The Swimmer

Watch The Swimmer

"When you talk about "The Swimmer" will you talk about yourself?"
  • M/PG
  • 1968
  • 1 hr 35 min
  • 7.6  (13,455)

The Swimmer is a 1968 film starring Burt Lancaster, Janet Landgard, and Janice Rule. The movie, based on a short story by American author John Cheever, follows the story of Ned Merrill, a wealthy and well-liked man who decides to swim home through his neighbors' swimming pools in the suburbs of Connecticut. The film begins with a shot of a lush, green, suburban neighborhood as Ned Merrill (Burt Lancaster) exits the woods and approaches a friend's house. As his friend hands him a drink, Ned boasts about how he can swim across his neighbors' pools to his own house, which lies on the other side of the town - a wild and seemingly ridiculous notion. However, Ned is determined to do it, and after trying the first pool, he jumps in, swims to the other side, and tries the next one. He continues, pool by pool, with each one bringing to mind a memory from his past, until he realizes that the seasons have changed, and it is now fall.

Throughout Ned's swim, he meets various characters who he interacts with, some of whom are old friends or lovers, and others who had wronged him in some way. These encounters serve to paint a picture of Ned's life, his relationships, and his struggles. As the film progresses, however, it becomes clear that Ned's past, though glamorous and enviable from the outside, was riddled with secrets, lies, and betrayals.

Despite being wealthy and successful, Ned is unhappy and unfulfilled. The more he swims, the more he comes to understand the reality of his life, which is far from the idyllic one he had imagined. The film explores themes of social class, identity, and perception, and it asks fundamental questions about what it means to be human and how to find happiness in a world of imperfections.

The Swimmer is a beautifully shot film, with stunning cinematography that captures the beauty of the Connecticut suburbs. The movie moves at a leisurely pace, mirroring the slow and steady swim of the protagonist, and this allows us to fully immerse ourselves in the story and the characters. The performances are excellent, especially Burt Lancaster, who portrays Ned with effortless charisma and vulnerability.

In conclusion, The Swimmer is a thought-provoking film that asks important questions about the nature of human existence. It is a movie that has stood the test of time, and it still resonates today, nearly 60 years after its release. The film reminds us that life is complex and messy, and that often the most important journey we take is the inner one.

The Swimmer is a 1968 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 35 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.6.

The Swimmer
Where to Watch The Swimmer
The Swimmer is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Swimmer for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 35 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.6  (13,455)