As we mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day on June 6th, 2019, we thought we’d revisit our list of the best World War 2 movies, series, and documentaries currently streaming on Netflix.
We’ve purposely left out any highly dramatized World War II movies and TV series. Instead, we’ve tried focusing on truthful recreations of the Second World War.
Note: all of these titles are currently streaming on Netflix US as of the time of publishing. Other regions availability may vary.
World War II in Colour (TV Series)
If you only watch one title on this list and want the quintessential World War 2 experience on Netflix, this is it.
The documentary series consisting of 13 episodes covers the wide-ranging conflicts that made up the second World War. It’s excellently produced with some olden footage recolored for the modern day.
Episode 7 in particular covers D-Day.
The War: A Ken Burns Film (TV Series)
Ken Burns and PBS published what many consider to be the biggest and definitive American look at the second World War. It begins in 1941 with the Pearl Harbor attacks.
The series features Ken Burns signature style and remains a gut-punching look back at the World War that changed the world.
Five Came Back (Limited Series) Netflix Original
This recent limited series sees new movie directors look back over the footage recovered from World War 2 from soldiers who were specifically drafted to document the second World War 2.
It features some fascinating footage but is extremely somber. Not one to miss.
Schindler’s List (1993)
Winner of 7 Oscars and perhaps Steven Spielberg’s finest work comes the story of Oskar Schindler. Schindler carried out a valiant effort by a business owner to help protect his predominantly Jewish workforce.
Schindler’s List features in our top 50 movies on Netflix list too.
This is a made for TV docu-drama that tells the story of the D-Day landings. The landings were the real entry of the US into the war. D-Day was the turning point of the war and has been examined by the movie from top to bottom, from side to side and from inside to out.
Given this, that is is room for yet another angle is surprising. Nevertheless, this is a strong delivery of the story and is worthy of a watch.
The Imitation Game (2014)
This movie set back in World War 2 follows the mathematician of Alan Turning and his attempts and eventual success of cracking the German Enigma code.
Unlike most titles on this list, it doesn’t cover the front-line but does set out to detail some of the efforts back home in the war.
The movie scored an Oscar and features the superb performance by Benedict Cumberbatch.
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (2008)
A deeply moving movie about the friendship between two young boys through the wire of a Holocaust concentration camp, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is an examination of the devastating effect of war on two innocents.
The Holocaust is one of the indictments of the Germans during this desperate period of their history – “We were only following orders” – but that it should have been imposed on young children who knew nothing of the concept is beyond comprehension.
Medal of Honor (Season 1) Netflix Original
Although this series covers multiple conflicts over several decades the first episode looks at World War 2. Specifically, the hour-long episode covers the heroics of Sylvester Antolak. He led a legendary charge while serving in Italy in 1944.
Wartime Portraits (TV Series)
This part-animated, part-archival TV series sees the retelling of five individual stories of some of World War II’s most colorful heroes. It features expert interviews, and archival footage as well as stunning animated segments recrafting true stories.
Churchill’s Secret Agents: The New Recruits (TV Series) Netflix Original
The first and only reality show on this list released last year on Netflix sees a group of contestants put through rigorous training that World War 2 spy veterans would’ve been put through.
The five-episode series is a chilling look at some of the struggles that some veterans would’ve to have to face while training. The students in the series have to tackle survival training, mock interrogations and learning to send and intercept secret messages.