Entertainment

The Best Movies About Kentucky 

Ranker Film
Updated August 8, 2019 149 votes 13 voters 60 items

List Rules Regardless of where the movie was filmed, it must be set in Kentucky. Vote up the best movies with Kentucky as the backdrop.

Which of these movies about Kentucky are the best? It's time to vote up the best movies set in the Bluegrass State. Some of these movies were actually filmed in Kentucky but all of them are about or partially set in Kentucky. Situated between Indiana and West Virginia, Kentucky is the inspiration or setting for classic movies and cult favorites. From Disney’s Secretariat to Next of Kin starring Patrick Swayze, it's time to finally determine the greatest Kentucky movies.

Vote up the best movies based in Kentucky. Be sure to check back to see what other voters think about these Kentucky films. Don't see your favorite Kentucky movie? Add it to the list and find out how other film aficionados rank your additions.

list ordered by
1
Daniel Boone is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Daniel Boone John Carradine, Heather Angel, George O'Brien

Released: 1936

Directed by: David Howard

Daniel Boone is a 1936 American historical film directed by David Howard and starring George O'Brien, Heather Angel and John Carradine.
2
The Story of Seabiscuit ... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Shirley Temple, Barry Fitzgerald, Rosemary DeCamp

Released: 1949

Directed by: David Butler

The Story of Seabiscuit is a 1949 American drama film directed by David Butler and starring Shirley Temple. The screenplay was written by John Taintor Foote. Though shot in Technicolor, the film ...more
3
Kentucky Moonshine is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Kentucky Moonshine John Carradine, Tony Martin

Released: 1938

Directed by: David Butler

Kentucky Moonshine is a 1938 film directed by David Butler.
4
The Little Colonel is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Shirley Temple, Hattie McDaniel, Lionel Barrymore

Released: 1935

Directed by: David Butler

The Little Colonel is a 1935 American comedy drama film directed by David Butler. The screenplay by William M. Conselman was adapted from the children's novel of the same name by Annie Fellows ...more
5
The Kentuckian is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Burt Lancaster, Walter Matthau, John Carradine

Released: 1955

Directed by: Burt Lancaster

The Kentuckian is a 1955 Technicolor and CinemaScope adventure film directed by Burt Lancaster, who also starred. This was one of only two films Lancaster directed, and the only one for which he ...more
6
Band of Angels is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Clark Gable, Sidney Poitier, Yvonne De Carlo

Released: 1957

Directed by: Raoul Walsh

Band of Angels is a 1957 romantic drama film set in the American South before and during the American Civil War, based on the novel of the same name by Robert Penn Warren. It starred Clark ...more
7
Fire Down Below is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Steven Seagal, Kris Kristofferson, Marg Helgenberger

Released: 1997

Directed by: Félix Enríquez Alcalá

Fire Down Below is a 1997 American action film directed by Félix Enríquez Alcalá in his directorial debut, and starring Steven Seagal. The film also includes cameos by ...more
8
In Country is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Bruce Willis, Joan Allen, Emily Lloyd

Released: 1989

Directed by: Norman Jewison

In Country is a 1989 American drama film produced and directed by Norman Jewison, starring Bruce Willis and Emily Lloyd. The screenplay by Frank Pierson and Cynthia Cidre was based on the novel ...more
9
April Love is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Shirley Jones, Pat Boone, Arthur O'Connell

Released: 1957

Directed by: Henry Levin

April Love is an American musical directed by Henry Levin and produced by David Weisbart, based on the novel Phantom Filly by George Agnew Chamberlain (New York, 1941). Photographed in ...more
10
The Hole Idea is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Mel Blanc, Bea Benaderet, Robert C. Bruce

Directed by: Robert McKimson

The Hole Idea is a 1955 Looney Tunes cartoon directed by Robert McKimson. He was also the sole animator on the short, as this was during the time he was re-assembling his unit after the brief ...more
11
Gallopin' Gals is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Sara Berner

Released: 1940

Directed by: William Hanna, Joseph Barbera

Gallopin' Gals is an animated film directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera and produced by Fred Quimby and was released with the movie Hullabaloo by Metro-Goldwyn Mayer in 1940. All of the ...more
12
Dead Moon Rising is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Chris Albro, Bob C. Cooke, Colleen Mooney

