Kevin Costner Movies: The 25 Best And Worst Of His Career

The best Kevin Costner movies include Dances with Wolves, Bull Durham, JFK, and Field of Dreams among many others.

By Matthew Creith | Published

Giant Freakin Robot

KEVIN COSTNER MOVIES: QUICK SUMMARY

The 15 Best Kevin Costner Movies

The 10 Worst Kevin Costner Movies

Some actors are so versatile that they have easily navigated comedies and dramas throughout their careers. But for Kevin Costner, his movies have taken on a life of their own through several genres over more than four decades. An entertainment industry veteran, Costner has taken time to hone his directing skills and on-screen persona in Academy Award-winning films, parlaying his success into a lengthy stay on television in Yellowstone.

68-year-old Kevin Costner has taken his background in playing youth baseball in California to a successful career full of transportive movies. Known for his good looks and charm on screen, Costner has starred in a number of outstanding blockbusters, critically acclaimed Westerns, historical dramas, and romantic comedies.

His work in front of and behind the camera has helped to establish Costner as a prominent figure in Hollywood alongside stars like Whitney Houston, Robert De Niro, Sean Connery, and Susan Sarandon.

Below is the definitive list of the best and worst Kevin Costner movies of all time, based on our own personal GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE algorithm.

THE BEST KEVIN COSTNER MOVIES

DANCES WITH WOLVES (1990) IS KEVIN COSTNER’S BEST MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.4/10

It’s not easy making one of the greatest Westerns of the past three decades, but Kevin Costner’s feature directorial debut is somehow just that and more. Considered the best of Kevin Costner’s movies, Dances with Wolves is a film adaptation of Michael Blake’s novel of the same name. Costner stars as John J. Dunbar, a Union Army Lieutenant stationed at a remote outpost on the Western frontier during the Civil War.

Dunbar befriends a Sioux tribe, and after learning their language and customs, he is given the name “Dances with Wolves,” becoming fully integrated into their community. Dunbar’s relationship with the tribe and its people is challenged when the U.S. Army arrives and threatens to relocate the Sioux to a reservation.

Dances with Wolves explores cultural differences, identity, and the clash of civilizations. It showcases the beauty and diversity of Native American culture while also addressing the brutality and discrimination they faced from white settlers and the government.

The film was a critical and commercial success, winning seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director for Kevin Costner. Costarring Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, and Rodney Grant, the movie grossed over $424 million against a budget of $22 million. Dances with Wolves is now famous for its stunning cinematography, Costner’s powerful performance, and authentic portrayal of Native American culture.

Largely due to the movie’s performance at the box office, there have been persistent rumors of a sequel in the works to Dances with Wolves. However, RogerEbert.com confirms that Kevin Costner has no intention of making a sequel to any of his movies, so this is unlikely.

BULL DURHAM (1988) IS KEVIN COSTNER’S BEST SPORTS MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.4/10

Written and directed by Ron Shelton and based on his personal experiences in minor league baseball, Bull Durham stars Kevin Costner in one of his most critically acclaimed movies. Costner stars as veteran baseball catcher Crash Davis, tasked with mentoring a young but wild pitcher named Nuke LaLoosh (Tim Robbins). The two play together on a minor-league baseball team called the Durham Bulls.

A love triangle begins to blossom when local baseball groupie Annie Savoy (Susan Sarandon) becomes romantically involved with both Nuke and Crash. Annie chooses one player every season to be her lover and protége, and the love triangle is the centerpiece of the film. Bull Durham further explores concepts of love, life, and the pursuit of greatness in the world of professional baseball.

Bull Durham is one of the hallmarks of Kevin Costner’s sports filmography. Even though he has made a name for himself in other genres, Costner is most recognized as a sports figure in film and, most notably, through the sport of baseball. Shelton’s witty dialogue helps to bring authenticity to the portrayal of minor league baseball.

JFK (1991) IS A CONTROVERSIAL KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.2/10

Although box office success and accolades have followed Kevin Costner through many of his movies, JFK proved not only to be a pop culture phenomenon but also a controversial movie for Costner in 1991. A political thriller co-written and directed by Oliver Stone, JFK is based on the events following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the investigations that ensued.

