There are many ways to get to know New York. No doubt, you can spend several lifetimes visiting their corners and still have many things to see. The Big Apple is like a miniature universe, where you will not only find the most typical tourist attractions, but also a wide panorama of leisure, art, gastronomy and culture.
A good way to discover the city and the idea behind this text is to visit some of the movie theatres in New York.
Without a doubt, the city is one of those places that, although you have never set foot in it, you have visited a thousand times in movies, series and photographs. That’s why many of us, when we go there for the first time, have the same feeling: “Wait a minute, I’ve already been here…”.
There are shoots that are part of our lives, and you certainly have a good handful of New York movies in mind whose scenes you’d like to get your head in.
For now…join us on our walk through ten films shot at different locations in The Big Apple! Get to know New York’s cinema!
1. King Kong (Cooper y Schoedsack, 1933)
Let’s start at the beginning. It’s probably not New York’s first appearance in the cinema, but it is the first scene that has remained as a universal visual memory icon. We’ve all seen the Great Ape climbing the skyscraper par excellence: the Empire State Building.
The Empire State stands out among New York’s movie stages for the strength of the scene ( even to this day) and the impact it had at the time. At its premiere, the building was brand new (it was built in 1931).
Can you imagine yourself hanging at the top of this New York skyline reference?
2. Hannah and her sisters (Allen, 1986)
You see, we haven’t done much begging. Yes, Woody Allen had to be there; how could he be missing? In this case, the difficult thing is to choose a single scene within one of his most New York filmography. The logical thing would have been to opt for Manhattan (1979), but practically the whole film is an ode to the city?
In the end, we’re left with this scene in which David, an architect, takes April and Holly to see their favourite buildings in the city. Would you dare to repeat the tour in search of these same buildings? But come on, there’s a lot to choose from in Woody Allen’s heritage when it comes to New York movies.
3. Taxi driver (Scorsese, 1976)
Martin Scorsese is another of those directors in love with his city who doesn’t miss an opportunity to portray it in his films. But Scorsese’s New York is very different from Allen’s: dark, sordid and violent, full of sinister characters.
Like Travis Bickle’s good guy, the crazy taxi driver played by Robert De Niro.
There is a lot of New York in Taxi Driver, but the atmosphere of the night scene of driving through Midtown, with all its urban fauna (“at night all the animals come out”), its dark corners contrasting with the neon lights are, for many, the real New York of the seventies.
4. Once upon a time in America (Leone, 1984)
The cinema New York and the real New York are intertwined in this magnificent film by the genius Sergio Leone (yes, the spaghetti western) so little valued at the time and so much, so long, that it tells the story of four young Jewish friends from Brooklyn who were gangsters with the New York of the 1920s as a backdrop.
We’ve chosen one of the most memorable scenes from this mastodon film because among interiors and stages, it’s not easy to recognize the current city on the screen. The Manhattan Bridge will certainly ring a bell. The protagonists, filmed from Washington St., cross Water St., in the area that the locals call DUMBO.
5. Cococrilo Dundee (Faiman, 1986)
All right, it’s not what a film would say (it seems more like the Australian version of The City Is Not for Me), but many of us felt like Paul Hogan when we first set foot in the metropolis; moreover, the film you’ve surely seen and which was a childlike reference on the New York of yuppies….
In this scene we can see ourselves immersed in nothing less than the mythical Fifth Avenue, an emblematic place in New York where there are people. The same goes for the Plaza Hotel, where the Australian adventurer is staying. Virtually not at all!
6. Big (Marshall, 1988)
Another classic that is present in any list like this is the toy store in which a Tom Hanks with a child’s soul played a huge piano with his feet. FAO Schwartz is called. You will probably still remember the melody with a bit of effort… We’ll let you enjoy the scene if you don’t remember. I’m sure you’ve seen yourself performing virtuoso musical dance steps from time to time. Now, from the end of 2018, it’s possible to do it again in New York (at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, to be exact). Oh, and you can take the opportunity to search for Zoltar on Coney Island…
7. Donnie Brasco (Newell, 1997)
We actually meant Katz’s Deli, the mythical Jewish delicatessen on the Lower East Side where they’re used to serving pastrami sandwiches as much as they are to leaving room for cameras. Yes, before you ask, it’s also the site of Meg Ryan’s famous fake orgasm scene in When Sally Found Harry…
The scene isn’t particularly spectacular, but the film (set in the 1970s) deserved a mention, because it’s another one of those that immerses you in a New York cinema (apart from monuments and attractions) that you’ll find again, more or less, when you visit the Big Apple in real life.
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Family travel Specialist
I have always liked to travel, discover other cultures, add experiences. Keep filling that personal backpack that we all have.
When our son was born, we wanted nothing to change. And so it has been. My boy, the little one, and I, together we are a small whirlwind hungry for trips, and we turn all this passion into helping you prepare your next dream.
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