Bam Bam’s TV Show and Movie List



By Bam Bam

Here’s a list of my favorite survival/post-apocalyptic TV shows and movies. Watching TV shows and movies is a way to have fun and perhaps gain a few tips. Most importantly, such shows can help broach the topic of survivalism to friends and family members who think we’re nuts. They present us with hypothetical scenarios that can stimulate discussion and make us aware of possibilities that we had not already contemplated.

The list below is in no particular order. They are all good shows and movies. I couldn’t rank them in order of excellence. In creating this list I did learn that I really like post-apocalyptic shows. I am interested in how others visualize the end of the world.

Two TV shows that didn’t make the list are National Geographic’s Doomsday Preppers and NBC’s Revolution. I have watched a few episodes of these shows but they are just so dumb.

Another caveat—I didn’t include a list of documentaries. I realized that almost all the documentaries I liked were about the flu—go figure. I felt my list wasn’t wide enough in scope to be representative. Perhaps you guys can help me here.

Please read through the list and comment below. What are your favorite prepper-related TV shows? What are your favorite movies? I would love to hear your recommendations.

TV SHOWS

Falling Skies

This show premiered on TNT June 19, 2011 and is currently in its fourth season. It is a post-apocalyptic, science fiction drama in which a group of civilians and fighters must survive and rebuild after a worldwide alien attack.

Survivors

This is a British science fiction show that premiered on BBC in 2008. It is another post-apocalyptic, science fiction drama in which a group survives a particularly virulent strain of the flu that has killed off most of the human race. The series was cancelled after two seasons due to poor viewership.

Walking Dead

This is another post-apocalyptic, science fiction TV show. It premiered on AMC October 31, 2010 and is currently in its fourth season. The show depicts a group that has survived in a world where a virus has turned the majority of humans into zombies.

Jericho

This is yet another post-apocalyptic, science fiction drama that depicts residents of Jericho, Kansas in the aftermath of a nuclear attack. The show premiered on CBS September 20, 2006 and was cancelled after four seasons due to poor viewership.

Out of the Wild: The Alaska Experiment

This is a reality TV series that premiered on Discovery Channel. There are four seasons. “Out of the Wild: The Alaska Experiment” is the second season, which premiered April 14, 2009. The series depicts a group of nine ordinary people who have been dropped in Alaska, handed a map, a compass and backpack equipped with everything they would need to survive. They are asked to make the trek out of the wild.

The Colony

This is a reality TV show that premiered on Discovery Channel July 21, 2009. The show places a group of ten strangers in a simulated survival situation in the wake of a global catastrophe. The second season was filmed in Chalmette, Louisiana amid the destruction of Hurricane Katrina. The show follows a group in a simulated post-apocalyptic environment in which an unknown viral outbreak has decimated the population.

MOVIES

The Flu

This is a Korean movie released August 15, 2013. It depicts the most severe influenza outbreak (H7N9) the world has ever seen. If you want to know what those FEMA camps are all about, watch this movie. The acting and storyline are both exceptional. The plots in this movie twist and turn, often in unexpected ways. This is a must see for anyone concerned about a potential pandemic. IMO, this movie makes Contagion look like a made for TV movie.

Defiance

This 2008 WWII film depicts the lives of three freedom fighters (and brothers). The trio flees into the woods after the Nazi occupation of Belarus where they are called upon to protect nearly one thousand of Jewish non-combatants from the Nazis. The film stars bad-ass James Bond, Daniel Craig.

The Road

The road is a 2009 film you will likely watch only once. It depicts the desperate lives of a father-son combo who are forced to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. Warning: This film is graphic and is inappropriate for children.

Book of Eli

The Book of Eli is a 2010 film that depicts the life of a nomad 30 years after a nuclear apocalypse. The film all the markings of Hollywood; it makes the list because of its focus on the Bible.

The Day After

This film aired on television in 1983. I was a kid and this was the height of the Cold War. The film scared the hell out of me. It depicts the lives of ordinary people in Lawrence, Kansas in the aftermath of a nuclear war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact.

The Snow Walkers

This film may get displaced from my favorites list by some of your suggestions. It is a 2003 Canadian adventure film staring Barry Pepper. The film is about a small airplane pilot who crashes in the Alaskan wilderness with an Eskimo woman who has TB. I like this film because of the respect it demonstrates for native survival techniques.

Deep Impact

This is a 1998 science fiction disaster film that depicts the world’s attempt to prepare for a 7-mile wide comet projected to hit Earth. This movie is totally Hollywood but it is entertaining.

Into the Wild

This is a coming of age 2007 movie about a young man that rejects the materialism of the modern world and escapes to the wilderness of Alaska. This is a beautifully filmed, moving story of survival and death. This film is untrammeled by the commercialization of Hollywood.

