Movies to get in the mood

Ok...now that everyone is all settled down over the new website I think its time for another fun post. A number of years ago I posted asking for favorite European movies... and there were lots of great movie suggestions. But, it's now a few years later with new movies and new posters, so how about some film suggestions for movies that make you want to return to Europe? (tv shows too)
I will start with a film I just recently watched and is probably a current favorite ...if you love Budapest (I do) you will love Gloomy Sunday. It was not available on Netflix but was on Youtube. It was in two separate parts, but you could click on 'close caption' and the English subtitles were there... Wonderful film.

Posted by Nikky
Seattle, WA
38 posts

I spent a lot of time watching Star Trek Next Generation and Darjeeling Limited while in Rome, so even though those aren't strictly European related, they always get me ready to go exploring.

Posted by Zoe
Toledo, Ohio, US
5895 posts

Terry, great question! Roman Holiday, Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. Summertime, Katherine Hepburn and Rossano Brazzi. Anything by Federico Fellini and Lina Wertmuller. 1900, Robert De Niro and Gerard Depardieu. Anything with Gerard Depardieu. Cinema Paradiso. The Leopard with Burt Lancaster. We All Loved Each Orher So Much, Vittorio Gassman. Christ Stopped at Eboli (Matera before it was a tourist sight). Il Postino. Schindler's List.

And during the summer, on Italian television, Road Italy - travel show focusing on areas of Italy.

Posted by Michael Schneider
New Paltz, NY
7463 posts

The BBC road trip comedy The Trip starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon. The sequel (The Italian Trip)has just started air on the BBC as well should make it around to the BBC America in the near future.
Spoiler alert.................the new series does feature more Michael Cain impressions:)

Posted by Alexandra
Houston, TX
55 posts

The American (2010), with George Clooney. Suspense thriller with great Italian small hill town atmosphere.

Posted by Amanda
Dreaming of Europe
42 posts

Midnight in Paris (2011 / Woody Allen). I absolutely love this movie. The scenery set in Paris is just beautiful.

Posted by Roy
East Alabama
1020 posts

I disagree about "The American" and agree totally about "Midnight in Paris" and would throw in the last part of "Something's Gotta Give" for making Paris look great even in winter.

In keeping with the mood of the movie, the Italian hill town in "The American" was so gritty and rundown that, if I had not already been to Italy, I would have scratched the country from my bucket list. I have taken Nebraska off the list for similar reasons after seeing the movie by the same name. : > ) No wonder I prefer travel in Europe to travel in the U.S. A lot of producers seek out the most depressing towns they can find and then proceed to make them worse to make "serious" movies. That's why comedies draw me to a place and dramas push me away.

Posted by Mary
Reno, NV, USA
241 posts

My fave is "Gotcha" about a young American college student who takes his first trip to Europe and hooks up with a beautiful spy. Absolutely hysterical!

Posted by Lee
Dallas
1017 posts

This is a fun thread. Here's some films that come to mind:
To Catch a Thief - Côte d'Azur
A Good Year - the Luberon
French Kiss - Paris
Under the Tuscan Sun

Posted by Barry
San Diego, CA
613 posts

@Roy,

Interesting, your post seems like you're giving a pass to Europe when you say you prefer travel in Europe over the U.S for something similar in both films you reference. In one sentence you say "In keeping with the mood of the movie the Italian hill town in "The American" was so gritty and rundown that, if I had not already been to Italy, I would have scratched the country from my bucket list." Then say "I have taken Nebraska off the list for similar reasons after seeing the movie by the same name. "No wonder I prefer travel in Europe to travel in the U.S." Regarding The American "In keeping with the mood of the movie", that's what the producers were also attempting to convey in Nebraska. In a light hearted comedy such as Midnight in Paris they're going to make the city look beautiful. Whereas movies such as The American, Nebraska and one that I will add, Trainspotting, which made Edinburgh and Scotland in general look less than ideal, they are setting a mood for the film, not everyday and everywhere is a walk along the Seine. I guess I'm defending The American, I liked it a lot too, one of Clooneys best IMHO. If people based their travel plans on things they see in movies they're going to be sorely disappointed sooner or later.

