Top 5 Movies to Celebrate This 4th of July

Who can count on clear weather for picnics and fireworks everywhere in the world where an American is celebrating the Fourth of July? Somewhere it has got to be dark and rainy. If you have to spend your holiday inside with popcorn and a movie, here is an eclectic list of the top five top films for passing the time. These movies offer something for all red-blooded patriots of every size, shape, age, and interest. Each story reminds us that America is not just an exceptional nation, but that our great land is filled with exceptional people.

5. Lt. Dan Band: For the Common Good (2011)

Few Americans make us prouder to be an American than actor Gary Sinise. Gary dedicates all his free time to volunteer work on behalf of the military, veterans, first responders and their families. This film tells the story of Gary's band that tours the world performing benefit concerts. The story is inspiring—and the music is pretty awesome.

4. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

James Cagney is most known for being the best gangster in black and white movies. But in this film, he plays the song-and-dance man George M. Cohan. Over his lifetime, Cohan produced more than 50 Broadway musicals, but he is most remembered now for his patriotic songs, including the inspiring "Over There."

3. Patriot Games (1992)

Back when Jack Ryan was a fresh character on the silver screen, Harrison Ford delivered his best performance as the cerebral super-spy who could crack heads when necessary. In this adaption of an early Tom Clancy novel, Jack saves British royalty from assassination by rogue IRA terrorists. It makes you proud to be an American, seeing a patriot risking his life to defend a descendant of King George. Really shows that America does not hold a grudge.

2. 1776 (1972)

Hamilton did not invent the Founding Fathers on Broadway. Based on the stage musical, William Daniels and John Collin led the cast in singing and dancing their way through the writing of the Declaration of Independence.

1. Independence Day (1996)

Even after two decades and a dreadful sequel, it is hard not to get pumped up when Bill Pullman makes his Fourth of July speech before leading the world in a counterattack against an invading alien race. Some may be put off by an American president globalizing Independence Day—but hey, in the end, it is a good old American-made missile that brings down the mothership.

If these movies are not enough, here is another list of entertaining films about inspiring Americans to help you celebrate the day that America was made.