Movies like Empire of the Sun

If you like "Empire of the Sun" you are looking for epic, emotional and touching movies about / with world war two, coming of age, pow, innocence lost, young heroes, survival and prison themes of Action, Drama and History genre shot in USA or UK.
Find your next favorite and similar movies in two steps: 1. Identify all themes of interest from this film (block below). 2. Look for them in the presented list.
Empire of the Sun (1987)
 7.7
 116K
Empire of the Sun (1987)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: USA, UK
Duration: 153 min.
Story: Jamie Graham, a privileged English boy, is living in Shanghai when the Japanese invade and force all foreigners into prison camps. Jamie is captured with an American sailor named Basie, who looks out for him while they are in the camp together. Even though he is separated from his parents and in a hostile environment, Jamie maintains his dignity and youthful spirits, providing a beacon of hope for the others held captive with him.
Style: epic, emotional, touching, realistic, gloomy, atmospheric, serious, captivating, dramatic, reflective ...
Plot: world war two, coming of age, pow, innocence lost, young heroes, survival, prison, concentration camp, chinese, peasant, child protagonist, bravery, japanese soldier, stadium, japanese army, internment camp, captivity, war, childhood, pilot, chess, tennis, youth, heroes, invasion ...
Time: 1940s, 40s, 20th century
Place: china, shanghai, tokyo, asia, japan, hong kong, pearl harbor ...

Movie in categories

Most similar movies to Empire of the Sun

The list contains related movies ordered by similarity. Recommendation engine sorted out realistic, serious, dramatic and intense films with plots about war, survival, world war two, brutality, sacrifice, military and courage mostly in Drama, War and History genres. Some movies like Empire of the Sun: Letters from Iwo Jima (2006), Unbroken (2014), City of Life and Death (2009), The Book Thief (2013), The Great Raid (2005). The matching attributes are highlighted in bold.
Letters from Iwo Jima (2006)
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, History, War
Country: USA, Japan
Duration: 141 min.
Story: The story of the battle of Iwo Jima between the United States and Imperial Japan during World War II, as told from the perspective of the Japanese who fought it.
Style: realistic, bleak, contemplative, disturbing, emotional ...
Plot: survival, world war two, battles, military, war, chaos, japanese history, danger, chaos and mayhem, selflessness, brutality, japanese army ...
Time: 1940s, 40s, 20th century, year 1945, year 2005
Place: japan, tokyo, asia
⇓ similarity ⇓
75%
 7.2
 150K
Unbroken (2014)
Genre: Action, Biography, Drama, Sport, War
Country: USA
Duration: 137 min.
Story: A chronicle of the life of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who was taken prisoner by Japanese forces during World War II.
Style: uplifting, emotional, bleak, rough, epic ...
Plot: war, soldier, u.s. air force, captivity, world war two, island, survival, life is a bitch, athlete's life, human spirit, hopes, danger ...
Time: 1940s, 30s, 20th century, 40s, 1930s
Place: japan, pacific ocean, germany, asia, berlin germany ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
City of Life and Death (2009)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: China, Hong Kong
Duration: 132 min.
Story: City of Life and Death takes place in 1937, during the height of the Second Sino-Japanese War. The Imperial Japanese Army has just captured the then-capital of the Republic of China, Nanjing. What followed was known as the Nanking Massacre, or the ...
Style: rough, disturbing, bleak, epic, emotional ...
Plot: sino japanese war, sexual abuse, war crime, massacre, atrocity, life is a bitch, mass murder, japanese army, military, dehumanization, invasion, war atrocity ...
Time: 1930s, 20th century, 30s, year 1937, year 1938
Place: china, asia, shanghai, shanghai china
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
 7.6
 128K
The Book Thief (2013)
Genre: Drama, War
Country: USA, Germany
Duration: 131 min.
Story: While subjected to the horrors of WWII Germany, young Liesel finds solace by stealing books and sharing them with others. Under the stairs in her home, a Jewish refuge is being sheltered by her adoptive parents.
