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Scuba Diving Movies: 31 Of the Best Underwater Films Ever

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Whoever says they don’t like stories is lying. We all like them, we divers love them, and that’s why we adore scuba diving movies.

Talking about storytelling is fashionable, but it has been with human beings since cave paintings. Diving movies are nothing more than that; a well-told story intended to:

– move us,

– make us feel connected with the protagonist,

– let us feel the pride of being a diver when the hero wins.

– help us discover mistakes,

– and think: “What are they doing? These guys have never dived in their lives”.

And above all, to have a good time… Or not so good time. Gosh! The filmmakers love underwater horror films.

So in this article, we have collected 31 titles of scuba movies that we have classified as follows.

1. Classic Scuba Diving Movies

1. The Frogmen (1951)

Few people have heard of this treasure, a 1950s American war movie. It tells us about the adventures of the Navy Underwater Demolition Team, “the frogmen”, during World War II, and the new commander’s efforts to gain his men’s respect.


2. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954)

Indeed, this is not strictly a diving movie, but we could not fail to name it. After all, it tops the submarines movies list.

It is an adaptation of Jules Verne’s classic of the same name. The plot places us in 1870 when a warship chartered by the U.S. must hunt down a sea monster in the South Pacific. The crew does not know this monster is not an animal but a submarine.


3. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea 1964

This was a television series that told the life of a submarine dedicated to oceanographic research in the service of the Nelson Institute.

In the submarine, work experienced divers, scientists, and crew who have at their disposal different mini-submarines and a diving bell to save the earth from terrible threats.


4. Thunderball (1965)

The second James Bond movie where Sean Connery does the impossible: escaping from a pool full of sharks and getting off with the Bond girl on duty underwater. Yes. In diving movies, the main character can do everything, even breathe from a high-pressure micro-tank of fountain pen size.

This scuba diving movie has an epic ending: a knife-edge underwater battle to cut the tracheas of the breathing apparatus.


5. The Neptune Factor (1973)

This diving film has some state-of-the-art effects for its time. To make them, they combined miniatures with real marine life.

Scientists trapped on an underwater platform, divers, a submarine, and monsters everywhere are the elements of this entertaining story.


6. The Deep (1977)

A couple finds a World War II wreck loaded with morphine and explosives on a scuba trip in the Bahamas. Treasure hunters, traffickers, and many dangers dot the plot.


7. Le Grand Blue (The big Blue, 1988)

This scuba film tells the story of Jacques Mayol, known by the nickname “Dolphin Man.”

He was the first freediver to break the 100 m/ 328ft depth barrier. His challenge with Enzo Maiorca inspired this film, which led him to work on underwater films as a technical coordinator.


8. Amsterdamned (1988)

Only a scuba diver working for the police can stop another serial killer scuba diver operating in the canals of Amsterdam. This diving film tells their story.


9. The Abyss (1989)

In this thrilling deep-sea movie, a team of divers working on an oil rig has the mission to rescue a nuclear submarine under strange circumstances. The group will face a mysterious power with the strength to destroy the world at a depth of 25,000 feet/ 7620 metres.


10. Sphere (1998)

In the oceans’ depths remains a ship of unknown origin that has been preserved intact for almost 300 years. A team of scientists must descend and study it, using their skills in saturation diving.

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2. Scuba Movies Filmed After 2000


11. Men of Honor (2000)

This diving movie tells the story of Carl Brashear, the first African-American diver in the U.S. Navy.

But he is not the only man of honor. The other protagonist is the Diving Instructor Leslie Sunday.

Throughout the 2 hours of the film, the viewer witnesses the relationship of these two men, their individual and joint failures and triumphs.


12. Open Water (2003)

This is a scuba movie with excellent reviews. It brings a true story to the screen.

A workaholic couple travels to the Bahamas to enjoy their diving vacation, but the diving boat crew doesn’t find them, and they remain alone in the middle of the sea.


13. Into the Blue (2005)

The main characters’ spectacular appearance decorates a scuba diving movie in the purest Hollywood style. Watching it, you will find Treasure-laden wrecks, pesky drug dealers, and plenty of action for two hours of pure entertainment.


