5 Best Movies Filmed In Wyoming
Located west of the center of the United States, Wyoming is a beautiful state acquired as part of the Louisiana Purchase. The least populated of the 50 states, Wyoming remains the tenth largest. In addition to this, the state is full of breathtaking mountain ranges and sparsely populated land — in the two centuries since the US obtained the land, it’s likely not much has really changed there. Beyond being a beautiful place, the state was also the first to grant women the right to vote all the way back in 1869. It’s no surprise the state remains one of the best places to shoot movies — with such wide open spaces, there’s no one to disturb and few manmade obstructions in the way of the stunning landscapes. While this list contains a few westerns, there are all kinds of great movies filmed in Wyoming.
Quentin Tarantino’s first western, Django Unchained, impressed critics and audiences alike upon its release in 2012. Starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson, and Kerry Washington, the movie tells the story of an eccentric bounty hunter and a slave as they head out to liberate Django’s wife from an evil plantation owner. The beautiful shots of Wyoming dispersed throughout the film, presented in beautiful widescreen, make for some glorious interludes.
Director Alexander Payne is one of the best working today, despite the fact that he takes his time in between films. His 2013 film, Nebraska, is no exception. Despite being named after a different state, Nebraska was partially filmed in the state of Wyoming. The gorgeous black-and-white cinematography presents the state in a different light, but make no mistake: it’s Wyoming through and through.
Perhaps Clint Eastwood’s greatest western, Unforgiven sees the actor-turned-director playing an aging bounty hunter who decides to take on one last mission. With a knockout cast and impressive direction, the movie almost doubles as a tribute to Wyoming. Eastwood was smart to film his movie in America’s 44th state.
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Written and directed by Steven Spielberg in 1977, Close Encounters of the Third Kind tells the story of an Indiana man whose life is changed forever after encountering an unidentified flying object. Despite the fact it’s about a blue-collar man living closer to the east coast than the west, the movie was smartly filmed in Wyoming. It was a passion project for the filmmaker, and it’s hard to imagine the movie looking any different than it does with its Wyoming scenery.
A cowboy movie, unlike any other, Brokeback Mountain stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger as two young men with a complex emotional and physical relationship between 1963 and 1983. With a supporting cast made up of Anne Hathaway and Michelle Williams, the movie profiles beautiful relationships with an equally beautiful Wyoming backdrop. Ang Lee is an impressive director as it is, but his movie is enhanced by its shooting location
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