Overseas Highway – The 10 Must-Watch Movies Shot on the Florida Keys

Welcome to the enchanting world of the Florida Keys, where turquoise waters, swaying palms, and a ribbon of road known as the Overseas Highway connect a string of tropical paradises. Beyond its picturesque landscapes, the Florida Keys have served as a captivating backdrop for numerous cinematic masterpieces. What are the best movies shot on the Overseas Highway in the Florida Keys? Is there any movie filmed with locations in the Florida Keys?

In this post, I invite you to embark on a cinematic journey as we explore the Overseas Highway and unveil eight must-watch movies that have chosen this stunning locale as their filming location. From thrilling adventures to heartwarming tales, each film captures the essence of the Florida Keys, providing viewers with a visual feast that complements the natural beauty of this unique and sun-kissed destination. Join me as we delve into the magic of the silver screen and discover the allure of the Overseas Highway through the lens of these unforgettable movies.

Whether it’s a blockbuster action sequence on the Overseas Highway or an intimate moment captured amidst the swaying palms, movies shot on the Florida Keys promise an unforgettable visual experience. From Hollywood blockbusters to independent gems, the Florida Keys stand as a cinematic haven where storytelling and scenery seamlessly merge, creating an unforgettable cinematic journey for audiences worldwide.

1. Key Largo, Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall – 1948

Key Largo - the movie shot in Key Largo, Florida Keys. List of best movies about the Florida Keys.

Key Largo” is a classic film noir released in 1948, directed by John Huston and featuring an ensemble cast led by Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. The movie is renowned not only for its stellar performances but also for its atmospheric setting in the Florida Keys, particularly Key Largo.

The film unfolds against the backdrop of a hurricane, adding an extra layer of tension to the already suspenseful narrative. Humphrey Bogart stars as Frank McCloud, a World War II veteran who travels to Key Largo to visit the family of a deceased war buddy. Upon his arrival at the isolated hotel run by James Temple (Lionel Barrymore) and his daughter-in-law Nora (Lauren Bacall), McCloud finds himself in the company of a motley group of characters.

One of the most memorable aspects of “Key Largo” is its use of the Florida Keys as a backdrop. The film captures the tropical beauty of the region, showcasing the lush landscapes, swaying palm trees, and the turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The decision to set the story during a hurricane not only serves the narrative but also highlights the vulnerability of the characters in the face of nature’s fury.

2. 92 in the Shade, Peter Fonda, Burgess Meredit – 1975

Overseas Highway locations and Florida Keys -  92 in the Shade

“92 in the Shade” is a 1975 film directed by Thomas McGuane, featuring a stellar cast that includes Peter Fonda and Burgess Meredith. The movie is known for its unique setting, as it was primarily shot in the picturesque Florida Keys and along the Overseas Highway.

Released in the mid-1970s, “92 in the Shade” is a drama that revolves around the world of sport fishing in the Florida Keys. The film explores the complexities and conflicts among the characters against the backdrop of the scorching Florida sun and the azure waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The film captures the essence of the unique and laid-back lifestyle of the Florida Keys, showcasing its vibrant maritime culture and the challenges faced by those who make a living from the sea.

The use of the Overseas Highway, a scenic route connecting the islands of the Florida Keys, adds a distinctive visual element to the film, as the characters navigate the stunning landscapes in pursuit of their dreams. “92 in the Shade” stands out not only for its compelling narrative but also for its authentic portrayal of the Florida Keys and the Overseas Highway, providing audiences with a glimpse into the charm and allure of this tropical paradise.

If you are interested in the history of the Overseas Highway, check out my post about that: Overseas Highway History – From Rail to Road

3. License to Kill, Timothy Dalton – 1988

License to Kill - Best movies shot on Overseas Highway and Florida Keys

“License to Kill” is a James Bond film released in 1989, starring Timothy Dalton as the iconic British secret agent. The film, directed by John Glen, marked Dalton’s second and final appearance as James Bond, following his debut in “The Living Daylights” (1987).

Numerous scenes in the 1989 James Bond movie “License to Kill” were shot in the Florida Keys, featuring the captivating opening aerial sequence that unfolded above the Sugar Loaf Shores Airport. This picturesque location in the Lower Florida Keys served as a stunning backdrop for the film’s introduction, offering audiences a breathtaking view of the Keys from the air. The filmmakers skillfully utilized the tropical beauty of the region, seamlessly blending action and natural splendor to create a visually compelling and authentic cinematic experience.

