10 Best Naval War Films You Need To See

9. Das Boot

Master and Commander
Columbia Pictures

U-96 was one of the most successful and long-lasting vessels in the German war-effort, first being launched in 1940 and spending the next five years hunting down allied vessels that attempted to cross the Atlantic ocean.

What's so impactful about Das Boot is its unflinching approach to portraying its titular style of warfare. Some audiences may be fascinated by the engineering and capabilities of submarines, but in reality, combat in U-boats was a claustrophobic and harrowing experience for those involved. Enemies they were, but the men aboard those submarines slowly cracked and withered under the pressure like any human would.

As the soldiers settle into the tedium of their hunt and the paranoia of being discovered, the connections between the crew slowly come to light in a meaningful way. Over time they're forced to contend with the loss of their comrades, sudden attacks from the enemy and the fear that their narrow vessel could become their water-logged tomb at any moment.

In a handful of World War II films that feature the Germans as the main protagonists, Das Boot portrays a brutal story. Even today, it still stands as one of the most expensive German productions ever produced and a standout picture of submarine warfare.

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