Released: 2007

Directed by: Mark E. Poole

Dead Moon Rising is a 2007 horror film written and directed by Mark E. Poole. It stars Jason Crowe, Mike Seely, and Erica Goldsmith as locals who must fight waves of zombies in Louisville,
13
Coal Miner's Daughter is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Tommy Lee Jones, Sissy Spacek, Beverly DAngelo

Released: 1980

Directed by: Michael Apted

Coal Miner's Daughter is a 1980 biographical film which tells the story of country music legendary singer Loretta Lynn. It stars Sissy Spacek as Loretta, a role that earned her the Academy Award ...more
14
Dreamer is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Dakota Fanning, Kurt Russell, Elisabeth Shue

Released: 2005

Directed by: John Gatins

Dreamer is a 2005 American family drama film starring Kurt Russell and Dakota Fanning, inspired by the true story of an injured Thoroughbred racehorse named Mariah's Storm. The film was written ...more
15
Elizabethtown is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Jessica Biel, Kirsten Dunst, Alec Baldwin

Released: 2005

Directed by: Cameron Crowe

Elizabethtown is a 2005 American romantic tragicomedy-drama film written and directed by Cameron Crowe starring Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst. Alec Baldwin has a small role as a CEO of an ...more
16
Next of Kin is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Liam Neeson, Ben Stiller, Helen Hunt

Released: 1989

Directed by: John Irvin

Next of Kin is a 1989 American action film directed by John Irvin and starring Patrick Swayze and Liam Neeson, with Adam Baldwin and Ben Stiller in one of his earliest roles. The screenplay was ...more
17
Secretariat is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Diane Lane, John Malkovich, James Cromwell

Released: 2010

Directed by: Randall Wallace

Secretariat is a 2010 biographical sports drama film produced and released by Walt Disney Pictures and directed by Randall Wallace. The film chronicles the life of thoroughbred race horse ...more
18
23 Blast is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Alexa Vega, Fred Thompson, Stephen Lang

Released: 2013

Directed by: Dylan Baker

23 Blast is a 2013 American sports drama film directed by Dylan Baker. A local football star, Travis Freeman (Mark Hapka), is stricken with a series of severe headaches and a bacterial ...more
19
Harlan County War is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Holly Hunter, Stellan Skarsgård, Ted Levine

Released: 2000

Directed by: Tony Bill

Harlan County War is a television film directed by Tony Bill and written by Peter Silverman.
20
Beauty Mark is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Beauty Mark Auden Thornton, Catherine Curtin, Laura Bell Bundy
21
Harlan County, USA is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky

Released: 1976

Directed by: Barbara Kopple

Harlan County, USA is a 1976 Oscar-winning documentary film covering the "Brookside Strike", an effort of 180 coal miners and their wives against the Duke Power Company-owned Eastover ...more
22
Hatfields & McCoys ... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Kevin Costner, Tom Berenger, Bill Paxton

Released: 2012

Directed by: Kevin Reynolds

It’s the true American story of a legendary family feud—one that spanned decades and nearly launched a war between Kentucky and West Virginia. Hatfields & McCoys, a three-part miniseries, ...more
23
The Moonshine War is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
The Moonshine War Alan Alda, Richard Widmark

Released: 1970

Directed by: Richard Quine

The Moonshine War is a 1970 film directed by Richard Quine, based on the novel of the same name by Elmore Leonard. It starred Patrick McGoohan, Richard Widmark, Alan Alda, Will Geer, John ...more
24
Pilgrim Song is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Pilgrim Song Michael Abbott Jr., Timothy Morton, Kristin Slaysman

Released: 2012

Directed by: Martha Stephens

Pilgrim Song is a 2012 drama film written by Karrie Crouse and directed by Martha Stephens.
25
Simpatico is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies About Kentucky
Sharon Stone, Nick Nolte, Jeff Bridges

Released: 1999

Directed by: Matthew Warchus

Simpatico is a 1999 film starring Nick Nolte, Jeff Bridges, Sharon Stone, Catherine Keener and Albert Finney. It was adapted for the screen from the 1993 play Simpatico by Sam Shepard.