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Exploring Louisiana on Screen: Top Movies Set in the Bayou State Vol. 1

Top movies set in Louisiana

By Ostap Bender

Movies are like real estate: location, location, location. The setting of a film can act like a foundation on which all other elements are built on. Characters speak a certain way, eat certain foods, dress in a particular fashion because of the region they’re from. People don’t immediately think of Louisiana as a prime cinema setting, but that all changes once you look into the great films set in the Bayou State. Here is our first volume of top movies set in Louisiana:


JFK (1991)


It’s not a question of who killed JFK, but rather, why kill JFK. That’s the “why” behind why this movie was made. To many it’s an entertaining roller coaster of conspiracy theory fantasies. To anyone that’s read enough history to know how many conspiracy theories turned out to be true, it’s a terrifying example of how little control we have in keeping governing bodies accountable.


The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

A visually stunning film that follows the life of Benjamin Button, a man who was born old and ages backward. It’s a Forrest Gump story that takes us through great moments in history as seen through the eyes of someone who can in no way fit in. It has everything you’d want from big scale cinema, but never feels like you’re watching a story bigger than the individuals we follow. 


The Waterboy (1998)


It’s an Adam Sandler movie from the golden age of Adam Sandler movies. The story follows Bobby Boucher, a socially awkward and dim-witted waterboy for a college football team in Louisiana. Despite being mistreated by his team and others, Bobby discovers he has an incredible talent for tackling due to his pent-up anger transforms from a waterboy into a star player. It could just as easily have been the feel-good movie of the year, but it has Blake Clark playing with his nipples so it’s an Adam Sandler movie.


A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)

While primarily set in a rundown New Orleans apartment, this classic film adaptation of Tennessee Williams' Pulitzer Prize-winning play vividly captures the essence of post-World War II New Orleans. The movie, starring Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh, delves into themes of desire, mental instability, and social dynamics, becoming a timeless representation of Southern Gothic drama.


All the King's Men (2006)

The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Robert Penn Warren was originally adapted in 1949, but this version came and went in 2006. It’s unfortunate because this version is incredible at leaving you questioning your own beliefs. That’s not easy to do for a movie. It’s the story of an honest southerner who wanted to destroy corruption in government only to succumb to it once in office. That’s clear-cut, but what isn’t, is the feeling your left with that not all corruption is created equal.



Charles Bronson could act! People remember the caricature, but often forget the talent and in 1975’s Hard Times he was at the top of his game. The movie is a perfect storm of talent with Walter Hill taking us into a desperate world of depression-era bareknuckle fighting. Louisiana also plays the perfect setting as the place down south you’d end up after rail-roading around the rest of the country and burning every bridge from east to west.



 The film centers around the investigation of the murder of a black sergeant, played by Adolph Caesar, at a segregated Army base in Louisiana. It’s WWII and all men want to do is fight on a foreign battlefield, but the reason “why” is different for the company of men we get to watch. They want to fight for their manhood because in the segregated south, it’s been stripped away. It’s been stripped away by other Americans and even by their own kind, leaving them wondering if hope is even an option.

Watch THE DIRTY KIND from executive producer Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill).

Now available on DVD and streaming courtesy of BayView Entertainment.


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