As for the specific scenes shot on Overseas Highways and the Florida Keys, the movie indeed features thrilling action sequences set in these locations. One memorable scene involves a high-speed chase on an Overseas Highway, showcasing Bond’s skills as he pursues the villains. The Florida Keys, known for their picturesque landscapes and unique atmosphere, provide a visually stunning backdrop for the film’s tropical and aquatic scenes.

4. True Lies, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis – 1994

True Lies - another great movie shot on Overseas Highway

“True Lies,” directed by James Cameron and released in 1994, is an action-comedy film that showcases a mix of espionage, humor, and explosive set pieces. One of the film’s memorable sequences is set against the picturesque backdrop of the Florida Keys, specifically featuring scenes on the Overseas Highway and the iconic Seven Mile Bridge.

The action-packed scenes set on the Florida Keys and the Overseas Highway are not only visually stunning but also utilize special effects to enhance the cinematic experience. The Seven Mile Bridge, a renowned landmark in the Florida Keys, serves as a dramatic setting for some of the film’s most thrilling moments. The bridge, surrounded by azure waters and breathtaking views, becomes the stage for intense action sequences that include explosions, daring stunts, and high-speed chases.

The utilization of special effects in these scenes demonstrates the film’s commitment to delivering a high-energy and visually captivating experience. The filmmakers employed cutting-edge technology for the time to create realistic explosions and enhance the overall spectacle of the action. The combination of practical effects and skillful cinematography adds to the film’s excitement and entertainment value.

5. The Spanish Prisoner, Steve Martin, Ben Gazzara, Campbell Scott – 1996

Top 10 movies shot on Florida Keys and Overseas Highway

“The Spanish Prisoner” is a captivating film released in 1996, directed by David Mamet. This psychological thriller stars Steve Martin, Ben Gazzara, and Campbell Scott in pivotal roles. Departing from his usual comedic roles, Steve Martin delivers a compelling performance in this suspenseful narrative.

The film revolves around Joe Ross (played by Campbell Scott), an inventor working for a mysterious corporation. Joe stumbles upon a groundbreaking formula known as “The Process,” which holds the potential for immense financial success. As the plot unfolds, he becomes entangled in a complex web of deception, betrayal, and manipulation.

One of the film’s notable features is its stunning locations, with Key West and the Florida Keys providing a beautiful backdrop. The lush landscapes and idyllic coastal settings enhance the film’s atmosphere, creating a visual feast for the audience. The tropical beauty of Key West and the Florida Keys contrasts sharply with the dark and intricate storyline, adding an intriguing dimension to the viewing experience.

6. 2 Fast 2 Furious, Paul Walker, Tyrese Gibson, Cole Hauser – 2003

2 Fast 2 Furious - movies filmed on the scenic locations of the Florida Keys and Overseas Highway

“2 Fast 2 Furious” is a 2003 action film directed by John Singleton, and it is the second installment in the “Fast & Furious” film series. The movie does feature scenes filmed in Florida, including the Florida Keys and portions of the Overseas Highway.

The story follows former LAPD officer Brian O’Conner (played by Paul Walker), who teams up with an old childhood friend, Roman Pearce (played by Tyrese Gibson), to bring down a Miami drug lord. To do so, they must participate in a series of high-stakes street races and heists.

The Florida Keys, with their picturesque landscapes and scenic roads, provided a visually appealing backdrop for some of the movie’s driving sequences. The Overseas Highway, which connects the islands of the Florida Keys, was likely utilized for various car chase scenes, given its unique and recognizable setting.

7. Miami Vice Colin Farrell, Jamie Foxx, Li Gong – 2006

What are the best movies shot on the Overseas Highway in the Florida Keys? Miami Vice 2006

“Miami Vice” is a crime thriller film directed by Michael Mann and released in 2006, not 2005. The movie stars Colin Farrell as Detective James “Sonny” Crockett and Jamie Foxx as Detective Ricardo “Rico” Tubbs, reprising the iconic roles originally portrayed by Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas in the 1980s television series of the same name.