Style: emotional, touching, sentimental, serious, captivating ...
Audience: girls' night
Plot: holocaust, jewish, world war two, childhood, human spirit, nazi germany, nazi, war, adoption, against humanity, life is a bitch, youth ...
Time: 40s, 1930s, 1940s, 30s, 20th century ...
Place: germany, europe
⇓ similarity ⇓
100%
Movie in collections
 6.7
 21K
The Great Raid (2005)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: USA, Australia
Duration: 132 min.
Story: As World War II rages, the elite Sixth Ranger Battalion is given a mission of heroic proportions: push 30 miles behind enemy lines and liberate over 500 American prisoners of war.
Style: tense, suspenseful, rough, harsh, realistic ...
Audience: boys' night
Plot: war, world war two, rescue mission, military, pow, escape attempt, massacre, human spirit, against the odds, military life, behind enemy lines, daring rescue ...
Time: 1940s, 40s, 20th century
Place: the philippines, asia, manila philippines, pearl harbor, japan ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
38%
To End All Wars (2001)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: USA
Duration: 125 min.
Story: Based on a real-life story, this drama focuses on a small group of Allied soldiers in Burma who are held captive by the Japanese. Capt. Ernest Gordon (Ciaran McMenamin), Lt. Jim Reardon (Kiefer Sutherland) and Maj. Ian Campbell (Robert Carlyle) are ...
Style: tense, suspenseful, rough, serious, harsh ...
Plot: jungle, corporal punishment, captivity, pow, war crime, escape, military, hopes, war, leadership, human spirit, prison life ...
Time: 20th century, year 1942, year 1943, 1940s
Place: japan, scotland, asia, india, thailand ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
38%
The Flowers of War (2011)
Genre: Drama, History, Romance, War
Country: China, Hong Kong
Duration: 146 min.
Story: A Westerner finds refuge with a group of women in a church during Japan's rape of Nanking in 1937. Posing as a priest, he attempts to lead the women to safety.
Style: emotional, realistic, bleak, disturbing, rough ...
Plot: prostitute, atrocity, world war two, brothel, sino japanese war, rape, forced prostitution, prostitution, life is a bitch, suffering, student, japanese occupation of china ...
Time: 1930s, year 1937, 20th century, 30s
Place: china, asia, japan, germany
⇓ similarity ⇓
50%
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2008)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: UK, USA
Duration: 94 min.
Story: When his family moves from their home in Berlin to a strange new house in Poland, young Bruno befriends Shmuel, a boy who lives on the other side of the fence where everyone seems to be wearing striped pajamas. Unaware of Shmuel's fate as a ...
Style: touching, heartbreaking, emotional, serious, twists and turns ...
Audience: kids
Plot: holocaust, world war two, jewish, concentration camp, childhood, friendship, against humanity, nazism, wartime life, atrocity, gas chamber, nazi ...
Time: 40s, 1940s, 20th century
Place: germany, poland, europe, berlin germany, switzerland
⇓ similarity ⇓
37%
Movie in collections
Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: Japan, USA
Duration: 144 min.
Story: In the summer of 1941, the United States and Japan seem on the brink of war after constant embargos and failed diplomacy come to no end. "Tora! Tora! Tora!", named after the code words use by the lead Japanese pilot to indicate they had ...
Style: serious, suspenseful, exciting, epic, factual ...
Plot: world war two, military life, battleship, military, navy, war, political unrest, state affairs, imperial japan, danger, rebellion, battles ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s, year 1941, 70s
Place: hawaii, japan, pearl harbor, washington d.c., usa ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
36%
 7.6
 15K
Europa Europa (1990)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: Germany, France, Poland
Duration: 112 min.
Story: A Jewish boy separated from his family in the early days of WWII poses as a German orphan and is taken into the heart of the Nazi world as a 'war hero' and eventually becomes a Hitler Youth. Although improbabilities and happenstance are ...
Style: epic, realistic, contemplative, emotional, disturbing ...
Plot: holocaust, world war two, anti semitism, survival, german, hitler youth, nudity (full frontal - brief), communism, roommate, homosexual, heroes, hidden identity ...
