London – Where Every Street Is a Cinema
While it’s certainly not the Manhattan of the movie business, London has been home to many golden cinematic moments through the years. From the quaint gardens of Notting Hill (complete with the very bumbling and very English Hugh Grant), to Bridgets Jones’ flat in Borough Market (who knew book publishing paid so well?) or the burning houses of parliament in V for Vendetta (going one step further than Guy Fawkes could), us cinema goers like to witness a bit of The Big Smoke on the silver screen. Even the Norse God of Thunder Thor popped by Greenwich a couple of years ago to save the world!
Unfortunately my London life isn’t quite as exciting as the movies would have you believe. I’m more often found in the queue at Tesco’s rather than running away from zombies in Crouch End (à la Shaun of the Dead). However, living in London does at least provide the chance to watch plenty of classic and new films in some wonderful locations. The beautiful Somerset House has been showing iconic motion pictures such as The Warriors and The Graduate throughout August, while The Luna Cinema has been providing the big screen experience to lucky crowds at Alexandra Palace and Kensington Palace. If you’re bored of trips to the tired multiplex, then these locations will certainly put the magic back into the movie-going experience.
Last week I headed to the top of a carpark in Stratford as part of the Rooftop Cinema Club, where they had transformed the mundane into the marvellous with pop up bars, fake grass and deck chair seating, all with the mesmerising backdrop of the Olympic Park. The heavens might have briefly opened but you’ll be surprised how uplifting watching a film with a beer and burger in hand can be. We watched the intense jazz drumming (one of my favourite genres as it happens) movie Whiplash. A great piece of work on its own, but made just that little bit more special as the sun set on the city around us.
The outdoor cinema experience doesn’t always come cheap, but in a city that’s provided so many memorable cinematic scenes, it only seems right that we get to create our own movie moments in London’s parks, rooftops and hidden corners.