Best History Movies of 2009

1.

Invictus

6.0
7.3/10

Newly elected President Nelson Mandela knows his nation remains racially and economically divided in the wake of apartheid. Believing he can bring his people together through the universal language of sport, Mandela rallies South Africa's rugby team as they make their historic run to the 1995 Rugby World Cup Championship match.

Starring: Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon, Tony Kgoroge, Patrick Mofokeng, Matt Stern
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Release date: 2009-12-10
2.

Prayers for Bobby

5.7
8.1/10

Bobby Griffith was his mother's favorite son, the perfect all-American boy growing up under deeply religious influences in Walnut Creek, California. Bobby was also gay. Struggling with a conflict no one knew of much less understood Bobby finally came out to his family.

Starring: Ryan Kelley, Sigourney Weaver, Henry Czerny, Dan Butler, Austin Nichols
Directed by: Russell Mulcahy
Release date: 2009-02-27
3.

The Young Victoria

5.3
7.3/10

As the only legitimate heir of England's King William, teenage Victoria gets caught up in the political machinations of her own family. Victoria's mother wants her to sign a regency order, while her Belgian uncle schemes to arrange a marriage between the future monarch and Prince Albert, the man who will become the love of her life.

Starring: Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Paul Bettany, Miranda Richardson, Jim Broadbent
Directed by: Jean-Marc Vallée
Release date: 2009-03-04
4.

Agora

5.3
7.2/10

A historical drama set in Roman Egypt, concerning philosopher Hypatia of Alexandria and her relationship with her slave Davus, who is torn between his love for her and the possibility of gaining his freedom by joining the rising tide of Christianity.

Starring: Rachel Weisz, Max Minghella, Oscar Isaac, Ashraf Barhom, Michael Lonsdale
Directed by: Alejandro Amenábar
Release date: 2009-05-17
5.

The Messenger

5.1
7.1/10

Will Montgomery (Ben Foster), a U.S. Army Staff Sergeant who has returned home from Iraq, is assigned to the Army’s Casualty Notification service. Montgomery is partnered with Captain Tony Stone (Woody Harrelson), to give notice to the families of fallen soldiers. The Sergeant is drawn to Olivia Pitterson (Samantha Morton), to whom he has delivered news of her husband’s death.

Starring: Ben Foster, Woody Harrelson, Jena Malone, Eamonn Walker, Samantha Morton
Directed by: Oren Moverman
Release date: 2009-11-13
6.

Taking Chance

4.6
7.5/10
Taking Chance
Lt. Col. Michael Strobl, a volunteer military escort accompanies the body of Lance Cpl. Chance Phelps to his hometown in Wyoming.
Starring: Kevin Bacon, Tom Aldredge, Nicholas Art, Blanche Baker, Guy Boyd
Directed by: Ross Katz
Release date: 2009-09-21
7.

John Rabe

3.8
7.2/10

A true-story account of a German businessman who saved more than 200,000 Chinese during the Nanjing massacre in 1937-38.

Starring: Ulrich Tukur, Dagmar Manzel, Steve Buscemi, Daniel Brühl, Zhang Jingchu
Directed by: Florian Gallenberger
Release date: 2009-04-02
8.

Glorious 39

3.2
6.4/10

A mysterious tale set around a traditional British family on the eve of World War Two. Oblivious to the looming shadow of World War II, the wealthy Keyes maintain a confident façade in the British countryside until daughter Anne becomes an unexpected pawn. Her accidental discovery of secret recordings creates a rift in the family.

Starring: Romola Garai, Bill Nighy, Julie Christie, Eddie Redmayne, Juno Temple
Directed by: Stephen Poliakoff
Release date: 2009-11-20
9.

It Felt Like a Kiss

3.2
8.0/10
It Felt Like a Kiss
The story of America's rise to power starting in 1959, it uses nothing but archive footage and America pop music. Showing the consequences on the rest of the world and in peoples mind.
Starring: H. Rap Brown, Nikita Khrushchev, Richard Nixon
Directed by: Adam Curtis
Release date: 2009-01-01
10.

Landslide: A Portrait of President Herbert Hoover

3.2
6.9/10
Landslide: A Portrait of President Herbert Hoover
Documentary about personal lide of Herbert Hoover's and his governmental career, profiles the former head of state's political philosophy, memorable election campaigns, Great Depression policies and more. Through interviews with scholars such as David Kennedy, Robert Reich and Tim Egan, this biography sheds new light on the underappreciated president's difficult tenure and enduring legacy.
Release date: 2009-10-26
11.

Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh

3.0
6.9/10
Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh
The story of Hannah Senesh, a Hungarian poet who was captured by the Nazis, while trying to rescue Jews in WWII.
Starring: Peter Hay, Judy Baumel-Schwartz, Michael Berenbaum, Shimon Peres
Directed by: Roberta Grossman
Release date: 2009-01-28
12.

Van Diemen's Land

3.0
6.0/10
Van Diemen's Land
The true story of Australia’s most notorious convict, Alexander Pearce and his infamous journey into the beautiful yet brutal Tasmanian wilderness. A point of no return for convicts banished from their homeland, Van Diemen’s Land was a feared and dreaded penal settlement at the end of the earth.
Starring: Arthur Angel, Paul Ashcroft, Mark Leonard Winter, Torquil Neilson, Greg Stone
Directed by: Jonathan auf der Heide
Release date: 2009-09-24
13.

The People Speak

3.0
6.8/10
The People Speak
A look at America's struggles with war, class, race and women's rights. based on Howard Zinn's "A People's History of the United States."
Starring: Rosario Dawson, Morgan Freeman, Marisa Tomei, Sean Penn, Viggo Mortensen
Directed by: Chris Moore, Howard Zinn
Release date: 2009-12-13
14.

Black Field

2.7
6.5/10
Black Field
A dark historical drama about two sisters, the man that comes between them, and the tragedy that results. Set in the 1870s.
Starring: Sara Canning, Mathieu Bourguet, Ferron Guerreiro, Darcy Fehr, Nazariy Demkowicz
Directed by: Danishka Esterhazy
Release date: 2009-10-13
15.

Journey to 10,000 BC

2.6
6.9/10
Journey to 10,000 BC
10,000 B.C. was a time of cataclysmic change on Earth. Extreme climactic fluctuations hurled the planet into a minor ice age; megafauna like the saber-toothed tiger and woolly mammoth were suddenly becoming extinct; and early humans began to inhabit North America. Cold and hungry, their fragile communities undertook perilous hunting expeditions. The slaughter of a single mammoth, weighing nearly ten tons, could be the difference between survival and death. Journey to 10,000 BC. brings this unique and thrilling period to life, and investigates the geologic and climate changes that scientists are just beginning to understand. In a major forensic investigation, History visits early human archaeological sites to uncover fossilized bones, ancient dwellings, and stone weapons, and uses state-of-the-art CGI to recreate the treacherous mammoth hunts and the devastating impact of a comet colliding with Earth.
Starring: Nicole Waguespack, David J. Meltzer, David George, Pat Lubinski, Christopher A. Shaw
Release date: 2009-01-01
16.

Darwin's Darkest Hour

2.6
6.9/10
Darwin's Darkest Hour
In 1858 Charles Darwin struggles to publish one of the most controversial scientific theories ever conceived, while he and his wife Emma confront family tragedy.
Starring: Henry Ian Cusick, Frances O'Connor, Nigel Bennett, Richard Donat
Directed by: John Bradshaw
Release date: 2009-10-06
17.

The Hessen Affair

2.3
5.2/10

In 1945 a group of victorious American officers discover a stash of German jewels and try to fence them in New York.

Starring: Michael Bowen, Michael Bowen, Noah Segan, Lyne Renee, Will Woytowich
Directed by: Paul Breuls
Release date: 2009-01-14
18.

Under the Eightball

1.9
8.6/10

In 1951 at Fort Detrick, Maryland, construction crews built a hollow metal sphere four stories high. Inside germ weapons were to be exploded, creating mists of infectious aerosols for testing on animals....and people. Employees called it the eight ball. In their eighteen month long journey Grey and Russell travel the country in search of answers and interview top experts in the world of Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases. Under the Eight ball includes live footage, historical documents, original animation and archival military footage.

Directed by: Timothy Grey, Breanne Russell
Release date: 2009-12-16
19.

Tales from Transylvania

1.8
8.1/10

In the mountains of Transylvania, ancient beliefs in the supernatural can still be found. These beliefs are quickly dying out as the world modernizes around the tiny villages of the Carpathians.

Release date: 2009-07-15
20.

Vittorio D

0.0
6.8/10
Vittorio D
A documentary about Vittorio de Sica with clips of his films and testimonials from friends and family.
Starring: Woody Allen, Peter Bogdanovich, Maria Pia Casilio, Enzo G. Castellari, Dino De Laurentiis
Directed by: Mario Canale, Annarosa Morri
Release date: 2009-09-17

Also check Best history movies of 2008.

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