With its enchanting desert landscapes and mountains, Santa Fe, New Mexico has been an obvious spot for many filmmakers. Oscar winners, comedies, and lesser-known but great movies have been filmed in the area, making it a coveted shooting town. From action movies to dramas, here are 7 great movies filmed in Santa Fe.
1. Crazy Heart (2009)
Based on the book of the same name, Crazy Heart stars Maggie Gyllenhal and Jeff Bridges/ The story follows the story of a doomed relationship as a former country music star, Bad Blake (played by Bridges) spirals even further down his drunken fall from fame. The film features beautiful imagery throughout, but some of the most powerful moments were those filmed in the Santa Fe landscape. The movie won two Academy Awards, with Bridges taking home Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role, and Best Original Song for “The Weary Kind.” Bridges also won Best Actor at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and AARP Movies for Grownups Awards. Gyllenhaal was nominated at the Academy Awards for Best Supporting Actress.
2. Corporate Animals (2019)
Corporate Animals stars Demi Moore as a CEO who takes her team on a corporate team building in an underground cave in New Mexico and follows them as they get stuck there. The movie didn’t garner a lot of attention, but it was the perfect storyline to be filmed in Sante Fe. While it didn’t take home any acknowledgments in the U.S., it did get nominated for Best Picture at the Catalonian International Film Festival.
3. Twins (1988)
This comedy film starring Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger was a big box-office hit when it came out in 1988. The story follows two fraternal twins who were a part of a secret experiment to see if they could produce the perfect child, but they separated at birth. While it’s not the focus of the film, Sante Fe acts as the backdrop and shows off the beautiful landscape that the city and its surrounding areas offer.
4. A Million Ways to Die in the West (2015)
What better place to film a western comedy than Santa Fe? A Million Ways to Die in the West is a story that follows a farmer who thinks that the wild west itself is trying to kill him, all while he is dealing with his girlfriend leaving him, and falling in love with another mysterious woman who comes into town. Given the old-time wild-west storyline, Sante Fe was the perfect location for shooting scenes in an old western town, gunfights, and desert journeys.
5. Thor (2011)
The Marvel movie Thor starring Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman was a huge success among superhero fans. The film grossed $449.3 million at the box office and was the lead-up to two more very successful films in the series. To get the full effect of the journey from Asgard to planet earth, Thor was filmed in several locations. Sante Fe was one of them, among other places like LA. The backdrop of desert and mountain was the perfect location for both fight scenes and dramatic moments like Thor’s landing on Earth.
6. No Country for Old Men (2007)
A dramatic and violent film based on the book of the same name by Cormac MacCarthy, No Country for Old Men follows a hunter who accidentally stumbles into a drug deal gone wrong. The film swept the Academy Awards, winning Best Motion Picture, Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role for Javier Bardem, Best Writing for an Adapted Screenplay, and Best Achievement in Directing. It was also nominated for Best Achievement in Cinematography, Film Editing, Sound Mixing, and Sound Editing. Sante Fe, similar to the reasons it was a perfect location for Crazy Heart and A Million Ways to Die in the West, was the perfect location to film this movie because of its dramatic need for a big sky and landscape.
7. True Grit (2010)
Another Academy Award nominee, the remake of True Grit starred Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld, Matt Damon, and Josh Brolin in a violent story where a teenage girl enlists the help of a U.S. Marshal to track down the man who killed her father. While the film was nominated for 10 Oscars, it didn’t bring home the win for any of the categories it was nominated in. Cinematography and Art Direction Sante Fe and its surrounding are provided to the camera.
Santa Fe has been the site of many cool movies. While everyone knows that Albuquerque is a hub for movie makers, Santa Fe is another location where a lot of cool movies have been filmed. The city is both a beautiful place to live (if you’re thinking of moving to Santa Fe) and a great spot to film movies.