I am a travel junkie.
Seriously, I am.
I probably look at travel news, stories, deals and journals more than anything else during my weekly activities. It is an addiction and something that I may need to eventually get help for (is there a Traveler’s Anonymous?). In any event, while my travel bug is still active, let me say that one of the things that makes me want to log onto Kayak or TravelZoo and book my next trip comes after watching certain movies.
If I see great scenery or a beautiful location, I will find myself online later that day, checking out where the movie was filmed, researching flight information, and seeing if my airline miles can take me there. Before you know it, I am walking the streets of Tuscany with a gelato in one hand and a limoncello in the other saying to myself, “Damn you Diane Lane, how am I going to afford this trip?!”
Here are some flicks you might want to add to your NetFlix or rent from your video store (actually do those still exist?):
: This Academy Award-nominated and Golden Globe Award-winning 2008 film directed and written by Martin McDonagh stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as two hit men hiding out in a small city in Belgium. Yes they are staying “In Bruges”, which is a small town outside of Brussels. The backdrop is perfect in my opinion, yet Colin Farrell’s character hates this city. It is too cold, quiet and boring for him. His character prefers the excitement and energy of Paris and London. But his partner absolutely loves the quaint city and takes in a river cruise, snaps pics of the architecture and enjoys many drinks at their local watering holes. If you can not have a good time in Belgium then something is seriously wrong with you. A place that is known for some of the best chocolate and beer on the planet? Perfect!
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
: Who wouldn’t want to spend a summer in Spain with the likes of Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson? This 2008 Golden Globe Award-winning/Academy Award-nominated movie, written and directed by Woody Allen, is filmed in beautiful Barcelona. Not only does it have a good storyline, but it also offers a lot of good looking cast. I’m sold.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
: Based on the 1971 Hunter S. Thompson book, this film starring Johnny Depp and Benicio del Toro is such a great flick. Depp and del Toro’s interaction throughout the film make for one hell of a ride to Sin City. A movie with so many desert scenes was never so entertaining. Highly recommend. But read the book first.
Under the Tuscan Sun
: While this one is an “Uber-chick flick”, I could not turn away while my wife watched it. The Italian backdrop was perfetto. Definitely check it out with your partner…great date movie. If you are a single male then rent it, lower the blinds and cuddle up on the couch with your kitty. It’s okay, you are confident in your masculinity.
A Good Year
: Set in both London, England and stunningly romantic Provence, France. This 2006 romantic comedy starring Russell Crowe seriously was not the best movie I have seen in recent years, but the location of Provence was good enough to keep me watching through to the end.
: All three of the Bourne movies, while fast paced and fun to watch in my opinion, also make you want to escape to Europe ASAP. Some of the locations used in these great movies include Prague, Imperia, Rome, Mykonos, Zürich, Tangier, London, Paris, Madrid and Berlin (which was also used as a double for Moscow). Even New York City is used in this movie. That is some serious traveling Mr. Damon.
: Set in Dublin, this drama, which stars musicians Glen Hansard (of popular Irish rock band The Frames) and Markéta Irglová as struggling musicians, was a fun flick to watch. I personally found this movie to be entertaining from beginning to end. Plus being of Irish descent and a regular visitor to Dublin, it was great to see places I had visited myself when I was in that great city. The soundtrack is equally good.
Into the Wild
: Based on the 1996 non-fiction book of the same name by Jon Krakauer about the adventures of Christopher McCandless. This Sean Penn directed film stars Emile Hirsch, Jena Malone, Marcia Gay Harden, Vince Vaughn, Kristen Stewart, William Hurt and Catherine Keener. I loved the book and found the movie to be good, not great. Check out the soundtrack by Eddie Vedder, some pretty good tunes.
Other notable mentions:
Home Alone 2
Sleepless in Seattle
National Lampoon’s European Vacation
The Da Vinci Code
Lost in Translation
Want to add to this list? Leave a comment.