A film that touched home to me was The Way, with Martin Sheen, I walked the Camino de Santiago at the same time this was being filmed so I hold it close to my heart. In some ways it does its job of showing people walking the Camino and their reasons for doing so, everyone has a story and their reason for being there, it shows the camaraderie that exists. Yet at the same time they didn't show the pain one will experience, or the feeling of being dirty and tired after a long day of walking. But in the end it is a film I show to friends and family to give them an idea of what I experienced.

Now if I was looking for a film that shows Paris in all it's beauty it would be Amelie. Or for a film that shows a side of London that the average tourist will never see, Dirty Pretty Things would fit the bill. Or if looking for something based in Europe and the U.S. that follows the same story line and shows the dynamics of their environment I would have to look no further than Shameless.

Posted by Gretchen
Andover, MA, USA
430 posts

Hi Terry Kathryn,

It's funny you posted this, because I was just looking at the original post (from a few years back) about two weeks ago. I'm getting ready for my France trip and I've been watching as many French movies as I can lately!

P.S. Some of these are NOT great movies, but there might be great scenery**

Some may have been mentioned already, but here goes:

FRANCE:
French Kiss - Meg Ryan
To Catch a Thief- Cary Grant
Heartbreaker- Romain Duris (English subtitles)
Romantics Anonymous- (subtitles)
Paris - Romain Duris (subtitles)
Amelie. - Audrey Tattou (subtitles)
Chocolate - Johnny Depp

GREAT BRITAIN:
Any Jane Austen flick
Notting Hill - Hugh Grant
Any James Bond flick
Any Harry Potter movie
The King's Speech. - Colin Firth
The Queen. - Judi Dench

ITALY:
The Italian Job - Mark Wahlberg
Under the Tuscan Sun - Diane Lane
Letters to Juliet. -Vanessa Redgrave
Bread and tulips - (subtitled)

GENERIC EUROPE:
Any Jason Bourne flick
Any James Bond flick, again
European Vacation (Big Ben, Parliament... Haha). ***** Love this

OTHERS:

In Bruges. - Colin Farrell. (Belgium)
My Life in Ruins - Nia Vardalos (Greece)

I'll probably think of many more later on...

FUN!! Thanks,

Posted by James E.
USA
3395 posts

"Movies to get in the mood?" You need movies for that? What????? Some of us can get in the mood without that sort of help.

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

Gretchen. I was trying to find that old list because I needed a few new things to watch and realized that so many of the previous list were old classics that would never go out of style...but there are so many new movies/shows I need to add. That old list (there might be a few movie posts from me) is priceless. I printed out the whole thing and have shared with a number of friends. There are already a number here I am not familiar with or that I need to watch again.
@james. We'll not so much to get in the mood. But to set the scene. Aren't you the big fan of Budapest? Have you seen Gloomy Sunday?

Posted by Roy
East Alabama
1020 posts

Barry, you're overthinking this, at least my part of it. Most movies that make it to our local theaters are from Hollywood and use U.S. settings. For those, the producers and directors usually choose gritty settings for dramas and attractive settings for comedies. That's all.
By the way, the Nebraska comment was marked as a light comment, not to be taken seriously.

Posted by Barry
San Diego, CA
613 posts

Roy, my point was I'm wondering why you prefer travel in Europe over travel in the United States based on the same criteria, a less than glowing view of both locations, Italian hill towns and Nebraska? Seems equal in my view. Luckily for me San Diego has 3 Landmark Theaters which affords me the opportunity to see films that aren't out of Hollywood.

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

How about keeping this post in the 'mood' that it was posted???
Fun and informative......

Posted by Roy
East Alabama
1020 posts

I was making a joke! I have never and will never choose a destination on the basis of a movie. Books, yes. Movies, no.

Posted by Karen (Leigh)
Missouri
429 posts

Thanks for the topic! I needed some new ideas for movies when I am craving Europe travel! I am not going to Europe this year, so I will need a lot of movies to get me through until my next trip next year. My go to favorites when I am thinking about Europe are French Kiss, Roman Holiday, and Bourne Identity.

