Movies bring us to magnificent places and situations. I’ve watched many epic movies. Now I want to share with you what I believe are the top 10 epic movies ever made. Enjoy my list!
#10. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
Lawrence of Arabia, one of the most impactful films of all time, kicks off our list. Lawrence, played by Peter O’Toole, is the titular character. T. E. Lawrence, a former British Army commander turned diplomat, is the subject of this 1962 historical drama.
Lawrence’s travels in the Ottoman Empire during World War I are chronicled in this account. Lawrence of Arabia was a gigantic film, both metaphorically and physically, when it was premiered.
It was not just a critical and commercial triumph right away, but it was also the longest film ever to win a Best Picture Oscar, edging even Ghan with the Wind by one minute.
Lawrence of Arabia has not been spared from criticism, while some have questioned how realistic the portrayal of Lawrence is.
Even biographers have mixed points of view. There is also the issue of there being a noticeable lack of non-white actors. True, Omar Sharif was in the movie, but the role was offered to multiple white actors before Sharif.
Regardless of its controversies, the fingerprints of Lawrence of Arabia are all over today’s movies, especially in the realms of science fiction, adventure and fantasy.
You can see elements of Lawrence in movies from Ridley Scott, Steven Spielberg, Oliver Stone, and many others.
#9. Back to the Future (1985)
Back to the Future was a phenomenon when it was released in 1985. In this first chapter, we meet eccentric scientist Dr. Emmett Brown and his adolescent buddy Marty, who is unintentionally sent back to 1955. Naturally, this poses problems with the characters’ current reality.
Marty has a limited amount of time to restore the chronology before he is erased from existence, with the help of a 30 year younger but not drastically different looking Dr. Brown.
Back to the Future was a commercial and critical success right away, and the sequels followed suit, albeit to a lesser extent. And, like Lawrence of Arabia, Back to the Future’s impact can be observed in recent films, with a clear allusion to the time heist storyline in Avengers: Infinity War.
The franchise is also present in other media, the most notable of which being the animated TV series. There is even a Back to the Future musical, which premiered in March 2020.
#8. Seven Samurai (1954)
Seven Samurai, directed by the famous Akira Kurosawa, relates the story of seven samurai recruited as bodyguards to safeguard a town of farmers’ crops from marauding marauders.
Much of the film’s success may be attributed to Kurosawa’s calm decision-making and the studio’s creative freedom. Kurosawa used numerous cameras and telescopic lenses, which were uncommon in 1954, to give the action scenes far more action than spectators were accustomed to.
Seven Samurai presently has a perfect score of 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, an achievement achieved by a tiny number of films. From Mad Max to Fury Road to Three Amigos, the direct impact of Seven Samurai may be observed in a wide range of films.
The most notable influence was on the 1960 version of The Magnificent Seven, which was a direct adaptation of Seven Samurai. To this day, it is one of the most borrowed from and referenced films ever.
#7. Saving Private Ryan (1998)
Saving Private Ryan is a highly praised military drama directed by Steven Spielberg that is often imitated but never matched for its vivid depiction of the Omaha Beach assault during the Allied invasion of Normandy during World War II.
Captain Miller, played by Tom Hanks, leads a courageous but fatigued troop of Army Rangers. Following their survival of the horrors of Omaha Beach, they are charged with rescuing Matt Damon’s titular Private Ryan, which requires them to go through Nazi-occupied France.
Saving Private Ryan featured Tom Sizemore and Giovanni Ribisi in supporting parts, as well as a few blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameos and a few glimpses of performers before they became big names.
Although Saving Private Ryan did earn some criticism for not depicting that soldiers of other countries were present at the Omaha Beach assault, it was praised by many World War II veterans for its realistic depiction of combat during the war.
#6. Interstellar (2014)
Interstellar, a science fiction epic directed by Christopher Nolan and released in 2014, sits near the halfway mark of our list.
Interstellar, starring Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway, is set in the year 2067, when mankind are barely living owing to climate change’s impacts.
The film follows a former NASA pilot as he leaves his family to help establish a home for the remaining people of Earth in the Cosmos.
The specifics of how this is performed may fill a whole post in and of itself, but suffice it to say that things get a bit Whiny.
Critical response for Interstellar was not as strong as some of the other entries on this list. It currently holds a 72% on Rotten Tomatoes, but the scientific aspects were highly praised by many experts, some going as far as to consider it the gold standard for science fiction to come.
#5. The Matrix (1999)
The Matrix, widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential science fiction films of all time, was released in 1999 to universal acclaim.
Keanu Reeves plays Neo, a software engineer by day and a hacker by night, who discovers the truth about how his world really works in his largest role to date.
Up to the turn of the century, it had some of the most revolutionary visual effects, including the much imitated bullet time illusion that you thought was genuine.
The legacy of The Matrix can still be seen in film and television 20 years later. The influence of The Matrix expanded beyond the scope of filmmaking as well, spreading into the worlds of comics, video games, and literature. The Matrix even influenced many fashion decisions in the years following its release.
#4. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
The term “epic” isn’t often used these days when discussing spaghetti Westerns, but Sergio Leone’s The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly certainly qualifies.
The film was a big commercial success despite being panned by reviewers upon its initial release due to a broad reaction against the genre. It’s also the film that launched Clint Eastwood’s career.
Overall, critical reaction has been overwhelmingly good, and “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” is now widely regarded as the quintessential spaghetti Western.
One of the most important elements of the film’s success, alongside Leoni’s vision and direction, was the score. The main theme, the Ecstasy of Gold, composed by Enio Morocconi, set the perfect mood for the preceding film.
#3. Forrest Gump (1994)
The following item on our list may include some names that are already recognizable to us. Forrest Gump is a multi-era drama starring Tom Hanks and directed by Robert Zemeckis, and it’s the second time they’ve both been on this list.
The plot follows the fictitious Forrest Gump, a guy with a below-average IQ but above-average luck, who is released in 1994.
Forest unknowingly participates in several key historical events in the film, which is an emotional roller coaster.
Has an on-again, off-again relationship with his childhood best friend Jenny, and becomes a successful businessman on the spur of the moment.
Winning a ton of awards, including Oscars for Best Picture and Best director, Forrest Gump was the second highest-grossing picture in 1994, falling just behind The Lion King.
#2. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
The Return of the King is the third installment of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and it is the conclusion of a classic fantasy adventure story.
To say that this movie was massive would be an understatement. The Return of the King grossed $1.146 billion worldwide, making it the second highest-grossing film of all time.
Not only that, but the film was nominated for and won all eleven Academy Awards at the 76th Academy Awards.
To this date, the only other films able to accomplish this feat were Titanic and Ben Her. We wonder if J. R. R. Tolkien could ever imagine how massive the world of Middle-earth would become when his first book, The Hobbit, was published all those decades ago.
#1. The Dark Knight (2008)
Batman has been one of the most adapted characters of all time since his debut in comic books in 1939. There will always be discussion about who made the best rendition, but many consider Christopher Nolan’s portrayal of Gotham city and its residents to be the definitive interpretation with the release of Batman Begins in the year 2000.
As the second episode of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, this film is compared to films like Empire Strikes Back and Alien as instances of greater sequels to their predecessors.
What makes this movie the most memorable is heath ledger’s career defining role as the joker. Released a few months after his death ledger was posthumously awarded an Oscar for best Supporting Actor an accolade that’s well deserved.
This was our top 10 list of the best Epic movies ever made. It is a great list of the best Epic movies of all time that No One Will Ever Forget.
Do you agree with our list? If you have any suggestions or comments please shoot them down in the comments below.