War film

From ArticleWorld

There are many examples of war films, all of which deal with the effects of war on the people who are involved. These people are what make the war films different as it depends on who they are as to the way in which the story is told. The majority of these films are told from the point of view of a person or people in the armed forces. This can be any force including the army, navy and air force. Sometimes the story focuses on prisoners of war and their treatment, rescue or sometimes death.

Many war films could be described as anti-war film as they put across a perspective of someone who disagrees with the conflict but is nonetheless involved in it. Rarely the action takes place away from the place of conflict and depicts life at home while loved ones are away fighting and shows the war effort form those left at home.


World War II had a real effect on the type of war films that the public were used to seeing. Before this time, across Europe and America, war films tended to be in the documentary style, an example of which being 1942s In Which We Serve, which was one of the first to marry the documentary style with fictional happenings.

Following the war things began to change and the films became more traditional in their presentation, although many still told true stories from the war. The mood was often very patriotic and the enemy was usually demonised in order to heighten that patriotism. Some very well known films were released in the years after the war ended, including The Dam Busters in 1954.


The other conflict which features predominantly in war films is the Vietnam War. The mood of films after this war changed dramatically from those following WWII. They tended to reflect the American public’s feelings about the conflict, which were mostly negative. This disillusionment is clearly seen in the majority of films on this subject, many of which received real critical acclaim for their handling of a delicate subject. Notable examples of this type of film include Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now.