Back to Nature: 10 Films Set in the Great Outdoors

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Written By Amanda Anthony

Amanda is a freelance writer passionate about horror and fantasy films. When she’s not writing about the latest celebrity hijinks and epic on-screen moments, you can find her watching Blumhouse films through the delicate fibers of a protective blanket. Amanda lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with her husband, kiddos, and goofy golden doodle, Ripley.

Spending time in nature refreshes and grounds us. When you can’t get outside, watching a film set outside is the next best thing. Nature-themed films often embrace adventure, inner growth, and reaching goals.

Here are some of the top films to get you back to nature.

Wild America (1997)

Nature films
Image Credit: Morgan Creek Entertainment

In Wild America (1997), three adventurous brothers, Marshall (Jonathon Taylor Thomas), Marty (Scott Bairstow), and Mark Stouffer (Devon Sawa), embark on a summer road trip across America. The boys want to document the beauty and wonder of the country’s wildlife. As they capture incredible footage of nature’s marvels and dangers, the siblings also grow closer, learning about life, family, and the importance of preserving the natural world for future generations.

Into the Wild (2007)

Films of self discovery
Image Credit: Paramount Vantage

Based on a true story, Into the Wild (2007) follows the journey of Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch) as he leaves society behind to live in the Alaskan wilderness. After donating all his worldly goods and leaving behind a bought and paid-for college education, McCandless finds himself living in an abandoned bus. Realizing he misses his family and may not survive the harsh Alaska conditions, he tries to venture home.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

Nature films
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013) follows the titular character Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller) on a journey of self-discovery. Mitty is an office worker developing photographs for Life Magazine. When the magazine decides to go digital, Mitty is responsible for printing the final cover photo but loses the negative. This sends him on a trip around the world to find the photographer. While it starts in urban environments, Walter’s adventures lead him through picturesque landscapes of Greenland, Iceland, and the Himalayas as he escapes his routine life.

The Revenant (2015)

Nature films
Image Credit: New Regency Productions

In The Revenant (2015), frontiersman Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio) is left for dead by his expedition team after a brutal bear attack. Left in the uncharted American wilderness, Glass must fight for his life to survive. Fueled by vengeance and sheer willpower, Glass embarks on a perilous journey through hostile terrain. Watch man vs. nature as Glass tries to find the man who betrayed him and to survive against all odds.

Wild (2014)

Films of self discovery
Image Credit: Anne Marie Fox and Fox Searchlight

Wild (2014) is based on Cheryl Strayed’s memoir of the same name. Strayed (Reese Witherspoon) sets out to hike over a thousand miles on the Pacific Crest Trail. Through her journey, she encounters kind people cheering her on, a pair of hunters with dark intentions, and a curious fox. Strayed hikes to escape grief and shame after losing her mother and turning to a life of drugs. Her journey on the PCT gives her a second chance at life.

127 Hours (2010)

Nature films
Image Credit: Fox Searchlight

127 Hours (2010) is a harrowing true story. The film stars James Franco (Pineapple Express) as mountaineer Aron Ralston, a mountaineer. When Ralston becomes trapped by a boulder while climbing in Utah, he has to make a desperate decision to survive. Before his great escape, Ralston spends 127 hours with his arm pinned between two boulders in a deep crevice.

The Mountain Between Us (2017)

Nature films
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox

In The Mountain Between Us (2017), a plane crash leaves two strangers stranded on a remote snow-covered mountain. Alex Martin (Kate Winslet) and Ben Bass (Idris Elba) must forge a connection to survive the extreme elements. As they embark on a perilous journey across the wilderness, they discover strength in each other and confront both their inner demons and burgeoning feelings.

Cast Away (2000)

Nature Films
Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox

In Cast Away (2000), FedEx executive Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks) finds himself stranded on a deserted island after a catastrophic plane crash. As days turn into years, Noland battles isolation, despair, and the challenges of survival. As he clings to hope, he forms an unlikely bond with a volleyball he names “Wilson.”

Everest (2015)

Nature films
Image Credit: Working Title Films

Everest (2015) is inspired by true events from the disastrous 1996 Mount Everest expeditions. Two climbing teams face unforeseen challenges, including severe weather and physical exhaustion. As they struggle to reach the summit and then descend, they must confront the life-threatening dangers of the world’s highest peak and the limits of human endurance. The film stars Jason Clark (Zero Dark Thirty) and Thomas M. Wright (The Stranger).

Captain Fantastic (2016)

Nature films
Image Credit: Electric City Entertainment

Viggo Mortensen (The Lord of the Rings) stars as a father of six, raising his children off the grid in the Pacific Northwest forests. He teaches them survival skills and a philosophical education until a tragedy forces them to confront the outside world.

The 20 Best Action Movies of All Time: Thrilling Adventures That Will Leave You Breathless

Inception For MSN
Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

Attention, movie lovers! Prepare for an exhilarating ride as we unveil the ultimate list of the 20 greatest action films ever made. From adrenaline-pumping car chases to mind-blowing fight sequences, we’ve got it all! So grab your snacks, silence your phone, and embark on a cinematic journey that will transport you to thrilling worlds. Superheroes, epic battles, and non-stop excitement await you. Buckle up and let the adventure begin!

The 20 Best Adventure Movies of All Time: Embark on Epic Quests and Thrilling Expeditions!

Interstellar for MSN
Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc. and Paramount Pictures Corporation.

Embark on an epic adventure through the greatest films of all time! Get ready for thrilling plots, heroic acts, and mesmerizing worlds that will leave you in awe. From Middle-earth’s epic battles to interstellar voyages, these 20 movies will take you on an unforgettable cinematic journey. Grab your popcorn, settle in, and let the adventure begin!

The 20 Best Thriller Movies Ever Made: Heart-Stopping Must-See Films

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Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox.

Attention, movie buffs! Get ready for an adrenaline-fueled, pulse-pounding cinematic ride! Brace yourself for the top 20 thrillers of all time, featuring unforgettable moments like Batman vs. the Joker, the captivating non-linear storytelling of Pulp Fiction, and the iconic shower scene from Psycho. Buckle up, grab your popcorn, and prepare for a suspenseful journey through movie history. Let the thrills begin!