Last Updated on 20 September 2023

I searched the Internet for lists of the best war movies of all time. Criteria included the movies being ranked, not just listed, and generally created by groups, whether teams or committees or based on general public voting (like Ranker.com).

I was able to find 51 lists. I took the 51 lists and added all their content into a spreadsheet, noting the rank of every film. The total number was over 2,300 including all the repeats. I experimented with different formulas, trying to balance the value of being ranked high on any list and being included on the most lists. I ended up averaging the rankings each movie got (there were 285 that were on at least 2 lists) and dividing that average by a factor of the number of lists that movie was on. The lowest score meant a high ranking average on many lists. The complete spreadsheet is attached at the bottom.

The movies that were on the most lists (out of 51) were:

  • Saving Private Ryan (1998) – 49 lists
  • Apocalypse Now (1979) – 48 lists
  • Platoon (1986) – 42 lists
  • Full Metal Jacket (1987) – 38 lists
  • The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) – 37 lists
  • The Thin Red Line (1998) – 37 lists
  • Das Boot (1981) – 36 lists
  • The Deer Hunter (1978) – 35 lists
  • The Hurt Locker (2008) – 34 lists
  • Dunkirk (2017) – 33 lists
  • Paths of Glory (1957) – 31 lists
  • Patton (1970) – 30 lists
  • Inglourious Basterds (2009) – 30 lists

Here are links to the lists I used along with dates the lists were created:

Loading