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

Recently found Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries...charming series on Netflix. Not Europe, but 1920's Melbourne. Great clothes as well:))

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
4047 posts

@ Roy...to paraphase...you prefer traveling in Europe and to Europe than traveling here.. So do I. My sentiments exactly. RS and his travel philosophy/politics have got nothing to do with it. I can think of numerous small towns in France, Poland, Germany that I would rather visit than counterparts here.

Posted by Ceidleh
Boston, MA, United States
1297 posts

Looks like you are getting a lot of recs for the old classics but are looking for some more recent releases to add to your original list. One that gets released in U.S. theaters in a few months that I want to see is Calvary with Brendan Gleeson (Ireland). Le Weekend (Paris) with Jim Broadbent was recently in very limited release in the U.S., with the DVD coming out later this year. Museum Hours (Vienna) is on DVD now, so is Mr. Morgan's Last Love (Paris) with Michael Caine and Before Midnight (Greece) with Julie Delphy. The Broken Circle Breakdown (Belgium), a recent Oscar nominee, is free to stream if you are an Amazon Prime member. Blue is the Warmest Color (France) is on Netflix. Also on Netflix is And While We Were Here (Italy) with Kate Bosworth. I second Barry's nomination for The Way (Spain) with Martin Sheen. A Royal Affair (Denmark) with Mads Mikkelsen is on Netflix. Not new (but released in the 21st Century) is the documentary Children Underground (Romania) - not a fluffy, feel-good film - definitely gritty and sad. Netflix has Meet the Fokkens (Amsterdam) - also a documentary which shows the lives behind the glass windows of the famous Red Light District. Also not a new TV show, but Little Britain (the original UK version - not the recent HBO sponsored "Little Britain USA") is hilarious to those not easily offended or uber-PC.

Posted by bsibiski
44 posts

The Talented Mr. Ripely!!! The English Patient!!!! Sweeping landscapes,beautiful people,LOVE!! Can't help being a hopeless romantic!!

Posted by Morgan
Spokane, WA, USA
41 posts

The Italian Job, Under the Tuscan Sun, The DaVinci Code, Angels and Demons

Posted by James E.
USA
3395 posts

Oops, sorry, got my forums confused. Here, all Budapest / Hungary and fascinating for different reasons.

Gloomy Sunday – WWII /
Cold WarKontroll – Social Commentary
Freedom's Fury – Cold War Documentary
Budapest Retro – Cold War Documentary
The Journey – Cold War Historical Story (1959, Yul Brynner, Deborah Kerr)
Budapest to Gettysburg: One man’s new birth of freedom - Documentary

Posted by Pamela
New York City, NY, USA
4302 posts

I don't think anyone has mentioned the Borne movies. They make me want to visit cities--Berlin and Paris in particular. Some others including oldies that I still love are:

  • Local Hero
  • Rob Roy
  • Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
  • PBS Masterpiece and Mystery--From Monarch of the Glen and Ballykisangel to the recent ones on Peter Robinson's hero Alan Banks, I love watching them. Oh and don't forget Doc Martin and Inspector Lewis.

Pam

Posted by Jeff
Vancouver, WA, USA
357 posts

If It's Tuesday This Must Be Belgium (1969), with Suzanne Pleshette, Ian McShane and a great ensemble of character actors and comedians. The plot follows a busload of American tourists on Worldwind Tour #225, a 19-day, nine-country tour from London to Rome. Though basically farcical, it's a charming story and a fairly accurate portrayal of the inner workings of the tour industry of that era. There is some very nice travelogue photography in here, too.

Posted by Anita
Long Beach, California, USA
1382 posts

Paris, j'taime...such a great flick and it happens in every arrondissement of the city. Makes me want to go just wander the streets...
Enchanted April...makes me want to go have a steamy vacation in Italy.
Bread and Tulips...run away from my family and live the dream in Venice.
Summertime...Kate Hepburn and a midlife crisis with a married man in Venice.

