Can You Identify These 40 Movies Set in the South?

Bambi Turner

Image: Summit Entertainment / Regency Enterprises / River Road Entertainment / Plan B Entertainment / New Regency Productions / Film4 Productions

About This Quiz

To quote Forrest Gump, these movies are "like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get." Sure, all of these films are set in the South, but they run the gamut from thrillers to rom-coms, dramas to period pieces and everything in between. Some show us the South in all its antebellum glory; others provide a terrifying and tear-jerking look at the Civil War; some focus on the horrors of slavery, while others showcase its after-effects and the struggles to achieve Civil Rights for all people. They show the double-edged sword of living in a small town where everybody knows your name, but many of them are set in Southern cities with all the grit of their northern counterparts. 

Above all, despite the subject matter, period or place, there is that certain something that only a Southern setting can provide. It's a sense of charm and beauty, the wafting scent of magnolias, rugged natural sites, quiet tree-lined streets, the stubborn determination of Scarlet O'Hara mixed with the rakish daring of Rhett Butler. 

Think you can name all of these Southern flicks from only a single image? Prove your southern movie IQ with this quiz!

Told in flashbacks, this 1991 film will make you wish you were hanging out at the Whistle Stop Cafe with Ruth and Idgie. Can you name it?

"Fried Green Tomatoes" is a hearty serving of small-town southern charm. It tells the story of Ruth and Idgie, who run the Whistle Stop Cafe during the 1930s, told through the lens of Evelyn and Ninny. This beloved classic stars Jessica Tandy, Kathy Bates, Mary Stuart Masterson and Mary-Louise Parker.

Rhett Butler might not give a damn, but if you like Southern films, you'll love this 1939 favorite starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh.

The 1939 film "Gone with the Wind" opens with the line "There was a land of Cavaliers and Cotton Fields called the Old South," and that's exactly how this film starts off ... until the Civil War brings the Confederacy to its knees, and leaves even Scarlett O'Hara wearing drapes as a dress. Tune in to this movie to watch as "gallantry" takes "its last bow."

Can you name this 1997 movie based on a true story, which was captured in a bestselling book by John Berendt?

"Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" starts off as a story about Savannah society, and ends in a tale of intrigue and murder. Watching this flick takes you straight to one of Savannah's many public squares, and makes you feel like you could meet Jim Williams around any corner.

What classic 1962 film stars Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch?

Think lawyers have a tough job? Imagine trying to defend a black man accused of raping a white woman in 1930s Alabama ... with an all-white jury. This is the task facing Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch in "To Kill a Mockingbird," in which the young Scout serves as the narrator and key character.

Name the 1989 comedy drama shown here, which was based on a 1987 play set in Louisiana.

In "Steel Magnolias," women in small-town Louisiana show they can be tough as steel while remaining as delicate as a flower. The film stars Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Julia Roberts and Shirley MacLane.

If you didn't cry while watching this 2004 Southern drama, you might need to read a few more Nicholas Sparks novels.

"The Notebook" stars Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling as young lovers who meet on the South Carolina boardwalk one summer, then spend their lives just missing each other. By the end of the film, the pair end up reunited in a nursing home, with only a notebook to help them recapture the past.

This Tom Hanks film made waiting for the bus in Savannah into a genuine tourist attraction ... and may have drawn a few young people into the shrimping biz. Think you can name it?

It's hard not to feel good after watching "Forrest Gump," a 1994 film about a special man from Greenbow, Alabama who ends up accomplishing extraordinary things. If you liked watching Forrest become a football star, war hero and business tycoon in the film, you wouldn't believe what other great things happen in the original book by Winston Groom, which inspired the movie.

A native of Benton, Arkansas, Billy Bob Thornton chose his home state to serve as the backdrop for this 1996 film. Do you know its title?

In "Sling Blade," Billy Bob Thornton plays a disabled man named Karl Childers who ends up in an institution after killing his mom and her lover. The film details his life after his release, including a poignant look at small-town life.

Based on three short stories by William Faulkner, name this 1958 film set in the tiny town of Frenchman's Ben, Mississippi.

"The Long Hot Summer" stars Paul Newman as a drifter named Ben Quick, who shows up unexpectedly in a tiny Southern town and ends up crossing the powerful Varner family. The movie was filmed in Clinton, Louisiana and co-stars Orson Welles as Will Varner.

You might not want to go camping after seeing this 1972 film remembered for its brutal rape scene.

In the 1972 film "Deliverance," four men go camping in the Georgia wilderness, only to run afoul of local mountain men. After being forced to squeal like a pig, the men are forced to fight for their survival and make difficult choices. This critically-acclaimed movie stars Jon Voight and Burt Reynolds.

Choose the correct name for this 1989 film, which earned the Best Picture Oscar and won Best Actress for Jessica Tandy.

"Driving Miss Daisy" is one of the most-beloved Southern films ever made. Released in 1989, it stars Morgan Freeman as a driver for a wealthy white woman in Atlanta, Georgia. The movie explores issues of race, faith and friendship.

