It’s no secret that some of the film industry’s most critically-acclaimed masterpieces are based on the real-life stories of individuals who either have made a mark in history or have gone through remarkable triumphs in life. Many of these true-to-life films remain popular and well-liked years—and even decades—after their time. Looking for interesting additions to your list of flicks to watch? You can’t go wrong with 10 of the greatest based-on-true-story movies of all time:
The Dam Busters
This 1955 classic is probably one of the most widely recognized war films. It follows the story of the 617 Squadron, a specially-formed troop of Lancaster bombers in their attempts to breach the German Eder, Sorpe, and Mohne dams, using special bouncing bombs that were designed to skip over torpedo defences.
Lawrence of Arabia
Said to be one of the most influential films in cinematic history, Lawrence of Arabia tells the tale of T.E. Lawrence, a hero from the first World War, who played a crucial role in the attack of the Turks by marshalling Arabian tribes during the war. This epic story explores the depths of Lawrence’s psychological troubles and persona as he descends into madness and barbarity as a result of his traumatic war experiences.
Chariots of Fire
A British icon in and of itself, Chariots of Fire centres on the story of two of the most hailed English sportsmen, Eric Liddel, a record-breaking runner who—because of his devout faith—refused to run on a Sunday, and Harold Abraham, a Jewish runner who won the 1924 Olympic 100-meter Sprint. It chronicles the struggles and victories of the two men who overcame prejudice and stayed true to their faith as they pursued their sport.
The King’s Speech
This emotional telling of the Duke of York’s story as he overcomes speech difficulties is also one of the most historically accurate motion pictures that showcased Britain during wartime.
Based on the life of Philomena Lee, this compelling watch tells the story of an Irish woman who, after becoming pregnant at the young age of 18, was sent to a home that kept unwed mothers and was then separated from her son. The film follows her attempts at finding her lost son 20 years later. At the heart of the film is the blossoming romance between Philomena and Martin Sixsmith, a recalcitrant journalist who joined her journey.
Summer in February
Expect a riveting tale of love, scandal, and liberty in a 20th century Edwardian artists’ colony in the Cornish Coast. This period film cum biopic stars Dominic Cooper, Dan Stevens, and Emily Browning in a complex love triangle between the members of the Lamorna Group of The Newlyn School of Artists.
This film was based on a true story film about the iconic British Coal Miner’s Strike of 1984, and how a group of gays and lesbians played a crucial part in support of the miners. It’s an interesting glimpse at the burgeoning relationship between the radically different communities.
The Theory of Everything
In this true to life film, Eddie Redmayne portrays young Stephen Hawking, a world-famous scientist whose decline to immobility due to disease didn’t stop his success in the academe. The film follows Hawking’s beginnings as a brilliant academic and his pursuit of love with wife Jane Wilde.
This is a well-told story of a 5-year-old Indian boy who gets lost on the urban streets of Calcutta, 1,500 kilometres away from home. He sets out to find his old family 25 years later after surviving many challenges and being adopted and raised by an Australian couple. Planning on watching it? Bring some tissues—it’s going to be an emotional 2 hours.
The Greatest Showman
One of the most recent and widely acclaimed true-to-life dramas portrayed in film, The Greatest Showman tells of the story of a poor, orphaned, yet ambitious American visionary as he rises toward show business success.
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