To travel to the some of the most beautiful and even exotic places around the globe is one item that’s surely part of everybody’s personal bucket lists. For one reason or another, however, not all of us are able to do so as often as we would want to. But don’t fret! In this week’s list, we’ll help you satisfy your wanderlust right at the comfort of your homes – all you need is one (or a couple or all!) of these excellent films! Our destinations? Rome, Vienna, Mexico, Tokyo, and the US!
”Roman Holiday” (1953)
Directed by William Wyler
This award-winning romantic-comedy film starred Audrey Hepburn as Princess Ann. Frustrated with her royal life, she discards her schedule and sets off on her own adventure around Rome where she meets by chance the American expat reporter Gregory Peck. In the film we see Peck and the princess visit iconic spots and landmarks such as the Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, the Roman Forum, the Colosseum, and the Mouth of Truth.
”Before Sunrise” (1995)
Directed by Richard Linklater
The first of a trilogy, the romantic film “Before Sunrise” also features a chance encounter between two strangers. This time, it’s the American Jesse and Frenchwoman Céline (played by Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, respectively) who meet aboard a train from Budapest. Jesse, who is set to disembark to Vienna, manages to convince the homebound Céline to go with him on a whim and talk some more while walking around the city. While sharing with each other their various musings about life and many other things, the two visited popular Viennese attractions like the Donaukanal, the giant ferris wheel Riesenrad, the Café Sperl, and the Albertina Museum.
”Y Tu Mamá También” (2001)
Directed by Alfonso Cuarón
This Academy and Golden Globe-nominated drama/road film is set in 1999, with the political and economical conditions of Mexico at the time in the backdrop. It starred Diego Luna, Gael García Bernal, and Maribel Verdú as Tenoch, Julio, and Maribel, and was highly-controversial owing to its graphic sexual content. The trio sets off to a secluded beach called “Boca del Cielo” (Heaven’s Mouth), which the two young men had only invented. Along the way, they pass through the roads of poor, rural Mexico – not really as glamorous as the other locations in this list, but interesting all the same.
”Lost in Translation” (2003)
Directed by Sofia Coppola
The bustling Japanese capital is the setting for this film following the lives of American movie star Bob Harris (Bill Murray) and young married woman Charlotte (Scarlett Johanson). Harris finds himself in Tokyo to film an advertisement for whiskey brand Suntory, while Charlotte is there to accompany his husband who was a celebrity photographer on an assignment. The two individuals form a friendship after meeting at the bar inside the hotel they were billeted at, and embark on an adventure around Tokyo, mainly in the districts of Shinjuku and Shibuya, as well as in the city of Kyoto.
”Little Miss Sunshine” (2006)
Directed by Jonathan Dayton
Perhaps the most unlikely item in this list, “Little Miss Sunshine” is yet another road film – this time a comedy – and is the directorial debut of couple Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. Its main plotline focuses on Abigail Breslin as seven-year old Olive Hoover, who’s qualified for the “Little Miss Sunshine” beauty pageant in California. With the competition happening in two days, Olive and her entire family frantically embark on a road trip aboard their beat up, yellow 1978 Volkswagen van from their home in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Amid family tensions and vehicular problems, the family travels through the American interstate highway.
Like this article? Check out our articles from the Friday Movie Flashback series in the Lomography magazine!