JFK stars Kevin Costner as New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison, investigating the assassination of the popular President of the United States. He uncovers a vast conspiracy involving high-level government officials, intelligence agencies, and organized crime. Though dealing with historical events, the movie is a fictional version of Garrison’s investigation and findings.

Despite the controversy surrounding JFK‘s take on the assassination and the fictionalized elements presented in the film, it is considered one of the better portrayals of the Kennedy assassination. Renewed attention on the case came from critics and audiences at the time since the movie sought to demonstrate that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone, which fueled the film to a box office gross of over $205 million against a budget of $40 million.

JFK is aided by Kevin Costner’s star power, as the movie was released theatrically months after Dances with Wolves won seven Academy Awards. The film stars an ensemble cast that includes Kevin Bacon, Tommy Lee Jones, Laurie Metcalf, Sissy Spacek, and Gary Oldman.

FIELD OF DREAMS (1989) IS THE MOST ICONIC KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.2/10

A consistent theme of Kevin Costner’s movies is the actor’s affinity for baseball projects. The 1980s seemed to be flush with baseball films, which included The NaturalMajor League, and Field of Dreams. The latter stars Kevin Costner, and it is arguably one of the best sports movies ever made.

Field of Dreams was released in 1989 and is based on the book Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella. Kevin Costner embodies Ray Kinsella, an Iowa farmer who hears a mysterious voice at the film’s beginning that tells him from a distance, “If you build it, he will come.” Despite the uncertainty and financial difficulty, Ray follows the voice and plows down his cornfield to inexplicably build a baseball field.

Ghosts of baseball legends soon appear on the field, including Shoeless Joe Jackson, portrayed by Ray Liotta. Costner’s character Ray realizes that the voice refers to his father, a huge baseball fan. He then sets out on a journey to understand the meaning behind the voice and reconcile with the baggage of his past.

An ensemble cast of younger actors and veteran performers fill the screen of Field of Dreams, enhancing its appeal to baseball lovers. James Earl Jones, Burt Lancaster, Amy Madigan, Art LaFleur, and Timothy Busfield contribute to Ray’s story as he learns more about the significance of the baseball field and the ghosts.

The value of family and relationships take center stage to help propel Kevin Costner’s performance in Field of Dreams.

NO WAY OUT (1987)

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.1/10

Before there was JFK, the political thriller was perfected with the introduction of director Roger Donaldson’s 1987 flick No Way Out. The movie follows Kevin Costner’s character of Tom Farrell, a U.S. Navy officer who becomes entangled in a web of deceit and conspiracy when he begins an affair with Susan Atwell, portrayed by Sean Young. Susan just so happens to be the mistress of Tom’s boss, Defense Secretary David Brice (Gene Hackman).

When Susan is murdered, Tom becomes the prime suspect and must race against time to clear his name while avoiding the clutches of a relentless investigator named Scott Pritchard, played by actor Will Patton. While inherently a Kevin Costner starring vehicle and one of his best movies up to that point in his career, No Way Out is known for its twist ending. It is also one of the first onscreen parts for actor Brad Pitt, who plays a party guest.

THE UNTOUCHABLES (1987)

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 8.0/10

Critical acclaim and Kevin Costner movies tend to go hand in hand, but when it comes to 1987’s The Untouchables by director Brian De Palma, this one is on another level. Costner stars as real-life Prohibition agent Eliot Ness as he puts together a team called the Untouchables to bring Al Capone to justice for his crimes during the American Prohibition era. Actor Robert De Niro plays Capone while the film introduces some fresh-faced performers like Andy Garcia and Patricia Clarkson.

The Untouchables is notable for a featured appearance by Sean Connery, who goes against type as Jim Malone, a character inspired by a real FBI agent of the time. Connery took home the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the crime thriller. While many of the sequences depicted in The Untouchables are largely inaccurate, the film is regarded as one of Kevin Costner’s best movies that became a critical and commercial success.

