Under John Barr’s direction, ‘Dangerous Waters’ spins a thrilling tale of a girl’s survival at sea amidst treacherous individuals and tumultuous events. Rose and her mother, Alma, work tiring jobs to make ends meet since Rose’s father died overseas while serving in the military. Alma’s ex-cop boyfriend, Derek Stipes, offers to take the two sailing on his boat to the edge of the Bermuda. While Alma gladly agrees, Rose has her reservations but is unable to reason with her excited mother. As they embark on their maritime journey, Derek attempts to bond with Rose and is surprised by her dexterity in seamanship and handling of firearms.
Their peaceful evening is brought to a jarring end when Derek’s dark past catches up with him and a boat rams into their yacht. Attackers shoot Alma and Derek while Rose is below deck. As she emerges, she finds the boat burnt, Derek floating in the water, and her mother to be no more. Washing ashore on an uninhabited Island, she helps Derek recover but is still suspicious of his past, given the tragedy that had befallen her. The 2023 film takes us through Rose’s transformation as she overcomes her fear and dishes out vengeance on her attackers. The thriller film transpires around stunning coastal landscapes and vibrant, serene waters, sparking curiosity regarding where exactly the movie was filmed.
Dangerous Waters Filming Locations
‘Dangerous Waters’ was filmed on location across various sites in the Dominican Republic. Principal photography was carried out between mid-May of 2022 and June 1, 2022. During shooting, legendary actor Ray Liotta, who plays the antagonist, passed away in his sleep. Talking about her experience with the crew and of the veteran actor’s passing, lead actress Odeya Rush, wrote in a social media post: “What a journey this movie was, and I’m so glad I got to do it with a crew that I love so so much by my side. We were all so honored to be able to work and learn and watch you Ray. Your beautiful spirit will never be forgotten.” Allow us to take you through the locations used to create the thriller movie.
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Filming for ‘Dangerous Waters’ took place majorly in and around the capital city of the Dominican Republic, Santo Domingo. A breathtaking seaside city, filmmakers made use of Santo Domingo for most of the movie’s land-based scenes and ventured into Caribbean waters to capture the characters’ journey at sea. This historic city, with its cobblestone streets and colonial architecture, offers a unique blend of old-world charm and modern energy, providing an ideal setting for filmmakers with its diversity and authenticity.
The crystalline Caribbean waters off the coast of Santo Domingo, present a cinematic canvas that is nothing short of mesmerizing. Within the film, the sea took on a character of its own that fluctuated with the mood of the scenes and character. In the beginning, its azure waters are tranquil and create a romantic atmosphere between Alma and Derek. Later on, when Rose’s life is thrown into disarray, the sea is dark and still, lending to the uneasiness felt in the scenes.
The film crew was spotted shooting along the Rio Ozama River in Santo Domingo, one of the Dominican Republic’s longest rivers which passes through the region. The dense vegetation and tropical locals by the riverside in western Santo Domingo can be seen earlier in the film. Flowing southward into the Caribbean Sea, the Rio Ozama holds both historical and strategic importance. Its banks were witness to the arrival of Spanish conquistadors, including Christopher Columbus, during their exploration of the New World.
Beyond its coastal vistas, Santo Domingo’s bustling urban scenes, historical buildings, and lively neighborhoods provide a diverse range of settings for filmmakers to explore. The Dominican Republic’s government has actively supported the film industry, offering incentives to attract international productions. This, coupled with a skilled local workforce and good production infrastructure, has turned Santo Domingo into a burgeoning hub for filmmakers. As such a number of prominent productions have been filmed in the tropical paradise, including ‘Road House,’ ‘The Killer,’ ‘Saint X,’ and ‘Miami Vice.’
Read More: Is Dangerous Waters Based on a True Story?