Films about the Age of the Revolutionary Wars

This collection provides information on selected movies, TV productions and documentaries on the themes of gender, military and war in the period covered by the Oxford Handbook.

The most important wars included for this period are:

  • American Revolutionary Wars (1775–83)
  • French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars War (1792–15)
  • Latin American Wars of Independence (1810–30)

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Director(s): Hunt, Peter H.
Year of Publication: 1972
Abstract:

A Broadway musical of the founding of the United States. Colonial elites debate and eventually sign the Declaration of Independence.

Director(s): Conway, Jack
Year of Publication: 1935
Major Wars:
Abstract:

An adaptation of Charles Dickens' famous novel, a tragic love story unfolds during the French Revolution. Lucy Manette falls in love with Charles Darnay, a French aristocrat framed for treason. His lawyer Sidney Carton substitutes his life for...

Director(s): Chahine, Youssef
Year of Publication: 1985
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Adieu Bonaparte examines the Napoleonic Wars through the French campaign in Egypt in 1798. General Cafarelli is transformed by his experiences there, rejecting his militarism and embracing Enlightenment ideals by supporting the...

Director(s): Felder, Clarence
Year of Publication: 2012
Abstract:

In 1775, Henry Felder, a Swiss-German colonist, lives with his family in the back-country of the British colony of South Carolina. He and his community are suffering under British injustice. After many years of struggling with corrupt British...

Director(s): Taviani, Paolo
Year of Publication: 1974
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Abstract:

Revolutionary fervor sweeps the Italian states in the early 19th century. A Lombard aristocrat returns home after his incarceration for revolutionary work in France. Old friends convince him to support a peasant uprising in a southern Italian...

Director(s): Griffith, D.W.
Year of Publication: 1924
Abstract:

Director D.W. Griffith's sweeping account of the American Revolutionary War. Two lovers on opposite sides find themselves at key places throughout the war such as Bunker Hill, Paul Revere's ride, and the presidential inauguration of George...

Director(s): Peter Jones
Year of Publication: 2007
Abstract:

Relying on the correspondence between the second president John Adams (1735–1826) and his wife Abigail Adams (1744–1818), this biographic documentary, directed by Peter Jones, sheds light on the characters of two remarkable people, their relation...

Director(s): Mann, Delbert
Year of Publication: 1988
Abstract:

A coming of age story set at the dawn of the American Revolution. Young Adam Cooper struggles to gain the approval of his father. He immediately signs up to join the local militia when warned about the British presence near Concord and Lexington...

Director(s): Pivotto, Sebastián
Year of Publication: 2010
Major Wars:
Abstract:

This biographical drama reveals the last ten years of the life of General Manuel Belgrano, one of the leaders during Argentine Wars for Independence. After rising to prominence after the May Revolution, Belgrano led a series of military campaigns...

Director(s): Salomon, Mikael
Year of Publication: 2003
Abstract:

This historical television film, produced by the A&E Television Networks, focusses on Benedict Arnold (1740–1801), an American-born senior officer of the British Army, who commanded the American Legion in the later part of the American...

Director(s): Burns, Chad
Year of Publication: 2015
Abstract:

This Christian historical adventure film, directed by Chad Burns, tells the story of a British East India Trading Company assassin, who seeks to redeem his past by thwarting a plot against a young nation's hope for freedom. The film follows...

Director(s): Murat, Lúcia
Year of Publication: 2000
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Abstract:

Conflict between indigenous communities and the Portuguese arise in 18th century Brazil. A cartographer charged with documenting the landscape discovers a different way of life when he encounters an indigenous woman within the interior. Their...

Director(s): Raoul Walsh
Year of Publication: 1951
Major Wars:
Abstract:

Captain Horatio Hornblower R.N is a 1951 British-American naval war film in Technicolor from Warner Brothers, produced by Gerry Mitchell, directed by Raoul Walsh, that stars Gregory Peck, Virginia Mayo, Robert Beatty and Terence Morgan. The film...

Director(s): Lewis Gilbert
Year of Publication: 1962
Major Wars:
Abstract:

The historical drama, directed by Lewis Gilbert, is based on the 1958 novel Mutiny by Frank Tilsley. During the Napoleonic Wars, Captain Crawford (Alec Guinness) takes command of the HMS Defiant and is ordered to rendezvous with the...

Director(s): Wajda, Andrzej
Year of Publication: 1983
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Abstract:

In 1793, as the Terror begins during the French Revolution (1789–99), the revolutionary leader Georges Danton (1759–94), a champion-of-the-people, clash against Maximilien Robespierre (1758–94) and other radicals in the Jacobine party. The film,...

Director(s): Henry Koster
Year of Publication: 1954
Major Wars:
Abstract:

In this romance movie, directed by Henry Koster, the young French millinery clerk Désirée Clary, living in Marseilles in 1794, becomes infatuated with Napoleon Bonaparte, but winds up wedding General Jean-Baptiste Berandotte, an aid to Napoleon...

Director(s): John Ford
Year of Publication: 1939
Abstract:

This adventure film, directed by Jon Ford and based on the 1936 novel Drums Along the Mohawk by Walter D. Edmond, sfocuses on Gilbert and Lana Martin, played by Henry Fonda and Claudette Colbert, a young couple trying to make a home in...

Director(s): Ford, John
Year of Publication: 1939
Abstract:

A newly married couple settles on the New York frontier at the dawn of the American Revolution. Local Indian nations sided with the British, leading raids on the Martin family and their neighbors. The Martin's persistence at forging a life on the...

Director(s): Walker, Noland
Year of Publication: 2009
Major Wars:
Abstract:

This documentary tells the story of General Toussaint Louverture, the Haitian Revolution, and the creation of the first black republic in the modern world. Born enslaved, Louverture wins his freedom only to risk it by supporting the most...

Director(s): Jacquot, Benoît
Year of Publication: 2012
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Abstract:

A young servant girl at Versailles witnesses the French Revolution. Sidonie is devoted to Marie Antoinette, staying with her when other servants and aristocrats flee. She agrees to help the Queen's friend escape. 

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