Top 20 Movies Based on True Stories


The cinema is a great place to unwind and take a break from real life, but sometimes a great movie is actually based on a true story. A great movie doesn’t always need high action scenes and over the top comedy. Sometimes, telling the truth is more interesting and fans love a good movie based on real life. Life can be complex and exciting, and for the movies we have listed, the true stories captivated audiences around the world.

1. Catch Me if You Can

Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks are major characters in this story based on the life of Frank Abagnale Jr.

A major con artist, Frank was successful at stealing millions of dollars, acting as a Pan Am pilot, a doctor and a legal prosecutor – all before his 19th birthday.

This story of a tricky character and his pursuer is both comical and dramatic.

DiCaprio is a convincing lead in this movie, capable of convincing everyone he comes across that he is the real deal.

Hanks spends the entire movie chasing down DiCaprio and is often one step behind the crafty Abagnale. Both characters work well together on screen, and it’s a dramatic movie with some good comedic breaks.

Abagnale is on the run, trying to recoup the losses his father sustained because he was in trouble with the IRS.

He takes off with $25 in his bank account, vowing to help his father. Abaganale writes more than $4,000,000 in bad checks and he uses the money trying to get his parents back together.

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Through the talents of FBI agent Carl Hanratty Jr, played by Hanks, the FBI is eventually able to track down Abagnale and he is tried and convicted. Abaganale receives a twelve year sentence for embezzlement, check forgery, and other charges. He is sent to a maximum security prison, where Hanratty visits him.

Hanratty shows Abagnale some counterfeit checks, and Abagnale is able to identify the counterfeiter. He serves out his sentence working for the FBI in the check fraud department, catching crooks much like himself.

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  • Jim

    “Gia” starring Angelina Jolie with an important appearance by Mila Kunis. Philly/New York/straight/gay/drugs/love/triumph/tragedy – this movie had it all.


  • Jerry Baustian

    “Ray” and “8 Mile” but not “Walk The Line”?

  • Tracy

    Silkwood, Dangerous Minds, We Are Marshall, My Left Foot, Sophie’s Choice…

  • rdh53

    I was surprised “Night of the Living Dead” didn’t make the list of true story movies.

    • Arya Hasheminasab

      That was sarcasme right?

  • Sumeet Thakur

    i am surprised where is “Persuit of happiness” .

  • giorgakis

    Where is Serpico? Or Mob Squad

  • Imaad Shahrukh

    The list should also include Frost/Nixon, Malcolm X, Nixon, Gandhi, Valkyrie and Che.

  • Madison Chaperon

    Yeah, I agree, why wasn’t the ‘Night of the Living Dead’ make the true stories list.

  • Shubham Ojha

    “The Imitation Game ” is the best case of a true story movies, Alan Turing’s contribution deserve enough to make its movie on the top of the list.

  • Mahen Nowzadick

    Ask for Movies based on true stories, shows ALL American stories…

  • Alpha

    Poor choice of movies. Where’s Into The Wild, Letters from Iwo Jiwa, The Pursuit of Happyness, The Immitation Game etc.?