Looking for some realistic and charismatic Civil War movies? Well, when you have this article handy, you don’t have to do it anymore! In this article, we have made a list of the best civil war movies.
No matter where you watch your favorite movies or tv shows, including other content, it is always to ensure that you are watching good stuff because that matters, pal! More to it that matters is the time you devote.
Anyway, when talking about movie genres, all we can come up with are horror, romance, comedy, anime, Historical, Halloween, documentary, etc., but there is one more genre that is of just as much equal importance as the others. Yes, you guessed it! It’s the “war” movies.
We can tell that you like it too, like many others, with the fact that in the quest of watching good titles of it, you came all the way here.
You have done the right thing. Since there are a lot of titles out there, each one unique to its own name, it might as well get overwhelming for you to decide which one to watch and which one to leave.
Keeping that situation of yours in mind, we ran through different popular and, in particular, best civil war movies out there. Hence, we came up with this list that can give you pretty good war movie suggestions. So, without more waste of time, let’s begin to find out the ones that you may like.
Little Women (2019)
Writer: Louisa May Alcott, Greta Gerwig
Cast:Saoirse Ronan, Florence Pugh, Timothée Chalamet, Emma Watson
Runtime: 2h 15m
One of the best civil war movies in Canada to watch, Little Women, takes place in the years after the Civil War. It has a beautiful women-like tale revolving around four March sisters, namely, Jo March, Amy March, Beth March, and Meg March.
They live in New York City, and one of the sisters, Jo March, who is really good at describing in words, tries to make her living through that. She is also writing a book of her own.
At the same time, the other sister Amy learns to paint in Paris. Amy meets Theodor, who was her childhood crush, but he had instead proposed to Jo and is rejected.
The eldest of them all is Meg March, who gets married to a schoolteacher, and the other one is Beth March, who has some serious illness developed in her. Her illness brings everyone together.
The Hateful Eight (2015)
Writer: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tim Roth
Runtime: 3h 7m
Considering the three hours the movie runs, it may seem like a really long movie. But it won’t feel like one if you really like war movies. The story is set in sometime after the Civil War in which a stagecoach is hurtled through a wintry and windy Wyoming landscape.
Primarily, the film revolves around John Ruth, who is a bounty hunter and has captured a fugitive named Daisy Domergue. They want to race to the town of Red Rock so that Ruth can get Daisy some justice.
As they are on their journey, they meet Chris Mannix and Marquis Warren on the way. At first, they take refuge in Minnie’s Haberdashery, where they meet some more unfamiliar faces and join them on their way to Red Rock. But soon, a strong storm hits and takes over the bunch of people who must protect themselves.
The Beguiled (2017)
Director: Sofia Coppola
Writer: Sofia Coppola, Thomas Cullinan, Albert Maltz
Cast: Kirsten Dunst, Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Elle Fanning
Runtime: 1h 34m
It was three years to the American Civil War in 1864, and during it, the young women’s dilapidated mansion of Miss Martha Farnsworth was still operating and was occupied by five students, a teacher, and a matriarch in Virginia.
However, one day all of a sudden, one of the students stumbles into a Corporal wounded soldier named John McBurney, who is on the verge of death. So, hesitantly, the headmistress decided to take him to the mansion until he healed fully from his injury.
But his appearance in the all-girls boarding school raises a wave of jealousy among the girls. Hence with the seduction of the young man, it will not be long before the ladies compete with each other to get his attention and favors.
Free State of Jones (2016)
Director: Gary Ross
Writer: Gary Ross, Leonard Hartman
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Gugu Mbatha‑Raw, Mahershala Ali, Keri Russell
Runtime: 2h 19m
The Free State of Jones can be considered as one of the great real-life-like examples of the rising of the rebellions. The movie occurs during the Civil War, depicting the courageous story of the defiant Newt Knight, a Southern farmer.
After serving as a medic in the Civil War, Newton decides to return home and safeguard his family. However, he finds that he has been labeled as an outlaw deserter. So, he forms a rebellion against the dishonest Confederate government.
After banding together with some other locals, he launches an uprising that Jones County, Mississippi, leads.