THIRTEEN DAYS (2000) IS ANOTHER HISTORICAL KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.8/10

Just as Kevin Costner is widely known for making movies about sports and the American West, he seems to be attracted to projects related to John F. Kennedy’s presidency. Directed by Roger Donaldson, who helmed No Way Out, the movie Thirteen Days tells the story of the Cuban Missile Crisis through the eyes of the American political leaders of the time.

Thirteen Days is based on a book by Ernest R. May and Phillip D. Zelikow, where Kevin Costner portrays Special Assistant to the President Kenneth O’Donnell during the 1962 standoff. Actor Bruce Greenwood plays President Kennedy, while the rest of the ensemble cast comprises administration officials embodied by the likes of Steven Culp, Dylan Baker, Michael Fairman, and Bill Smitrovich.

Even though Thirteen Days was a hit with critics and a historical depiction of a well-known time in American politics, it was a box office bomb when released theatrically in December 2000. The film grossed $66 million against a budget of $80 million.

A PERFECT WORLD (1993)

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.7/10

Kevin Costner has been fortunate to work with some talented directors throughout his distinguished career, so when he got the opportunity to work with one of the greats like Clint Eastwood in 1993’s A Perfect World, he jumped at the chance.

The movie is set in the early 1960s in Texas, where an escaped convict named Butch (Costner) kidnaps an 8-year-old boy named Philip “Buzz” Perry while on the run. The two develop a bond as they evade the law, and Butch becomes a sort of father figure to Buzz.

However, as the law enforcement led by Texas Ranger Red Garnett closes in on them, tensions rise, and their idyllic life on the run is threatened. A Perfect World costars Laura Dern under the direction of Clint Eastwood, who portrays Garnett in the film. Fatherhood, family, and the concept of a perfect existence are all themes at the heart of this crime drama.

Kevin Costner’s take on Butch in A Perfect World is masterful, as he takes the character of a hardened criminal and is transformed by his interactions with Buzz. The boy helps him to see the world differently. In their review of the movie, The Austin Chronicle noted, “Costner turns in a subtly nuanced performance that is by far the best work he’s ever done.”

OPEN RANGE (2003) IS AN UNDERRATED KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.7/10

Riding high on the coattails of the success of Kevin Costner’s foray into the Western genre with Dances with Wolves and other projects, the actor got into the director’s chair once again for the 2003 epic Open Range.

Set in the 1880s, the film centers around a group of cattle herders, led by Robert Duvall’s character of Boss Spearman and his right-hand man, Charley Waite, played by Costner. They drive their herd across the open range of the American West, where they encounter a corrupt lawman, played by Michael Gambon and his hired guns, who try to force the cattle herders out of town.

A bloody showdown emerges due to escalated tension between the two groups, demonstrating loyalty, justice, and the cost of violence. Open Range includes an acclaimed performance by Annette Bening, as the harsh realities of life on the range and the changing landscape of the American West become the movie’s backdrop.

Even though it’s not the first Western most audiences think of when they think of Kevin Costner’s filmography, it’s a worthy homage for fans of the genre.

SILVERADO (1985)

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.5/10

Contributing to the overall theme of Kevin Costner’s movies, Silverado was released in 1985 and was the first Western that Costner participated in during his early career. The film stars Scott Glenn, Danny Glover, Costner, and Kevin Kline and tells the story of four cowboys who come together by fate and circumstance. They find themselves drawn into a fight against a corrupt sheriff and his gang of outlaws.

Silverado is one of Kevin Costner’s earliest roles after taking on small parts in established dramas like Frances and the dark comedy Night Shift. This flick is arguably the start of a slew of films that Costner starred in during the mid- to late-1980s that catapulted him to the A-list star he is today. 

Silverado is directed by Lawrence Kasdan, who would go on to write one of Costner’s most prolific films, The Bodyguard.

MR. BROOKS (2007)

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.3/10

Mr. Brooks has earned the right to be a cult favorite amongst Kevin Costner fans since its release in 2007 and was a sleeper hit in theaters. Costner stars in this psychological thriller as the titular Earl Brooks, a successful businessman and loving family man with a dark secret. He leads a double life as a serial killer but tries to keep his murderous urges under control by using his inner voice, played by actor William Hurt.