Posted by Nancy
Corvallis OR
2104 posts

I'm a sucker for the movies of the 50's & 60's, and/or anything with luscious scenery:

-France - Charade

-Paris - Sabrina (love the original, but the Paris scenes are much better in the newer version)

-Rome - Three Coins in the Fountain, Roman Holiday

-Venice - Summertime
-Mykonos - Shirley Valentine

-Europe - The Great Escape

-Scottish Isles - The Eye of the Needle

Posted by Mary
Reno, NV, USA
241 posts

Also good is Room with a View for scenes of Tuscany and Florence and England.

Posted by Beatrix
Calgary
2127 posts

I was looking forward to some NEW suggestions of more RECENT movies as requested by Terry Kathryn. Pretty much everything that's been suggested can also be found on the old threads. Here is one that you should see if you're heading to Switzerland:

North Face
Quite a suspenseful action movie based on a real story of two mountaineers trying to climb the most dangerous mountain in the Alps - the Eiger North Face. It's set in 1936 and was filmed on location in the beautiful Swiss Alps.

Here is a trailer:
http://youtu.be/Of9fd6smarA

Posted by Sharon R.
Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
57 posts

As someone who lives in Nebraska and has visited relatives in many places there, I know it's a beautiful state in its own way. If you are expecting mountains you won't find any but it is not boring. It just seems that way if you only drive though it on I-80. The smaller roads that go through the small towns show the state better. I think anyway. I once heard someone call the drive from the eastern part of the state (Omaha and Lincoln) to the Fort Robinson area an eight hour meditation. That you can't drive all of it on the interstate.

As part of Lenten School we studied Joyce Rupp's book Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino. As part of that we also watched The Way. I watched it each of the three times it was offered before class time. And in class we watched excerpts that fit what we had been assigned to read the previous week. Joyce's book shows the fatigue and dirt that for various reasons the movie couldn't show. But both help in understanding the other.

Can't comment on the movie Nebraska because I haven't seen it. But from what I heard it sounds like it needed the look Roy mentioned.

I wonder how Roy feels when someone says something about where he lives that seems to denigrate it like his supposedly joking comments about Nebraska.

Okay! That's enough!

Posted by Barry
San Diego, CA
613 posts

For something new in theaters right now go see The Grand Budapest Hotel, starring Ralph Fiennes and F Murray Abraham, it was filmed in Germany.

Posted by Beatrix
Calgary
2127 posts

The Grand Budapest Hotel is a beautiful movie! I could recognize the Zwinger in Dresden. I haven't been to Görlitz, yet, but a good chunk of the movie was filmed there.

Posted by Patty
Steilacoom, WA, USA
577 posts

How about:

"Greenfingers"-
"Saving Grace"
"Foyle's War" tv
"Call the Midwife" tv
"Last Chance Harvey"

"The Intouchables"
"Amour"
"I Do"
"Kings of Pastry"
"The Women of the 6 th Floor"
"The Butterfly"
"An Afternoon with Marguerite"

Patty

Posted by Gretchen
Andover, MA, USA
430 posts

Patty,
I was thinking of watching The Women on the 6th Floor. Did you enjoy it?

Also, if you google 'French movies on Netflix' there are some fairly new ones (some that I mentioned above). Some looked really cute but they are DVD and I only stream. If did like Romantics Anonymous and paris wasn't too bad - lots of good city views on the one.

Gretchen

Posted by Pam
Troy, Idaho, USA
1827 posts

-The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill and Came Down A Mountain

....and I will confess I cry when the Male Voice Choir sings Men of Harlech

Posted by Patty
Steilacoom, WA, USA
577 posts

Gretchen - We enjoyed the "Women of the 6th Floor". I only listed ones that my husband liked, too. Everytime I put something like this on, he rolls his eyes. Usually he ends up liking it. Those first two French one should be watched with tissue handy and well as " Marguerite."
Enjoy! Patty

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
4047 posts

Both serious and comedy films...."38 Vienna Before the Fall" (Austrian), "The Supper" (French), "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie" (French), "Monsieur N" (French), and, of course most, recently, "The Grand Budapest Hotel"

Posted by Linda
Santa Rosa, CA, USA
333 posts

A few of my favorites are Vicky Christina Barcelona, A Foreign Field (set in Normandy), Volver (Spanish with English subtitles), Tell No One (French with English subtitles) and Jean de Florette and Manon of the Spring (French with English subtitles and you must watch both, as Manon is the continuation of the story - classic with Gerard Depardieu and Yves Montand).

