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Movies Featuring Great Cities

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Scott Roberts
Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Sep 16, 2010 at 3:41:31 pm

I went over to my friend's apartment last night to hang out, and however it happened we ended up watching The Blues Brothers for the ?th time. We have seen it so many times because we're from the Chicago-land area, and it is basically required watching for any proud Chicagoan. I was born and raised in DuPage County, IL, the same place that the Belushi family grew up (DuPage even gets a mention in the film). Dan Aykroyd even said in an interview for the 25th Anniversary release of the movie that the city of Chicago was just as much a character in the film as any of the actors.

To deny that The Blues Brothers is a love letter to Chicago is blasphemy! :) To me, it is as linked to Chicago as Portillo's, or Empire Carpet commercials... I know this is going to sound pretentious before I even say it, anyone can love The Blues Brothers, but if you are from the Chicago area, we love it a little bit more than you ever will, sorry!

So that brings me to my question, do any of you have that great movie that is a tribute to the place where you are from? A movie you feel more entitled to love than someone the next state over?


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Mike Cohen
Re: Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Sep 16, 2010 at 6:30:07 pm

It is an interesting topic, because many movies are filmed in places recognizable only to people who know the location, yet are not intended to be seen as taking place in that city.

So let's disregard movies filmed in NY, as those locations are well known. Although one could argue for their favorite NY based movie - one that uses the city as a character. I'll get back to this one.



I like the Dark Knight and Batman Begins for their great use of Chicago as Gotham City. I recently took a peek down to Lower Michigan Ave but did not see anything out of the ordinary.


While hundreds of tv shows and films are filmed in Canada in place of New York, LA or Caprica, not many movies have been filmed in Canada AS Canada. I like "The Sentinel" featuring Michael Douglas as a secret service agent, along with Keifer Sutherland in a similar role (a stretch) - the exciting climax takes place in Toronto at the iconic government building. That's another city I enjoy walking around - a little like New York but cleaner and friendlier.

And I think everyone will agree that Rocky was as much a great film as it was a tourism commercial for Philadelphia.

Boston has also seen its share of film productions. Fever Pitch, the Departed, the Town (have not seen it but it looks good and they filmed in Fenway Park) and Surrogates in a futurized Boston.

Mike Cohen


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Scott Roberts
Re: Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Sep 17, 2010 at 3:40:26 pm

And if we can delve into TV shows, The Wire did an amazing job of characterizing the city of Baltimore...

...as a place I never want to live in, ever...


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Adrian Jans
Re: Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Sep 17, 2010 at 4:37:51 pm

Haha, I love The Wire, truly among the greatest television dramas ever (well, at least to me). I used to watch that one with my Dad, he lived in Baltimore for a long time and would point out all of the places he used to work near, walk by, etc. while watching the show.

And that "filmed in your city" thing can have a positive effect, even on the worst movies. For example, Password Swordfish (which is just.... really really bad) has a scene where John Travolta shoots some senator in my hometown of Bend, OR (at Smith Rock for those of you who know). That little novelty alone makes the movie more memorable for me.... although I don't see myself ever watching it again.


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Stephen Smith
Re: Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Sep 24, 2010 at 3:40:00 pm

I live in Utah. I remember seeing Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade in the theater. The movie starts with young Indian and his boy scout troop. The amazing looking rock formations are found in Arches National Park, Utah. If you have never been, you need to check it out on a vacation and bring your camera. The amazing thing is how you can see one amazing land mark after another without out going very far.

The park is loaded with awesome things showcased in other movies that I'm not going to get into. But about Indian Jones. His troop stops to take a brake at Double Arches, and then the action starts.

What a great movie. My family has taken lots of trips to Arches National Park and it was so much fun to see a place that I enjoy in a movie I enjoy.

About a hour away from Arches National Park is Goblin Valley. It truly feels like you are on another planet when you visit. (insert Utah joke here) That of course was the idea in the Movie Galaxy Quest.

This was another one of those experiences when you see a movie in the theater and get excited about having been their. Plus I really liked Galaxy Quest and thought it nailed Star Trek dead on.

Okay, last one because I could go on and on. Dumb and Dumber was mostly shot in Utah. Even though it takes place in Rhode Island to Aspen, Colorado. The opening scenes with the Limo and their apartment are really close to where I work. I even worked on a video a year ago that had an interview with the actor who played the blind kid that was given a pretty bird. A lot of Aspen was really Park City, a great town and great ski resorts. Any one going to Sundance this year? Any ways, funny movie.

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

Check out my Motion Tutorials


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Stephen Smith
Re: Movies Featuring Great Cities
on Dec 23, 2010 at 9:03:32 pm

I lived in Oregon for a while and loved it. It is a fantastic place. There is a great town called Astoria. A couple of great films where filmed their. Goonies is a classic. I even have video of me doing the truffle shuffle in front of the "Goonies" house. Down the street a few blocks is the school used in Kindergarten cop. If you have not been to Astoria put it on your list of places to go. Outside of town on the cost is Ecola State Park / Cannon beach. There you will see this famous backdrop.

Did I say I loved Goonies. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3 was filmed here as well. Great place, if you go make sure you get some Marionberry pie...its awesome!

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

Check out my Motion Tutorials


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