Earl is pushed to the brink when a voyeuristic photographer (Dane Cook) blackmails him into committing another murder. Meanwhile, a hard-nosed detective (Demi Moore) is hot on the trail of the notorious “Thumbprint Killer,” and is closing in on Earl.

The film is a tense and unsettling exploration of addiction, guilt, and the duality of human nature. Kevin Costner delivers a masterful performance as Earl, capturing the character’s charming exterior and inner turmoil with equal skill. Though Mr. Brooks received mixed reviews upon its release, it was a box office success when it grossed over $48 million against a budget of $20 million.

MAN OF STEEL (2013) IS THE FIRST KEVIN COSTNER COMIC BOOK MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 7.1/10

The DC Universe might not come to mind when one thinks of Kevin Costner’s acting career, but Man of Steel broke that mold. It stars Henry Cavill as Clark Kent, aka Superman, and Costner as his adoptive father, Jonathan Kent. The film follows the origins of Superman as he discovers his powers and comes to terms with his true identity.

Though similar themes have been portrayed on the big screen in other Superman iterations before, 2013’s Man of Steel confirmed how much of a moral compass Jonathan Kent is for Clark. Kevin Costner, as Jonathan, teaches his son how to use his powers responsibly and to consider the consequences of his actions. His performance is a standout in a comic book movie, bringing a sense of gravitas and wisdom to the role.

While Man of Steel might be recognized as a Zack Snyder-helmed epic and Henry Cavill-starring action blockbuster, Kevin Costner’s character’s relationship with Clark is the heart of the movie. Their scenes together provide some of the film’s most moving moments alongside Diane Lane, who plays Martha Kent, Clark’s adoptive mother.

THE UPSIDE OF ANGER (2005)

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 6.8/10

The final quasi-baseball movie to make it on this list, albeit not the last sports movie overall, is The Upside of Anger. Directed by Mike Binder and starring Kevin Costner and Joan Allen, the romantic dramedy explores a woman struggling to cope with her husband’s sudden disappearance, the romantic dilemmas, and the family dynamics that follow.

Kevin Costner plays Denny Davies, a former baseball player who becomes Terry’s (Joan Allen) love interest. As Terry’s family falls apart and her relationship with Denny deepens, they must confront their own fears and insecurities and learn to rely on each other. Denny is Terry’s quiet strength while Terry brings depth to their budding relationship.

The Upside of Anger is a more nuanced portrayal out of many of Kevin Costner’s movies, particularly because it deals with the challenges of life and the importance of human connection. It was a moderate success at the box office when it grossed over $28 million against a budget of $12 million in 2005. Costner and Allen received some of the best reviews of their careers, with Costner winning Best Supporting Actor from the San Francisco Film Critics Circle.

TIN CUP (1996) IS A CLASSIC KEVIN COSTNER GOLF MOVIE

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 6.4/10

Since writer and director Ron Shelton was so successful in the 1980s with Bull Durham, he parlayed some of that success by making another sports movie in the 1990s called Tin Cup. Kevin Costner stars as Roy “Tin Cup” McAvoy, a down-on-his-luck golf pro who becomes infatuated with a psychiatrist named Dr. Molly Griswold, played by Rene Russo. As Roy tries to win Molly’s heart, he also sets his sights on winning the U.S. Open, despite the objections of his longtime rival and friend, David Simms (Don Johnson).

As far as romantic comedy sports movies go, Tin Cup is among some of the best. Kevin Costner captures Roy’s humor, passion, and vulnerability in his performance opposite Russo, who shines as the object of Roy’s affection. It is an engaging and fun flick that appealed to both sports fans and romantic comedy enthusiasts when it premiered to a $75 million box office return.

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE (1999)

kevin costner movies

GIANT FREAKIN MOVIE SCORE: 6.2/10

Author Nicholas Sparks had a moment in the 1990s and 2000s after several of his novels, like The Notebook and A Walk to Remember, were brought to the big screen. But the first to break through the gate was 1999’s Message in a Bottle, which stars Kevin Costner, Robin Wright, and Paul Newman in a romantic drama that has stood the test of time.