Terminator

Okay, you know this had to make the list. The 1984 film depicts a post-apocalyptic world that has been taken over by artificially intelligent machines called terminators. Thus far in the series there are four movies: (1) Terminator, (2) Terminator 2: Judgment Day, (3) Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and (4) Terminator Salvation.

The Way Back

This is a WWII era movie about a group of prisoners who escape a Siberian Gulag camp. The film depicts their grueling trek across the Himalayas in route to India.

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Comments

  1. “The Pianist” (2003) is another excellent movie, about the real live experience of Jewish pianist/composer Wladyslaw Szpilman after the Nazi occupation of Poland. His story was the exception, of course, in that he survived.

    A deal breaker for many will be the director: Roman Polanski.

    “Enemy at the Gates” (2001) is another top notch WWII story about two snipers, one Russian, one German, during the 900 day siege Stalingrad by the Nazis. It gives some small idea of what life was like for those in the ruins.

    • Penrod,

      I love both those movies. There’s a new WWII movie out called The Book Thief. This is one of the most intelligent (i.e. non Hollywood) movies I’ve seen in years.

  2. PS: Good list, Bam, Bam. Thanks!

    Another fine movie: “All Is Lost” (2013) with Robert Redford as the sole person on a small sailboat which is severely damaged by a drifting shipping container. Zero dialog, and riveting. I think this is one of the best movies Hollywood has made in a long time.

    Some will have trouble dealing with lack of dialog over 145 minutes, but his character is all alone, dealing with unending challenges for the eight days after the accident.

  3. This was great! Thank-you for putting this together. I would love to see a book list as well.

    • I have read several books and could give you a quick 1-3 scale on them.

      Alas Babylon-3
      One Second After-3
      Earth Abides-1
      Lucifer’s Hammer-2
      The Jakarta Pandemic-2
      patriots-2
      Surviving Home-2
      Going Home-2
      The Stand-3
      The Road-2
      If anyone else would like to add to this list it would really help me decide what to read next

      Thank you!

      • Another good post-nuclear war book is War Day by Whitley Strieber and James Kunetka. It’s about two journalists roaming the country some years after a ‘limited’ nuclear war. It is written in an affectless tone, as if by people whose emotions have been burned out of them.

        I re-read Alas, Babylon and One Second After a couple months ago and they both hold up very well. Alas has some technical inaccuracies about nuclear weapons (jewelry which has been exposed to radiation does not itself become radioactive) but then it was written in the 1950s. And that bit isn’t a big part of the book. It is one of the very earliest post-nuclear war novels, and I think still one of the best.

        We talked about it a few months ago, but the Twilight Zone episode “The Shelter” is worth checking out on YouTube. Its about a family going into their fallout shelter when an attack warning is sounded, and the neighbors’ reactions.

        You can see it here:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zm6cMdePtMA

        • Oh, I remember watching this as a kid–when the dad pulls a shotgun on the neighbors. That left an impression on me. My dad was in the Navy at the time and he was stationed at BANGOR in Puget Sound.

      • I am going to check out these books. Thanks for the list.

      • Son of Liberty says:

        I really like the book “DISCOVERY TO CATASTROPHE” by Wood. It deals with the second coming of Christ, and has many good ideas on prepping, as well as an interesting twist at the end.

        Blessings,

      • Rider of Rohan says:

        Lights Out would be #1 on my reading list followed by One Second After. Alas, Babylon is dated, though I enjoyed it a lot when I read it back in the 1970s, I believe. The Road was the worst book I’ve ever read, period. There, I said it.

        • k. fields says:

          Do you like McCarthy’s other books or is it his style of writing that you don’t like?

          • Rider of Rohan says:

            After reading The Road, couldn’t make myself read anything else he had written. It wasn’t the style so much as the storyline.

        • I found both the book and the movie “The Road” quite interesting. I loved the “Book of Eli” so much I asked one of my daughters to gift it to me.
          “The Walking Dead” is unprobable but I still enjoy watching it.

  4. I guess I need to find a local video store – I think I’ve maybe seen 2 or 3 of those.

    There was one show I used to like, and it seems to have been cancelled, but it was about a group of ‘survivor types’ who went through a time portal back into the distant past, who were trying to survive and correct the mistakes that society made BEFORE society made them.

    No, I don’t recall what it was called and it seems to have been gone for a couple years.

  5. I found an older (1983) movie on tv the other night called The Survivors with Walter Matthau and Robin Williams. Not a serious survival movie at all, but a comedy, which is a nice change once in a while.

    • Tactical G-Ma says:

      I always liked The Day After (1983) w/ Jason Robards.

      But where can I get a copy of The Flu and are all sub-titled?

      • Tactical G-Ma,

        We watched it in Korean. I pirated it.

        • k. fields says:

          “I pirated it.”
          Bad, bad, bad, bad – now go write another helpful article to make up for it.

          • Aarggggg!

