Going Places Educational Travel Blog - 10 Popular Movies Set in London
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February 27, 2014

10 Popular Movies Set in London

These pop-culture classics are sure to get you in the mood for your student trip to London:

1. FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL

This 1994 gem was Hugh Grant’s breakout role, and catapulted him to international fame. His character and the female lead (played by Andie MacDowell) share some great scenes in and around London, including the South Bank of the River Thames, and the final scene of the movie, shot in Highbury Fields, London N5.

2. THE DA VINCI CODE

The 2006 thriller, based on the book of the same name, and starring Tom Hanks, was filmed on location in England and France, and includes glimpses of Westminster Abbey. But Westminster refused use of its premises for filming, so the Westminster Abbey scenes were actually shot at Lincoln and Winchester Cathedrals – both of which belong to the Church of England.

3. BRIDGET JONES’S DIARY

Based on Helen Fielding’s novel, this 2001 film gets you fully immersed in London, with scenes taking place at St. Pancras Station, Tower Bridge and the Borough Market area of London. Hugh Grant makes another appearance, but American Renee Zellweger steals the show by mastering a British accent and gaining 20 pounds for the role.

4. HARRY POTTER, THE SORCERER’S STONE

Set mainly in a fictional suburb of London, this first film in the series nevertheless ticks off all the famous London landmarks including Big Ben, Parliament, King’s Cross Station, St Pancras Station (again), and of course the River Thames. The famous scene where Harry releases a snake was filmed at the London Zoo in Regent’s Park; and Gloucester Cathedral serves as the exterior of Hogwarts School.

5. MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL

1975 may seem like light-years ago, but this hilarious film has withstood the test of time. Its typical “British humor” punctuates the story (very loosely followed) of King Arthur’s quest for… the holy grail, silly! Not actually filmed in England at all, most of the scenes were shot in Scotland. Each cast member plays several parts in this absurdly funny movie.

6. BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM

2002’s surprise award-worthy, old-fashioned and uplifting comedy follows two rebellious young female soccer (football) players in their quest to secure a future in professional sports. The title refers to bending the rules (of football, and also of life). The film contains key scenes throughout London including Carnaby Street, Queensdale Road, and Beaconsfield Road in Southall.

7. A FISH CALLED WANDA

Monty Python alum John Cleese fast-forwards into 1988 alongside Jamie Lee Curtis, Kevin Kline and Michael Palin for this fast-paced movie about a jewel heist. British humor abounds, of course, along with a lot of double-crossing and swindling. Filmed in London and Oxford, England, there are many famous and typical-looking streets and buildings scattered throughout this campy classic.

8. SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE

Ten years later, Joseph Fiennes and Gwyneth Paltrow depict young William Shakespeare and his lover, Viola de Lesseps, in this stand-out picture that’s grounded in history without being totally restricted by historical accuracy. Filmed mainly in Oxfordshire, London and Hertfordshire, great scenes include one that happens inside the Church of St Bartholomew the Great.

9. TO SIR, WITH LOVE

Taking the way-back machine all the way back… to 1967, this movie about a Californian teacher and his students from London’s East End slums is a must-see for educators, students, and London buffs. The pop single of the same name topped the charts at number one in Billboard Magazine that year, and was sung by the lead female actress, LuLu. Just the London fashions alone are worth seeing in this typically-‘60s pic. Filming took place throughout London including the Tower Bridge, Whitechapel, and the Docklands. Mr. Thackeray (portrayed by Sidney Poitier) even takes the class on an excursion to Victoria and Albert Museum!

10. MY FAIR LADY

Back further, still, is the quintessential London musical, My Fair Lady, brought to the screen in 1964, the same year the Beatles invaded America. Everyone knows the Pygmalion story – and this is the Broadway take on that theme, with Henry Higgins and his protégé, Eliza Doolittle, who learns “how to walk, and to talk, and to act like a regular lady” thanks to Higgins’ persistence. The film features famous London locations including Covent Garden.

 

Category: Travel Inspiration




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