Message in a Bottle concerns a former reporter, Theresa (Wright) who discovers a tragic love letter in a bottle washed ashore on a beach on Cape Cod. She becomes determined to track down whoever wrote the letter, leading her to Garrett Blake (Costner), a boat builder who lost his wife to a tragic accident. As Theresa and Garrett’s relationship deepens, she discovers the heartbreaking truth behind the message in the bottle and the loss that Garrett has been trying to come to terms with.

Like many of Nicholas Sparks’ works that have seen film adaptations, Message in a Bottle is captivating with the intent to tug at the heartstrings of its audience. The movie was a financial success with a box office gross of $118 million, but it received mostly negative reviews from critics. Kevin Costner was singled out when he was nominated as Worst Actor at that year’s Razzie Awards.

THE WORST KEVIN COSTNER MOVIES

Through all of the critical acclaim, Kevin Costner has unfortunately had his fair share of stinkers over the course of his career acting in movies. Some of these have been box office successes despite negative reviews, while others failed to recoup some losses on behalf of the studios he worked for. His career has seen many ups and downs, but he always seems to come out on top.

With these movies, the worst Kevin Costner movies fall more under the highest profile misses rather than just the Giant Freakin Robot score.

THE BODYGUARD (1992)

Kevin Costner spent a lot of his time acting in movies spanning several different genres, but the romantic drama is one he comes back to often. 1992 was a banner year for the California native, as he starred opposite singing sensation Whitney Houston in The Bodyguard. While the film was Houston’s acting debut, it resulted in a string of number-one hits for the superstar that stood the test of time.

Kevin Costner plays a former U.S. Secret Service agent tasked with protecting Houston’s character from a mysterious stalker. The movie grossed over $411 million at the box office but was met with primarily negative reviews from critics due to its preposterous premise and the love story captured by its two leads. 

The Bodyguard was nominated for seven Razzie Awards, including Worst Actor and Worst Picture for Costner, as he was also a producer on the movie.

ROBIN HOOD: PRINCE OF THIEVES (1991) WAS A TERRIBLE KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

The tale of Robin Hood has been told many times on television and film, but Kevin Costner’s take on the story in director Kevin Reynolds’ Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves might be the worst of all time. Costarring Morgan Freeman, Christian Slater, Alan Rickman, and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, the film was a box office success but critically panned.

Many viewers believed the supporting cast was excellent, but the film suffered because of Costner’s lackluster performance in the titular role.

Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves earned Kevin Costner his first nomination and “win” at the Razzie Awards for Worst Actor.

WATERWORLD (1995) WAS A KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE THAT REALLY BOMBED

The definitive box office disaster still regarded as one of the worst post-apocalyptic movies ever is Waterworld. Again directed by Kevin Reynolds, Kevin Costner stars as a man navigating the Earth in the distant future, when the polar ice caps have melted, and the world’s land is all covered by water. 

Waterworld was one of the highest-grossing films of 1995, but it was also the most expensive movie ever produced at the time, so Universal Pictures did not see a profit until video sales popped up.

WYATT EARP (1994)

Kevin Costner entered the 1990s on top with the release of Dances with Wolves, but somehow his exploration of the Western genre resulted in some more movies of the same decade that didn’t resonate as well with audiences and critics.

One of those flicks is the 1994 biographical film Wyatt Earp, and Costner stars in the titular role as the quintessential lawman and gambler. The movie’s outstanding supporting cast includes Mark Harmon, Gene Hackman, Bill Pullman, Isabella Rossellini, Tom Sizemore, and Dennis Quaid.

Unfortunately, the ensemble cast of A-list stars couldn’t help Wyatt Earp to be a good film. Some criticisms of the movie have to do with its length, clocking in at just over three hours, its slow pacing, and its attempt to cover too much of Wyatt Earp’s life, resulting in a lack of focus on any particular aspect. Kevin Costner “won” the Razzie Award again for Worst Actor, and the film “won” Worst Remake or Sequel.