            I do wonder whether folks just don’t know how to pirate or if they just don’t condone such behavior. I like free.

            • k. fields says:

              Thou shalt not ….
              Yea, it’s probable most people don’t know how to pirate although you’ve explained it re: music here before.
              I wish people wouldn’t do it, but everybody feels differently about what should be seen as private property and what should be openly shared without recompense.

      • It was on Amazon, but a bit expensive.

  6. >Defiance: Excellent movie really enjoyed it especially because it is true.
    >Book of Eli: Another go movie. I still have not total figured it out and much of it is on the outside edge of believability but still a good flick.
    >The Day After: This movie stars Jason Robards and co-stars John Lithgow. This film originally aired as a TV movie and was intended to show the insanity of the MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction) concept of nuclear deterrence. I saw this movie originally when I was 11 or twelve (around 1984 or 85) scared the hell out of me then and still makes me nervous.
    >Into the Wild: I hated this movie the guy was a complete moron and he got what he deserved.

    Ken

    • Richard J Medicus says:

      With the Book of Eli keep in mind that ALL of his actions are guided by the hand of God.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Best survival movie line ever was in the Book of Eli:

      “We are now fighting and killing each other over the things we used to throw away”.

      There is some deep truth in that statement if we were ever to suffer a SHTF event.

  7. Bam Bam,

    I actually ordered The Snow Walkers and Into the Wild just now from Amazon (MD’s link) after watching the trailers.

    Thanks – these will be fun to watch with DH.

  8. Tactical G-Ma says:

    Oh, and good list Bam Bam!

  9. I would differ with saying Revolution is dumb. This is what will happen
    as groups form and try to take over. Are we under the false impression
    that there will be huge groups of good old boys doing the take over
    with all our good will first and foremost in their agenda?

    We are primates with followers and leaders from day one of “PEOPLE
    ON THIS EARTH” We will always be so-DNA. So this show is about just that. Groups taking over for different reasons and goals. How
    they handle their agenda, who suffers and who gains by what.
    I think we need to see this so we never think we are safe from humans
    and their good and bad ideas.

    We are not and never will be safe. We are humans the ugliest most complicated, destructive primate ever.
    Watch the show you will sharpen your people skills. Forget the Nanos
    although they maybe in a lab some where too.
    The list is excellent other wise-Hollywood is trying to teach to survive.
    We just need to pay attention.

    • SoCalPrepper says:

      I think where they’ve recently gone with the “tech” / “nanites” part of it is a little out there – but the rest of it? Not silly at all. I’m sure there will be a lot of factions vying for control, and it could very well go down just the way it is in the show.

    • Bebe,

      Oh, I like the general concept for the show. It was just too dumb for me to watch a teenager boss around a hardened military leader.

  10. Good list, I can always learn something from watching,,, even if it’s what NOT to do.
    Walking Dead is one of my favorites, you just have to look past the zombie aspect and see them as a group of people trying to survive when SHTF.
    I haven’t seen the others but someone else mentioned Falling Skies and I have been looking for the seasons on DVD,, I’ll have to look harder.

    • That’s funny. I don’t ‘believe’ in zombies, but told my kids that ‘the zombies’ will be crazed starving people – only out for themselves.

  11. Here’s a few I like in addition the list above:
    The Postman
    20 Years After
    A Boy & His Dog
    Shackleton
    Jeremiah Johnson
    The Mountain Men
    The Quiet Earth

    If you’re going to have Deep Impact ya gotta have Armageddon, Dante’s Peak and Twister. Maybe even Volcano

    And for fun as well as kid friendly: Swiss Family Robinson and White Fang.

    To learn about loss and the making of hard choices: Old Yeller
    On making friends and influencing people: The Outlaw Josey Wales ;)

    And just because it’s silly: Night Of The Comet. Who can forget the classic line “Daddy would have gotten us UZI’s”

    TV shows
    Gilligans Island – After all The Professor could build anything from two coconut shells and a piece of bamboo….lol.
    MacGyver – Swiss army knife for the win!

    • I thought David Brin’s book ‘The Postman’ was excellent, and that the Kevin Costner movie made from it was absolutely awful. If you’ve seen the movie and disliked it, you might like the book a lot.

      • I agree, the book was MUCH better. I think that anyone would have been better than Kevin Costner….can you say “Waterworld” or “Robin Hood” without cringing?

      • I have the book as well as the movie. Books are always better than film adaptations. Never seen a film adaptation that came even close to the book version. Case in point: The Road. The film is a pale imitation and don’t get me started on The Stand mini-series.

        For me the star of Waterworld was the mounted quad 50 cal…..lol. It was worth the rest of the movie just for those few seconds.

