Best History Movies of 2004

1.

Disaster at Chernobyl

3.5
7.7/10 IMDB

The explosion at Chernobyl was ten times worse than the Hiroshima bomb and was due to a combination of human error and imperfect technology. An account of the sixty critical minutes prior to the explosion of the nuclear power plant on the night of April 26, 1986.

Starring: David Morrissey, Nikolai Steinberg, Alexander Yuvchenko, Boris Stolyarchuk, Alexander Yuvchenko, Piers Paul Read, Anatoli Diatlov, Sergei Yankovsky, Mikhail Gorbachev, Igor Slavinskiy ..
Directed by: Renny Bartlett
Release date: 2004-01-01
2.

Ghosts of Rwanda

3.3
8.8/10 IMDB

Ghosts of Rwanda marks the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide with a documentary chronicling one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century. In addition to interviews with key government officials and diplomats, this documentary offers eyewitness accounts of the genocide from those who experienced it firsthand. FRONTLINE illustrates the failures that enabled the slaughter of 800,000 people to occur unchallenged by the global community.

Starring: Madeleine Albright, Bill Clinton, Kofi Annan, Willy Claes, Roméo Dallaire, Gromo Alex, Henry Anyidoho, Brent Beardsley, Prudence Bushnell ..
Directed by: Greg Barker
Release date: 2004-04-01
Best History Movies of 2004 : The Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance
3.

The Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance

3.2
8.1/10 IMDB

From a small Italian community in 15th-century Florence, the Medici family would rise to rule Europe in many ways. Using charm, patronage, skill, duplicity and ruthlessness, they would amass unparalleled wealth and unprecedented power. They would also ignite the most important cultural and artistic revolution in Western history -- the European Renaissance. But the forces of change the Medici helped unleash would one day topple their ordered world.

Starring: Massimo Marinoni, Peter Guinness, Ian Bustard, Niccolo Cioni, Ben De Saumserez, James Innes-Smith, Federico Stefanelli, Pip Torrens ..
Directed by: Justin Hardy
Release date: 2004-02-04
Best History Movies of 2004 : So Funny It Hurt: Buster Keaton & MGM
4.

So Funny It Hurt: Buster Keaton & MGM

3.2
7.4/10 IMDB

A Turner Classic Movies (TCM) documentary about Keaton's discontented relationship with MGM and the events that eventually led to his career downfall.

Starring: James Karen, Buster Keaton, Louis B. Mayer, Irving Thalberg, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle ..
Directed by: Christopher Bird, Kevin Brownlow
Release date: 2004-12-07
Best History Movies of 2004 : Congo: White King, Red Rubber, Black Death
5.

Congo: White King, Red Rubber, Black Death

3.1
7.7/10 IMDB

This true, astonishing story of what King Leopold II did in the Congo was forgotten for over 50 years. "Congo: White King, Red Rubber, Black Death" describes how King Leopold II of Belgium turned the Congo into his private colony between 1885 and 1908. Under his control, Congo became a gulag labour camp of shocking brutality. Leopold posed as the protector of Africans fleeing Arab slave-traders but, in reality, he carved out an empire based on terror to harvest rubber. From the mid-1880s and lasting for nearly 40 years, an estimated 10 million Congolese were killed under Leopold's reign. The madness only came to an end thanks to the efforts of British journalist and humanitarian E.D. Morel, who exposed the human rights abuses in Congo and published photographs of the mutilated Congolese.

Starring: Nick Fraser, Elie Lison, Roger May, Steve Driesen, Tshilombo Imhotep, Annette Kelly ..
Directed by: Peter Bate
Release date: 2004-02-24
6.

Thérèse: The Story of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux

2.7
6.5/10 IMDB

The mesmerizing story of a young girl's romance with God. Her faith, trials, and sacrifices reveal a way of life based on love and simplicity. A contemplative film based on the true story of Saint Therese of Lisieux, the most popular saint of modern times.

Starring: Leonardo Defilippis, Maggie Rose Fleck, Susan Funk, Linda Hayden, Sybil Johnson, Judith Kaplan, Samantha Kramer, Jen Nikolaisen, Mandy Rimer, Mary Magda Schultz ..
Directed by: Leonardo Defilippis
Release date: 2004-10-03
7.

Pearl Harbor: A Day of Infamy

2.1
5.5/10 IMDB

On the morning of December 7, 1941, a surprise attack by Japanese naval aviation against the American held island of Oahu and Pearl Harbor thrust the United States into World War II. This story details one of the most momentous events in American history and a crucial turning point in the 20th century. Most importantly, it is a story of the people who were there, told through eyewitness accounts of American and Japanese veterans, some of whose stories have never been told. This is a story of perseverance and heroism in the face of overwhelming odds. This is the story of Pearl Harbor.

Release date: 2004-05-22
Best History Movies of 2004 : Ben Franklin
8.

Ben Franklin

1.8
7.9/10 IMDB

The History Channel biography on the life and achievements of one of this nation's founding fathers.

Release date: 2004-12-05
Best History Movies of 2004 : Japan: Memoirs of a Secret Empire
9.

Japan: Memoirs of a Secret Empire

1.7
7.6/10 IMDB

Japan blossomed into its Renaissance at approximately the same time as Europe. Unlike the West, it flourished not through conquest and exploration, but by fierce and defiant isolation. And the man at the heart of this empire was Tokugawa Ieyasu, a warlord who ruled with absolute control. This period is explored through myriad voices-- the Shogun, the Samurai, the Geisha, the poet, the peasant and the Westerner who glimpsed into this secret world.

Starring: Michael Auslin, Beatrice M. Bodart-Bailey, Richard Chamberlain, Michael Cooper, Luke S. Roberts ..
Directed by: Deborah DeSnoo, Lyn Goldfarb
Release date: 2004-05-26
Best History Movies of 2004 : Frank Hurley: The Man Who Made History
10.

Frank Hurley: The Man Who Made History

1.6
7.0/10 IMDB

Frank Hurley's photos of Antarctic heroes, World Wars and mysterious natives in faraway jungles grabbed the attention of all who saw them. But just how real were they? Was he a giant in photography or just a conjurer with a camera?

Starring: Linda Cropper, John Noble ..
Directed by: Simon Nasht
Release date: 2004-08-23

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