Film

Napoleon: The Best Movies Featuring The French Revolution & Its Leader

Napoleon Bonaparte is a historic figure who was the leader of the French Revolution and has since become an iconic individual for many, as his persona and who he was has provided many with a source of inspiration.

Indeed, the former French military leader and politician rose to fame and became such an important person in history as he managed to lead several successful campaigns during the Revolutionary Wars that had an impact on many countries around France, in regards to the way they operated.

Of course, this has meant that Napoleon has become an incredibly popular figure to try and portray in a various number of films and TV shows, with some having been brilliantly done. Here are just some of the best films that have used the former French military leader as the main character within a plot that has been provided.


War & Peace (1956)

Perhaps one of the best films to have ever featured Napoleon, King Vidor’s ‘War & Peace’ film managed to win a number of awards and was nominated for five different Golden Globes in 1956, including winning the Best Foreign-Language Film.

Starring actors and actresses such as Audrey Hepburn and Oscar Homolka, the film was set in the years prior to Napoleon’s decision to try and conquer Russia, having already torn most of Europe apart in 1805. The Russians have opted for peace, although the French leader is determined to take what he wants but finds out that he had been out-matched and forced his troops to retreat before being able to achieve his ultimate aim.

The film had been seen as a huge success at the time of its release and was recently shown at the 70th Berlin International Film Festival in 2020, as part of the retrospective dedication that was being paid to King Vidor’s career.

Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story (1987)

Broadcasted as an American television miniseries that consisted of 3 episodes in 1987, Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story was actually provided with a rather large negative review and critic, with some suggesting that it was rather unimpressive.

However, the show managed to do something that not many others who have used Bonaparte for in the past could do; to show his romantic side and by deciding to try and focus away from the largely-covered battle side that he was famed for. Indeed, whilst they had covered his military accomplishments, the directors revealed that they had wanted to use it as a backdrop to show how the love between Napoleon and Josephine had affected France, the world, and the individuals involved.

Whilst the TV miniseries may have received some poor feedback and criticism when it was released, the love story is something that has proven to be a rather popular source of inspiration for many, with films, books and even video slot games that are available amongst the impressive and exclusive Unibet casino slot collection have all been created in the past, whilst future projects could also be in line.

Waterloo (1970)

One of the most famous battles that Napoleon Bonaparte ever fought in was the Battle of Waterloo on Sunday, 18 June 1815 in Waterloo, Belgium. It was a fight that saw the French lose to the British-led coalition army and marked the end of the Napoleonic Wars.

The 1970 ‘Waterloo’ film, which was directed by Sergei Bondarchuk is arguably one of the best films to have ever depicted the battle that took place, although reviews and critics might suggest otherwise based on what it had managed to achieve at the time it was released.

The film is perhaps more favorable and popular to those who like to watch battle scenes as it focused on those to a degree, with many of them having been rather lavish for the time period. However, it still has plenty about it and one that many would recommend being watched, especially if you can get past some historical inaccuracies that appear.

Napoleon (1927)

The 1927 film ‘Napoleon’ took a different approach to many of the other films that have been created and perhaps offers viewers a completely different outlook on the former French military leader. This film, which runs for five-and-a-half hours (330 mins) looks at the earlier life of Bonaparte and looks at his early military career in Abel Gance’s first of six parts. Unfortunately, the director did not make any of the remaining five parts as he did not have the money to do so.

Nonetheless, this film managed to obtain a legendary status for its use of various techniques that had been used by the director, which is why it is one that can be considered the best to watch.


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