    • What about, (wait for it!) DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS! First movie I ever saw that left me shaken. (I was about 12) I saw it years later when I got a VHS player and showed it to my kids as one of the best movies of all time. They were not impressed. I was disgusted at how amateurish it was when I realized everyone had an English accent. The next movie I chose for the family was an end of the world thriller produced in Japan. I can’t remember the name of the movie but the VHS sleeve promised an exciting end of TWAWKI movie with special effects to rival the real thing, complete with rocket launches and end of the world scenarios. It was subtitled in English. If any of you are familiar with the Buck Rogers type movie technology, you will know exactly what I watched. This was the only movie I ever requested a credit for because it was so bad! I did not chose a movie for the family a long time after that one. Having admitted to all of this, I do remember a great made for TV movie shown over 3 weeks that I watched many years ago titled world War III. This was a great Movie. The plot involved National Guard troops on a 2 week exercise in Alaska that had to defend their base from an invading Russian force during the cold war. They utilized a tactic from a bygone era that allowed themselves to shoot only what was in their immediate field of vision. This was accomplished by laying in a prone position with their weapons inside multiple corrugated steel culverts that had been angled to provide a 235 degree field of vision. We won. Great movie!

    • Tommy,

      This is a good list. I found these movies online for free.

      20 Years After
      Jeremiah Johnson
      The Mountain Men
      The Quiet Earth

      I couldn’t find Shackleton but I will look a bit more. I’ve seen the other two movies.

  12. SoCalPrepper says:

    Agree with everyone listing Stephen King’s “The Stand,” the book has a lot of interesting survival considerations.

    No one listed the “Resident Evil” series? Maybe a little sci-fi, but the basic idea: virus escapes government experiment lab and pandemic ensues – isn’t so out there. In the same vein, “Oblivion,” “Elysium,” “Escape from NY / Escape from LA,” and the book version of “The Running Man.” And Thunderdome!!

    And we can’t forget WALL-E … kid friendly!

    Les Stroud’s Survivorman series – you likely won’t be dropped in the woods with nothing but a knife, but he talks about really good outdoor survival principles.

    This is young adult fiction, but I just finished up reading Marie Lu’s “Legend” series, and before that Veronica Roth’s “Divergent” series. Both were really good, both deal with what might happen through science or natural disaster changing everything. YA fiction, too, so a quick read. The Hunger Games / Suzanne Collins was great too, if you haven’t picked that up yet.

    Ok, I’ll stop. As you can probably tell…I read a LOT.

    • Somebody has uploaded the 6 hour 1994 TV version of “The Stand” (7.3 /10 on IMDB; with Gary Sinise and Molly Ringwald etc.) to YouTube:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBbQ3k9I24U
      I believe it can also be found on Netflix. Also, I second the motion for “The Pianist” (2002) — one thing Polanski has going for him is that he’s Polish. 3 Oscars.

    • I HATE Stephen King!

      I read the Dark Tower series, and when he killed off the little talking dog Oy, that was it for me. I’d execute him publicly – without the benefit of blindfold or cigarette.

      And, calling me crazy would just put you in good company – I take it as a compliment these days.

      • Rider of Rohan says:

        Hahaha…..Michele! I had to pick myself up off the floor.

      • SoCalPrepper says:

        That’s why he’s so good…the unfailing ability to make you go… “are you KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW! I waited 20 years for you to kill OY!!”

        I read the first book in 6th grade. I read the last book during my first year of law school. It’s kind of been the “soundtrack” to most of my life, and there is something about that particular story that has just….resonated with me. I read the entire thing through at least once a year.

    • k. fields says:

      SoCalPrepper,
      Pick up a copy of How I Live Now (2005) by Meg Rosoff if you’re looking for kid friendly books of this type.

  13. Mountain girl says:

    There’s another Out of the Wild where the people are dropped in Venezuela. It’s not as good as the Alaskan one but I still enjoyed it. There was another Discovery show that I thought was interesting but I cannot for the life of me remember the name. It was a reality show where the people were stuck in a warehouse in LA after an apocalyptic disaster and I thought it was plausible in that many people will have to survive in urban areas and that the people weren’t “survivor types” and had to work together. There were interesting scenarios such as one of the members going missing and what should be done and a small group that included children asking for shelter, etc.

    • Suburban Housewife says:

      Hey, yeah – I saw an episode or two of that and kind of liked it. then it just kind of disappeared or I forgot about it or something. Can anybody remember the name of that show?

      • Frugalmom3 says:

        My husband and I both enjoyed those shows on Netflix. I think I could handle Venezuala but Alaska would be tough…. Those poor souls were sleeping in sub zero temps in shanties. I guess if I had to I would but not for the heck of it.

    • That was The Colony. I think there were two seasons. They made soap in one of the episodes. I thought that was pretty cool. They didn’t have a lye calculator and so had to work out all the weights on paper.

    • That was the 1st season of the Colony,where they were in an abandoned warehouse in LA not far from the river.

  14. Mountain girl says:

    And what about Mad Max?

  15. mindyinds says:

    What about Red Dawn, the original, not the one made recently.