THE POSTMAN (1997) MISSED THE MARK

Continuing the trend of 1990s flops in the post-apocalyptic variety for Kevin Costner’s movies is 1997’s The Postman. Costner sat in the director’s chair and stars in this epic alongside Larenz Tate, Will Patton, and James Russo. Based on the novel of the same name, The Postman revolves around Costner’s nameless drifter character, who wears a postman’s uniform and carries a bag of mail in the year 2013 after a series of plagues have devasted the United States.

The Postman only earned $20.8 million at the worldwide box office against a budget of $80 million. Many people believed that Kevin Costner might never work in movies again as a director. Again, he “won” several Razzie Awards for this film, including Worst Actor and Worst Director.

FOR LOVE OF THE GAME (1999) WAS A BAD KEVIN COSTNER BASEBALL MOVIE

Baseball and sports movies have always sort of been Kevin Costner’s calling card in the film industry, but 1999’s For Love of the Game failed on all cylinders. Directed by Sam Raimi in a genre that seems out of his element, Kevin Costner stars as Billy Chapel, a Detroit Tigers veteran pitcher who reminisces about his time in the sport during what could be his final game. The movie received mixed reviews from critics and audiences and was an overall bummer at the box office.

DRAFT DAY (2014)

Baseball might be something Kevin Costner knows well, but when it comes to football, he might be out of his league. Draft Day was released theatrically in 2014 and came from veteran director Ivan Reitman prior to his passing in 2022. The movie centers on the Cleveland Browns general manager (Costner) who acquires the number one draft pick and goes through a series of options about what to do with the pick during the NFL draft.

Kevin Costner’s star power could not push Draft Day beyond a paltry $29 million box office gross, which barely covered its budget. The movie costars Jennifer Garner, Denis Leary, Frank Langella, Ellen Burstyn, and Chadwick Boseman. The movie benefits from cameo appearances by real-life football stars like Jim Brown and commissioner Roger Goodell, but its failure to compete with new releases like Captain America: The Winter Soldier gave the film a downgrade with audiences.

DRAGONFLY (2002) WAS A WEIRD KEVIN COSTNER MOVIE

Kevin Costner has starred in a number of dramatic movies throughout his career, but supernatural thrillers were a new thing for the actor when he signed on to play Dr. Joe Darrow in 2002’s Dragonfly.

His dead wife contacts Dr. Darrow through many of his patients’ near-death experiences, leading him to discover death’s true meaning. A box office failure and critically panned film upon its release, Dragonfly is a forgettable entry in Kevin Costner’s filmography.

THE GUARDIAN (2006)

Loosely adapted from the Japanese film Umizaru, 2006’s The Guardian stars Kevin Costner, Ashton Kutcher, Melissa Sagemiller, and Sela Ward. The film follows Ben Randall (Costner), a veteran United States Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer tasked with training new recruits, including Jake Fischer (Kutcher). As Jake struggles to adapt to the rigorous training and lifestyle, he develops a rivalry with Ben, who is dealing with his own personal and professional struggles.

While The Guardian received mixed reviews from critics, audiences seemed to dislike its predictable plot, clichéd dialogue, and lack of character development. The film was criticized as overly sentimental and unrealistic when portraying the life of a Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer. Kevin Costner might not be to blame for the movie’s failure to reach audiences, but having The Guardian on his resume doesn’t help.

SIZZLE BEACH, U.S.A. (1981) WAS KEVIN COSTNER’S FIRST MOVIE

Ever heard of Sizzle Beach, U.S.A.? Didn’t think so, but there’s a good reason: actor Kevin Costner once tried to buy the rights to the film so that the public couldn’t see it. He wasn’t successful, and the title (also known as Malibu Hot Summer) was eventually widely released in 1986 after Costner became a well-known actor.

Sizzle Beach, U.S.A. revolves around two young men who start a business renting beach houses to tourists in Southern California. They encounter a group of attractive women who become the focus of their romantic pursuits, leading to a series of comical situations. The film is a lighthearted and entertaining comedy that captures the spirit of beach life in the early 1980s.

At the heart of Kevin Costner’s reasons for wanting the film banned is due to a sex scene he participated in that he felt was too uncomfortable for his liking.