Swimming pools are a perfect match for film. Their shimmering, inviting water lends an irresistible beauty to an already visual media...Swimming pools make a great setting for a scene in a movie [and] can create deeper meaning by quietly acting as a metaphor. It's easy to think of a scene from a film that reminds you why swimming pools have left a certain impact on you.
Whether Let the Right One In terrified you or Fast Times at Ridgemont High made you want to shield someone's eyes, swimming pools in movies stick with you. So, we at California Pools picked the Top 10 of our favorite swimming pool scenes in film. For starters, The Graduate features the wonderful metaphor with Ben Braddock's (Dustin Hoffman) observation, "I would say that I'm just drifting...here in the pool...it's very comfortable to drift here."
Take a look at our 9 other hand-picked swimming pool scenes and reminisce some of your favorite movies that feature a classic shimmering swimming pool! While some of them carry strong metaphors, just like The Graduate, others simply are great to look at. Let us know if a terrific swimming pool scene of your favorites is missing from our list!
Next, is The Guardian, a great showcase of heroism in rescuing swimmers. Their swimming pool gets far more significant use than even the one in your own custom backyard living space!
It's a Wonderful Life | It's hard to believe a swimming pool with a retractable dance floor overhead existed in 1946 when this charming film was made, but this was a working swimming pool located at Beverly Hills High School in Los Angeles.
In this famous scene, dancers in formal dress falling into a swimming pool adds wild exuberance to the Bedford Falls High School dance, jump-starting the courtship of George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) and Mary Hatch (Donna Reed).
Let the Right One In | The range of what is considered "horror" is vast, from low-budget comedy/horror blends like "Sharknado" to nuanced stories that comment on various aspects of society. Let the Right One In is a Swedish film later remade in the U.S. as Let Me In and tells the story of a young boy named Oskar who unwittingly befriends a vampire, a girl named Eli. In one scene, Oskar is confronted by a bully, Jimmy, while in the school swimming pool. Jimmy's demand: For Oskar to hold his breath underwater for three minutes. If he fails, Jimmy will cut his eye out.
Knowing this to be nearly impossible, Oskar nevertheless tries to hold his breath. During the scene, we watch him underwater, eyes tightly shut, and hear some commotion from above. Someone is dragged to the other side of the swimming pool, as evidenced by sneakers gliding unnaturally along the surface. Then: a severed head falls into the swimming pool. Jimmy's arm, which formerly had a tight grip on Oskar's hair, loses its grip and falls to the bottom of the swimming pool, severed. Oskar is pulled out of the swimming pool by Eli, who saved him by "taking care of" the others. With blood on her face, their eyes meet, and they smile.
Lady in the Water | Although this may not be M. Night Shyamalan's brightest star, it has an intriguing plot that almost entirely revolves around this property's swimming pool.
Fast Times at Ridgemont High | probably one of the most famous / iconic swimming pool scenes...pretty racey / scandalous for its time.
The Way Way Back | An aging waterpark takes center stage in this 2013 coming-of-age film that chronicles the rocky summer vacation of Duncan, a lonely 14-year-old. Sullen, depressed and seeking escape, by chance he meets Owen, the rumpled wise-cracking manager of the nearby Water Wizz water park. An aging beach bum suffering from chronic Peter Pan syndrome, the kind-hearted Owen offers Duncan a job. Duncan soon finds himself working alongside a staff of lovable tragic misfits. Along the way, he discovers girls and ultimately finds fun and self-confidence among the park's aging slides and play structures. Like its motley staff, the waterpark is worn out but still big-time fun, if not a bit hazardous as well. For Duncan, it becomes the perfect place to discover the sunnier, and soggier, side of life.
No Country for Old Men | This scene wasn't in the book, but is an alternate scene, rather than an added one. It takes the place of a moment in the book where Moss talks to the girl who hitchhikes with him on the road to el Paso. It doesn't end well in both circumstances.
Ferris Bueller's Day Off | Another classic film from the 1980's, and the final scene in the swimming pool reminds every viewer how they easily we can fall in love with fictional characters.
The Great Gatsby | The swimming pool featured in this film's extravagant party scene(s) is one that so excellent exhibits what we love to fantasize about The Great Gatsby story and the era it is inspired by. Allowing the cast to showcase the wealth and posh lifestyle of Jay Gatsby is going to be hard to surpass in coming years of film-making, and it's a swimming pool we'd all like to dream of having in our backyards.
If you didn't see your favorite swimming pool scene from a film in this list, let us know! You can also recreate some of your favorite swimming pool scenes in your own custom outdoor living area. If you do, post photos or video and tag California Pools!
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