9/11 films and dramas: best movies based on September 11 attacks, from United 93 to Worth and The Falling Man

There are a number of gripping 9/11 dramas and documentaries that mark one of the darkests moments in US history

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It has been almost 21 years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, but there are still many films and shows to watch to remember the tragic event.

The anniversary has seen the release of several documentaries and docu-series on the topic, but there are also several films about the events before and after the tragic attacks.

From explorations into the CIA’s investigation into Al-Qaeda, to a retelling of the events of United Flight 93, here are eight films that are inspired by, or based on, the events of 9/11.

Copies of The News, from September 12, 2001 - the day after New York's Twin Towers were hit in a terrorist attackCopies of The News, from September 12, 2001 - the day after New York's Twin Towers were hit in a terrorist attack
Copies of The News, from September 12, 2001 - the day after New York's Twin Towers were hit in a terrorist attack


Netflix’s latest 9/11 film, Worth, explores the aftermath of the tragic terror attacks. Starring Micahel Keaton and Stanley Tucci, the movie tells the story of Washington, DC, attorney Kenneth Feinberg and his task of distributing more than £7 billion to the victims’ families. The movie is a compassionate look at the complexities of defining how much a life is worth, and the lasting impact the attacks had on America.

Worth is available to watch on Netflix

United 93

Telling the story of United Flight 93, Paul Greenglass’s film is a recreation of the heroism that took place on the fateful plane journey. On 9/11 the terrorists hijacked four planes, three of them hit their targets, but the fourth, United Flight 93, crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. There are no big Hollywood stars in the film, instead Greenglass cast real pilots and flight attendants in the role.

United 93 is available to rent on Amazon Prime and YouTube

Zero Dark Thirty

Directed by The Hurt Locker director Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty tells the story of the CIA’s hunt for Osama bin Laden, culminating in the deadly assassination of the mastermind of 9/11. The film stars Jessica Chastain as Maya, and also features one of the most real life depiction of CIA torture tactics on film.

Zero Dark Thirty is available to watch on Netflix

The Looming Tower

Jeff Bridges stars in the Hulu adaptation of Lawrence Wright’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book. The mini-series follows the journey before the events of 9/11 in the late 90’s, and how a rivalry between the FBI and CIA may have inadvertently set the path for the attacks. The series follows members of the I-49 Squad in New York and Alec Station in Washington, D.C. - the counterterrorism divisions of the FBI and CIA.

The Looming Tower is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video

World Trade Centre

Starring Nicolas Cage, and directed by Oliver Stone, World Trade Centre tells the story of two Port Authority officers who were trapped in the rubble of the collapsed towers in New York on 11 September.

World Trade Center is available to watch on Netflix

The Report

The Report is a fictional retelling of the investigation into the CIA’s post 9/11 Detention and Interrogation Program. Starring Adam Driver as Daniel J. Jones and Annette Bening as Senator Dianne Feinstein, the film depicts the long journey before the 6,700-page- report was published in 2012.

The Report is available to watch on Amazon Prime

Reign Over Me

Reign Over Me covers the heartbreak of those who lost their loved ones in the attacks. Starring Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle, the film follows the rekindling of a friendship when all in the world seems lost.

Reign Over Me is available to rent on YouTube

9/11: The Falling Man

This harrowing documentary examines the story behind one of the most unforgettable images of 9/11: a photograph of a man falling from one of the towers.

9/11: The Falling Man is available to watch on All4

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