"John Sayles — perhaps the greatest American political filmmaker of his or any generation — once wrote in Mother Jones that movies as disparate as "Rambo" and "Adventures in Babysitting" could be described as political, because "they served only to maintain the status quo, strengthen stereotyping, and push people apart." He makes an excellent point: A political film can be great — or at least jarringly effective — even though it's not political on purpose.
A few movies like that are on this list. But there's also the usual collection of thrillers, biopics, satires and straight-ahead dramas. Many are fact-based, set amid the imposing edifices and featureless bureaucracies of Washington. Others are more speculative and metaphorical, taking viewers to the Texas border or an Omaha high school to explore the vagaries of power as they play out within communities and individual relationships."
(image from the WP article, made by Stephen Bliss)