November 11, 2008

"this is where I'm from..."

whenever we travel or move to a new place, I enjoy finding movies and TV shows that were filmed on location in the place to where we are headed. I'll peruse IMDB for an evening and try to find movies that I've already seen or ones that I can easily rent. I've even gone as far as holding a hometown movie night with some RUFers in Seattle (we watched Singles and Say Anything, for those of you keeping score).

as we moved to the Bay Area, it wasn't too difficult to find movies filmed in San Francisco. we've watched Harold & Maude, Escape To Witch Mountain, Vertigo, The Presidio, and Time After Time. new ones keep popping up all the time!

last night while Sarah was at Bible study, I watched a James Bond film that I don't remember seeing as a child (the sheer fact alone floored me since I thought I'd seen them all). A View To A Kill was the final 007 role for Roger Moore, and starred Christopher Walken as the villain along with a handful of forgetable Bond girls. About halfway through the film I'm wondering, "What on earth is this movie about? And what does the title have anything to do with the movie besides the horrible theme song performed by Duran Duran?" Within a few frames, Walken gave the answer: he was going to destroy Silicon Valley so that his microchip company could take over as the top producer in the expanding computer market of the mid-1980s! He ham-fistededly recites the title as his blimp hovers over the Golden Gate Bridge and he gazes at the San Francisco skyline.

as much of a flop as this film was, the second half redeemed itself based solely on its location. There were great shots of not only the city, but the lower half of the peninsula, which doesn't get as much air time usually. There was even a "diabolical scheme" map that demonstrated what would happen if there was a double earthquake and the entire area were flooded! Now that I've lived here nearly 6 months and have spent time in the city, it's really a lot of fun to catch glimpses of places I've been, perhaps catching a perspective I haven't seen or even pointing out a continuity issue ("how on earth did they get from Lombard Street to the East Bay in two turns?!?")

what are some movies that you've watched that included a place you were familiar with, either as a hometown or a place you've visited? what was it like to see the filmmaker's perspective of a place you know so well?