All-Time Favorite 4th of July Movies to Watch With the Family

4th of July Movies to Watch With the Family

There’s nothing quite like the 4th of July, a fun holiday filled with parties, parades, colorful decorations, and backyard barbeques complete with summer drinks, desserts, and, of course, brilliant fireworks!

But sometimes, a meaningful Fourth of July celebration calls for something a little more understated, like movie time with the folks. Thankfully, there are more than a couple of patriotic movies to select from to help you celebrate what it truly means to be an American. Celebrate the country’s independence, and entertain yourself and your family with one or more of these 4th of July movies perfect for the occasion!

Top 25 Fourth of July Movies

From tales of long-lost love to gut-wrenching war dramas and monumental sporting events, these 4th of July movies will leave you feeling proud and sentimental in all the best ways.

1. Hamilton

Hamilton
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2021

Cast

Lin-Manuel Miranda, Phillipa Soo, Leslie Odom Jr.

About the Movie

This Tony Award-winning show, produced, written, and composed by the amazing Lin-Manuel Miranda, narrates the story of Alexander Hamilton, America’s first Secretary of the Treasury and Founding Father. With a score that combines R&B, hip-hop, and jazz with a Broadway flair, it has never been more fun to learn history!

2. Apollo 13

Apollo 13
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1995

Cast

Tom Hanks, Bill Paxton, Kevin Bacon

About the Movie

America’s space program is an immense source of national pride, so we just had to include Apollo 13 as one of our must-watch Fourth of July movies! The movie plot centers on NASA’s attempt to chart a way to bring the Apollo 13 spacecraft back to Earth after experiencing damage that threatened the lives of the three astronauts on board.

3. Air Force One

Air Force One
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1997

Cast

Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, Glenn Close

About the Movie

Harrison Ford essays the role of President James Marshall, who finds himself in the crisis of fighting it out with a group of hijackers to protect his family and advisory board without compromising the country’s ideals.

4. Yankee Doodle Dandy

Yankee Doodle Dandy
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1942

Cast

James Cagney, Joan Leslie, Walter Huston

About the Movie

Iconic actor James Cagney stars in this movie about the life of music composer George M. Cohan. It’s a phenomenal look at the man behind the music and even highlights the occasion when the brilliant composer received a presidential medal for his contributions to the country.

5. Hidden Figures

Hidden Figures
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2016

Cast

Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe

About the Movie

In this movie, the incredible female African-American mathematicians who played a significant role at NASA during the space program’s preliminary years finally get their time in the spotlight. This amazing story reminds us that heroes are present among us everywhere, and each of their stories should be told.

6. The American President

The American President
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1995

Cast

Michael Douglas, Annette Bening, Martin Sheen

About the Movie

In this movie, we get to watch the dating life of a POTUS as he falls in love with an environmental lobbyist. This one is definitely for rom-com enthusiasts, as it has everything from romance to politics!

7. Saving Private Ryan

Saving Private Ryan
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1998

Cast

Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Tom Sizemore, Vin Diesel

About the Movie

This Steven Spielberg war drama revolves around the Normandy landings during World War II. When two brothers are killed during the war, a team led by Captain Miller is sent over enemy lines to find Private Ryan, break the news about his brothers’ deaths, and escort him home.

8. Independence Day

Independence Day
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1996

Cast

Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum

About the Movie

When alien forces begin to take over major cities in the United States of America in hopes to destroy Earth on the 4th of July, mankind’s best bet to win is the will to survive. Plus, Will Smith striking aliens to save the country just screams patriotism!

9. Forrest Gump

Forrest Gump
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1994

Cast

Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise

About the Movie

Forrest Gump is one of the most iconic movies of all time. It follows the title character throughout the Vietnam War, becoming an international ping pong star, captaining a shrimp boat, running the length of the country, and more.

10. Flags of Our Fathers

Flags of Our Fathers
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2006

Cast

Adam Beach, Ryan Phillippe, Jesse Bradford, Barry Pepper, Joseph Cross, Paul Walker

About the Movie

This Clint Eastwood-Steven Spielberg drama gives us a glimpse into the lives of the six men who would go on to raise the American flag at the Battle of Iwo Jima. This event was a major turning point in World War II.

11. Captain America: The First Avenger

Captain America: The First Avenger
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2011

Cast

Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Samuel L. Jackson

About the Movie

It may be a superhero movie, but no one personifies patriotism perfectly like Steve Rogers, aka Captain America. A skinny man transforms into a super soldier to fight in World War II; what more could you ask for?