One of the distinctive aspects of “Miami Vice” is its striking cinematography, showcasing the vibrant and glamorous atmosphere of Miami. While the film is primarily set in Miami, it also features various locations in the Florida Keys and other overseas locales.

The 2006 adaptation of “Miami Vice” aimed to modernize the iconic 1980s television series while maintaining its gritty and stylish essence. The film received mixed reviews but was praised for its intense action sequences, sleek visual style, and the chemistry between Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx.

8. I Am Number Four, Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Dianna Agron – 2011

Best top movies Florida Keys and Overseas Highway locations

“I Am Number Four” is a science fiction action film released in 2011, directed by D.J. Caruso. The movie is based on the young adult science fiction novel of the same name by Pittacus Lore (a pseudonym for authors James Frey and Jobie Hughes). The film stars Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, and Dianna Agron in key roles.

The story revolves around John Smith, played by Alex Pettyfer, an extraterrestrial being from the planet Lorien. John is one of nine alien teenagers who escaped their home planet just before its destruction by a hostile species known as the Mogadorians. These nine individuals are gifted with special powers and are being hunted down by the Mogadorians in a specific order. Each of them can only be killed in numerical order, and John is Number Four.

The movie was filmed in various locations, including the Florida Keys. The film features visually stunning scenes shot on the Overseas Highway and the iconic Seven Mile Bridge, showcasing the picturesque landscapes of the Florida Keys.

9. Bloodline – 2015-2017

Bloodline - 2015-2017 - Netflix series shot on Key West and Florida Keys

“Bloodline” is a dramatic thriller television series that aired from 2015 to 2017 on Netflix. Created by Todd A. Kessler, Glenn Kessler, and Daniel Zelman, the show revolves around the Rayburn family, owners of a beachfront hotel in the Florida Keys. The series explores the dark secrets and intricate dynamics within the family when the black sheep son, Danny Rayburn, returns home.

One of the distinctive features of “Bloodline” is its breathtaking cinematography, with a significant portion of the show filmed on location in the Florida Keys. The series effectively captures the unique and picturesque landscapes of the Keys, showcasing the azure waters, lush greenery, and the laid-back atmosphere that defines the region.

In addition to the Florida Keys, “Bloodline” also utilizes the Overseas Highway as a backdrop for many scenes. The use of this scenic highway adds an extra layer of authenticity to the series, as the characters navigate through the tropical beauty of the Keys.

10. Chasing the Sun – Clara Flynn, Kate Rene Gleason, Karina Diglyte – 2018

The newest movie Chasing the Sun - Florida Keys and Overseas Highway locations.

The story revolves around Bamboo Bob, a small-time DJ broadcasting from his bedroom, and his cousin Steve’s plan to take them to Key West for an award ceremony. Bob faces a dilemma when he encounters one of his biggest fans, who introduces him to the possibilities of life in the Keys. The movie explores Bob’s choice between his current life and the one he envisions beyond the beach.

The inclusion of many locations in the Florida Keys and the feature of the Overseas Highway add a scenic and adventurous element to the narrative. These settings could contribute to the overall atmosphere and visual appeal of the film, providing a backdrop that reflects the charm and uniqueness of the Florida Keys.

πŸ‘ Find out more:

Overseas Highway Florida Keys Travel Guide - 101 best stops by Mark Watson

Explore the finest attractions along the Overseas Highway and Florida Keys with my travel guide, ‘Florida Keys Overseas Highway Travel Guide – 101 Best Stops,’ now available on Amazon. This comprehensive guide is your ultimate companion for those seeking adventure and wonder along THE OVERSEAS HIGHWAY & FLORIDA KEYS! Discover 101 amazing places with convenient ‘Scan QR and go’ functionality for easy navigation.


Pacific Coast - Mark Watson

Mark Watson is a California-based member of a Los Angeles motorcycle club and an avid traveler. He has completed seven full journeys along the iconic Pacific Coast Highway on his Harley-Davidson and is passionate about promoting this historic drive to others. Mark has also explored the Alaska Highway and Route 66, and has authored four bestselling travel guides on Amazon: “Route 66 Travel Guide – 202 Amazing Places,” “Alaska Highway Travel Guide – 202 Best Stops,”, “Pacific Coast Highway Travel Guide – 202 Best Stops”, and “Florida Keys Overseas Highway Travel Guide – 101 Best Stops.”

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