Epic Adventure Movies To Watch Before You Die

Tuesday, April 19 by D. Michaels

Everyone has a great movie that they think everyone must see before they die, but we like to overdo it at times so here we have ten epic adventure movies to watch before you die. Seriously, these movies are that good and are ones that have either been awarded by their peers repeatedly, or in some cases, have changed the ways movies get made.

  1. “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.” This is the first PG-13 film ever released directly by Disney and the first of the trilogy of epic adventure movies that introduced the world to Captain Jack Sparrow.
  2. The original “Star Wars” trilogy. True, this really is a collection of three movies, but once you see George Lucas’ original masterpiece, you’ll see why it’s had such a huge influence on popular culture. This epic adventure movie trilogy combines elements of fantasy and science fiction that had never before been presented in film.
  3. “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. The masterpiece that some thought could never be filmed was tackled by now legendary (and Oscar-winning) director Peter Jackson. Costing $285 million dollars to shoot over the span of 438 days (most films shoot in under 90), this ranks as one of the biggest and successful epic adventure movie productions in the history of modern filmmaking.
  4. “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” The first collaboration of superstar directors Steven Spielberg and George Lucas led to the first of four epic adventures movies you need to watch before you die starring Harrison Ford as the charismatic archeologist Henry “Indiana” Jones II. Ih his first adventure, he chases the Nazis in order to prevent them from obtaining the biblical Ark of the Covenant.
  5. “The Bridge Over The River Kwai.” The first of many great Oscar-winning epics from British director David Lean, this epic adventure movie tells the story of a captured World War II colonel who is ordered to build a bridge for his captors unaware that a special unit has been sent to destroy it before it's completed.
  6.  “Lawrence of Arabia.” Still considered by some to be Peter O’Toole’s finest performance and one of the most critically acclaimed epic adventure movies to watch before you die, O’Toole portrays T.E. Lawrence, an actual historical figure who led a force of Arabs against the Turks during World War I.
  7. “Braveheart.” When actor Mel Gibson does something big, he doesn’t mess around. Telling the somewhat true story of a Scottish uprising against the British during the thirteenth century led by a commoner named William Wallace, Gibson plays the title character in this epic adventure movie that won five Oscars in 1996.
  8. “Seven Samurai.” Considered by most film critics to be the best Japanese movie ever made, it tells the story of an unemployed master Samurai who recruits six others to defend a town of farmers against a band of thieves. This film is hailed as the first modern action movie and aspects of it have been duplicated even decades later.
  9. “The Hunt for Red October.” Would you believe James Bond as a Russia submarine captain? Well, it doesn’t matter because Sean Connery pulled it off rather remarkably in this epic adventure movie with young Alec Baldwin that made naval adventures cool again. It was also the start of a series of movies with a completely different cast as Harrison Ford took over the role of Jack Ryan from Baldwin for the next two films and Ben Affleck took it from Ford for a fourth movie.
  10. “Spartacus.” This epic adventure movie marked Stanley Kubrick’s first foray into the genre with Kirk Douglas as the title character and an all-star cast to back him up. Douglas’ insistence that a previously blacklisted writer be given a screen credit for his work effectively ended the practice of not hiring writers who had run afoul of the McCarthy Red Scare trials in the previous decade.

- Mark Dodson