Director: Justin Lee
Writer: Justin Lee
Cast: Kevin Makely, Mira Sorvino, Jeff Fahey, Amanda Wyss
Runtime: 1h 56m
Badland is an American western film that is set nearly a decade after the American Civil War ended. The movie’s plot on thinner views revolves around a Pinkerton detective named Matthias Breecher.
Matthias has been hired for his special work of tracking down and capturing the worst of the Confederate war criminals that are still around.
While roaming around the Old West in search of seeking justice, his resolve is put to the test as he comes across a determined and, more to it, pious woman. She is a woman who is just simply a lot more than what she originally looked like.
Lincoln (2012)Director: Steven Spielberg
Writer: Tony Kushner, Doris Kearns Goodwin
Cast: Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Runtime: 2h 30m
In 1865, as the American Civil War continued to create a rage in the country, the US president became concerned about the unity and safety of the people. While he is concerned, he also struggles with the continual carnage of his men on the battlefield.
He aims to bring forth a passage of the landmark constitutional amendment through which slavery in the US could be completely banned forever. His struggles do not end here; he also needs to face those snake-heads inside his cabinet that are rising on his idea to emancipate the enslaved people.
Captain America: Civil War (2016)
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Writer: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely, Joe Simon
Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan
Runtime: 2h 27m
Are you an MCU fan who also likes the best civil war movies? Well, if that is the case, then this MCU film will be your favorite movie. Though the name suggests that it is a movie specific to Captain America, it is a film featuring most of the Avengers.
The saddest thing happens in the movie: the Avengers break into groups, each one considering the other wrong and less powerful than themselves.
One group decides to agree with the government’s decision to impose a law that can control their powers, looking at all the havoc they wreak, while the other group opposes it.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Writer: Seth Grahame-Smith
Cast: Benjamin Walker, Anthony Mackie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Dominic Cooper
Runtime: 1h 45m
When Abraham Lincoln was 9 years old, he witnessed a Vampire, Jack Barts, killing her mother. Some ten years later, a lot of things changed around him. However, despite the many other changes taking place, the existence of vampires is still a big issue.
He is determined to catch the vampire, Barts, that took her mother. But he fails in the process. However, in his attempt, he was able to make acquaintance with Henry, who could teach him ways to fight vampires and how to kill them.
But in return, Abe must kill the vampires that Henry tells him to. He keeps working on learning the law of killing vampires and eventually gets married. Later, he also becomes the 16th president of the US, now having to deal with vampires seriously.
Field of Lost Shoes (2014)
Director: Sean McNamara
Writer: Thomas Farrell, David M. Kennedy
Cast: Sean McNamara, David Arquette, Jason Isaacs, Keith David
Runtime: 1h 36m
Field of the Lost Shoes is a very interesting teenage war movie that also makes it one of the best civil war movies. This story is based on factual events from the American Civil War, particularly the New Market’s battle in 1864.
A group of teenage cadets is taking shelter at the Virginia Military Institute from the ongoing civil war. However, when the Valley of Shenandoah is under the threat of destruction, these young teenagers are called to defend it.
In a call for protection of the Shenandoah Valley from the enemies, they must leave behind their youth. They must also have to face the horrors of the adult war and decide what they are actually fighting for.
Director: Lawrence Roeck
Writer: Carlos De Los Rios, Lawrence Roeck
Cast: Scott Eastwood, Samuel Marty, Danny Glover, Camilla Belle
Runtime: 1h 30m
Diablo is a take on the life of a very disturbed civil war veteran and mass murderer who is looking for a woman that he kidnapped to marry her as his husband. Her husband and brothers had rescued her.
As the story of this man proceeds, we see him as a double-trait man: one who is a sad and disturbed veteran and the other an evil mass murderer. But with the story’s unfolding, the man eventually fully takes up the personality of an evil mass murderer.
He sets out to find the woman and, along the way, kills almost everyone that seems to menace her.