Time: 1940s, 1930s, 20th century, 40s, 30s
Place: latvia, germany, poland, europe, berlin germany ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
35%
Saints and Soldiers (2003)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: USA
Duration: 90 min.
Story: Five American soldiers fighting in Europe during World War II struggle to return to Allied territory after being separated from U.S. forces during the historic Malmedy Massacre.
Style: rough, touching, emotional, intense, realistic ...
Plot: soldier, behind enemy lines, world war two, pow, battles, allies, military, tragic hero, heroic mission, bondage, hapless soldier, battle zone ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, year 1944
Place: germany, europe, belgium, berlin germany, louisiana ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
The Human Condition III: A Soldier's Prayer (1961)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: Japan
Duration: 190 min.
Story: His ideals challenged by life as a conscript in war-time Japan's military, a pacifist faces ever greater tests in his fight for survival.
Style: atmospheric, bleak, gloomy, serious, realistic ...
Plot: soldier, world war two, survival, japanese army, chinese, captivity, unfulfilled love, prison life, imperialism, estrangement, escape attempt, hapless soldier ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s
Place: china, japan, asia
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
 7.0
 10K
The Grey Zone (2001)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: USA
Duration: 108 min.
Story: A Nazi doctor, along with the Sonderkomando Jews – who are forced to work in the crematoria of Auschwitz against their fellow-Jews – find themselves in a moral grey zone.
Style: bleak, disturbing, serious, factual, depressing ...
Plot: holocaust, rebellion, survival, world war two, concentration camp, nazi, anti semitism, redemption, smuggling, human spirit, against humanity, moral dilemma ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, 40s, year 1944
Place: poland, europe, germany, budapest, budapest hungary ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
 7.3
 101K
Rescue Dawn (2006)
Genre: Action, Biography, Drama, Thriller, War
Country: USA, Luxembourg
Duration: 120 min.
Story: A US Fighter pilot's epic struggle of survival after being shot down on a mission over Laos during the Vietnam War.
Style: suspenseful, bleak, rough, tense, based on true events ...
Audience: boys' night
Plot: vietnam war, survival, pow, soldier, torture, violence, escape, rescue, camp, human spirit, danger, confined ...
Time: 60s, 20th century, 1960s, year 1965, 70s
Place: vietnam, laos, asia
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
 5.9
 34K
Red Tails (2012)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: USA
Duration: 125 min.
Story: The story of the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American pilots to fly in a combat squadron during World War II.
Style: exciting, suspenseful, serious, realistic, epic ...
Audience: boys' night
Plot: world war two, fighter pilot, interracial relations, aerial combats, military life, war, military base, soldier, discrimination, airplane, military, battles ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s, year 1944, year 1942
Place: europe, italy, pentagon, germany, cuba ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
A Bridge Too Far (1977)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: USA, UK
Duration: 175 min.
Story: A Bridge Too Far tells the story of Operation Market Garden, the failed attempt by the allies to end the war quickly by securing three bridges in Holland and allowing access over the Rhine into Germany. A combination of poor allied intelligence and ...
Style: epic, realistic, rough, serious, suspenseful ...
Plot: war, behind enemy lines, world war two, army, allies, heroic mission, battle zone, against the odds, soldier, mission, resistance, danger ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s, year 1944, 70s
Place: netherlands, holland, germany, europe, united states ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
34%
 7.2
 139K
Defiance (2008)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, Thriller, War
Country: USA
Duration: 137 min.
Story: Based on a true story, during World War II, four Jewish brothers escape their Nazi-occupied homeland of West Belarus in Poland and join the Soviet partisans to combat the Nazis. The brothers begin the rescue of roughly 1,200 Jews still trapped in ...
Style: emotional, epic, sincere, intense, realistic ...
Plot: world war two, nazi, holocaust, survival, wartime life, jewish, rebellion, partisan, camp, russian, jews, hopes ...
