There’s something about firefighters that just makes us all feel warm and fuzzy inside. Maybe it’s the thought of them rushing into a burning building to save someone or the camaraderie between firefighters that is so evident in movies.
Whatever it is, we can’t get enough of firefighter movies! This piece will discuss our picks for the 14 best firefighter movies of all time.
From dramas to comedies, these films will surely entertain and educate you on the brave men and women who risk their lives to keep us safe every day. So grab some popcorn and get ready for an exciting ride!
1. Backdraft (1991)
English 2h 17m IMDb
Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Robert De Niro
Directed by Ron Howard, this action-packed thriller follows the lives of two brothers who are firefighters in Chicago. The film features an all-star cast including Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, and Robert De Niro. Backdraft is a suspenseful and edge-of-your-seat movie that will have you on the edge of your seat.
If you’re looking for a heart-pounding, action-packed movie about firefighters, then Backdraft is the perfect film. With an all-star cast and a suspenseful plot, this movie will keep you entertained from beginning to end. Backdraft is available on Amazon Prime Video.
2. Playing With Fire (2019)
English 1h 36m IMDb
Director: Andy Fickman
Stars: John Cena, Keegan-Michael Key, John Leguizamo
Playing with Fire is an action comedy movie directed and produced by Andy Fickman and written by Matt Lieberman and Dan Ewen, released in 2019. The movie features Keegan-Michael Key, Tyler Mane, John Cena, John Leguizamo, Brianna Hildebrand, Judy Greer, and Dennis Haysbert.
The plot follows a team of wildfire fighters who must rescue three children from a burning forest fire. The film was released in the U.S. on November 8, 2019, by Paramount Pictures. Playing with Fire received mixed reviews from critics and grossed $118 million worldwide.
3. Only the Brave (2017)
English 2h 14m IMDb
Director: Joseph Kosinski
Stars: Josh Brolin, Miles Teller, Jeff Bridges
Only the Brave is a 2017 American biographical drama film inspired by a true story featuring a firefighting team called the Granite Mountain Hotshots created in Prescott, Arizona, in 2002.
The film starred Miles Teller, Josh Brolin, Jeff Bridges, and Jennifer Connelly and was directed by Joseph Kosinski. Only the Brave was released in the U.S. on October 20, 2017.
The film tells the story of Brendan McDonough (played by Josh Brolin), a former drug addict who turns his life around and becomes a member of the Granite Mountain Hotshots.
The team is assigned to fight a wildfire in Yarnell, Arizona, which quickly spirals out of control. Brendan and his fellow firefighters are forced to make a decision that will change their lives forever.
Only the Brave is an emotionally powerful film that highlights the heroic efforts of the Granite Mountain Hotshots. The cast does an excellent job portraying the characters, and the film is visually stunning.
Backdraft is a 1991 action thriller directed by Ron Howard and starring Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, and Scott Glen. The film follows the activities of two Chicago firefighters as they investigate a string of suspicious fires.
As they continue their investigation, they discover that the fires are connected to a larger conspiracy. Backdraft was a box office success, grossing over $153 million worldwide. The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards, winning one for Best Visual Effects.
4. Fire! Trapped on the 37th Floor (1991)
English 1h 34m IMDb
Director: Robert Day
Stars: Lee Majors, Lisa Hartman, Peter Scolari
Fire! Trapped on the 37th Floor is a gripping tale of survival in the face of overwhelming odds. When a fire breaks out in a high-rise office building in LA, a group of people is trapped on the 37th floor with no way out.
With the flames licking at their heels, they must put their differences aside and work together if they’re going to make it out alive. Featuring an all-star cast, Fire! Trapped on the 37th Floor is an edge-of-your-seat thriller that will have you literally on the edge of your seat from beginning to end.
5. Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232 (1992)
English 1h 35m IMDb
Director: Lamont Johnson
Stars: Charlton Heston, James Coburn, Richard Thomas
On July 19, 1989, United Airlines Flight 232 crashed in a cornfield in Sioux City, Iowa, after a catastrophic engine failure. Despite the odds, 184 people out of the 296 on board survived.
This disaster is recreated in the movie Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232, which features interviews with some of the passengers and crew, as well as the first responders who worked to save lives.
While the film does not shy away from the brutal realities of the crash, it also highlights the remarkable heroism of those who stepped up in the face of adversity. In addition to telling an inspirational story, Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232 is a testament to the power of human resilience.
6. Ladder 49 (2004)
English 1h 55m IMDb
Director: Jay Russell
Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, John Travolta, Jacinda Barrett
Ladder 49 is a 2004 drama about the lives of firefighters in Baltimore. The film follows the story of Jack Morrison (played by Joaquin Phoenix), a veteran firefighter trapped in a burning building.
As he awaits rescue, Jack reflects on his life and career. Ladder 49 is an intimate look at the courage and dedication of firefighters, and it is sure to leave a lasting impression on viewers.
7. Hellfighters (1968)
English 2h 1m IMDb
Director: Andrew V. McLaglen
Stars: John Wayne, Katharine Ross, Jim Hutton
Hellfighters is a 1968 action drama film starring John Wayne and directed by Andrew V. McLaglen. The film is based on the true story of Texaco Fire Chief Red Adair and his team of firefighters hired to fight an oil well fire in Mexico in 1966.