The Birth of a Nation (1915)
Director: D. W. Griffith
Writer: Thomas Dixon Jr., D.W. Griffith, Frank E. Woods
Cast: Lillian Gish, Henry B. Walthall, John Ford, Miriam Cooper
Runtime: 3h 7m
The Birth of a Nation follows the story of a literate and well-educated man, Nat Turner, who is a slave preacher. Samuel Turner is his financially strained owner who accepts Nat’s offer to use his preaching to subdue the unruly enslaved people.
In the mission, as he proceeds, he witnesses several atrocities against him and his fellow slaves. As a result of that, Nat orchestrates and initiates an uprising, hoping that this will help him lead his people to freedom.
He thinks that he is a chosen man of God and is, therefore, the instrument of freedom for his people.
Director: Brian Trenchard-Smith
Writer: Philip MacDonald, David Phillips
Cast: Jim Belushi, Alan David Lee, Simon Westaway, Paul Empson
Runtime: 1h 46m
In June 1942, after the fall of Tobruk, sergeant Joe Gunn, one of the sergeants of the US army, led his tank all the way to the Sahara desert, the hottest desert.
He does it to reach the Allied lines and evade the advancing of Rommel’s forces. On his way, he gathers a few Allied soldiers. However, the problem starts to rise when they realize that they are running out of water.
Though they do find a source: water in the ancient well, that source is a goal of the entire German battalion. But to get their hands on it and to defend the water of the good sergeant, Gunn will do what they can.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)
Director: Gavin Hood
Writer: Gavin Hood, David Benioff, Skip Woods
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Ryan Reynolds, Liev Schreiber, Lynn Collins
Runtime: 1h 47m
If you follow the sequence of X-men movies, this X-Men Origins: Wolverine falls as the fourth movie in it. This one is mainly about Logan, famously known as Wolverine. Logan is finally able to seek solace from his unforgettable dark past.
He has found the love of his life, Kayla Silverfox, and everything is going pretty for him. But one day, the peace in his life is shattered again. This happened when his cruel brother, Victor Creed, murdered Kayla brutally.
Now, Logan is filled with the thirst for revenge like never before. The vengeance pushes him into the Weapon X program, where he goes through a procedure through which he emerges as virtually indestructible.
Blood Diamond (2006)Director: Edward Zwick
Writer: Charles Leavitt, C. Gaby Mitchell
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Connelly, Djimon Hounsou, Kagiso Kuypers
Runtime: 2h 23m
In the 1990s Sierra Leone, when Civil War rages, a black Mende fisherman is kidnapped and has been taken to an unknown place where he is forced to work in the mines among other abducted people. With no power of his own, the guy can’t do anything and starts to work in the mine.
However, one day, while working, he finds a precious gem and hides it with himself. When this thing comes into the knowledge of Danny, a white South African mercenary, he offers him to help find his family but gets the gem in return.
As they set out on their quest to achieve their goal, they meet a journalist who helps them embark through rebel territory on a hazardous trek.
Cold Mountain (2003)
Director: Anthony Minghella
Writer: Charles Frazier, Anthony Minghella
Cast: Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, Renée Zellweger, Natalie Portman
Runtime: 2h 34m
This civil war saga, Cold Mountain, is a beautiful story that addresses love, the ravages of war, and the bonds of friendship.
W P Inman, an injured American soldier during the Civil War, is set on returning home to Cold Mountain, North Carolina, to see his sweetheart before its too late. However, with enemies at every corner and days waning down, his journey seems more perilous than ever.
It is simply a tale of longing, hope, faith, redemption, and second chances, and these simple emotions make it one of the best civil war movies. You surely won’t regret watching it. So check it out.
Gangs of New York (2002)
Director: Martin Scorsese
Writer: Jay Cocks, Steven Zaillian, Kenneth Lonergan
Cast: Daniel Day-Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, Liam Neeson
Runtime: 2h 47m
In the early-1860s restrict of Lower Manhattan – also known as the Five Points – there lived a vicious nativist named Bill “The Butcher” Cutting. He is the supreme overlord of a place that is filled with prostitution, crime, murder, and theft, all while the Civil War is still going on.
Whole 16 years after his father’s murder at the hands of Bill, Amsterdam Vallon, an Irish orphaned young man, returns to the furiously melting container of corruption. He wants to avenge the death of his father, but since he got out of prison, a lot of things have changed.