Time: 1940s, 40s, 20th century, year 1941, year 1942
Place: poland, europe, germany, israel, russia
⇓ similarity ⇓
33%
The Longest Day (1962)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: USA
Duration: 178 min.
Story: The retelling of June 6, 1944, from the perspectives of the Germans, US, British, Canadians, and the Free French. Marshall Erwin Rommel, touring the defenses being established as part of the Reich's Atlantic Wall, notes to his officers that ...
Style: realistic, suspenseful, serious, touching, epic ...
Plot: world war two, soldier, resistance, war, invasion, allies, german, military, navy, military life, officers and cadets, battle zone ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, 40s, year 1944
Place: normandy, france, europe, england, paris france ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
33%
Movie in collections
Escape from Sobibor (1987)
Genre: Drama, History, War
Country: UK, Yugoslavia
Duration: 143 min.
Story: During WWII, the death camp at Treblinka had an escape, causing the Commandant at a similar camp in Sobibor to vow (actually threaten) that his camp would never experience the same thing. But those who were its captives, the Jewish laborers that had ...
Style: realistic, serious, suspenseful, rough, tense ...
Plot: concentration camp, escape, world war two, captivity, pow, genocide, brutality, violence, against humanity, corporal punishment, holocaust, rebelliousness ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, 40s
Place: poland, europe
⇓ similarity ⇓
33%
 7.8
 559K
Dunkirk (2017)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, Thriller, War
Country: UK, Netherlands, France, USA
Duration: 106 min.
Story: The story of the miraculous evacuation of Allied soldiers from Belgium, Britain, Canada and France, who were cut off and surrounded by the German army from the beaches and harbour of Dunkirk between May 26th and June 4th 1940 during World War II.
Style: atmospheric, dramatic, epic, suspense, realistic ...
Plot: world war two, british history, wartime, warship, rescue mission, survival, british army, evacuation, war, military, military officer, army ...
Time: 1940s, year 1940, 20th century
Place: europe, france, english channel, england, flanders
⇓ similarity ⇓
33%
City of War: The Story of John Rabe (2009)
Genre: Biography, Drama, History, War
Country: France, China, Germany
Duration: 134 min.
Story: A true-story account of a German businessman who saved more than 200,000 Chinese during the Nanjing massacre in 1937-38.
Style: disturbing, realistic, tense, bleak, serious ...
Plot: rescue, war crime, atrocity, heroes, deadly, confined, war, wartime life, survival, lifesaver, negotiation, disorder ...
Time: 1930s, 20th century, 30s, year 1937, year 1938
Place: china, japan, asia
⇓ similarity ⇓
32%
 6.8
 18K
Midway (1976)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: USA
Duration: 132 min.
Story: This war drama depicts the U.S. and Japanese forces in the naval Battle of Midway, which became a turning point for Americans during World War II.
Style: realistic, exciting, suspenseful, serious, epic ...
Plot: world war two, naval battle, military, u.s. navy, war, heroic mission, against the odds, danger, underdog, military life, main character dies, death of protagonist ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s, year 1942, 70s
Place: pacific ocean, japan, tokyo, germany, hawaii ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
32%
We Were Soldiers (2002)
Genre: Action, Drama, History, War
Country: USA, Germany, France
Duration: 138 min.
Story: The story of the first major battle of the American phase of the Vietnam War and the soldiers on both sides that fought it.
Style: factual, serious, realistic, sincere, suspenseful ...
Audience: boys' night
Plot: vietnam war, soldier, battles, military, war, military life, heroes, battlefield, wartime life, u.s. army, army, death ...
Time: 1960s, 60s, 20th century, 2000s
Place: vietnam, asia, usa, iraq
⇓ similarity ⇓
32%
Movie in collections
Miracle at St. Anna (2008)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: Italy, USA
Duration: 160 min.
Story: Miracle at St. Anna chronicles the story of four American soldiers who are members of the all-black 92nd "Buffalo Soldier" Division stationed in Tuscany, Italy during World War II.
Style: rough, sincere, suspenseful, epic, intense ...