Which of these films was set in the fictional Louisiana town of Isle de Charles Doucet ... or Bathtub?

A young Quvenzhane Wallis steals the show as young Hushpuppy in the 2012 film "Beasts of the Southern Wild." Forced to deal with an angry, ailing father and the constant threat of flooding in her small Louisiana town, Hushpuppy manages to appear both vulnerable and wise beyond her years.

Who do you call when you get charged with a murder you didn't commit in a tiny Alabama town?

It's up to newly-minted lawyer Vinny to save the day when his young family members are accused of murder. Starring Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei, "My Cousin Vinny" is not only a great look at stereotypical New Yorkers trying to function in a small Southern town, but is also celebrated for its portrayal of courtroom procedures.

Which of these films shows what happens when a black man and white man are forced to work together to survive in a strictly-segregated Southern town?

In the 1958 film "The Defiant Ones," Sidney Poitier and Tony Curtis play a black and a white convict who escape from a chain gang but are still locked together. As they attempt to survive in the '50s deep South, they are forced to face issues of deep-seated racism and hatred.

Reese Witherspoon plays a New Yorker who must head back down south to file for divorce before marrying her fiance in this 2002 favorite. Can you name it?

In "Sweet Home Alabama," Reese Witherspoon plays a New York fashion designer named Melanie who must return to her Southern roots before she can marry her high-flying fiance. Of course, once she's back home again, she realizes why she'll always be a Southern girl through and through.

Remember listening to Stanley cry for Stella from that Louisiana courtyard? Which 1951 movie features this scene?

"A Streetcar Named Desire" tells the story of former Southern belle Blanche DuBois, who returns to New Orleans to live with her sister Stella and her brother-in-law Stanley. As she watches Stella and Stanley's relationship fall apart, Blanche begins to fall to pieces herself. This movie, which was based on a Tennessee Williams play, helped make Marlon Brando a star.

Montgomery Clift plays Chuck Glover, a man torn between ethics and career in the 1960 movie set in Tennessee.

"Wild River" is a 1960 film featuring Montgomery Clift as a man trying to force local Tennessee families to leave their homes to make way for a new hydroelectric dam. Set in the '30s in small-town Tennessee, the film shows Clift's character changing from an authority figure to a friend of the locals.

This 2013 film won three Oscars, including Best Picture. Think you can name it using only this image?

"12 Years a Slave" is the onscreen adaptation of a biographical work by Solomon Northrup, a free man sold into slavery in the mid-19th century. The film tells Soloman's tragic tale of being forced to slave away at a Louisiana plantation while his family in New York wonders what became of him.

It won five Oscars, including Best Picture, but can you name the 1967 film starring Sidney Poitier as Detective Virgil Tibbs?

Set in the small town of Spartan, Mississippi, "In the Heat of the Night" focuses on a black detective from Philadelphia who ends up solving a murder. In addition to dealing with a tough case, Detective Virgil Tibbs is forced to deal with racism, small-town politics and a Southern town struggling with the effects of the Civil Rights Movement.

Four little girls in 1930s Louisiana vow to be friends forever, and end up helping one another as adults in this 2002 film favorite.

"Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood" begins with four young girls taking a blood oath, and goes on to show how they keep their promise of friendship as they grow. The 2002 film stars Sandra Bullock, Ashley Judd, Maggie Smith and James Garner.

Can you pick the Southern film that shows a former salesman narrating his life to his son while on his deathbed?

The 2003 film "Big Fish" is a unique blend of fantasy and gothic storytelling. It features Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Jessica Lange and Billy Crudup, and tells the story of a former salesman who uses his gift of storytelling to bond with his son as he lays dying.

Controversial when it was released in 2012, which of these films was designed to pay homage to Sergio Leone and his spaghetti western legacy?

"Django Unchained" blends the classic tales of the Wild West with the horrors of slavery in the antebellum South to create a truly unique story. Set in the mid-19th century in Texas, Tennessee and Mississippi, the film stars Jamie Foxx as Django Freeman. The film was as controversial for its high level of violence as it was for its portrayal of slavery.

Which of these films was a 1982 musical starring Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds?

"The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" manages to make a Texas brothel called the Chicken Ranch look sort of wholesome. The feel-good film stars Dolly Parton as proprietor Mona Stangley and Burt Reynolds as Sheriff Ed Earl Dodd, a man willing to look beyond the law to help his friends.

Loretta Lynn started life dirt poor in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky before becoming a major country music star. Name the 1980 flick that tells her story.

Before she was signing at the Grand Ol' Opry, Loretta Lynn was just a poor "Coal Miner's Daughter." This 1980 film chronicles her young marriage, rise to stardom, near breakdown, and comeback as a country music queen.

Pick the title of this Stephen King-inspired flick, which stars a prisoner named John Coffey, a guard named Paul Edgecomb and a mouse named Mr. Jingles.

Told in flashbacks, the 1999 film "The Green Mile" is told through the eyes of a former death row prison guard named Paul Edgecomb, played by Tom Hanks. Edgecomb reveals that during the Great Depression, he met a doomed man with special powers, including the ability to make a certain prison guard and a seemingly normal pet mouse live much longer than expected.

