Special Report

50 Best Movies Based on True Events

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

20. Dunkirk (2017)
> Favorable reviews: 81% of audiences
> Director: Christopher Nolan
> Starring: Fionn Whitehead, Barry Keoghan, Mark Rylance

“Masterful visual storytelling on an epic scale,” said Bob Mondello of NPR about this heroically scaled account of the dramatic evacuation of Allied forces from France in the face of a German advance during World War II.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

19. The Right Stuff (1983)
> Favorable reviews: 90% of audiences
> Director: Philip Kaufman
> Starring: Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris

Based on Tom Wolfe’s book of the same name, “The Right Stuff” recounts the true story of test pilots such as Chuck Yeager and Gordon Cooper as they break the sound barrier. The 193-minute film has been critically praised since its release, despite not doing well at the box office in 1983.

Source: Courtesy of The Weinstein Company

18. The King’s Speech (2010)
> Favorable reviews: 92% of audiences
> Director: Tom Hooper
> Starring: Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter

This historical drama about King George VI of England and the speech therapist who helped him overcome his stammer won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Actor (Colin Firth as the titular king), Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

17. Badlands (1973)
> Favorable reviews: 91% of audiences
> Director: Terrence Malick
> Starring: Martin Sheen, Sissy Spacek, Warren Oates

Terrence Malick’s debut film is his take on teenagers Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate’s 1950s killing spree. The crimes were also the inspiration behind the 1994 film “Natural Born Killers.”

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

16. All the President’s Men (1976)
> Favorable reviews: 92% of audiences
> Director: Alan J. Pakula
> Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford, Jack Warden

This account of the Washington Post reporters — played by Dustin Hoffman and Robert Redford — who exposed presidential skullduggery in the Watergate scandal has a 93% rating on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer. Newsday called it “a quintessential American movie.”

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