Who can think that an innocent young man like him can turn out into a totally different creature?
The Last Samurai (2003)Director: Edward Zwick
Writer: John Logan, Edward Zwick, Marshall Herskovitz
Cast: Tom Cruise, Ken Watanabe, Koyuki, Hiroyuki Sanada
Runtime: 2h 34m
After a samurai rebellion arose in the Japanese empire, its Emperor of the time decides to appoint a skilled American in the military that could train the first army of the country in modern-day warfare. So, he hires Capt.
Nathan Algren (Tom Cruise), who is an American military officer, for this purpose would later allow the army to put down the samurai rebellion. However, he has been captured by the Samurai class, and while being there, Algren finds himself being affected by the surrounding people.
He starts to embrace them. This movie has the hearts of many and is, therefore, counted among the best civil war movies.
Gods and Generals (2003)
Director: Ron Maxwell
Writer: Ron Maxwell, Jeff Shaara
Cast: Stephen Lang, Jeff Daniels, Robert Duvall, Donzaleigh Abernathy
Runtime: 3h 43m
Gods and Generals is a good pick of the Civil War movies that has a whole film series, making the viewers of it extremely thrilled. You, too, can start with its first released movie, and then if it matches your interest, you would also perhaps like to enjoy its other parts. Anyway, the movie, as the name suggests, revolves around the generals.
This movie, in specific, depicts the fall and rise of Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, a confederate governor.
You will follow him from 1861 to 1863 as he achieves military success against the Union. However, it may be shocking for the people around him to learn that his own soldiers kill him accidentally.
In the Electric Mist (2009)
Director: Bertrand Tavernier
Writer: Jerzy Kromolowski, James Lee Burke, Mary Olson-Kromolowski
Cast: Tommy Lee Jones, John Goodman, Peter Sarsgaard, Mary Steenburgen
Runtime: 1h 57m
A very determined detective in New Iberia, Louisiana, named Lt. Dave Robicheaux, is on a mission to solve the mystery of a murder case.
With the evidence he has and is collecting, he is trying to make a connection between the murder of the local hooker with Julie (Baby Feet) Balboni, the New Orleans mobster who is also a co-producer of the Civil war movie.
However, at the same time, the star of the movie, Elrod Sykes, reports another corpse near the movie set in Atchafalaya Swamp. The detective then commences a new investigation, thinking that it may be the corpse of the black man killed 35 years ago.
Wild Wild West (1999)
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Writer: S.S. Wilson, John Thomas, Jim Thomas
Cast: Will Smith, Kenneth Branagh, Kevin Kline, Salma Hayek
Runtime: 1h 47m
President Ulysses S. Grant (Kevin Kline) discovers that Dr. Arliss Loveless, a treacherous inventor, intends to murder him.
Scared for his safety, he draws up orders to James West, a Civil War hero, and Artemus Gordon, the US marshal, to capture and arrest him.
Though the thoughtful personality of Gordon does not go well with the trigger-happy personality of James, the two try to get together and work. However, they close in on Loveless with the help of a stranger.
Dances With Wolves (1990)
Director: Kevin Costner
Writer: Michael Blake
Cast: Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant
Runtime: 3h 56m
Following a severe injury, Lt John J Dunbar is tasked to a western Civil War outpost. While there in the New surroundings, he meets a band of Lakota people and makes friends with the wolves and the Native Americans.
He is quite attracted to their simple lifestyle and decides to give up his former life to be with them. After observing him, the people give him the name ‘Dances With Wolves.’
With this, we have reached the end of the article carrying the best civil war movies list.
Now, we hope that your quest, too, to find out about great movies has finally reached an end, and you actually found some good ones! Whatever the platform you are using to get your streaming services (like Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime, etc.), you just need to know what you will watch.
So, just collect good suggestions from your friends or family members or even websites like these and write them down somewhere.
This way, whenever you want to watch these movies, you would already know what to stream without wasting your time searching for them again. Great, right? Get some snacks and prepare to watch the best civil war movies you want.