The film features an all-star cast including Gene Kilmer, Jim Hutton, Karen Black, Paula Prentiss, and Jay C. Flippen. Hellfighters was a commercial success, grossing $26 million at the box office. It was also nominated for two Academy Awards, winning Best Visual Effects.
8. World Trade Center (2006)
English 2h 9m IMDb
Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Michael Peña, Maria Bello
World Trade Center is a 2006 movie about the September 11 attacks. The movie follows the true story of two Port Authority officers entrapped in the World Trade Center after the towers collapsed.
The film was directed by Oliver Stone and starred Michael Peña and Nicolas Cage. World Trade Center was generally well-received by critics, with many praising the performances of Cage and Peña. The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Actor (Cage) and Best Supporting Actor (Peña).
9. The Towering Inferno (1974)
English 2h 45m IMDb
Director: John Guillermin
Stars: Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, William Holden
The Towering Inferno is a 1974 action thriller directed by John Guillermin and produced by Irwin Allen. The film features an all-star cast, including Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, William Holden, Faye Dunaway, and Fred Astaire.
The story revolves around the occupants of a 118-story skyscraper trapped on the top floor by a raging fire. With the help of the building’s architect (Newman), the firefighters (led by McQueen) must find a way to rescue the people before the entire structure collapses.
The Towering Inferno was a box office smash, grossing over $100 million globally. It was also nominated for eight Academy Awards, winning one Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture.
10. 9/11 (2017)
English 1h 30m IMDb
Director: Martin Guigui
Stars: Charlie Sheen, Gina Gershon, Whoopi Goldberg
Released in 2017, 9/11 is a dramatization film composed by Stephen H. Wolivert and Patrick J. Solomon and coordinated by Martin Guigui. It stars Charlie Sheen, Whoopi Goldberg, Gina Gershon, Luis Guzmán, Olga Fonda, and Bruce Davison.
The film portrays the 9/11 attacks in 2001 from numerous perspectives. For example, those of office workers in One World Trade Center, the casualties on one of the flights, and the NYC police and fire detachments who reacted to the occasion.
The film was first released in 2016. The shooting started in Los Angeles on September 5, 2016. 9/11 was delivered on Sep 8th, 2017, by Atlas Distribution Company.
It earned $2 million in its North American opening weekend from 810 screens. 9/11 grossed $13 million in North America and $1 million in different nations for a worldwide aggregate of $14 million against its $6 million spending plan.
11. Brave Are the Fallen (2020)
English 52m IMDb
Director: Jacob Whitley
Stars: Billy Cook
Brave Are the Fallen is a recent documentary that outlines the life of a real-life firefighter- Captain Tom Wall. This film, directed by Captain Tom’s nephew, Jacob Whitley, gives viewers an intimate look at what it means to be a firefighter. Captain Tom dies in the line of duty, and this film is a way to keep his memory alive.
As firefighters are constantly running into burning buildings while everyone else is running out, they are truly brave. This documentary tells the story of one firefighter in hopes of honoring all firefighters.
12. The Tower (2012)
Korean 2h 1m IMDb
Director: Ji-hoon Kim
Stars: Kim Sang-kyung, Sol Kyung-gu, Son Ye-jin
The Tower is a 2012 disaster film directed by Kim Ji-hoon and starring Sol Kyung-gu and Song Seung-Heon. The film is set in the fictional World Trade Center Seoul and revolves around a group of people trapped in the building when it catches on fire.
With the help of a construction worker, they must find a way to escape before the fire kills them all. The Tower was a box office hit in Korea and received positive reviews from both fans and critics. Many praised the film’s suspenseful plot and impressive visuals.
13 Burn (2012)
English 1h 26m IMDb
Director: Tom Putnam, Brenna Sanchez
Stars: Donald Austin, Brendan Doogie Milewski, Craig Dougherty
Burn is a 2012 film about firefighters who work hard to save the city of Detroit that many have given up on.
The documentary follows the firefighters as they go about their thankless task of saving lives and property. Burn was well-received by critics, with many praising the film’s insights into the city of Detroit and its hard-working firefighters.
14. Firestorm (1998)
English 1h 29m IMDb
Director: Dean Semler
Stars: Howie Long, Scott Glenn, William Forsythe
Firestorm is a 1998 American disaster film about a raging wildfire that threatens to consume a small town in the Rockies. The movie stars Howie Long, Scott Glenn, and Suzy Amis.
Firestorm was directed by Dean Semler and shot on location in British Columbia. The film was released on January 10, 1997, by 20th Century Fox. Firestorm received mixed reviews from critics but was a box office success, grossing $67 million worldwide.
15. Fireproof (2008)
English 2h 2m IMDb
Director: Alex Kendrick
Stars: Kirk Cameron, Erin Bethea, Ken Bevel
Fireproof is a 2008 American Christian drama film directed by Alex Kendrick and written by Kendrick with his brother Stephen. The film stars Kirk Cameron as Caleb Holt, a firefighter who discovers the importance of God and marriage through the guidance of his father (played by Harris Malcolm).
Fireproof was produced on a budget of $500,000 and went on to gross over $33 million at the box office. The film received mixed reviews from critics but was a commercial success due to its strong message about faith and marriage.
These are the best firefighter movies that you can watch. Some of these movies are based on true stories while others are purely fiction. But all of them portray the brave men and women who risk their lives to save others. So sit back, relax, and enjoy these great films.