contributed by Melissa Lucas, senior staff writer
When setting out to write a Cold War Movie Review, it became clear that films about the era are very different than other films highlighted in our Greatest War Movies Series. This is, of course, because the Cold War was not a war in the typical sense. It was a period of tension between the U.S. (and our Western Bloc allies) and the Soviet Union (and their Eastern Bloc allies).
While official start and end dates are difficult to pinpoint, most agree that the Cold War spanned the 40+ years between the end of WWII in 1947 and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991. The term “Cold War” was used because there was no large-scale fighting in this conflict. Rather, the term describes the span of time and the actions taken during it.
The best Cold War films were created during one of two time periods. The first – near the beginning of the Cold War, after most of the famous WWII movies of the time had been imagined, filmed, and released. These films were unique in that they were at the forefront of cinema during the conflict. The second – years after the end of the conflict, most within the past decade, and all with the advantage of hindsight regarding the ways in which the Cold War influenced world culture.
That said, our Cold War Movie review offers an interesting look into how the war was viewed both during and after, as well as perspective on its impact has changed over time. Here are the ten famous movies about the Cold War on Netflix, Amazon, and other streaming services. You’ll want to add these to your watchlist this fall!