Best ... war film ... ever

For British soldiers, 'Zulu' is tops

The British troops have decided. The best war film ever made is the 1964 classic "Zulu," directed by Cy Enfield, according to the results of a survey conducted by British Forces Broadcasting Service Television.

The survey flies in the face of previous straw polls of the public and critical acclaim.

Organizers point to the fact that when the British people voted for U.K. broadcaster Channel 4's television program "100 Greatest War Films" in 2005, "Zulu" only came in eighth place.

Similarly, "The Cruel Sea" (1952) was placed 41st by the general public, but was ranked seventh by the British Forces in the survey published Thursday.

Survey organizers the BFBS TV said the fact that the No. 1 ranking for "Zulu" reflects the film's "iconic status" because "the vast majority of those serving on the frontline in Afghanistan today were not even born when it was made."

Other titles featuring in the top 10 include Steven Spielberg's "Saving Private Ryan" in second place and Richard Attenborough's "A Bridge Too Far" in third.

BFBS TV will be showing the top three films on consecutive nights across its digital terrestrial television network beginning Feb. 1.