The Bend on the Big Screen
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Among the things we could use as we stay at home and practice social distancing: Something to watch.  

But what to choose? Turns out we can help with that. Here’s our guide to seven things you can stream from home with serious ties to the local area.

Rudy

Did you think we’d start somewhere else? “Rudy,” like most sports movies, takes some creative license with the actual Rudy Ruettiger story. That’s OK, it’s probably a better flick as a result. Rolling Stone considers it a Top 30 sports movie; Vulture put it in the top 35. And so on.  

Most of the film was shot in South Bend and on Notre Dame’s campus. It shows off several campus landmarks – the Grotto, Hesburgh Library, Notre Dame Stadium – plus some in the community, like Corby’s Irish Pub.  

RELATED CONTENT: 10 Iconic Landmarks at Notre Dame

Notre Dame fans, of course, swear by the movie. We’d argue it should be watched by everyone.

Where to Stream Rudy

Anything with Adam Driver

One of the most famous actors on the planet right now, Driver spent most of his formative years in Mishawaka (his mother’s hometown) and graduated from Mishawaka High School in 2001.  

Driver broke through with a role in the HBO series “Girls.” He earned Academy Award nominations for roles in “BlacKkKlansman” and “Marriage Story.” Of course, Driver’s role as Kylo Ren/Ben Solo in the recent “Star Wars” sequel series launched him into superstardom.  

Where to Stream Adam Driver Movies

Breaking Bad

One of the greatest television series of all time? Um, yes. “Breaking Bad” needs no introduction. Here’s the local connection: Actor Dean Norris, who plays Hank Schrader in all 62 episodes, grew up in South Bend and graduated from Clay High School. A diehard Notre Dame fan, he still returns for games.  

Where to Stream Breaking Bad

A League of Their Own

We’re guessing many have seen this movie, which brought the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League to the big screen. Tom Hanks and Geena Davis star in a story ostensibly about two sisters competing in the league, which rose to prominence during World War II while many men were away fighting.  

A founding member of the league, The South Bend Blue Sox participated for the duration (1943-54).  

RELATED CONTENT: Explore The Bend’s Past at The History Museum

The History Museum in South Bend has a permanent exhibit on the AAGPBL called “Polished in Public, Fierce on the Field.” Its collection, a repository for the league, includes photographs, programs, film footage, equipment and more.  

Where to Stream A League of Their Own

Lincoln

Come for the Academy Award-winning performance by Daniel Day-Lewis as President Abraham Lincoln, stay for Adam Driver’s small role as telegraph operator Samuel Beckwith. But that’s not the only connection.  

RELATED CONTENT: Exploring Classic Cars at Studebaker National Museum

Studebaker National Museum is home to a significant piece of Lincoln history — the very carriage he rode to Ford’s Theatre on the fateful night of his assassination. It’s part of the world’s largest collection of presidential carriages, one of the museum’s permanent exhibits. 

Where to Stream Lincoln

Prancer

This under-the-radar, uplifting holiday film has a star-studded cast: Sam Elliott, Cloris Leachman, Abe Vigoda and a young Johnny Galecki. The plot revolves around a young girl helping a wounded reindeer, which she believes to be Prancer, back to health.  

Most of the movie was filmed in the area, including several scenes at The Old Republic, a now-private residence in New Carlisle. Check out the fan-posted photo below.

Where to Stream Prancer

Independence Day

Bet you’re searching for a connection to The Bend with this one. Roland Emmerich’s epic blockbuster about the world coming together to thwart an alien invasion stars Hollywood titans like Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum and Randy Quaid. Then there’s Vivica A. Fox.  

Fox, born in South Bend, has had a long and successful career as an actress. In “Independence Day,” she plays Jasmine Dubrow, girlfriend to Steven Hiller (played by Smith). It’s arguably her biggest film role.  

Plus, who doesn’t want the stir of patriotism that comes with America taking down some aliens?  

Where to Stream Independence Day