    • Wolverines baby, WOLVERINES!

    • Really good movie. The Soviet Union denounced it vehemently.

      It was one of those low budget movies, made by a true believer, which show that big budgets are not needed. It works. Lots of very early performances by young actors who went on to be stars, too.

    • I think there are some lessons to be learned from the new one as well. I like how they showed them observing the actions and reactions of the occupiers to form plans before they just attacked.

  16. There are 3 books that I never really see mentioned here that I absolutely loved. They are Life As We Knew It, The Dead and The Gone and The World We Live In. All were written by Susan Beth Pfeffer. These books take you through a meteor knocking the moon closer to Earth. But it looks at things through a adolescents point of view. These are inexpensive and available in books or audio. The kids and I listened and we all loved them. I thought that the happenings were very well thought out. And it gave my younger kids and I something to talk about how and why we store things and why we don’t go around telling everyone!

    • Thanks, sarona. I just ordered the Kindle of the first one.

      This “Buy Now with 1-Click” feature is really dangerous…

    • Ms. Albatross says:

      Loved the Susan Beth Pfeffer series as well. (Also known as The Last Survivors series). Book 4 was released last year. The Shade of the Moon.

  17. The movie Zombieland for laughs
    The movie “Tomorrow when the war begins” the Australian version of Red Dawn.
    The movies “The Passion of The Christ” and “The Nativity Story” to remind me that the Christian Faith is historical fact.

    The TV show “Swamp People”, real Cajun preppers!

    • Rob Crawford says:

      Second on “Tomorrow, When the War Began”. The movie is good, the book is excellent. Actually, there’s an entire series of books; I’ve read the ones that occur during the war, but there’s a set that follows the main character after the war, as well.

      In short — a group of Australian teenagers go out into the back country for a camping trip, and while they’re away, “someone” (Indonesia with Chinese backing, most likely) invades. Their families are in a camp, their homes are occupied by settlers, and they can see that their town is on a major supply route…

      There are some scenes and events that seem to have been drawn from “Red Dawn”, but overall it’s a fresh take. There’s a little sex and lots of violence (it’s about a war!), and I recommend having a Google search handy for Australian slang.

    • Oh I love Swamp People. I asked my dh if we could go on a vacation next year going gator hunting. LOL He looked at me like I was nuts.

      I did tell him I wanted a bunny. He said, “Oh, for Easter. How cute. Do you want a pink bunny?” I said, “No I want a pair of bunnies so I can breed them and eat them.” He was mortified. He said, “That’s almost like being a cannibal.”

  18. Redwood Mama says:

    Books I love: Gary Paulsen’s Hatchet series and his world of adventure series for younger kids, The My side of the mountain series and most anything about the mountain man era and skills and native American skills They all teach as well as entertain which I really like!

    • Frugalmom3 says:

      My son read these last year and loved them! Good books!

      • Loved the Hatchet series. My son had to read this for school and I ended up reading it more than he did. I finished my third reading of it about a month ago.

  19. Suburban Housewife says:

    Thank you so much for all of these suggestions. Next time we have the “What do you want to watch? I don’t know – what do you want to watch?” conversation I can pull out this list! The only limiting factor is I made a promise to G-d that I would not watch R rated movies – and I’ve kept it over 13 years now. That really cuts into a lot of probably really good movies – but a promise is a promise. Thanks again.

    • SoCalPrepper says:

      Remember, man, not G-d, makes the ratings. Ratings didn’t exist at all prior to 1968, and PG13 wasn’t introduced until the 1980s.

      Worse than that is that it is totally subjective and dependent upon the “morals” of the time…and can be influenced by Hollywood’s politics. From the MPAA site:

      “Furthermore, to ensure our rating system reflects the current sentiment of parents, CARA’s system is constantly evolving. As American parents’ sensitivities change, so too does the rating system. Elements such as violence, language, drug use, and sexuality are continually re-evaluated through surveys and focus groups to mirror contemporary concern and to better assist parents in making the right family viewing choices.”

      Hike your own hike and all, but just realize the “ratings” don’t really follow any set rules.

      • Hunker-Down says:

        God does not practice moral relativism. Good is good, evil is evil and humanity is not intelligent enough to determine the difference. Proof? Civil law.

        • SoCalPrepper says:

          Hunker-Down – you may be the first person ever (other than people in my philosophy major) that I’ve interacted with that gets the CRUCIAL 3rd piece:
          1) Good is good. 2) Evil is evil. 3) We can’t always know the difference!

          • SoCalPrepper,

            You are a philosophy major. Very cool. What level are you at? Undergrad or grad?

