Top Ten Films Shot in Fort Lauderdale
3. Cape Fear (1991)
Martin Scorsese's remake of the 1962 classic is a chilling psychological thriller starring Nick Nolte as Sam Bowden, a small-town corporate lawyer who is stalked by a deranged Cajun-talking, Bible-quoting ex-con Max Cady, played by Robert De Niro. Cady's mindscrew of Bowden's life is like a slow decent into Dante's Circles of Hell as he looks to enact revenge on the attorney after he failed to defend him properly in Cady's rape trial. Bent on vengeance, Cady worms his way into Bowden's family by wooing his young daughter and always being a step ahead of Bowden. Scorsese pays homage to the pulp crime films of the '50s and '60s and stuffs Cape Fear with enough Hitchcockian overtones to make a proper creeper of a film. Various parts of Fort Lauderdale make for an excellent backdrop to the movie's dark, purgatory noir feel.
2. Caddyshack (1980)
One of the most quotable films ever, Caddyshack is the all-time classic comedy that is the template for others to follow. A star-studded cast led by Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, and the incomparable Ted Knight make this quite possibly the greatest comedy ever made. It's debatable, but there might be fisticuffs involved. Portions of the golf scenes were actually filmed in Boca Raton. It's not Fort Lauderdale, but Caddyshack was filmed near Fort Lauderdale. So that, and its awesomeness, are enough to get on this list. IT'S IN THE HOLE!
1. Midnight Cowboy (1969)
OK, so most of the film takes place in New York. But the pivotal scene, which happens to be the final scene, which happens to be the video clip above (SPOILER ALERT), was shot in Fort Lauderdale. Fort Lauderdale, after all, represents the film's quest for hope amid darkness. So there's that. Jon Voight stars as Joe Buck, the Texan cowboy who soon realizes that big-city life is meager, ugly, and all too real. He soon begins to make a living as a hustler (which is '60s talk for male prostitute) and befriends a gimp named Ratzo, played by Dustin Hoffman. The film depicts New York in its peep-show heyday, when it was a dirty, sexy hot mess. And the film richly portrays two lost souls trying to find their way through the detritus. Hoffman is exceptional as Ratzo ("I'm walkin' here! I'm walkin' here!") and Voight is equal parts naive and intelligent in his portrayal as the fish-out-of-water Texan. In the end, the cowboy goes from being a self-centered gigolo to a man who simply wants to get his tuberculous-striken friend to the warm, sunny beaches of... awww yeah, Fort Lauderdale.