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How many films set in London do you know? We spotted 8

From romantic comedies to historical films and the most celebrated futuristic dystopia in cinema history: check out the best movies shot down in Albion

8-films-set-in-london-a-clockwork-orange

As any other respectful metropolis, London has seen multitudes of prestigious movie directors and actors wandering across its lush parks and towering skyscrapers. Although the city’s native allure – when it comes to cinema production d’auteur – has been darkened for decades by nasty competitors of the likes of Paris and Rome (read also → Parigi in pellicola), the British capital has been living a cinematographic renaissance from the 1990s onwards. Over this flourishing time, iconic movies such as 4 Weddings and a Funeral, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Closer, Love, Actually, About a Boy have rapidly seen the light, thus establishing a film category of its own: the British rom-com. Strong of its ever-changing urban landscape – a blend of sumptuous ancient buildings, legendary historical monuments, and the roaring avant-garde design of those cutting-edge skyscrapers built over the last twenty years –, London is a great fit for both modern fairytales and historical movies, not to mention frightening futuristic dystopias.

1. Alfie – 1966

Can you think of a best way to ride across the British capital if not right on board of a cheeky limo? Especially if Michael Cane is driving, delivering one of his most celebrated performances in acting history. A quite misty and faded London goes hand in hand with a fair dose of irreverent wit, along with some old jazz tunes that only old-fashioned movies can play, and a main character who loves to break the so-called “fourth wall”…. 

 

2. Blow Up – 1966

Michelangelo Antonioni’s unmatchable style meets the swinging, vicious, glamorous London of the Sixties. Probably the Italian director’s best-known piece of work, the movie unfolds into a forward-looking thriller built on exquisite photography and flawless direction.

 

3. A Clockwork Orange – 1971

Speaking of cult movies, no wonder that Stanley Kubrik’s most controversial and popular effort soon peeps out. Far from being an evocative city postcard, the film is more of a dystopian and disturbing portrait of London, here depicted as a world of – strictly existing in reality – concrete monsters, shallow suburbs and unsettling scenarios.

 

4. A Fish Called Wanda – 1988

A mismatched bunch of robbers bump into each other within the most classical twist of clumsy betrayals and deceits. The result? A smart crime comedy casting a stunning crew of actors. 

 

5. Sliding Doors – 1998

Let’s step in the 90’s, at the time when London started topping the chart of romantic comedies & dramas’ best-loved locations. Sliding Doors masterfully shows two parallel lives of the key character, while letting the London tube steal the stage.

 

6. Notting Hill – 1999

This movie has attracted more tourists to the city than some low-cost flight carrier: joking aside, the dreamy locations and love story par excellence make the movie – together with Hugh Grant – an actual landmark of British rom-coms.

 

7. Match Point – 2005

Iconic corners and glimpses of London are here shaken up in a totally different mood: here is Woody Allen’s much celebrated drama enrolling an extraordinary Scarlett Johansson. 

 

8. V for Vendetta – 2005

Based on the graphic novel by Alan Moore and David Lloyd, such dystopian political thriller movie was mainly filmed in the British capital. Not everybody knows that a few majestic locations like Trafalgar Square, Westminster and Whitehall have been closed to public for three nights in a row (from midnight to 5AM) for shooting reasons. 

 

 

 


by Alessio Gentile / 19 September 2017

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