  20. For books, Earth Abides is one of my all time favorite books. We have been reading survivor type books for over a year now and many are not worth reading, but a few are. Our problem is we like real books that we can hold in our hands and not Kindle books. Sometimes it takes quite a while for a paperback to come out, which is frustrating. I really liked T.J. Reeder’s A Long Lonesome Road series (even with the horrible misspellings and grammar), and also 299 Days series by Glen Tate. I’ll check out some of the books mentioned above and have already put some of the movies and tv series on my Netflix list. Thanks to everyone for the suggestions.

  21. Thank you for the great suggestions! There is quite a list to start on. I just put three of the books on hold at our library.

  22. Quest for Fire.

  23. I LOVE Zombieland. What a hoot. My all time favorite was Fahrenheit 451. We just sent Downfall back to Netflix and couldn’t stop thinking of our current gang in Washington and their attitudes to,the populace as I listened to the characters. We have just added some of BamBams picks to our Netflix queue.

  24. k. fields says:

    Boy oh boy, there are just so many great films in this genre to choose from. Quick list of some of my favorites that haven’t been mentioned by other posters.

    Metropolis – 1927
    Things To Come – 1936
    Modern Times – 1936 (comedy with serious undertones)
    Hitchcock’s Lifeboat – 1944 (great lesson on how people act under stress)
    War of the Worlds -1953 (classic sci-fi but the reactions of the people are worth noting)
    The Seventh Seal – 1957 (it’s by Bergman which means you’ll have to understand the symbolism to appreciate it)

    On the Beach – 1959 (classic nuclear war questions)
    The World, the Flesh and the Devil -1959 (was kind of remade as The Quiet Earth in1985)
    French film Le Jetée – 1962 (was remade as Twelve Monkeys in 1995)
    The Last Man on Earth – 1964 – with Vincent Price (the original of The 1971 Omega Man)
    Hitchcock’s The Birds – 1963 (a different view of what may cause the end of mankind – the final shot – deleted in many versions – of the birds covering the Golden Gate Bridge was just chilling)

    Japanese films: Note that none of these are for kids (and maybe not for all adults) but they are very powerful and thought provoking.
    Akira – 1988
    Ghost in the Shell – 1995
    Battle Royale – 2000 (think hunger games without the pg rating)

    British films:
    No Blade of Grass – 1970 (just a walk along the road)
    Threads – 1984 (much, much better than The Day After)
    1984 – 1984
    Brazil – 1985
    V for Vendetta – 2005 (One of my personal favorites)
    Children of Men – 2006 (written by P.D. James – excellent)
    Blindness – 2008 (sometimes hard to watch)

    Others:
    Fahrenheit 451 – 1966
    Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970)
    Soylent Green – 1973
    A Boy and His Dog – 1975
    Blade Runner – 1982 (another favorite)
    The Handmaids’s Tale – 1990
    Delicatessen – 1991 (love this movie)

    • K. Fields,

      I have only heard of a couple of these movies. Thanks for the list. I will check them out.

      • Tactical G-Ma says:

        Children of men was exceptional.

        Surprised I didn’t see Omega Man!

        • k. fields says:

          I find the original -1964′s The Last Man on Earth with Vincent Price to actually be better. But if the shoot-em-up aspect appeals to you, then 1971′s Omega Man is indeed good.

  25. Hobbitt of the Shire says:

    I would have to say that one of my favorites would have to be the original Red Dawn

  26. No Blade of Grass is great.takes place in England It deals a lot of moral decisions when all the grasses are dying due to a mutant fungus. No rice,wheat barley and such. I saw it when it first came out and maybe one time after. It is available on amazon will try to look it up on you tube.

  27. Rob in Ontario says:

    I saw a movie one morning I woke up from night shift to see it on tv was a news cast type of USA and USSR attacking each other I watched it for 1/2 hour before I realized was not real= I think was called “Count down to Looking Glass” , there is a 1962 movie called “Panic in the Year Zero” I liked “Contagion ” I read about a movie this week “Dragon Day”- came out last year about China using the computer chips to attack America and what happens to a family

    • Not that I’m old or anything,,, BUT I saw Panic in the Year Zero as a kid and it scared the bejeebies out of me.
      I built myself a little hide-e-hole under the basement stairs, kept my Uncles old canteen there w/water and put up tin foil packs of cookies.
      You could say that was my first start at prepping although it would be years until I started again.

  28. Ms. Albatross says:

    How about Under the Dome? A TV series that started last summer. Inspired by the Stephen King novel. Every week, they seemed to touch on a topic close to “prepper” doctrine. One week it was medication shortages, another it was about water needs, then gun confiscation, the rise of barter – especially for “vice” items such as alcohol and so on. It returns June 30th.

  29. defiance and book of eli are my two faves.dont really watch much T.V. because im so busy working out and excersing,,,,,,,,,,BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! i laughed as i was typing that,,,,, time for a sandwich.

  30. Hunker-Down says:

    We started watching Jericho on Netflix last week. I saw 3-4 episodes when it first aired; thought it was ‘interesting’.

