10 Best Patriotic Films You Should Watch To Celebrate The 4th Of July
10 Best Patriotic Films You Should Watch To Celebrate The 4th Of July. (Photo Credit – Instagram)

Independence Day calls for celebrations, and once all the festivities and fireworks are over, all one wants to do is take off their shoes and relax with their family and friends in the comfort of their homes.

And what better way to have a good time with your loved ones, than grabbing a bucket of popcorn and putting on a good movie? To help you out, here is a list of 10 best patriotic films, perfect to celebrate the 4th of July.

1. Apollo 13 (1995)


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Directed by Ron Howard, Apollo 13 is a historical drama based on the captivating true story of the Apollo 13 lunar mission. Featuring Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, and Bill Paxton, the film depicts the astronauts’ fight for survival following an oxygen tank explosion that jeopardizes their spacecraft. Together with NASA, they strive to find a solution to safely return home. The movie highlights ingenuity, teamwork, and perseverance, making it a great choice for an Independence Day watch. It celebrates American resilience and the ability to overcome obstacles: qualities that resonate with the spirit of the holiday.

2. Hamilton (2020)


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The film adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s revolutionary Broadway musical, Hamilton, combines hip-hop, R&B, and traditional music styles to tell the story of Alexander Hamilton, a pivotal figure in America’s founding. The movie depicts Hamilton’s journey from his challenging beginnings to his influential role in shaping the United States. Starring the original Broadway cast, with Miranda portraying Hamilton, the film showcases dynamic performances, impressive dance sequences, and a compelling narrative that brings history to life with powerful storytelling.

3. Saving Private Ryan (1998)


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Starring Tom Hanks and Matt Damon, Saving Private Ryan is a gripping World War II film directed by Steven Spielberg, renowned for its realistic portrayal of combat. The story follows Captain John Miller (Hanks) and his team, tasked with finding Private James Ryan (Damon) after his brothers are killed in action. Beginning with the intense D-Day invasion of Normandy, the film features a dramatic and intense tone. Through compelling performances and an authentic depiction of war’s brutality, it honors the bravery of soldiers and explores the sacrifices made in the line of duty and honor.

4. Lincoln (2012)

Another Steven Spielberg film on the list, Lincoln, showcases the final months of President Abraham Lincoln’s life. The film stars Daniel Day-Lewis, who delivers an acclaimed performance as Lincoln. It centers on Lincoln’s efforts to pass the Thirteenth Amendment, which would abolish slavery in the United States. With its detailed portrayal of historical events, powerful acting, and compelling narrative, Lincoln offers an insightful look into one of America’s most significant and transformative periods.

5. Top Gun (1986) and Top Gun: Maverick (2022)


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A Top Gun marathon would also be an ideal way to spend Independence Day. The first film follows the story of Navy pilot Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, played by Tom Cruise, showcasing thrilling aerial combat and intense training scenes. Its 2022 blockbuster sequel continues Maverick’s journey, focusing on themes of mentorship and redemption. Both films celebrate American patriotism, bravery, and the spirit of adventure.

6. Born on the Fourth of July (1989)

Another film starring Tom Cruise, Born on the Fourth of July is a biographical war drama based on the true story of activist Ron Kovic. Cruise stars in the film as Kovic, a patriotic young man who enlists to fight in the Vietnam War. After being severely injured and paralyzed, Kovic returns, but the country does not feel like his home anymore. The film explores his journey from a passionate supporter of the war to a passionate anti-war activist.

7. Glory (1989)

Helmed by Edward Zwick, Glory revolves around the 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, one of the first African-American units in the Civil War. Starring Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Cary Elwes, and Morgan Freeman, the film follows the regiment’s formation and their courageous fight at the Second Battle of Fort Wagner. With its themes of bravery, sacrifice, and the fight for freedom and equality, the film captures the spirit of American independence.

8. The Patriot (2000)


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The Patriot is a historical drama starring Mel Gibson and Heath Ledger, that follows Benjamin Martin, a South Carolina colonist aligned with Great Britain, who chooses to join the Revolutionary War when his son is killed by a brutal British officer. The film wonderfully portrays the conflict that led to America’s independence. Its dramatic and patriotic storyline, along with thrilling battle scenes, makes it a great watch.

9. The Sandlot (1993)


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After all those war and drama films, The Sandlot will be an excellent choice to lighten up the mood. The coming-of-age film, directed by David Mickey Evans, follows Scott Smalls and his new set of young friends in the 1960s who spend their summer playing baseball at their local sandlot. During a Fourth of July game played under the fireworks, Smalls observes something that changes their lives.

10. Zero Dark Thirty (2012)


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Zero Dark Thirty chronicles the decade-long hunt for Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind the September 11 attacks. The film stars Jessica Chastain as Maya, a determined CIA analyst whose relentless pursuit leads to the discovery of bin Laden’s hideout. The Kathryn Bigelow directorial is a great watch for the 4th of July as it celebrates American strength, determination, and the quest for justice.

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