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By homeis South Asians  ·  July 01, 2020

Best Patriotic 4th of July Movies

Whether you're looking forward to a light and breezy romantic comedy or an adrenaline-pumping thriller, the movies on this list are very different — but what they all have in common are their patriotic, all-American themes.
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Zero Dark Thirty

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You'll be on the edge of your seat during this twisty thriller that dramatizes the hunt for Osama bin Laden following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
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Hidden Figures (2017)

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This movie is about three formerly unsung heroes, NASA's Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer), and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe). Together, they worked to launch astronaut John Glenn into orbit. The film was nominated for three Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Supporting Actress for Octavia Spencer.
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Air Force One

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Harrison Ford does what only Harrison Ford could do in this Cold War action movie — play a U.S. President who can fight of assassins with his bare hands.
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Saving Private Ryan

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In this heart-wrenching film, you'll see Captain John Miller (Tom Hanks) go behind enemy lines in the hopes of locating missing soldier, Private James Ryan (Matt Damon). All three of Ryan's brothers have been killed in combat, and Miller makes it his mission to save him.
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The Patriot (2000)

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After his son is murdered, a peaceful farmer is forced to fight the British to avenge his death. Mel Gibson's performance earned him the People's Choice Award for Favorite Movie Actor.
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National Treasure

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A treasure map on the back of the Declaration of Independence? It's not the craziest thing that happens during this story's running time. This Nicolas Cage action flick is pure campy fun.
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Top Gun (1986)

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Training to become a Navy fighter pilot, Maverick (Tom Cruise) certainly has his work cut out for him. But with a new bestie named Goose and a crush on his flight instructor, we see just how much this young pilot can accomplish. It went on to win the People's Choice Award for Favorite Movie and reigns as one of the most popular Halloween costumes of all time.
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Apollo 13 (1995)

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Just a year later, Hanks played one of the three astronauts aboard NASA's spacecraft Apollo 13. The movie about the near-disastrous true story changed up the real quote, but it brought us the memorable line, "Houston, we have a problem."
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Independence Day (1996)

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In this movie released the day before the 4th of July in 1996, Captain Steven Hiller (Will Smith) and President Whitmore (Bill Pullman) are on a mission to save the United States ... from an alien invasion. This sci-fi action film is a twist on your classic war movie.
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Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

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Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) turns into the ultimate superhero after he's rejected from the military because of his small stature. His transformation ultimately helps him combat the Nazis in this fictional portrayal of World War II.
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Pearl Harbor (2001)

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The real-life event is depicted in this period romance drama following two best friends (Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett) who fall for the same woman (Kate Beckinsale). It was nominated for three Oscars, and won for Best Sound Editing.
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1776

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If you have someone in your life that won't shut up about the Hamilton soundtrack, they'll probably love 1776. It's actually a pretty accurate retelling of the first ever Independence Day — minus the catchy songs, of course.
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The American President

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Dating is hard, especially when you're the president of the United States. This sweet romantic comedy follows a widowed U.S. President as he falls for an environmental lobbyist — and all of the bumps along the way.
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Glory (1989)

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You'll feel all the feels watching this movie about the first African-American regiment, led by Col. Robert Gould Shaw (Matthew Broderick). With famous faces like Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman, we honor and celebrate the men who risked their lives during the Civil War.
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Mr. Smith Goes To Washington (1939)

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When local hero Jefferson Smith is surprisingly appointed to serve in the United States Senate, he becomes even more shocked when he learns what he's up against. The fictional story of a young idealist entering the Senate was met with positive reviews from viewers and is even featured in the Senate's history.
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The Longest Day (1962)

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John Wayne takes the helm as Lt. Col. Benjamin Vandervoort in this film about D-Day. Presenting the perspectives of the Allies storming the Normandy beaches and the Germans, this film shows what happened in 1944 from all angles.
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Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

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If you want to sing and dance your way through the 4th of July, just turn on this musical starring James Cagney. Looking back at the life of Broadway icon George M. Cohan, you'll hear all the patriotic tunes you know and love (like "You're a Grand Old Flag" and "Over There").
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Young Mr. Lincoln (1939)

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We all know about President Abraham Lincoln's accomplishments in the White House, but this dramatized version of his early life takes us back to his time as a lawyer in Illinois. Starring Henry Fonda, we see how Lincoln rose to power and found love (twice) in a film that is 100% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.
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Born on the Fourth of July (1989)

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Just three years after Top Gun, Tom Cruise starred in the movie based on former Marine Ron Kovic's life. You'll see how he transforms from dedicated soldier to a critic of the war that left him paralyzed.
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