Top 7 WWII Movies on Netflix This Week

War movies often captivate audiences not only through heroism or glamorized depictions, but also by creating a distinct atmosphere. Despite the grim subject matter, these films transform the darkest aspects of human society into compelling works of art.

They recreate history for future generations, evoke empathy, and encourage us to strive for improvement as a species. War stories humanize the machinations of conflict, bridging the gap between us and the often distant realities of war, offering fresh perspectives.

This genre holds a special place in filmmaking and attracts fans from all walks of life. After some research, we’ve compiled a list of WWII movies currently available on Netflix.

1. Title: Goyo: The Boy General

Release Year: 2018
Director: Jerrold Tarog
Runtime: 2h 30m

“Goyo: The Boy General,” also known as “Goyo,” is a Filipino historical war film that chronicles the life of Gregorio “Goyo” del Pilar, a notable general in the Philippine Revolutionary Army. Goyo, one of the youngest generals during the Philippine–American War, valiantly fought in the Battle of Tirad Pass and met a heroic end. The movie explores his story after the assassination of General Antonio Luna, as he is entrusted with the task of eliminating Luna’s supporters. Goyo, portrayed by Paulo Avelino, is depicted as a young and audacious general favored by the President. Alongside his unit, including his best friend and brother, Goyo embarks on the mission while simultaneously battling against American forces.

2. Title: Heneral Luna

Release Year: 2015
Director: Jerrold Tarog
Runtime: 1h 58m

If you’ve seen or are currently watching “Goyo,” then “Heneral Luna” should be on your watchlist too. While not an official sequel, it can be considered a precursor to “Goyo.” Director Jerrold Tarog helmed both films, and the success of “Heneral Luna” led to the creation of “Goyo.” “Heneral Luna” also draws from true historical events and characters. The biopic depicts the remarkable journey of General Antonio Luna and his leadership of the Philippine Revolutionary Army. Set during the Philippine-American War, Luna faces tremendous opposition from his own people and fellow countrymen while fighting for his nation’s freedom.

3. Title: Paskal 

Release Year: 2018
Director: Adrian Teh
Runtime: 1 hr 55 min

“PASKAL” is an exhilarating Malaysian military action film that draws inspiration from the esteemed special operations force of the Royal Malaysian Navy. Based on real-life events encountered during a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Angola, the plot centers around the hijacking of the Malaysian supertanker, Laurel 11, by Somalian pirates in the Gulf of Aden in 1998. The Royal Malaysian Navy swiftly responds to the distress signal by deploying the elite PASKAL unit to rescue the captured tanker. The movie captivates audiences with its strategic warfare, showcasing the team’s swift and stealthy tactics. Audiences appreciate the film for its compelling narrative, realistic military portrayals, and impressive action sequences.

4. Title: Father Soldier Son 

Release Year: 2020
Directors: Catrin Einhorn and Leslye Davis
Runtime: 1 hr 39 min

“Father Soldier Son” is a poignant American war documentary that delves into the profound impact of war on a soldier and his family. The film intimately follows the journey of Brian Eisch and his loved ones, who are at the heart of this compelling documentary. Eisch, a Sgt. First Class in the United States Army, embarks on a six-month deployment to Afghanistan, leaving behind his role as a single father to his two young boys. The film sensitively portrays the emotional toll experienced by Eisch’s children during his absence. As Eisch returns home, the documentary explores his apprehension about the changes wrought by war and the subsequent effects on his relationship with his children. “Father Soldier Son” provides a moving exploration of sacrifice, resilience, and the complexities of military service within the context of family dynamics.

5. Title: Outlaw King 

Release Year: 2018
Director: David Mackenzie
Runtime: 2 hr 17 min

For a gripping dose of Scottish history drenched in bloodshed, “Outlaw King” is a perfect companion to “Braveheart.” Picking up after the demise of rebel leader William Wallace, this film follows the rebel movement led by Wallace’s ally, Robert the Bruce (played by Chris Pine). Bruce unites loyal lords and strategically reclaims their homeland castle-by-castle from English control. The movie is replete with intense combat sequences, capturing the brutalities of war. Reuniting with his “Hell or High Water” director David Mackenzie, Pine delivers a riveting performance in this fast-paced historical thriller. “Outlaw King” offers a captivating and action-packed glimpse into Scotland’s tumultuous past.

6. Title: All Quiet on the Western Front 

Release Year: 2022
Director: Edward Berger
Runtime: 2 hrs 23 min

Edward Berger helms the Academy Award-winning war epic, “All Quiet on the Western Front,” based on Erich Maria Remarque’s timeless novel. Felix Kammerer shines as an idealistic soldier thrust into the tumultuous final days of World War I, exposing the grim reality of battle. Daniel Brühl delivers a stellar performance, known for his role in “Falcon and the Winter Soldier.” The film skillfully intertwines a parallel storyline exploring armistice negotiations, deviating from Remarque’s original narrative to present a nuanced blend of hope and the brutalities of war. Berger’s direction captivates audiences, creating a haunting portrayal of the war’s impact on individuals.

7. Title: Outside the Wire 

Release Year: 2021
Director: Mikael Håfström
Runtime: 1 hr 55 min

“Outside the Wire” is a science-fiction military film that offers more than just action-packed thrills. Set in the near future, Damson Idris portrays Harp, a drone pilot who faces consequences for a tactical decision. He is then assigned to work with Captain Leo (Anthony Mackie), who is secretly a highly advanced android super-soldier. The film hinges on Idris and Mackie’s banter and frenemy dynamic, as trust remains elusive between them and the audience. As the story unfolds, a larger conspiracy gradually emerges, although the film takes its time getting to its important message, which is revealed in the third act. It is worth staying engaged, as the payoff in the denouement is rewarding. 

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