Tom Hanks, Tom Sizemore and Edward Burns star in this World War II drama about soldiers trying to rescue a paratrooper stuck behind enemy lines. Was nominated for 11 Academy Awards and earned five, including Best Director for Steven Spielberg.
AFI's 100 most inspirational films were chosen from 300 nominated films on ballots sent to 1,500 filmmakers, actors, critics and others in Hollywood.
9. Miracle On 34th Street (1947)
An adorable little Natalie Wood starred in this film about a man who claims he's the real Santa Claus. Won 3 Oscars including Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Edmund Gwenn (Kris Kringle).
The American Film Institute announced the list of inspirational films June 14 in the group's annual top-100 TV special that aired on CBS.
8. Breaking Away (1979)
Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid and Daniel Stern star in a story about an Indiana teenager who dreams of being a world class cyclist. Was nominated for four Oscars and won one for Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen.
Past AFI lists have included best comedies, movie quotes, songs and love stories.
Credit: 20th Century Fox
7. The Grapes Of Wrath (1940)
Henry Fonda and John Carradine star in this classic film about the Depression based on the book by John Steinbeck. John Ford won an Academy Award for Best Director and Jane Darwell won Best Actress in a Supporting role. It was nominated for an additional six Oscars.
With the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the war in Iraq and the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, AFI wanted to examine films that offer hope.
6. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
Steven Spielberg directed this heartwarming film about the friendship between a little boy and a lost alien being who just wants to go home. Audiences fell in love with a pint-sized Drew Barrymore as Gertie and a wide-eyed Henry Thomas as Elliott. Nominated for nine Oscars and won four.
Credit: Universal Pictures
5. Mr. Smith Goes To Washington (1939)
Frank Capra directs James Stewart and Jean Arthur in this comedy about a naive man who fills a vacant seat in the U.S. Senate and stands up to the corruption he finds there. Was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, but the only win was for Best Writing, Original Story.
Sidney Poitier and Gary Cooper appeared in films on the list five times each, more than any other actor.
4. Rocky (1976)
Sylvester Stallone plays a down-on-his-luck boxer who gets a shot at the big time. Won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Film Editing and was nominated for an additional seven awards.
The newest films on the list were two from 2004, "Hotel Rwanda" (No. 90) and "Ray" (No. 99).
3. Schindler's List (1993)
Liam Neeson stars in the true story about Oskar Schindler, who managed to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death at the hands of the Nazis. The film was nominated for 12 Academy Awards and earned seven including Best Picture and Best Director for Steven Spielberg.
With five films, Spielberg led directors in the top 100, including "The Color Purple" (No. 51) and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (No. 58).
Credit: UNIVERSAL PICTURES
2. To Kill A Mockingbird (1962)
Gregory Peck stars as a lawyer in this film about racial strife in the Deep South during the 1930s. Based on the novel by Harper Lee, the film won three Oscars including a Best Actor award for Gregory Peck. It was nominated for an additional five awards.
The oldest movie on the list was Charles Chaplin's 1931 silent film "City Lights" (No. 33).
1. It's A Wonderful Life (1946)
The team of director Frank Capra and actor Jimmy Stewart appear on the list once again in this heartwarming holiday classic about an angel who shows a frustrated man what the world around him would have been like if he never existed. Was nominated for five Oscars.
Capra had four films in the top 100, his others being "Meet John Doe" (No. 49) and "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town" (No. 83).