14. Fool’s Gold (2008)

Once again, the cinema industry repeats the formula. This dive movie adds two good-looking main characters and thrilling underwater adventures. It is a diving movie with no pretensions except to entertain.


15. Pioneer (Pionér, 2013)

The main character is Petter, a commercial diver employed with his brother in oil exploitation in Norway in the 80s. When the latter suffers an accident, Petter tries to find out what really happened, but he must face the dangers and difficulties imposed by an uncooperative environment.


16. Pressure (2015)

A team of 4 deep divers in saturation must repair an oil pipeline. However, the ship servicing the bell is sunk by a storm, and they are trapped in it. The objective is to find a way to get out alive from there.


17. 47 Metres Down (2017)

Two sisters cage diving with a white shark are trapped 47 meters / 154 feet away when the cage is released from the boat.


18. 47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019)

Two years after “47 Meters Down: Uncaged” its sequel was released with a completely different cast, but with a chillingly similar plot. Now we have 4 female divers and where they have been trapped are some underwater Mayan ruins.


19. Underwater (2020)

Trekking across the sea floor in saturation diving to an abandoned oil rig is the only way for a team of scientists to survive.

The problem in this movie about deep sea diving: the underwater facility where they work is being flooded by a tidal wave.


20. Breaking Surface (2020)

Two ice-diving sisters get into trouble during a dive in Norway. One of them gets trapped, and the other, in the purest “dive buddy” style, resorts to all her skills to help her.

3. Cave Diving Movies

21. The Cave (2005)

A group composed of the world’s best cave divers must dive into a submerged system in the heart of Romania where a new ecosystem is believed to exist.


22. Sanctum (2011)

Diving in the world’s most inaccessible cave is the goal of a group of technical divers led by a father and son. Tragedy strikes when a tropical storm forces the divers deeper into an underwater labyrinth they don’t know how to leave.


23. Xilbaba (Curse of the Mayans, 2017)

Searching for the lost library of the Maya is the goal of an expert cave diving team. However, they find hell in the submerged cave system of Xilbaba.


24. Thirteen Lives (2022) 

This cave diving movie is a big-screen adaptation of the rescue of the kids soccer team trapped in the Than Luang cave in Thailand. We told you about this true event that in this article. Cave Diving Specialists Rescue 12 Thai Children After Two Weeks Trapped

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4. Scuba Diving Documentaries

25. Ray: A Life Underwater (2011)

This documentary film tells the life story of 75-year-old Ray Ives. A modern pirate and recycling lover who, in his youth, dived deep for treasure. The story is told through the objects he found.


26. Monty Halls’ Dive Mysteries (2013)

This is a documentary series in which explorer and marine biologist Monty Halls narrates his underwater adventures. Among them: he investigates the Blue Hole, searches for a safe lost in World War II, tracks Atlantis and explores the Marie Celeste wreck that sank under strange circumstances.


27. Diving into the Unknown ( Takaisin Pintaan, 2016)

A group of Finnish cave divers try to explore a cave system in Norway more than 130 meters /426 deep and through the ice, but 2 of them die in the attempt.

After a while, the specialists who tried to rescue the bodies abandoned the task because of the extreme danger. The survivors of the original team, however, did not and managed to salvage the bodies. This documentary narrates their adventure.


28. Mission Blue (2014)

This documentary dive movie chronicles the life of legendary oceanographer Sylvia Earle, whose personal mission is to save the ocean.


29. Chasing Coral (2017)

This documentary narrates the experience of a team of scientists, scuba divers, and cameramen who investigate corals and their threats to support their conservation.


30. Last Breath (2019)

Last Breath is a documentary film that tells a story of a saturation diver. The man had his air supply tube severed. He was stuck at 100 meters deep with a ridiculous amount of air in his backup tank and still survived.


31. The Rescue (2021)

Again, the incident suffered by the kids football team that entered the Than Luang cave, got trapped, and had to be rescued by expert cave divers motivates a scuba diving movie. In this case, it is a documentary.

In this article, we have collected 30 scuba diving movies, but there are more. Are you missing any? Feel free to share it with us!

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