18 Movies and TV Shows Based in Nebraska

August 7, 2020Add a CommentPosted By

While there are many inconveniences of social distancing, there have been some positives. Mainly that it’s given us the chance to catch up on our favorite podcasts, books, television shows and movies! If that’s you too, and you’re looking for something new to watch, we’ve got a list of our favorite locally based television shows and movies that will keep you entertained for hours on end.

While all these shows and films are based in Nebraska, a few of them were even filmed here! That means you might even be able to spot some local landmarks as you watch.

So queue up these Nebraska-based TV shows and movies the next time you need something new to watch. This list has everything—from terrifying Stephen King horror movies to brand new superhero TV shows that will keep you busy for weeks.

If you’re still on the fence about what streaming service you should invest in for your family—check out this handy guide from Consumers Advocate that outlines the pros and cons of all the top streaming services including Netflix, Hulu, YouTube TV and more! 

Television Shows

Bless This Mess (2019-Present)

Watch on ABC (Free) + Hulu

TV + Movies Set in Nebraska

This relatively new ABC comedy stars Lake Bell and Dax Shepard as newlyweds Rio and Mike, as they give up their home in New York City to enjoy the “simple life” in rural Nebraska. Once they make the move from skyscrapers to farmhouses, they soon realize that the simpler life isn’t as easy as they had planned. This hilarious show, which has raving reviews on both IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes, has two seasons and has just been renewed for a third in 2020.


Stargirl (2020-Present)

Watch on The CW (Free)

This brand new DC Universe show premiered on May 19, 2020, and has already received a 100% Rotten Tomatoes rating—which means you pretty much have to watch it! The series follows a high school student, Courtney Whitmore, who has recently moved to the fictional town of Blue Valley, Nebraska, as she inspires a group of young heroes to stop villains of the past. It is the newest addition to The CW’s DC lineup of Arrow, The Flash, Superwoman, Batwoman, Black Lightning and more. While there are only a few episodes out at the moment, we can’t wait to see where this show takes us!


The Young Riders (1989-1992)

Watch on Prime Video

This late ‘80s television show follows a group of young Pony Express riders (some of whom are young versions of legendary figures in Old West history) based in the Nebraska Territory prior to the Civil War. Starring Stephen Baldwin, Josh Brolin and Melissa Leo, the series premiered on ABC and ran for three seasons, ending in 1992.



1922 (2017)

Watch on Netflix

1922 is a horror-drama film based on Stephen King’s 2010 novella of the same name. Starring Thomas Jane, Neal McDonough and Molly Parker, this movie starts off with a farmer who pens a confession admitting to his wife’s murder. But her death is just the beginning of a macabre tale. The film premiered on Netflix in October of 2017 and available to watch whenever you need a bit of a fright.


About Schmidt (2002)

Watch on YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

TV + Movies Set in Nebraska

This 2002 dramedy follows Warren Schmidt (Jack Nickolson), a quiet ex-insurance actuary who is unhappily married and brooding over the forthcoming wedding of his daughter, Jeannie. When his wife suddenly dies and he finds love letters to her from his best friend, he is inspired to stop the wedding. Brought to the big screen by Alexander Payne, a Nebraskan legend, this film will make you laugh and cry—usually at the same time.


Alien vs. Predator (2004)

Watch on Hulu + Amazon Prime + Youtube + Itunes

One of the most iconic crossovers ever, Alien vs. Predator features two creatures from two of the scariest franchises ever that are made to battle for supremacy on Earth. The discovery of an ancient pyramid buried under the Antarctic ice sends a team of scientists and adventurers to the frozen continent. Once there, curiosity turns to terror as two devastating alien races wage war, with the fate of humanity in the balance. Directed by Paul W.S. Anderson and starring Raoul Bova, Sanaa Lathan, Lance Henriksen, this thriller is a must-watch for science fiction fans.


Boys Don’t Cry (1999)

Watch on Hulu + YouTube + Itunes

This independent film follows a transgender man as he explores his gender identity and searches for love in rural Nebraska, before falling victim to a brutal hate crime. A trailblazer in its time, this drama nabbed Hilary Swank her first Academy Award for best actress.


Boys Town (1938)

Watch on YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

Spencer Tracy stars with Mickey Rooney in this Oscar-nominated biological drama based on Father Edward J. Flanagan’s work with a group of underprivileged and delinquent boys in a home that he founded and named “Boys Town” near Omaha. Watch the film and then take a drive over to the actual Boys Town area for yourself! Not only is it packed full of historic sites (which you can see right from your car), it’s also home to the World’s Largest Ball of Stamps.


