Rent Movies From The Library For A DIY Film Festival

Did you know you can rent movies from the library as well as books?

Sometimes people don’t realize that they can rent movies from the library. Lots of movies are available in DVD form or to stream and download. Orange County Library System, encourages you to create your own DIY film festival using library resources. 

If you can't get enough of Orlando Science Center's new RESCUE exhibit, check out these search & rescue and survival films! 


True story: The author of this article once had a friend whose father was a firefighter. Once, the author slept over at this friend’s house and he was shown Backdraft for the first time. The author was so afraid of the noise that backdrafts made - and so insistent that the noise coming from the house’s a/c unit was, in fact, a backdraft - that he had to be picked up by his mom.

In the author’s defense, the film’s intense firefighting set pieces are still an excellent example of pre-CGI visual effects: you can practically feel the heat of the flames radiating from the screen. Backdraft also does an excellent job honoring the bravery and sacrifice of firefighters who risk their lives every day. Even if that message is sometimes undercut by the film’s overly campy tone.

the cover of the movie backdraft

Apollo 13

Based on the inspiring true story of astronauts Jim Lovell, Jack Swigert and Fred Haise, Apollo 13 is a white-knuckle voyage through the dangers of pioneering space travel. I’m scared of heights so being an astronaut was never in the cards, but the film does an excellent job of making me feel like I’m a part of the ill-fated lunar mission. Just as enjoyable are the scenes that take place on the ground, showcasing the ingenuity and quick-thinking of early NASA scientists and engineers.

apollo 13 movie cover

The Martian

Untethered by the gravitational hold of real-life events, The Martian launches the tale of space travel survival to new heights (again, no thank you). For those who loved the book, you may be comforted to know author Andy Weir’s devotion to realism and trademark comedic moments translate excellently to the screen. Thanks in no small part to skilled directing from Ridley Scott and an anchoring performance by Matt Damon.

The Martian movie cover

The Poseidon Adventure

It’s New Year’s Eve, 1972. You’re having a lovely time traveling to Greece aboard the luxurious ocean liner, SS Poseidon. Such a shame then, that someone would invite a 90-foot tidal wave to the party…

Though a defining example of the disaster movie genre, The Poseidon Adventure may seem trite compared to the visual spectacles and behemoth budgets of today’s tentpole pictures. But what keeps the movie afloat is a who’s who of early-70s celebrities including Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine, and Shelly Winters.

the poseidon adventure movie cover

Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Before the charismatic Taika Waitiki rose to superstardom as director of Thor: Ragnarok and JoJo Rabbit, he helmed this more intimate and comedic tale of a young boy and his foster father surviving in the New Zealand bush.

Based on the book Wild Pork and Watercress, Hunt for the Wilderpeople eschews the intensity of typical survival films with heartfelt humor and whimsical adventure.

the hunt for the wilderpeople movie cover

To explore Orange County Library System’s vast collection of digital and streaming movies, visit


Do you have what it takes to be a hero?

Search and rescue operations take place every minute, every hour, every day, all around the world. But what does a rescue scenario really involve? 

Through interactive exhibit pieces and the stories and testimonies of real-life heroes, the RESCUE exhibit will give guests a first-hand look into the technology and teamwork that goes into a rescue mission.

two kids on jet ski simulators