Special Report

50 Best Movies Based on True Events

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

35. Gandhi (1982)
> Favorable reviews: 92% of audiences
> Director: Richard Attenborough
> Starring: Ben Kingsley, John Gielgud, Rohini Hattangadi

This historical epic recounts the life of the famed Indian leader as he fights against British rule. The movie won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director for Richard Attenborough and Best Actor for Ben Kingsley.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

34. Captain Phillips (2013)
> Favorable reviews: 89% of audiences
> Director: Paul Greengrass
> Starring: Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi, Barkhad Abdirahman

The eponymous Phillips was captain of the MV Maersk Alabama, seized by Somali pirates in 2009 — the first American cargo ship to be hijacked in 200 years. With Tom Hanks in the title role, critics consensus on Rotten Tomatoes hails the film as “Smart, powerfully acted, and incredibly intense.”

Source: Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

33. Persepolis (2007)
> Favorable reviews: 92% of audiences
> Director: Vincent Paronnaud, Marjane Satrapi
> Starring: Chiara Mastroianni, Catherine Deneuve, Gena Rowlands

“Persepolis” is an animated autobiographical film by co-writer and director Marjane Satrapi. The Iranian Satrapi comes of age during the Islamic Revolution.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

32. The Great Escape (1963)
> Favorable reviews: 95% of audiences
> Director: John Sturges
> Starring: Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough

This classic adventure tale about prisoners of war escaping from a German prison camp during World War II was hailed by Variety as “a motion picture that entertains, captivates, thrills and stirs.”

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

31. The Killing Fields (1984)
> Favorable reviews: 91% of audiences
> Director: Roland Joffé
> Starring: Sam Waterston, Haing S. Ngor, John Malkovich

“The Killing Fields” tells the story of Pol Pot’s genocidal Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia. Specifically, the film is based on the experiences of New York Times reporter Sidney Schanberg and Cambodian journalist Dith Pran.

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