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Remember The Underwater Battle With These Submarine Movies

Remember The Underwater Battle With These Submarine Movies

Submarine films are a kind of war film in which the bulk of the action takes place under the ocean's surface.

Kelvin Farr
Last updated: Feb 02, 2022 | Jan 31, 2022

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Submarine films are a kind of war film in which the bulk of the action takes place under the ocean's surface. Typically, films in this subgenre focus on a small but determined crew of submariners battling against enemy submarines or submarine-hunter ships, or against a variety of other issues such as crew disputes, mutiny threats, life-threatening mechanical breakdowns, or the daily difficulties of life on a submarine.

How Realistic Are Submarine Movies?

All submarine films are excessively dramatic and often include required sequences involving flooding, exceeding the safe depth, or malfunctioning components. While the acting is likewise too theatrical, Das Boot Director's Cut shows the challenges of submarine combat during World War II the most authentically.

Did Das Boot Use A Real Submarine?

For the filming of the film, a mock-up of the U-96 submarine was constructed. The sub's interior was elevated five meter above the ground. To replicate depth charge strikes, the submarine set was forcefully shaking, rocked, and slanted 45 degrees using a hydraulic system.

List Of 7 Best Submarine Movies

Some of the finest thriller films have submersible watercraft as a prominent motif. Additionally, since submersibles are mostly utilized as navy vehicles, such submarine films tend to focus on wartime drama or a fictitious account of two opposing nations colliding. Ten of the greatest submarine films of all time are summarized as follows:

Crimson Tide

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Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman star in this film about military commands and insubordination in the field of battle. The film was a smashing success, bringing both stars even more notoriety for their already brilliant careers.


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U-571 is a cinematic account of the legendary German cypher device 'Enigma' being seized by American naval troops. The film portrayal was fictitious and contradicted the device's real seizure by a British navy warship. U-571 came under fire for this fictitious deviance.

When a German U-571 submarine containing a powerful encryption machine is lost at sea during World War II, the Allies dispatch an American Navy detachment commanded by Lieutenant Andrew Tyler (Matthew McConaughey) to recover it for examination. American cover as a rescue force is swiftly shattered as they board the German ship. Forcing the crew to surrender, the Americans lay their explosives and prepare to destroy the German warship before the Nazis can dispatch naval reinforcements.

Das Boot

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Das Boot (The Boat), a German film, chronicles the lives of naval sailors imprisoned aboard the U-boat U-96 during World War II. The narrative, based on a fake book of the same name, gave an alternate view of the German naval forces. This brought more depth to the film and helped it become an even larger success. The film was directed by Wolfgang Petersen and released in 1981.

The Hunt For Red October

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At the height of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union, this film was another triumph of American filmmaking. The narrative revolves around an absurd underwater vehicle that threatens to destabilize the delicate peace between the two countries, as well as the quest to catch and destroy it. The film is widely recognized as one of the greatest Hollywood productions ever created.

Torpedo Run

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A significantly unusual perspective on World War II, this film's narrative follows the resolve of a submarine's commanding officer to attack a Japanese aircraft carrier ship. The film was released in 1958 and earned an Academy Award nomination.

Lieutenant Commander Barney Doyle commands the submarine tasked with the mission of destroying the Shinaru, the Japanese aircraft carrier from which the attack on Pearl Harbor was conducted. Doyle performs this expedition despite the presence of a transport carrying his wife and kids, who have been taken by the enemy and are being used as a shield to protect their vessel.

The Abyss

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The Abyss is a James Cameron horror/drama film. The skilled filmmaker demonstrates his directing ability once again as he flawlessly incorporates paranormal influences into the operations of the American navy and submarine forces.

Ed Harris and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio are divorced petroleum engineers who are currently resolving certain concerns. They are enlisted to aid a gung-ho Navy SEAL (Michael Biehn) with a top-secret recovery operation: a nuclear submarine has been attacked and sunk in some of the world's deepest waters under inexplicable circumstances.

Run Silent, Run Deep

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This 1958 film, loosely based on the novel of the same name, presents a fictitious chapter of the American-Japanese fight during World War II. The film emphasizes the different characteristics demanded of a military member and the protagonist character's will to fulfill them, even in the face of death.


Observing underwater combat is one of the oldest and most unusual experiences one can have. While several films have been made about combat on land (see the list of military films), very few have been made about conflict at sea.

For well over a century, submarines have provided an abundant backdrop for films. Submarine films originated as a spin-off from war films in the early twentieth century. There have been well over 150 films set almost exclusively aboard submarines subsequently, and the popularity is evident. What more dramatic setting could there be than a claustrophobic metal contraption many fathoms beneath the sea's surface, at risk of being lost forever and besieged by a variety of human and natural enemies?

Kelvin Farr | Crypto and Finance expert.


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