The Top 10 Sniper Movies of All Time

Clint Eastwood's highly anticipated film "American Sniper"...

This story was originally published in 2014

Based on the late Chris Kyle's best-selling book is getting rave reviews. So we thought we'd rank ten of the best...

10.JACK REACHER (2013)

Despite the presence of Tom Cruise, "Jack Reacher" is a pretty good movie. The story revolves around a deranged sniper who guns down a bunch of people in broad daylight for no apparent reason--(Or does he? Cue the dramatic music)--and reaches out to Jack Reacher (Cruise) for help after he is apprehended. The plot is clean and simple, the action sequences are damn good, and it co-stars the lovely Rosamund Pike *sigh* of "Gone Girl" (on whom I have a bit of a crush, if you can’t tell). Alas, there is that matter of the omnipresent Cruise, who apparently seemed to think his role required little more than a cocky smile and the assistance of good stuntman. But don't let that stop you from enjoying this one.

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9.SAVING PRIVATE RYAN (1998)

One of the great war movies, Ryan would have ranked higher on our list if it had featured a little more of Private Jackson, the sniper played by Barry Pepper who smites Germans with his trusty Springfield 1903A4. Sure, the gun seems to have a different scope on it every other scene. And sure, Pepper (a lefty) is constantly struggling with the action, which was designed for a right-handed shooter. But the final battle scene of this movie is epic, and the best 60 seconds come in this clip (above).

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6.Jarhead (2005)

Based on the best-selling book written by former Marine Anthony Swofford, "Jarhead" takes viewers on a hell of a ride. The film depicts Swofford, a Camus-reading young Marine, as he is shipped off to the Persian Gulf after the outbreak of the Gulf War. Some have called the flick the "Full Metal Jacket" of the 90s, and we'd have to agree. Directed by the talented Sam Mendes ("American Beauty," "Sky Fall"), "Jarhead" carefully and colorfully depicts the strain and toll of deployment and combat. Though dark at times, because Mendes treats the subject matter seriously, the film is more morally ambiguous than anti-war.

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3.THE JACKAL (1997)

A perennially underrated movie, "The Jackal" is a surprisingly entertaining film that entertains from start to finish. Based on the 1971 novel penned by English writer Frederick Forsyth, the film would have landed even higher on our list if Richard Gere had pulled off his role (and that Irish accent) as protagonist Declan Mulqueen, an ex IRA sniper released from a federal penitentiary to assist federal agents in their hunt for a deadly assassin (Bruce Willis) targeting a high-ranking government official. The movie has a tight script and contains some great supporting performances—particularly Sidney Poiters as FBI man Carter Preston and Diane Venora as Russian Maj. Valentina Koslova—but it’s Willis that makes this film great, as he seamlessly captures the phantom-like nature of the killer. Willis’ Jackal is at different seductive, cool, darkly funny, and insidiously chilling. Need an example? Have a look at this scene as he calmly shoots to pieces an oily, pre-famous Jack Black.

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2.LONE SURVIVOR (2013)

Based on Marcus Luttrell's real life story of survival during the ill-fated Operation Redwing, "Lone Survivor" is two hours of adrenaline pumping cinema. Actor-turned writer/director Peter Berg (aka the guy from "Aspen Extreme" and "The Great White Hype") managed to not turn this incredible story of honor, heroism and sacrifice into a steaming pile of Hollywood schlock. And don't just take it from us. Speaking to our own Ray "Cash" Care in a recent interview, Luttrell said Berg "did a great job of telling the story," adding that the actors "put all the Hollywood bullshit aside." The result is a riveting film unmatched by anything we've seen in recent years.

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1.ENEMY AT THE GATES (2001)

Based on the real-life exploits of Vasily Grigoryevich Zaytsev, a Red Army sniper whose kill tally at the Battle of Stalingrad is said to have eclipsed two hundred,"Enemy at the Gates" is the godfather of sniper movies. Directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud ("Seven Years in Tibet," "The Name of the Rose"), the film depicts a grim battle to the death between two insidious regimes (Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union) among the rubble of the Red city on Volga River. The key players are Zaytsev (Jude Law) and Major König, a German sniper (played brilliantly by Ed Harris) called to Stalingrad to dispatch young Zaytsev, who's become a Russian hero for his knack for plinking off German officers trying to capture the city. It doesn't get any better than this. But we'll soon find out how "American Sniper" measures up to "Enemy of the Gates" and co.

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