    I’m learning that back then I was an empty headed sheeple (Silence! peanut gallery) because now my ears pick up a lot of undertow within the story line; things like the words EMP, awareness of firepower capacity, breakdown of society that meant nothing more than a storyline back then.
    Looking at todays “Wednesday Miscellany” string and the several mentions of EMP, I can see how the many towns around us can and will disintegrate into the Jericho story line as actual fact.
    Putting together the situations in the book “Lights Out” and the Jericho series in my imagination, they seem to be our future.

    I hope our fruit and nut trees are not killed by this winters several cold snaps, prepping for all this crap is hard enough. If the parallels in the book, “The Harbinger” about ancient biblical happenings and the United States are accurate, a few apples and nuts wont make any difference; an EMP might be an upgrade.

  31. Name change for this reply says:

    Harry, RE: WW III, I was stationed in Alaska in ????? I took mission requests for our aviation unit. One night I received a request to provide 2 Slicks to be flown to designation B and turn them over to the people there. Our CO saw this and said we would not do this and canceled the mission. The next night I received the same mission request and showed it to my boss Capt. ?????? and said will the CO cancel this and received a terse NO. Several years later I was at Ft. Bragg and got to talking to a special ops person and were BSing about Alaska when He said he was on a mission to escort unwanted foreign military persons from a mountain area south of Ft. Greely. There are things that happened in Alaska people don’t know about like a foreign power building a runway up near Barrow.

  32. have read the book: “The Long Walk” upon which the walk back was based…..very very informative of humanities will to survive or the human spirit, call it what you will. another good one regarding political corruption here (circa 1860′s) is The Molly Maguires- same corruption, different era, the depths to which moles will go to be accepted is reminiscent of the base tactics displayed by our leaders as well as how the most trusted will be corrupted by $$$$…. ‘The Last Wagon’ shares some tracking/trapping info (Richard Widmark) but not a great cinematic achievement overall. A good example of man’s potential depravity & corruption.

  33. the book I find BOTH the most troubling & the most telling of the depravity of some our leaders is ‘The Franklin Coverup’ by John W DeCamp. The authors credentials are stellar, this is NON-FICTION! It all happened….another item depicting the author’s credibility is he’s never been sued by any of the BIG names he mentions in this shocker (or little names). The saddest aspect is how soooooo many different personnel w/in Omaha NE banking, media, financial, legal & police communities (& some @ national levels, including the White House) came together to discredit some horribly abused children. Is the word horribly strong enough? This book is enlightening & will eat @ your insides for quite a while. Non fiction stranger/stronger than fiction!

  34. Sgt Survival says:

    Four seasons? Jericho was actually cancelled after its first season. The fans of the show mounted an interesting campaign for the return whereby several tons of peanuts were sent to CBS executives. This was in reference to the infamous “Nuts!!!” response given by General McAuliffe to the Germans when they demanded the surrender of Allied forces during the Battle of the Bulge. In the show, the main character, Jake Green learned this from his grandfather. It was also HIS response to the “invaders” from a neighboring town, when they called for the surrender of the Jericho defenders. The show returned for an abbreviated second season.

    If you enjoyed the remake of the BBC series, Survivors, you really owe it to yourself to see the original series (3 seasons) from back in the 70′s. It is available on DVD. While I enjoyed the remake, it doesn’t hold a candle to the original (kind of like Red Dawn, eh?)

    Some other TV shows to look at:
    Jeremiah
    Earth 2
    Harsh Realm

  35. OK – just dropped DirectTV because of the dirth of quality TV shows. Now I think I have enough to watch for the next couple of years using YouTube, Amazon, hulu, maybe Netflix and enough to read for another year. Thanks to all who made suggestions. I like my spare time to be useful and thought provoking. Combining TV with knitting, sewing & even cooking will make my life much more productive.

  36. Rider of Rohan says:

    Maybe I missed it, but “When Worlds Collide” and its companion “After Worlds Collide” were two of my favorite books I read as a child. I recently purchased these books(now combined into one book) on Amazon, and enjoyed the heck out of it again. Dated, but the concepts are still good.

    The premise is Earth is about to be hit by another planet. The book was written in 1932, but the authors got so much right about technology, energy, etc. that one would think they saw into the future. Also gives you a glimpse at America of that time. Well worth the read with little expense. I highly recommend it.

  37. k. fields says:

    So what about books? Again, there are so many to choose from in this genre but here are some of my favorites that you may not yet have read:

    The Epic of Gilgamesh written maybe 3,000 BC has to be the start. Beautiful, poetic – life in a land just beginning and the basis for so many stories that have followed.
    The Last Man written by Mary Shelley in 1826 – Did you think she stopped writing with 1818’s Frankenstein?
    H.G. Wells –
    The Time Machine (1895) – what would you take with you to rebuild the human race?
    The War of the Worlds (1898)
    The Shape of Things to Come (1933)
    Although the movie versions of these 3 were good, they barely scratched the surface of Wells thoughts.

