looks at morality and social existence. Using real firemen playing fictional roles, Fires Were Started follows the men of a fire station during intense German bombing raids. The movie takes a few liberties with the actual details as to which prisoners tried to escape at which time, but the movie's thrilling central escape really happened in much the same way it's portrayed in the film. Hollywood didn't quite corner the market on great World War II movies. Director Leslie Norman's 1958 film takes the opposite and more traditional approach, giving context every step of the way and telling a series of parallel stories of men on the ground in France and citizens back home in Britain that eventually meet up and intertwine on the beaches at Dunkirk. Top 10 films to watch before going to film school. Directed by: Andrew HaighStarring: Charlotte Rampling, Tom Courtenay Two giants of British screen acting, surprisingly working together for the first time, make a combustible double-act in this Norfolk-set two-hander. What we get is movies made with all the craftsmanship we're used to with Hollywood war films from the era but that don't follow the Hollywood rules about plot and character we've seen in a hundred other (often great) WWII movies. There's one unintentionally shocking thing about this movie: Richard Todd's character, Wing Commander Guy Gibson, has a magnificent black labrador retriever as a pet. Films 188 Comments 12 ... Any additional suggestions are welcome, however. So many great European movies; Pygmalion, How Green was my Valley, Christopher Nolan's classic 2017 "Dunkirk" plunges viewers into three different perspectives (land, sea, air) and three different timelines (week, day, hour) to give a sense of the chaos of war from the battlefield perspective. Emily Rainey is scheduled to leave the Army in April after resigning her commission over earlier incidents. 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