From way back before I started up this blog site, I had accumulated a number of “hits” of movie locations during my varied travels. These are mostly now spread across a completely random jumble of DVDs, USB drives, Flikr albums and the like.
The exact ‘story’ details behind each visit may now be getting hazy, so rather than try to recreate proper per-movie posts for any of them, I thought I’d just work on putting up some archive-bucket type posts containing whatever snippets I come across. First up: New York.
Obviously, the Big Apple is one giant freaking film set. Even the very first time you visit (I think I’ve been on 6 separate occasions so far, spanning from 1981 to most recently in 2017) you cannot help but feel that massive swathes of the skyline and city are instantly familiar, so iconic are its views. I’d be willing to bet you can hardly turn in any given direction in central Manhattan, and not see a location that had appeared in something at some time or another. As a result, I’ve never tried to find “the movie for each location” when I’ve been there, or even to bother recording a lot of places that I know appear in one or more movies. Rather, I’ve just focused here on a select few locations-for-movies that fit into my particular Channel 83 aesthetic. (Not even all of my specific-visits and photographs are recorded here. I’ve seen the globe inside the Daily Planet offices from ‘Superman’; I’ve seen the table in Kat’z Deli where Sally faked out Harry; I’ve walked down the path where Nic Cage crashes into the boating lake in Central Park, watched by an amused Bridget Fonda in ‘It Could Happen To You’. All memorable, but not so on-point for this blog.)
Personally, my cinematic love-affair with the city grew mainly out of the old horror and exploitation movies of the 70s and early 80s; films such as Driller Killer, Zombie Flesh Eaters, The New York Ripper, Taxi Driver and so on evoke a nostalgic sense of a since-sanitised New York that was grimy and edgy, and felt as alive with danger as it did possibility. It’s probably a “much nicer place” to visit, these days (I always have a wonderful time there, and feel safer there than I do in many parts of London) – but it has undeniably lost some of what made it seem so vital and compelling.
Anyway – enough with the random waffle, let’s make with the random pictures.
Escape From New York
Go on then: I’ll include a picture of the Statue of Liberty – purely because John Carpenter used it as the location for the ‘Liberty Island Security Control’ centre in his 1981 masterpiece. You don’t really need me to drop a map pin for this one, eh.
(But just in case there’s any doubt, there it is in glorious 80s ‘computer graphics’. I have this on a t-shirt, from the excellent Last Exit To Nowhere.)
(From a visit in August 2014.)
Zombie Flesh Eaters
The closing scenes of Fulci’s tropical chomp-fest see his iconic, shambling dead crossing the Brookyln Bridge into Manhattan. I’m sure the people I’ve caught on camera during my several visits and strolls across were much nicer. Probably. Zombies have entered the building!
Again, I can’t see a map pin or location-finding details being necessary for this one. (The 2nd picture above is again from an August 2014 visit.)
Coming in the next NYC archive post(s): Taxi Driver, Goodfellas, and more.