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Happy Independence Day weekend. Here are 7 of my favorite 4th of July movies. Hope you enjoy and stay safe. God bless you and America.
#1. The Patriot
A widowed farmer (Mel Gibson), with a brave but brutal military past, decides not to join up when the British arrive in 1776. However, when his son (Heath Ledger) enlists and is later captured by the enemy (Jason Isaacs), the former soldier must abandon his new-found pacifist principles in order to rescue his oldest child, and forms a regiment of Carolina patriots, whose guerrilla tactics prove pivotal to the US war effort.
In consideration of the political unrest in America right now with Black Lives Matter protests daily, The Patriot with Mel Gibson seems like a great choice to watch this holiday weekend as it features Jay Arlen Jones as slave Occam who learns by fighting in the Revolutionary War he could earn his freedom.
Approximately 5,000 black soldiers fought on the Patriots’ side of the Revolutionary War. And according to Wikipedia, many enslaved men who fought in the war gained freedom, but others did not. Some owners sadly reneged on their promises to free them after their service.
For more information visit “The American Revolution” at nps.gov.
#2. Live Free or Die Hard
As the nation prepares to celebrate Independence Day, veteran cop John McClane (Bruce Willis) carries out another routine assignment: bringing in a computer hacker (Justin Long) for questioning. Meanwhile, a tech-savvy villain named Thomas Gabriel (Timothy Olyphant) launches an attack on America’s computer infrastructure. As chaos descends around him, McClane must use old-fashioned methods to fight the high-tech threat.
One of my favorite contemporary 4th of July movies is Bruce Willis‘ Live Free or Die Hard that takes place during the Fourth of July weekend in D.C. Doesn’t help that the amazing Maggie Q (yay for representation!) kicks some serious tooshie in the movie.
#3. Independence Day
Strange phenomena surface around the globe. The skies ignite. Terror races through the world’s major cities. As these extraordinary events unfold, it becomes increasingly clear that a force of incredible magnitude has arrived. Its mission: total annihilation over the Fourth of July weekend. The last hope to stop the destruction is an unlikely group of people united by fate and unimaginable circumstances.
Who hasn’t seen Bill Pullman, Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum in Independence Day? A Classic 4th of July movie! There’s a great deal of humor (thanks to Goldblum and Judd Hirsch, who plays his father), action, aliens, and patriotism. A must for anyone who enjoys a good fun movie.
#4. Yankee Doodle Dandy
Brought to the White House to receive a Congressional Gold Medal from President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Broadway legend George M. Cohan (James Cagney) reflects on his life. Flashbacks trace Cohan’s rise, from a childhood performing in his family’s vaudeville act to his early days as a struggling Tin Pan Alley songwriter to his overwhelming success as an actor, writer, director, and producer known for patriotic songs like “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “You’re a Grand Old Flag” and “Over There.”
James Cagney plays George M. Cohan in this black and white biopic that features many of Cohan’s great numbers such as “Over There” (a personal favorite).
Suggested Reading: 7 Movies Remembering Our Fallen Heroes
The nation’s fathers harmonize their way through the founding of America in this musical adapted from a popular Broadway show. Colonial representatives gather in Philadelphia with the aim of establishing a set of governmental rules for the burgeoning United States. Benjamin Franklin (Howard da Silva) and John Adams (William Daniels) charge Thomas Jefferson (Ken Howard) with the work of writing a statement announcing the new country’s emancipation from British rule.
I would be amiss to not mention the musical movie 1776 featuring William Daniels (John Adams, the only founding father who didn’t own a slave), Howard da Silva (Benjamin Franklin), and Ken Howard as Thomas Jefferson. Featuring memorable songs you’ll want to sing along with and a beautiful reenactment of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
Bonus: Two more 4th of July Movies.
This war drama depicts one of the biggest events of the American Civil War, the Battle of Gettysburg. The massive three-day conflict begins as Confederate General Robert E. Lee (Martin Sheen) presses his troops north into Pennsylvania, leading to confrontations with Union forces, including the regiment of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain (Jeff Daniels). As the battle rages on and casualties mount, the film follows both the front lines and the strategic maneuvering behind the scenes.
The famous battle that changed the tide of the Civil War took place between July 1-3, 1863. This epic drama is one of my favorite 4th of July movies.
#7. Olympus Has Fallen
The unthinkable happens when heavily armed and highly trained terrorists launch a bold daytime attack on the White House. The building is overrun, and President Benjamin Asher (Aaron Eckhart) and his staff are taken hostage. Luckily for Asher, former presidential security officer Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) is on the scene. With time running out, it’s up to Banning to locate Asher’s son before the extremists do and rescue the president before his captors unleash their ultimate plan.
Again, a very happy Fourth of July weekend to one and to all. Hope you enjoy these 4th of July movies.
I have no idea about July 4th movies we need to watch. Thanks for this. Will surely check these movies.
I actually watched Olympus has fallen on 4th July! It’s an excellent movie! I would also add Air Force One and White House Down to this list!
“1776”….I wanna watch this!!!
Nice list you have put together, I would definitely watch the “Independence Day”, I believe would like it
You know what, I have not seen any of the movies you are listening, so even though the 4th has passed, I think I am setting up a movie night 🙂
Independence day is one of my favorite movies ever! It is now a tradition to always watch it on july 4th or some day prior to the celebration! My whole family love it
I love all those movie just suggested. My favorite one would be the patriots.
Finally today is July 4th and although it will be a different day from the others, the desire to celebrate is not lacking. Just reinvent yourself!
And some of these are just classics to see in general! I liked Independence Day.
What a fun read – Im going to pass this over to my father who is such a movie buff!
OH MY GOSH so I have seen Life Free or Die Hard and actually didn’t realize it’s a July 4th setting. That’s a great choice then! Independence Day is a natural choice. But I have seen that one too many times. No doubt it will be on TV.
I hope to watch Live Free or Die Hard. Seems like a good movie. It’s perfect for 4th of July!
These are great movies. I have seen a few of them but look forward to seeing the others. Thanks for sharing!
Needful content. Keep creating content like this! Tons of love for you
I think I have watched many of these, except 1776. Very good cast and interesting to watch.
These are great movies you can use to entertain your self while under lockdown…. Great work
These are perfect movies to watch over the long weekend!
I’d love to see Yanky Doodle. I love old movies, and this one is perfect for the season. I think I’ve seen all the other ones. They’re great.
very nice !
I hope you enjoy your holiday and get to watch some of these movies 🙂
I have seen most of these movies and loved them all. The Patriot was amazing but sooo heavy.
I have seen all of these at some point in my life, but it’s been a while. We are going to re-watch this weekend.
This is a great list. I’ve seen all of these movies except for Yanky Doodle Dandy. I love finding new movies, so I can’t wait to watch that one.
I have never seen some of these movies but definitely watching Independence Day and Die hard with my kids as a part of our July 4th celebration.