Posted by Linda
Santa Rosa, CA, USA
333 posts

Just thought of two French comedies that I love - The Closet (Le Placard) and The Dinner Game (Le Diner de Cons).

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

Glad to see some newer ideas as well as a reminder to enjoy some all time favorites. Will go see The Grand Budapest Hotel in the next few days...
Thanks again

Posted by Anna
Seattle, WA, United States
723 posts

I enjoy a good cheesy 90s rom com: French Kiss (France) and Only You (Italy).

Posted by Wil
IJzendijke, The Netherlands
535 posts

Nowadays not, but long ago I can remember that James Bond’s “A View to a Kill” made me interesting in that very nice castle, looked so far away but it was Chantilly, some 3 hours driving from my home and the beginning of many visits to castles in France. Reality was different from what I expected and since then......no movies don’t really bring me in the mood for travelling anymore. In movies everything is too much idealized and has little to do with reality, so I see this different apparently.

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
4047 posts

Hi,

I have to say that movies do play a role in affecting my decision to visit a place, as well as books, both historical fiction and non fiction.

Some of the movies that have put places on my list are: "The Illusionist, " obviously, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and "Midnight in Paris," "38 Vienna Before the Fall" (1988, Austrian), "Und Jimmy ging zum Regenbogen" (1971, German)...both films were partially shot in Vienna,

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

@Fred... all time favorite classic in Vienna... 'The Third Man' Love the movie and the music.

Posted by Maryam
Washington, DC
766 posts

Ditto for the Bourne movies. Every time I hear the sirens in the movie (and there are lots since blowing up of things happens), I get a hankering for a European cafe, and overall lots of urban and rural scenery.

Mary Poppins makes me want to go to London every time!

Posted by Anita
Long Beach, California, USA
1382 posts

I almost forgot "Miss Potter" about the life of Beatrix Potter - set in London and the Lake District. Beautiful movie!

Posted by Jean
Mill Creek, WA, USA
590 posts

An entertaining movie that I enjoy for Venice and a bit of Paris is "The Tourist". I was in Paris last month and saw the area where Angelina begins.

Posted by Linda
Seattle, WA, USA
498 posts

Terry Kathryn:

I recently enjoyed a French film from Netflix called, "The Well Digger's Daughter." It takes place in Provence just before WW 1. Check it out..

Some day I will enjoy Provence..

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
4047 posts

How can one deny that "The Third Man" is not a gem, a classic? Totally agree, just a great film.

Posted by Wil
IJzendijke, The Netherlands
535 posts

Hi, I think, so agreeing with most of us, that media playes an important role in getting interested in places far away from home. As a kid my ideas about the US was completely shaped by movies, news, books, but my first visit changed this completely. I don’t mean that a movie can keep me interested to go somewhere, but for me personally getting in the travelmood by watching movies is not so much the case nowadays. Movies can’t replace the real feelings I have for going to travel. Ofcourse everybody do things the way they like.

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

@Wil... there are lots of movies with beautiful scenery that bring up memories of past trips and excite people about future trips for lots of people... I am certainly not suggesting that movies replace travel...nor that many of them are 'reality'... just a little light entertainment here...

Posted by Terry kathryn
Ann Arbor, Mi
3254 posts

@Wil... there are lots of movies with beautiful scenery that bring up memories of past trips and excite people about future trips for lots of people... I am certainly not suggesting that movies replace travel...nor that many of them are 'reality'... just a little light entertainment here...

