There are many great movies that you should watch about planes and flying. Check out our list here of the best aviation movies.
Do you want to become a pilot? Besides the compulsory training and qualifications, you’ll also need to study-up on aviation in pop culture.
That means watching the most important aviation films ever made.
From Wings to Top Gun, there’s plenty of material to study. Some will give you a peek into the life of a pilot, others will be slightly less realistic.
Here’s a list of the best aviation movies every plane buff and pilot-to-be needs to see.
1. Wings (1927)
This classic aviation film was the first movie to win Best Picture at the Oscar’s, and it’s no surprise why.
Wings is set during World War II and features the trials and tribulations of two young cadets in love with the same girl. It has drama, action, and lots of WWII aviation content.
2. Strategic Air Command (1955)
Another film based on aviation in the military, Strategic Air Command follows the story of an ex-bomber pilot.
This movie gives plane-buffs an in-depth look at the B-36 aircraft. You see many of the real-life issues with the B-36 play out and how they were improved.
3. Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines (1965)
Who says aviation films need to be serious? In this 1965 flick, viewers learn about the start of aviation with lots of laughs along the way.
The plot centers on an air race that goes from London to Paris. The goal? To further Britain’s lead in the aviation industry.
4. Top Gun (1986)
One of the first movies that likely comes to mind when you picture aviation films is Top Gun. Tom Cruise does an excellent job of portraying the bad boy and exceptional flyer, Maverick.
Plane enthusiasts may roll their eyes at this film because of how popular it was in Hollywood. However, Tom Cruise is one of the rare celebrity pilots who can fly in real life, not just on the screen.
5. The Aviator (2004)
Howard Hughes is a monumental figure in the world of aviation. This biographical drama is based on his book and life.
Not only did he set the record for flying around the world in four days, but he later directed the aviation movie, Hell’s Angels. Leonardo DiCaprio did an excellent job portraying him and his life story.
6. Flyboys (2006)
Set during World War I, Flyboys is about the volunteer fighter pilots who joined the 124th air squadron. Based on actual people, Flyboys gives an accurate and fascinating peek into those who fought in WWI.
7. Amelia (2009)
The first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean was Amelia Earhart. She was a pioneer for women in aviation, and a film dedicated to her life is only right.
The film captures moments of Amelia’s life as she grew up and began flying. It also discusses her mysterious disappearance.
8. Sully (2016)
This movie has been a constant crowd-pleaser among pilots and aviation buffs alike.
Sully tells the true story of Captain “Sully” Sullenberg and his amazing US Airways Flight 1549 emergency landing. Despite landing on the Hudson River, all passengers survived.
Ready to Watch the Best Aviation Movies?
Whether you want to fly planes or enjoy learning about the history of them, movies can teach and entertain you.
After watching the best aviation movies listed, check out our Movies page for more film news and suggestions!
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