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The Pendragon Society

The Guardian’s 25 best action and war films of all time

In October 2010 The Guardian compiled a list of the 25 best action and war films ever made. Defining what makes something an action film is a troublesome thing. After all nearly all films have some sort of action in them. Does a film need gunfights and explosions in every other scene to be considered a real action movie? If so, then those following the adventures of Jason Bourne or starring the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Steven Seagal and Jason Statham should surely be on the list, but there not. In fact, some will argue that Die Hard is the only true action film among the 25 listed but The Guardian’s Michael Hann believes “the perfect action film should set the heart racing while still giving some food for thought” which is apparently why Where Eagles Dare is on the list! Ultimately whether or not these films would be classed as action movies, (particularly when you consider the low attention spans of many modern cinema-goers), they are all well worth a watch.

1) Apocalyse Now
2) North by Northwest
3) Once Upon a Time in the West
4) The Wild Bunch
5) Deliverance
6) City of God
7) Paths of Glory
8) Wages of Fear
9) Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
10) The Thin Red Line
11) Raiders of the Lost Ark
12) Ran
13) Bullitt
14) Die Hard
15) The Adventures of Robin Hood
16) The Searchers
17) Goldfinger
18) The Last of the Mohicans
19) Full Metal Jacket
20) The Deer Hunter
21) Gladiator
22) Rome, Open City
23) Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
24) Where Eagles Dare
25) The Incredibles