12. National Treasure

National Treasure
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2004

Cast

Nicolas Cage, Diane Kruger, Justin Bartha

About the Movie

Nicolas Cage plays the role of historian Benjamin Franklin Gates in this heist film. On his quest to steal the Declaration of Independence, he decodes the encrypted map hidden inside the document, leading to a valuable treasure.

13. Young Mr. Lincoln

Young Mr. Lincoln
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1939

Cast

Henry Fonda, Alice Brady, Marjorie Weaver

About the Movie

This biopic takes you through Abraham Lincoln’s early years before he was given the responsibility of piecing back together a country that was torn apart. The movie is a moving portrait of a young gentleman who was destined for greatness.

14. Miracle

Miracle
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2004

Cast

Kurt Russell, Patricia Clarkson, Nathan West

About the Movie

Kurt Russell stars in this real-life narrative of Herb Brooks, the legend who coached the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team to participate against the intimidating Soviet Union team. With all the odds against them, Brooks provides a deep level of inspiration that will give you all of the patriotic chills.

15. American Sniper

American Sniper
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2014

Cast

Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Kyle Gallner

About the Movie

American Sniper takes us into the life of Chris Kyle, a U.S. Navy SEAL who was sent to Iraq to protect his fellow servicemen and women. While his brilliant accuracy, when doing his job, saves numerous lives, his four tours of duty completely change him.

16. Jaws

Jaws
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1975

Cast

Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw, Richard Dreyfuss

About the Movie

This classic movie about a man-eating great white shark takes place during the 4th of July holiday when the beach town of fictional Amity Island is at its busiest. The thrilling Jaws soundtrack is one that will forever be etched into your mind!

17. G.I. Jane

G.I. Jane
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1997

Cast

Demi Moore, Viggo Mortensen, Anne Bancroft

About the Movie

When Jordan O’Neill, played by Demi Moore, enrolls in the Navy’s Combined Reconnaissance Team Training, no one expects her to make the grade. In fact, she’s surrounded by many waiting for her to fail. But with a steely determination and a desire to serve her country, the recruit surprises even herself! Is there anything more American than that?

18. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1939

Cast

James Stewart, Jean Arthur, Claude Rains

About the Movie

This Frank Capra classic sees a visionary young senator played by actor James Stewart take on corruption in the capital.

19. Stripes

Stripes
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1981

Cast

Bill Murray, John Candy, Harold Ramis

About the Movie

Bill Murray and Harold Ramis star as two unmotivated friends who join the Army and find themselves in a troop of misfits.

20. Red Dawn

Red Dawn
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1984

Cast

Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, Lea Thompson

About the Movie

This action film imagines the idea of World War III through the eyes of a group of rebellious teens defending Midwest America from Soviet invaders.

21. Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2001

Cast

Ben Affleck, Kate Beckinsale, Josh Hartnett

About the Movie

This epic blockbuster movie from 2001 tells the story of two best friends, and the nurse who steals their hearts, as they experience war, particularly 7th December 1941, a date which will forever live in infamy as the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

22. The Right Stuff

The Right Stuff
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1983

Cast

Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris

About the Movie

Based on the 1976 novel by Tom Wolfe, this movie follows the stories of the Project Mercury astronauts who were selected for the U.S. space program.

23. The Patriot

The Patriot
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

2000

Cast

Mel Gibson, Heath Ledger, Joely Richardson

About the Movie

Mel Gibson stars as a peace-loving South Carolina farmer who joins the American Revolution after his son is captured and murdered by a sadistic British officer.

24. Glory

Glory
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1989

Cast

Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Cary Elwes

About the Movie

This movie is based on a true story about the first Black regiment in the Union Army and stars Morgan Freeman and Denzel Washington. The acclaimed actors play former slaves who strive to prove themselves and work towards the freedom of those still enslaved.

25. Superman II

Superman II
Source: Pinterest

Year of Release

1980

Cast

Christopher Reeve, Gene Hackman, Margot Kidder

About the Movie

Before Captain America came to the big screen, we had Superman from the planet Krypton, and in the franchise’s second film, the red-caped superhero returns an American flag to the White House.

You can set up a movie screen in your backyard to keep your friends and loved ones entertained, or simply move the party indoors. And even if you’re not hosting a party, these Independence Day movies will be enjoyable for you and the kids to watch together. They narrate the stories of American history, significant victories, and overcoming hardships, making them a perfectly patriotic choice for your 4th of July movie night.

Also Read:

US Independence Day – Patriotic 4th July Instagram Captions
4th of July Quotes, Wishes and Messages to Celebrate America’s Independence
4th July (US Independence Day) Facts for Children

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