The Top 10 Best Sailing Movies

Top 10 Best Sailing Movies

For many people (no judgment over here!), the first time they imagined themselves at the helm of a sailboat was after watching a perfectly idyllic sailing scene in a movie. That was is. They were in love. And while sailing isn’t exactly the way the movies make it out to be, we are all for a little bit of cinematic inspiration.

In no particular order and with a mix of action, romance, drama, documentary, and comedy, we present to you, in our opinion…

The Top 10 Best Sailing Movies:

White Squall (1996)

Starring Jeff Bridges as the captain, White Squall depicts an account of teenage students who discover fortitude, discipline, and friendship on a doomed sailing voyage through a storm.

Captain Ron (1992)

The comedy, Captain Ron, features Kurt Russell as Captain Ron who skippers the inherited vintage yacht of Martin Harvey (Martin Short) and his family.  With questionable skills, Captain Ron takes the family on an amusing family holiday filled with misadventures.

Dead Calm (1989)

Based on the novel of the same name, this thriller stars Nicole Kidman and Sam Neil.  An Australian murder mystery, Dead Calm features a beautiful yacht, dangerous sailing, and a stranger who has abandoned a sinking ship.

Chasing Bubbles (2016)

In this documentary, Alex Rust leaves his land life to sail around the world. This three/four-year adventure focuses on Alex as he learns to sail Bubbles and his search for adventure and fulfillment.

(Alex actually bought Bubbles in the British Virgin Islands – not a bad sailing destination, if you ask us!)

All is Lost (2013)

This survival drama focuses on a man lost at sea during a solo voyage.  Encountering danger, Robert Redford’s character must come to terms with his own mortality in All is Lost.  It’s a classic man vs. boat vs. sea drama.

Adrift (2018)

Based on true events, Adrift is a love and survival story. A young couple faces a catastrophic hurricane and one must find the strength and determination to survive the aftermath.

Following Seas (2016)

The documentary Following Seas gives you a front seat to a sailing family’s ocean voyages as they navigate family, adventure, sacrifices, love, heartbreak, and dreams.

Wind (1992)

Based loosely on actual events, Wind, starring Matthew Modine and Jennifer Gray, focuses on the America’s Cup series of races as a backdrop for a romantic adventure drama.

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003)

Russell Crowe stars as the brash Captain during the Napoleonic Wars in this historical adventure drama.  Ordered to capture a French vessel off the South American coast, the captain pushes his ship and crew to complete the mission while facing questions of bravery, duty, and friendship.

Maiden (2019)

This is the inspiring true story documentary of the first all-female crew to enter the Whitbread Round the World Yacht Race. Join Tracy Edwards as she leads the crew in the 1989 arduous competition lasting over nine months and covering over 33,000 of sailing racing.

Have these sailing movies inspired you to get out on the water?

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I find myself drawn to any project that allows me to learn and use my creativity to solve problems - and sailing tops my list!
Trisha Evelyn
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Last updated on June 1st, 2022