Korean War Movies

Saturday, April 2 by Karen Murdock

Filmmakers often overlook the Korean War, but these Korean War movies show how the “Forgotten War” is just as compelling, moving and important as any other major conflict. Whether these Korean War movies tell the war’s story through humor or gritty battle scenes, all of them will open your eyes to this important moment in history.

  1. “MASH” (1970) – MASH stands for Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, but for most people, it just refers to the best Korean War movie (and television series) of all time. Directed by the legendary Robert Altman, MASH uses humor to confront the horrors of war. If you have never seen Duke, Hawkeye or ‘Hot Lips’ O’Houlihan, get ready for some hardcore belly laughs. “MASH” won an Oscar for Best Writing and was nominated for four others, including Best Picture.
  2. “Pork Chop Hill” (1959) - The Korean War is known as the “Forgotten War,” but director Lewis Milestone—also famous for “All Quiet on the Western Front”—wants to make sure you always remember the soldiers who fought and died. In “Pork Chop Hill,” American soldiers fight to take back a hill from Red Chinese troops. You can guess how the hill got its name. This is the other side of the “MASH” coin, where young men’s ravaged bodies wind up at the mobile hospital.
  3. “The Bridges at Toko-Ri” (1954) - This Korean War movie takes you inside the cockpit and mind of a Navy fighter pilot on the verge of a mission to bomb the brides at Toko-Ri. With William Holden starring and Oscar-winning special effects, you cannot go wrong with this Korean War movie.
  4. “Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War” (2004) – This South Korean movie tells the story on brothersfighting for South Korea during the Korean War. Although the older sibling initially enlists in the army to protect his little brother, their relationship falls apart just like that between North and South Korea.
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