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Hollywood and History
A critical analysis of Historically-based movies
Over the years, Hollywood filmmakers have produced a fairly large number of
movies based on either specific historic events or a particular time period in
history. It is safe to assume that some filmmakers have been more historically
accurate in their portrayal of the particular events and/or period of history included
in their films than others have been. It is also safe to assume that the great
majority of these kinds of movies have been produced to convey some underlying
message or theme to the movie-going public.
Please be familiar with content of film prior to viewing and use caution with
appropriate ratings.
Students can earn up to ten (10) points of extra credit on each unit test by
viewing the film and completing a “Critical Analysis Worksheet” for each
Critical Analysis Worksheet: (Answer the following questions thoroughly)
1. What is the title of the film reviewed?
2. What historical period or event is the movie based on?
3. What underlying theme (s) or message did the filmmakers intend to convey
in this movie?
4. How did the filmmakers attempt to portray this theme or message?
5. Write a synopsis of the movie, including any personal observations or
reactions. (at least ½ to 1 page)
6. Comment on the historical accuracy of the film. (This requires research)
In your opinion, how accurate were the filmmakers in portraying the actual
events or persons represented in the movie?
(Give at least 2 specific examples of historical accuracies AND
inaccuracies in the film.)
7. Would you recommend this film to another history student? In other
words, did this film enhance your understanding of the time period being
taught? Explain why and how or why not? (about ½ page)
Unit 6: Absolutism to Revolution (1500-1900)
The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)
Elizabeth (1998)
The Bounty (1984)
Marie Antoinette (2006)
A Tale of Two Cities (1980)
A Man For All Seasons (1988)
Rob Roy (1995)
Last of the Mohicans (1992)
Amadeus (1984)
Napoleon (2003)
War and Peace (1972)
Waterloo (1970)
Unit 7: Industrialism, the Race for Empire, and World War I
Four Feathers (2002)
Surviving Picasso (1996)
Citizen Kane (1941)
Ghost and the Darkness (1996)
Shaka Zulu (1987)
Zulu (1964)
The Day that Shook the World (1977)
Gallipoli (1981)
Reds (1981)
Impressionists (2006)
Frida (2003)
Chocolat (1989)
Out of Africa (1985)
Zulu Dawn (1979)
A Passage to India (1984)
All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)
In Love and War (1996)
Unit 8: Depression/ Nationalism and World War II
Gandhi (1982)
Schindler’s List (1993)
Chariots of Fire (1981)
Animal Farm (1955)
Saving Private Ryan
Dr. Zhivago (1965)
Unit 9: Perspectives on the Present (1945—Present)
Munich (2005)
Thirteen Days (2001)
Bloody Sunday (2002)
Cry, The Beloved Country (1995)
In My Country (2004)
Rabbit Proof Fence (2002)
Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)
MacArthur (1977)
In the Name of the Father (1993)
Cry Freedom (1987)
Drum (2004)
Hotel Rwanda (2004)