The Best Sailing Movies

Do you often sit down in front of the TV,  scroll through hundreds of channels and still feel none the wiser about what to watch?   We’ve come up with a list of sailing films that hopefully you will enjoy and inspire your next sailing adventure.  We think there is a film for everyone and most genres including thrillers, documentaries, historical , adventure, comedy and even family watching. The list is in no particular order:


A story about a sailor’s determination to win the America’s Cup, starring Matthew Modine and Jennifer Grey.  An action film with some romance thrown in. 


Swallows and Amazons

This is one of my family favourites, based on Arthur Ransome’s classic children’s novel.  Set in the Lake District, in the interwar period, a group of children meet and have all sorts of adventures on their two dinghies.  It has definitely stood the test of time. 



Based on an inspiring true story of two free spirits who meet by chance which first leads to love then on an adventure into the middle of the Pacific Ocean and a catastrophic hurricane.


Captain Ron

A comedy about a family from Chicago that inherit a yacht owned by Clark Gable.  They set off to sail with Captain Ron and their lives will never be the same again.



A documentary about a 14 year old Laura Dekker who sets out on a 2 year voyage to become the youngest person ever to sail single handed around the world.


Master and Commander

An adaptation of O’Brien’s historical maritime novels this adventure stars Russell Crowe as Captain Jack Aubrey who sets out in search of a French war vessel.  It includes amazing scenes including the Galapagos Islands.


White Squall

A disastrous survival film about a group of final year students who discover discipline and camaraderie on a two masted schooner. Directed by Ridley Scott and starring Jeff Bridges as the Captain.


Chasing Bubbles (2016) 
A documentary about the wonders and journey of a farm boy turned day trader who at 25 years old decided to buy a sailboat and set off around the world from Chicago. 


Dead Calm

It’s not exactly about sailing but it is a thriller set on a boat, with Nicole Kidman and Sam Neill as husband and wife on a boat who get disturbed by a stranger who has abandoned a sinking ship.



Muppet Treasure Island

A family classic based on RL Stephenson’s Treasure Island, it includes comedy and action and even some funny songs.  Long John Silver is played by Tim Curry, alongside the muppet cast you might see some other well known faces. Perfect giggle for the whole family.



The Mercy

Based is based on the true story of the disastrous attempt by the amateur sailor Donald Crowhurst to complete the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race in 1968.



The perfect Storm

In the Fall of 1991, the "Andrea Gail" left Gloucester, Mass. and headed for the fishing grounds of the North Atlantic. Two weeks later, an event took place that had never occurred in recorded history