Based on a real-life crime, name this 1996 courtroom drama that tells the story of Medgar Evers.

"Ghosts of Mississippi" is based on the real-life 1994 trial of Byron De La Beckwith, a white supremacist accused of murdering a civil rights leader named Medgar Evers. The tense film stars Alec Baldwin, Whoopi Goldberg and James Woods.

Set in 1950s Louisiana, this coming of age film stars Reese Witherspoon as Dani Trant.

"The Man in the Moon" is a poignant story of a young girl's first love. As Dani Trant, Reese Witherspoon is forced to watch her love interest Court fall for her sister, and then end up dead.

Set in Mississippi in the 1960s, which of these films stars Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer?

"The Help" explores life among the black housekeepers of wealthy families in 1963 Jackson, Mississippi. It's told through the eyes of a young white reporter, played by Emma Stone.

Kate Hudson stars as a nurse working with a private patient in a spooky Southern house in this 2005 flick.

The 2005 film "The Skeleton Key" is so atmospheric that it's almost like the New Orleans home where the movie is set is a character in itself. Kate Hudson plays Caroline, a nurse who takes a job in a mysterious house with a hoodoo history.

Know which 2012 coming-of-age tale tells the story of a pair of Arkansas teens who befriend a convict on the run?

Set in Dewitt, Arkansas, "Mud" is about two teens named Ellis and Neckbone who befriend a vagabond named Mud. Played by Matthew McConaughey, the accused killer Mud is willing to sacrifice his freedom to save his young friends.

Released in 2007, which of these films stars Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin and Tommy Lee Jones?

The 2007 film "No Country for Old Men" is about a Vietnam vet named Llewelyn Moss who ends up stealing $2 million during a drug deal gone bad. As he tries to survive long enough to spend the money, he is tailed through Texas by a deranged hit man and a tough Sheriff.

In this 2003 film, a Southerner named W.P. Inman joins the Army, then struggles to make his way home after the Civil War. Can you name it?

"Cold Mountain" is named for a western North Carolina peak located in Pisgah National Forest. Resident W.P. Inman, played by Jude Law, is desperate to make it home to his love Amy after surviving the horrors of the Civil War.

Set in a Louisiana swamp in the 1930s, which tense Southern flick is shown in this image?

The 1981 film "Southern Comfort" tells the story of a group of Army National Guard members performing training exercises in the bayous of Louisiana. As they become hopelessly lost in the swamp, things get serious as a group of angry Cajun hunters closes in.

Starring Samuel L. Jackson as Louis Batiste, which of these films is set in a Creole community in 1960s Louisiana?

"Eve's Bayou" tells the tale of a young girl named Eve Batiste. Eve is forced to grow up too fast in this 1997 film due to her father's infidelity and murder, as well as the effects of her own mysterious gifts.

What is the name of this celebrated 2005 film that was inspired by the life story of musician Johnny Cash?

Based on a pair of Cash biographies, "Walk the Line" follows the legendary singer from his youth on a 1940s southern farm in Arkansas, through his early career in Memphis and his move towards Nashville and stardom. The movie stars Joaquin Phoenix as Cash and Reese Witherspoon as his wife June Carter.

Nick Nolte plays Tom Wingo, a teacher forced to face his damaging past in this 1991 movie. Remember what it's called?

The 1991 movie "The Price of Tides" tells the story of southern Tom Wingo, who travels from his home in South Carolina to New York City in an effort to help his mentally-damaged sister. While there, he is forced to face his tragic past and deal with emotions he would rather ignore.

Keri Russell plays small-town girl Jenna, who's suffering from a bad job, bad relationship and surprise pregnancy in this 2007 film. Think you can name it?

Things are not going well for Jenna in the 2007 film "Waitress." Not only is she pregnant and stuck with an abusive boyfriend, but she also scrapes out a living making pies at Joe's Pie Diner. The story has a happy ending, however, as Jenna ditches the job and the guy and starts her own diner named for her daughter.

Know which of these films was inspired by the real-life story of NFL player Michael Oher?

Inspired by the difficult life story of Michael Oher, "The Blind Side" stars Sandra Bullock as a Tennessee mom who takes in a child in need. That child, Michael, ends up playing football for Ole Miss before taking a turn in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens.

Set in Mississippi during the Great Depression, which of these films stars George Clooney as Ulysses Everett McGill?

"O Brother, Where Art Thou?" is a feel-good tale about three convicts on the run in 1930s Mississippi. Set to classic folk music, it's a modern telling of Homer's "The Odyssey," with George Clooney in the role of Ulysses.

A new grad takes on more than he bargains for when he takes a job as a lawyer in this 1993 film. Do you know its title?

Based on the book by John Grisham, "The Firm" stars Tom Cruise as a naive young lawyer who joins a Memphis law firm. Forced to make immoral and even illegal choices, Cruise's character is manipulated by his mentor Avery Tolar, played by Gene Hackman.

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