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So the United States’ government shut down. There are questions of whom to blame: President Obama, Democrats, Republicans or simply all of the members of Congress. Debate surrounds the nation, each side passionate about their point of view. Instead of writing another article trying to explain what is going on, this is a distraction article. With the members of Congress disagreeing, the American people need to remember their patriotism.
Patriotism is simply love for one's country and willingness to sacrifice for it. Because of that, many of the films on the list cover war while others simply cover the history of the United States. When choosing the films on the list, there were criteria that each had to meet.
Each film needed to show a love or support for the country, to take place in (or for) the United States and have a happy ending. The films range from dramas to musicals and everything in between. A patriotic film doesn’t always have to be someone dying for his or her country.
In choosing the films, I had to keep in mind that the United States’ government is currently shut down and using political movies wouldn’t be the best for a distraction. The films are not Democratic or Republican - they are simply American.
Listed below are the top 10 patriotic films.
10. Born on the Fourth of July
This Tom Cruise flick tells the story of a man who was injured in war, and when he returns from the Vietnam War, he protests against the war. The film questions what is and isn’t patriotism. This character fought for the war and protested it.
9. Yankee Doodle Dandy
This musical is filled with songs that talk about how much each character loves their country. In the film, there are songs such as "Yankee Doodle Dandy" and "Grand Ole Flag" among other uplifting, fun, good old American classics. If you have no time to watch the film, just listen to the soundtrack, even it will give you a little more patriotism.
8. Act of Valor
This film follows the story of Navy SEALs, SEAL Team six, and how their lives are in war and out of it. The film is based on actual missions. It can be compared to Zero Dark Thirty, but it expands the story. It shows how these men fight for our protection.
This film tells the story of the US Olympic men’s hockey team and their coach. The film isn’t necessarily about having faith in the country as a whole, but rooting for a group of Americans to succeed. This true story shows one of the greatest miracles in American Olympic history. By the end, even the most uninspired Americans will be chanting U-S-A!
6. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
This film is the closest thing to actual politics on the list. It is black and white. It has filibusters and very complicated congressmen. James Stewart plays a senator who is passionate about his job and the American people. Seeing congressmen that work should be exciting and make the viewers look back on what the country used to be.
5. Independence Day
I know, it’s cheesy. Why should we care about aliens attacking the Earth when we have everyday trouble with regular men not doing their jobs? This film is on the list because, when everything is going wrong, a group of men get together and save the day. They don’t shut down.
This Denzel Washington film tells the story of African American soldiers fighting for their freedom in the Civil War. It is uplifting because these men were literally fighting for their own freedom. It is uplifting to see that these men, who were considered second-class citizens, actually fought alongside white men.
3. United 93
The story is all too familiar. On Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists hijacked flight United 93, attempting to crash into a building. The film is about the heroes who proved that they had the power to protect their country from people who wanted to harm it. Warning - the clip below is the patriotic moment when the Americans put the plane down.
2. Saving Private RyanThe Patriot
This film is an American classic. There is heroism, sacrifice and patriotism. This follows the stories of a group of soldiers trying to find another solider. The solider that they are looking for is Private Ryan because his three brothers were killed in Normandy and he was the only one left.
1. The Patriot
Number one goes to The Patriot. This Mel Gibson flick is exactly what any American needs to watch in a time like this. There were men that were willing to fight to make sure that our country was free. The film is about the United States’ first war. This movie shows where Americans started to remind them where they need to go.
What is your favorite patriotic film?