Caddyshack (1980)

Watch on YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

Brought to the big screen by comedy legends Harold Ramis and Brian Doyle-Murray and starring a cast of famous funny men like Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield and Bill Murray, this cult classic is a must-watch this season. It follows a teen down on his luck working as a caddy at a snob-infested country club to raise money for his college education.


Children of the Corn (1984)

Watch on Tubi (Free) + YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

TV + Movies Set in Nebraska

This 1984 horror film based on the 1977 short story by Stephen King, has spawned a massive Children of the Corn franchise—with eight movies currently available to rent and watch. The original, however, is a classic for horror lovers everywhere, following a couple who stumbles into a small town in Nebraska that is populated only by children who believe that anyone over 18 should be killed.


Downsizing (2017)

Watch on Hulu + YouTube + Amazon Prime

Another fantastic film directed by Nebraskan Alexander Payne, Downsizing is a 2017 science fiction satirical political drama starring Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau and Kristen Wiig. It follows mild-mannered therapist Paul Safranek and his wife, Audrey, as they decide to undergo a “shrinking” process that shrinks people down to miniature size to live in small communities. The irreversible procedure allows people to gain wealth and a life of leisure while also helping cut down on overpopulation and the consumption of natural resources.


Election (1999)

Watch on Hulu + YouTube

This 1999 film starring Matthew Broderick and Reese Witherspoon follows a feud between high school government teacher Jim McAllister and student Tracy Flick as she runs for student body president using some… less than ethical tactics. This cult classic is another spectacular film directed by Alexander Payne and is based on Tom Perrotta’s 1998 novel of the same name.


Fail Safe (1964)

Watch on Amazon Prime + YouTube

Fail Safe is a 1964 Cold War thriller directed by Sidney Lument, based on the 1962 novel by Eugene Burdick and Harvey Wheeler. It portrays a fictional account of a nuclear crisis that has the president of the United States, played by Henry Fonda, struggling to keep the Soviet Union from counter-attacking after an American Bomber destroys Moscow.


Heaven is For Real (2014)

Watch on Amazon Prime

Heaven Is for Real is a 2014 American Christian drama film starring Greg Kinnear, Kelly Reilly, Connor Corum, Margo Martindale and Thomas Haden Church. Set in Imperial, Nebraska, this movie follows small-town businessman, pastor and volunteer firefighter Todd Burpo (Kinnear) and his wife, Sonja (Reilly), who are struggling to make ends meet during a tough year. After their young son, Colton (Corum), undergoes emergency surgery, Todd and Sonja are overjoyed at the child’s miraculous recovery. However, the Burpos are unprepared for what happens next—Colton says that he went to heaven and back, and tells his parents things that he couldn’t possibly know.


Mr. Woodcock (2008)

Watch on YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

This slapstick comedy may have gotten poor ratings from critics—garnering a 13% on Rotten Tomatoes, but it’s definitely still a fun film to watch when you’re stuck inside! Mr. Woodcock follows John Farley (Sean William Scott), a self-help author who returns to his hometown and makes a shocking discovery: his mom (Sarah Sarandon) is about to marry his former gym teacher (Billy Bob Thornton), a man who made John’s life a living hell during his high school years. To prevent history from repeating itself, he sets out to stop his mother’s marriage and hilarious antics ensue.


Nebraska (2013)

Watch on Crackle (Free) + YouTube + Amazon Prime + Itunes

TV + Movies Set in Nebraska

It just wouldn’t be a list about Nebraska movies without Alexander Payne’s iconic film, Nebraska! This 2013, black-and-white comedy-drama follows the cantankerous old buzzard, Woody Grant (Bruce Dern), who can barely walk down the street of his home in Billings, MT without stopping for a drink. So when he receives a sweepstakes notice in the mail and insists on making a 750-mile road trip to Lincoln, NE to collect his prize, it falls to his baffled son, David (William Forte), to accompany him.


Out of Omaha (2018)

Watch on Amazon Prime

Out of Omaha is an award-winning documentary that follows twin brothers Darcell and Darrell Trotter, young black men coming of age in the divided city of Omaha, Nebraska. By intimately portraying the twins’ hopes and struggles—and the love and help they give and get along the way—the film examines how much it takes to overcome disadvantages rooted in historic injustice.


Peacock (2010)

Watch on Tubi (Free) + YouTube

Peacock is a psychological thriller directed by Michael Lander that follows a man with a multiple-personality disorder who tricks a town into believing his multiple personalities are husband and wife. The drama really begins when a freight train caboose derails and crashes into John’s backyard, putting John’s life into the spotlight. Peacock has a solid cast with many well-known actors, including Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page, Susan Sarandon, Josh Lucas and Bill Pullman.


And… Action!

Did we mention your favorite movie? Or did we miss one of your favorites set in Nebraska? Chat with us in the comments!

NP Dodge

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