    W.H. Hodgson – The Night Land (1912)
    Philip Chadwick’s – The Death Guard (1939)
    The Earth Abides by George Stewart (1949)

    The Day of the Triffids (1951) and The Chrysalids (1955) by John Wyndam – Although the movie version was mentioned, the books are something else indeed.
    The Birds (1952) by Daphne du Maurier, one of my favorite authors.
    Childhood’s End (1953) by Arthur C. Clark – I’m still waiting for someone to make this into a film. Can’t believe they haven’t yet.

    Richard Matheson’s 1954 I am Legend that spawned the films The Last Man on Earth and later Omega Man
    The Death of Grass (1956) by John Christopher – 1970 movie No Blade of Grass comes from this amazing book.
    On The Beach (1957) Nevil Shute – Much. Much more than the movie.

    1959′s A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller Jr. – Just fantastic.

    The Drowned World (1962) by J.C. Ballard – Offers a view not often seen.
    Make Room, Make Room (1966) by Harry Harrison – Made later into the film Soylent Green
    Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968) Philip K. Dick – Movie Blade Runner was loosely taken from this book but the book goes into much, much more.

    The Children of Men (P.D. James, 1992) What can you say about P.B. James, one of the best.

    Margaret Atwood’s 2004 Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood – OK, if I were to suggest an apocalyptic novel to someone not a prepper, it would be these 2. The stories are simply beautiful.
    How I Live Now (2005) by Meg Rosoff – This is actually a children’s book but well worth a read by adults. Give this and Atwood’s novels as gifts to begin discussions – they will not turn off a non-prepper.

    • I loved The Epic of Gilgamesh when I read it in high school. We read this and Job. These were two of the earliest manuscripts we have.

      • k. fields says:

        The center section of Job, the questioning, the discussions, the poetry, I just love. I’ve always felt that was the part that held the most importance – not the simplistic acceptance of perseverance in suffering.
        Surprisingly the Qur’an account leaves out all the discussion and poetry – strange for an otherwise very poetic tome.

        I’m glad to hear you were exposed to Gilgamesh when young – that must have been a great high school.

    • A Canticle for Leibowitz is a wonderful book.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      I thought about doing a post on Books similar to what Bam Bam did with movies and TV, but you got most of it in your post, Mr. Fields, and others added many as well. A hearty well-done to all.

      • k. fields says:

        Please go ahead and do a post on books so there will be an open opportunity to discuss their merits.
        There are so many that preppers could find insightful, but normally discussions only center on a small handful.

        • Rider of Rohan says:

          Mr. Fields, you’ve obviously spent some time reading. I read a book when I was a youngster about men who would travel into the past and future to tweak certain events for the benefit of the human race. As they traveled further into the future, they found that humans no longer existed. In an effort to correct the demise of the human race, they decided to send a man back in time who would discover nuclear power. This discovery would prevent the research into the time machine?, and the world would not exist as it then did. I can’t think of the name of the book, or the author, but it was well done. Very similar to The Time Tunnel by Leinster, but that book’s tunnel only connected a couple of hundred years. Or so I seem to remember.

  38. City Slicker says:

    Hey Bam Bam – add these movies. You’ll be glad you did!

    Carriers – Awesome pandemic movie! Only a couple of years old.
    Phase 7 – Argentine Pandemic movie.
    Time of the Wolf – French 2003 – This movie shows you why you should prep.
    Right at your Door – low budget but good.

    Contagion is pretty good
    Dead Set – British Mini-Series. A bit of a comedy but still good.
    Reign of Fire
    The Dark Hour (Spanish)
    Hell (German Movie)

  39. City Slicker says:

    I forgot two:

    One Hundred Mornings – this movie also shows you why you should keep quiet about prepping.
    The Dead Outside – scottish zombie. Low budget but ok.

  40. Encourager says:

    Thanks to all of you for the great lists!

    Now if I could just find the time to watch a few of them…

  41. Bam Bam,

    I’ve seen all of your TV shows, and pretty much concur. I have however, stopped watching The Walking Dead, since in my opinion, it has become short on survival and long on drama.

    I don’t watch a lot of movies, but I will note some of what you listed that I haven’t already seen.

    “Into the wild” is one of those I’ve seen, and my opinion is that it is about an idealistic, unprepared idiot, who goes into the wild to commit suicide. His death is not at all a surprise when you see his skill set and preparations.

    I would add Atlas Shrugged, which has produced two of three movies, with the last due later this year. It’s about survival of the makers, over the takers, and is very topical.

  42. City Slicker says:

    Sorry again, I forgot a really good one.

    The Trigger Effect – chaos begins after the power goes out (EMP?). Stars Kyle MacLachlan and Elizabeth Shue. Don’t miss this one.