“War is sweet to those who have no experience of it”. That little chestnut was said by Greek poet Pindar, obviously he had never played the Total War games or been an avid LARP fan. Another quote on the subject that seems to spring up in every other Hollywood movie is “War is Hell” said by every soldier that ever fought in a war (excluding those with sociopath like tendencies). So we all know that war is pretty bad, there can be no good wars, there are no winners, only losers…But seeing as I watch too many movies and read far too much about various wars, why not rank them. Not by their cause or death count, but on individual factors that make them stand out just a little more than your average border clash or ethnic cleansing.
5. Vietnam war – Pretty generic choice, but it shouldn’t be left out for this reason. As it goes this was a pretty fucked up and unpopular war. There was no clear victor, as the American essentially failed there unclear objectives and the Vietnamese lost millions due to the conflict. However it does have its saving graces. A killer soundtrack can go a long way, we all know the Vietnam set list, The stones, Creedence Clearwater, Smokey Robinson and Bob Dylan. Oh and the movies made about it are awesome too. Who can forget Full Metal Jacket and Platoon, not to mention Apocalypse Now.
4.Star Wars Saga – This really had to come up, droids, clones and Jedi carving shit up left right and centre. Its safe to say, the Star wars clone wars/civil war are the coolest wars ever put on screen. You just knew where you stood, Empire bad, rebels good. However the battle for the galaxy lost major points when the grand finale was a fight in some woods somewhere with a bunch of highly trained storm troopers with piss poor aiming against a bunch of teddy bear like Ewoks…Oh and the Ewoks won. Oh George George George.
3. The battle for Middle Earth – The first swords and sorcery entry to the list. Huge armies battling it out for the fate of Middle Earth, bad-ass hero’s going through orcs like a knife through butter. Yep, you can’t really knock the Lord of the Rings when it came to the war itself. Throw in a few trolls, fell beasts and the coolest cavalry charge ever! You have a near perfect war. Even better when you got the good guys dicing up monsters and not other humans, there is no grey area here, your either a good guy or a horribly deformed freak made in a pit somewhere.
2. World War 2 – This truly is the most epic war ever fought, and what’s more you could kind of justify it. You had the Nazis one side that were burning through Europe, Africa and the later the east, killing and essentially enslaving all those that put up resistance. They were the real life evil empire. On the other side you had the Allies that were trying to stop this. Fought on every arena that can be fought on, such as air, sea, snow, desert, and urban. They would have fought in space if they had the technology. Although it is surely the darkest chapter in human history, the Nazis were defeated, and freedom lasted for a little longer in most territories that the war touched… But there is always another war around the corner to see to the end of that.
1. World War Z – How could anything top WW2? A war…with Zombies. To those that haven’t read Max Brooks novels on the undead, stop reading this article, go to your local book shop and buy, borrow or steal this fantastic book (and then come back and finish this article). A war that affects every single country, that turns social and political order on its head, it even changes the geo-political outline of our planet. I can’t stress the detail and intelligence this book is written with. When the Undead rise, do we stand a chance, if so what do we have to give up to achieve a victory over something that cant really be stopped. Oh and its being made into a film starring Brad Pitt, so next year this may become an even cooler war.
Honorable mentions – The Machine war (The Matrix/Animatrix). The Machine War (The Terminator films). The Crusades. The war for Gotham’s soul (Joker/Batman).