Plot: soldier, world war two, partisan, military, behind enemy lines, battles, war crime, interracial relations, racism, war, village, military life ...
Time: 80s, 20th century, 1940s, 40s, year 1944 ...
Place: italy, europe, berlin germany, rome italy, harlem manhattan new york city ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
32%
 6.6
 4K
MacArthur (1977)
Genre: Biography, Drama, History, War
Country: USA
Duration: 130 min.
Story: The film portrays MacArthur's (Gregory Peck) life from 1942, before the Battle of Bataan, to 1952, the time after he had been removed from his Korean War command by President Truman (Ed Flanders) for insubordination, and is recounted in ...
Style: realistic, serious, melancholic, epic, intense ...
Plot: world war two, military, pow, soldier, war, politics, island, rebellion, ruler, ambition, revolution, unlikely friendships ...
Time: 20th century, 50s, 1940s, 40s, 1950s
Place: usa, japan, the philippines, korea, asia ...
⇓ similarity ⇓
32%
 6.9
 27K
Memphis Belle (1990)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: UK, Japan, USA
Duration: 107 min.
Story: The "Memphis Belle" is a World War II bomber, piloted by a young crew on dangerous bombing raids into Europe. The crew only have to make one more bombing raid before they have finished their duty and can go home. In the briefing before ...
Style: tense, exciting, rough, serious, emotional ...
Audience: boys' night, girls' night
Plot: bomber, war, battles, soldier, world war two, military, one last job, mission, behind enemy lines, friendship, airplane, rescue ...
Time: 1940s, 20th century, 40s, year 1943
Place: europe, england, germany, australia
⇓ similarity ⇓
31%
 6.1
 66K
Windtalkers (2002)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: USA
Duration: 134 min.
Story: Joe Enders is a gung-ho Marine assigned to protect a "windtalker" - one of several Navajo Indians who were used to relay messages during World War II because their spoken language was indecipherable to Japanese code breakers.
Style: realistic, sincere, serious, emotional, rough ...
Plot: world war two, war, code, military life, u.s. marine corps, heroes, military, mexican standoff, behind enemy lines, native americans, commando, survival ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, year 1943, year 1944
Place: japan, asia, arizona
⇓ similarity ⇓
31%
The McKenzie Break (1970)
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Country: Ireland, UK
Duration: 108 min.
Story: A German U-Boat commander and 600 prisoners plan a daring escape from a PoW camp in Scotland.
Style: suspenseful, rough, realistic, serious, suspense ...
Plot: military, soldier, battles, world war two, prison, captivity, survival, prison life, war, military life, human spirit, wartime life ...
Time: 20th century, 1940s, 40s
Place: scotland, london
⇓ similarity ⇓
30%
 7.2
 148K
War Horse (2011)
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, History, War
Country: USA, India
Duration: 146 min.
Story: Follows a young man named Albert and his horse, Joey, and how their bond is broken when Joey is sold to the cavalry and sent to the trenches of World War One. Despite being too young to enlist, Albert heads to France to save his friend.
Style: emotional, touching, epic, sentimental, serious ...
Audience: girls' night, teens
Plot: horse, world war one, battles, war, friendship, german, human spirit, animal training, danger, hopes, french, animals ...
Time: 1910s, 20th century, year 1918
Place: england, europe, france
⇓ similarity ⇓
30%
Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983)
Genre: Drama, War
Country: UK, New Zealand, Japan
Duration: 123 min.
Story: In 1942, British soldier Jack Celliers comes to a japanese prison camp. The camp is run by Yonoi, who has a firm belief in discipline, honour and glory. In his view, the allied prisoners are cowards when they chose to surrender instead of commiting ...
Style: disturbing, psychological, realistic, bleak, serious ...
Plot: world war two, pow, soldier, war, prisoner of war camp, war crime, captivity, anti war, escape attempt, undisciplined, atrocity, strong violent content ...
Time: 1940s, 40s, 20th century, year 1936, year 1946 ...
Place: japan, asia, australia, indonesia, tokyo
⇓ similarity ⇓
30%