London Movies Guide
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London Movies Guide » London Movies and the Silver Screen
London Movies and the Silver Screen
Hollywood is the recognised home of the movie industry so you wouldn't necessarily think that London is an important city to be associated with the movie industry. You will be surprised to learn that London is in fact a major venue for movie makers as an ideal location for making movies.
London has been the backdrop for action movies such as the James Bond film the world is not enough which spectacularly exploded on to the screen from the banks of the River Thames and a power boat crashing from the so called secret MI5 building into the Thames.
Other genres are also filmed in London such as the bizarre and scary 28 Days Later depicting deserted London streets following the exposure of a chemical virus, and the period dramas of Victorian England with movies including Oliver, and most recently The Four Feathers.
Cinema directors such as Stanley Kubrick couldn't resist the less likely London venues to feature in his ground breaking movies when he used Beckton Gas Works as an alternative to war ravaged Vietnam and featured the new constructed concrete jungle housing estate of Thamesmead in south London built on reclaimed land for his dramatic cult movie A Clock Work Orange.
London is certainly the home of cinema and is featured in numerous movies largely due to its eclectic and unique mixture of architectural styles and moody locations to ultra modern buildings such as the glass head office for the giant Swiss Reinsurer locally known as the "Gherkin". London offers a unique blend of film locations all within a 20 miles radius.
Some of the more famous movies that were filmed in London include:
From the Fifties and swinging sixties we had The Lady Killers, Alfie launching Michael Caine's career filmed in and around Kings Cross, A Hard Days Night with the Beatles, period dramas such as Howard's End. London has been the backdrop for critically acclaimed films from Chaplin to huge box office success stories such as Batman.
Notting Hill was immortalised in the Hugh Grant love affair, but the area was previously used in the original The Italian Job again starring the bungling gang leader Michael Caine, and Performance.
More recently, Guy Ritchie the director used London for its more violent back drops for London gangland warfare with Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch. Bob Hoskins became the likely London gangland Don when featured London seedy and beautiful locations in the The Long Good Friday.
Bridget Jones has made her home in London and its streets and theatres are key scenes to period dramas as well such as The French Lieutenant's Woman were shot in and around the Borough Market as was Howard's End.
No period drama would be complete without a scene at the world famous Greenwich in South London. With its riverside location Greenwich is the gem of historical and naval traditions of England. With the Royal Observatory high up on the hill of Greenwich Park where time is measured across the world with GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) to the glorious Queen Anne's Building in the same park which is the finest example of Italian Palladio style architecture outside of Italy anywhere in the world. There is also the Grand structure of the Royal Naval College opposite the park adjacent the river Thames. Many film makers have used Greenwich as a backdrop for historical and period dramas including All or Nothing by Mike Leigh and Stephen Frear's Dirty Pretty Things and many others.
London is proud to be a feature in many of the movies on show in the numerous London cinemas around the capital so why not get away from the couch and TV and make a visit to a London Cinema.
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