Movies set on lakes. Lake Living Guide list

Our List of The 10 Must-Watch Best Movies Set on Lakes. Trailers Included.

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We all have our favorite movies, and watching a movie at the end of a day at the lake is a great way to unwind. A good film is especially welcome on a rainy day that keeps us indoors. 

While at the lake house, it would be fun to incorporate some lake-centric movies in the mix.

Must-Watch Lake Movies

To help you decide what you will include in your cinema playlist, you may try these exciting lake movies:

A Month By the Lake (1995)

Featured Lake Como; Starring Vanessa Redgrave, Edward Fox, and Uma Thurman.

A Month By The Lake is a story that revolves around the love triangle of Miss Bentley (Vanessa Redgrave), Miss Beaumont (Uma Thurman), and Major Wilshaw (Edward Fox).

Set on the stunning Lake Como, this comedy takes all kinds of twists and turns as these couples pursue their varied romantic interests.

Big Fish (2003)

Featured Jackson Lake; Starring Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, and Jessica Lange

The film is all about the tales and adventures of Edward Bloom. He was portrayed by Ewan McGregor (flashbacks) and Albert Finney.

If you are fond of watching adventures, then this film is a must-watch movie for you. Although it was not properly set on a lake, it features a lot of water adventures.

One interesting thing about the film is that the lake house and other structures used in the movie still exist. Movie enthusiasts can visit the place to have some photo opportunities.

Dirty Dancing (1987)

A classic, the movie featured Mountain Lake and Lake Lure. It stars Jennifer Gray and Patrick Swayze.

If you are into dancing, you’ll surely love this film. The story started when Baby (Jennifer Gray) arrived at Kellerman’s Resort to have a simple vacation.

But her summertime became more memorable after meeting Johnny Castle, a dance instructor. This meeting transforms Baby into one of the graceful dancers in town.

The film reminds us of the romance and fun that accompanies summertime in a lake house.

Scooby-Doo, Curse of the Lake Monster (2010)

Here is one for the kids that even the adults will enjoy! A live action film based on the cartoon series, this movie starts with Velma, Shaggy, Fred, Daphne and Scooby-Doo with jobs at a country club in Erie Point. 

The film is complete with a lake monster that looks like a huge frog, but is intended on wreaking havoc. Watch as the friends work together to stop the monsters in the lake.

Lake Effects (2012)

“There’s no place like home.” It is one of the lessons that the movie tries to teach. The story features Sara, a woman who moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dream.

After becoming an attorney, she vows not to go back to Smith Mountain Lake, her childhood home. But after an unfortunate event, she has no choice but to go back and reconnect with her relatives. There, she realizes the importance of family.

Nell (1994)

Featuring Fontana Lake and starring Jodie Foster, Liam Neeson, and Natasha Richardson.

Nell, portrayed by Jodie Foster, was left to raise herself in an isolated cabin on Fontana Lake. Many years had passed when Dr. Jerome Lovell (Liam Neeson) discovered Nell.

He found out that she communicates using a language she only knows, because Nell has never experienced life outside the humble cabin.

Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)

Featuring the Lake District National Park and starring Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, and Charlize Theron.

Fairy tales always fascinate kids, but this movie is not your child’s fairy tale. This adult adaptation of Snow White, entitled Snow White and the Huntsman takes the tale on a dark and realistic turn. Rupert Sanders directed this 2012 film.

Kristen Stewart playing Snow White was an imprisoned daughter of the late king. She escaped the palace after discovering that she is the source of the Evil Queen’s immortality.

The Evil Queen, played by Charlize Theron, ordered the Huntsman to capture Snow White. But after realizing that she is playing him, he turned out against the queen and saved Snow White throughout the film.

Even though this movie is a fairytale, it might not be for the little ones, as the realism might be a bit much for tots.

The Lake House (2006)

Featuring Maple Lake Forest Preserve, this movie stars Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock, and Christopher Plummer.

Many of the scenes in The Lake House were shot in Maple Lake (although the lake house movie was set in Wisconsin Lake).

The story revolves around a doctor who exchanges letters with the former tenant of the lake house.

You will need to suspend your belief in a linear timeline as you watch the film. But at its heart, it is a good old-fashioned love story.

Without a Clue (1988)

Featuring Lake District National Park and starring Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley.

Another film that featured the Lake District National Park is the movie Without a Clue. Thom Eberhardt directed this classic film.

The characters are based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters from the Sherlock Holmes stories. Sherlock Holmes, in this film, was an actor who was hired by a brilliant detective.

It is because he needs to cover up Dr. Watson, who is the real great detective.

Thirteen Lakes (2004)

Featuring 13 lakes throughout the United States.

13 Lakes is a film by James Benning and is an example of Slow cinema.  This type of film making emphasizes long takes and is observational with little or no narration. 

This is sometimes called “contemplative cinema” and this genre has become more popular in recent years. 

This film is 135 minutes of ten-minute static shots done on 13 different lakes in the United States. Shot without dialog, this film has been described as “symmetrical, minimalistic and repetitive. 

It is a calm, soothing and sensory experience. The lakes are: Jackson, Moosehead, Salton Sea, Lake Superior, Lake Winnebago, Lake Okeechobee, Lower Red Lake, Lake Pontchartrain, Great Salt Lake, Lake Illiamna, Lake Powell, Crater Lake and Lake Oneida. 

A lovely testament to the beauty of lakes, this is the kind of film that would set the mood to be playing while you enjoy a glass of wine in front of the fireplace.

BONUS: What About Bob? (1991)

This list would not be complete without the addition of the comedy What About Bob?

This hysterical classic is set on Smith Mountain Lake in Virginia, and stars Richard Dreyfuss as self-involved  psychiatrist Dr. Leo Marvin and Bill Murray as Bob Wile, as his new patient. 

Rotten Tomatoes calls Bob Wiley an “exemplar of neediness and a compendium of phobia” who follows Dr, Marvin to the family’s vacation lake house. The ensuing turmoil seldom ceases and the movie ends with Dr. and patient roles reversed.