Thanks for the suggestions... have already found some new things to watch...:)

Posted by Wil
IJzendijke, The Netherlands
535 posts

Terry kathryn - Hi, thanks for responding and enjoy watching those new things :)

Posted by selkie
232 posts

It's tv, but The Amazing Race gets me wanting to go exploring more episodes than not. And about the first 25% of the excellent Ewan MacGregor miniseries 'Long Way Round' is the Europe part of the trip.

In the literature realm, (and it's apparently been optioned for television, so it kind of ties in) if you like urban fantasy, Ben Aaronovich's 'Rivers of London' series has a tendency to leave readers checking the internet for cheap flights to the UK. His love of the city despite its flaws just comes through so well, and there's lots of snarky fun.

Posted by Claudia
Land of La
2563 posts

The International, Waking Ned Divine, The Tourist, Love Actually, The Swimmer, Berlin Babylon, Notes on A Scandal, Charade, Cinema Paradiso, The Way, The Lives of Others, Ryans Daughter, Amelie, Grand Prix, Manon of Spring, Jean D'florette, In Bruge, The Guard, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo,
and The Net 2.0. Television, thanks to Netflix, Hulu, Masterpiece Theatre, and BBC America; Sherlock, Wallander, Above Suspicion, Luther, MI-5, Waking The Dead, Murphy's Law, George Gently, Vera, Jack Taylor, Wire In The Blood, Morse, Inspector Lynley, Inspector Frost, Midsomer Murders, Torchwood, Foyles War, The Fall and Fabio Montale.

Posted by Sam
Green Bay
4559 posts

Yeah, "Euro Trip".
@ Ilja, Check out their take on Bratislava!

Posted by Jeanine
Pacific NW, USA
93 posts

I really enjoyed a movie (comedy) called Pranzo Di Ferragosto set in the Trastevere district of Rome. For me it's not just the scenery in a movie but also hearing the language spoken. It's like yearning to hear le campane chime in Italy.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t31wKgagKVU

Posted by Richard
Los Angeles
970 posts

HBO mini series "Rome". It gives personalities to history and makes it much easier to understand Rome during one of the most notable eras. Touring Rome after watching the series made many of the sights more interesting when I could relate a character to the locale. Happening upon the ruins of Octavia's home (near the Jewish Ghetto) for example was far more interesting knowing who she was and being able to relate a character to the place.

Posted by monim
11 posts

Actually i like to watch TV series more than Movies. Recently i watched 300 rise of an empire. Now i am watching Game of thrones 4. Anyone here who like series more than movies?

Posted by Dave
Ventura, CA, USA
1029 posts

We just saw La Grande Bellezza (The Great Beauty). Over the top highly entertaining film about a rich single guy in Rome re-examining his life. Gorgeous shots around Rome. Stunning.
An older film, 2002 I think, that we loved was Heartlands, starring Michael Sheen.
We saw Le Weekend recently too, with Jim Broadbent. Another excellent Broadbent film is Another Year, about a well-adjusted late 50's English couple noticing all of the disfunction among friends and family.
Other excellent, recent films:
The Past, France
Barbara, Germany
Caesar Must Die, performed by men in Italian prison; Italy
Shun Li and the Poet, Italy
In the House, France
Nicky's Family, Slovakia/Czech Republic
The Hedgehog, France
Wadjda Saudi Arabia

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
4047 posts

Great classics "Amelie" with its scenes of Paris (the story too), and "Cinema Paradiso"....more films come to mind, old and recent, Renoir's "The Grand Illusion" and "Joyeux Noel"...good, poignant French film on British, French, and German soldiers in 1914 at Christmas.

Posted by Sarah
Seattle, Washington
122 posts

For a while there my friends and I joked what Woody Allen movie is coming out this year that's going to make us dream of Europe. I mean there was To Rome with Love (the movie not amazing itself, but man did it make you want to be in Italy during the summer), Midnight in Paris (it had me at Paris), Vicky Christina Barcelona (came out a month before my RS Spain and Portugal Tour, my buddy on the tour got the main song from that film stuck in my head) and lastly You'll Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger and Match Point (makes me think of the UK every time).

As for Shows, bring on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservation and The Layover. There is nothing like a food oriented travel show, to make you want to go straight to the airport.