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The Movie Lover’s Guide to London (Paperback)

Colour Books Hobbies & Lifestyle > Travel P&S History > British History P&S History > Social History Photographic Books World History > UK & Ireland > England > London

By Charlotte Booth
Imprint: White Owl
Series: City Guides
Pages: 200
ISBN: 9781399072694
Published: 4th April 2023



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London is a magical place which has intrigued people for more than 2,000 years, and never is this more apparent than in the past 130 years following the invention of the moving image.

Do you want to follow in the footsteps of Paddington, James Bond and Dorian Gray? Do you want to kiss in front of the blue door? Or look for the tomb of the resurrected Lord Blackwood? Or do you want to know where Richard Burton lived? Or where you can actually buy jewellery which was in the movies?

If you do, then you’re in the right place.

London has been a draw for filmmakers for decades, and this book guides you through the locations, in the shadow of some of your favourite movies.

Take a tour by movie, go on a movie pub crawl, a leisurely stroll through cemeteries with connections to the movies or create your own tour by postcode. This book will allow you to visit new parts of London but with the familiarity of a well-loved film.

With more than 500 movie locations from 91 films covering more than six decades of movie making and more than 100 images, this book will have something for everyone and will show you London in a new, sparkling, glamourous light.

If you are movie buff and are in London - take this book and see for yourself.

NetGalley, jane brown

This lives up to the title and provides plenty of background details on how the city of London has been used as background (and foreground) in many movies over the years. Thoroughly enjoyed and hope someone compiles some walking maps based on the intel provided here.

NetGalley, Jason R

I love movies and learning about the places they were filmed. This tells me more about the movies I love and the locations that I could visit if I was ever to go to London. That would be amazing and just to stand there in those places. I would like to see more books like this for other locations.

NetGalley, Destiny Bridwell

This was such an interesting read. I love the fact that you can go to places and recognise them from movies that you have seen. I learnt some interesting facts and I cannot wait to go and see them

NetGalley, Aria Harlow

Listen to an interview with the authors on The Oscar Project Podcast here!

The Oscar Project Podcast

As featured in 'History of London through the Lens of a Movie Camera'.

Read the article here!

Historic UK

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

If you're a movie buff and are living or visiting London and have time to spare this book would be a great companion. It introduces many different locations for scenes throughout the city. Recommend any movie lover looking for a fun alternative activity to the usual day out.

NetGalley, Anna White

An absolutely fantastic guide book for movie lovers who want to visit the filming locations of their favorite movies across the city of London. It's a great city with tons of history, and there are plenty of interesting places to check out from film history.

NetGalley, Jonathan Ytreberg

If you are like me and try to figure out where something has been filmed, you will enjoy this book. It is great for those who know their way around London and also those who plan to visit and would like to check out shooting locations. Naturally, there is more emphasis on modern locations as so often the older ones have either vanished or changed but it does give an eclectic selection of flicks.

I like the way it breaks down film locations in groups such as British films, Hollywood films and Bollywood films. It also looks at different genres.

NetGalley, Susan Johnston

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

A lovely and well sectioned book. It takes you to the sites of very well known movies and the lesser known ones as well. There is ample information to find you way around.
I do enjoy the multiple tours in the book where if you for example follow the Notting Hill tour, you will visit various places from movies such as Notting Hill, Spectre, Paddington and Love Actually. I thoroughly enjoy this book and can recommend it if you want to bring a little Hollywood into your next trip to London!

NetGalley, Fabienne Payet

This book is a good guide to movie locations in London, with interesting anecdotes, and lots of pictures. It includes well-known movies like the James Bond films, Bridget Jones and Shakespeare in Love, and obscure movies set in London.

NetGalley, Lisa Sanderson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This book is a great travel companion to all movie lovers visiting London. The book is divided into two 8 sections - one dedicated to specific movies and then chapters on James Bond, Hollywood, Bollywood, Movie-related sites, Blue Plaque Tour (plaques identifying and commemorating buildings of note), Retro cinema tour, movie pubs, churches and cemeteries, as well as by neighborhood. Some of my favorite films such as Love Actually, Paddington, and Withnail and I are all described here among many others. There are great photos throughout and this book is to be used with Google or Apple Maps by entering the post codes given for each location. This is a fun read.

NetGalley, Ann Manikas

It's a good guide to London based on movie location. There's plenty of places, iconic scenes and the coordinates to find the places.
Useful and informative.

NetGalley, Anna Maria Giacomasso

A great book with lots of interesting information.

NetGalley, Nadine Rizvi

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

What a brilliant book. The nostalgia from films in years gone by, with some of my favourites, to new films. All filmed in various parts of the capital. Wether you just read the book, use it as a walking tour or just to explore one area of the capital you will be entranced.
Use it as a guide to explore with and take lots of pictures to show off to friends and family with your film knowledge in relation to London.

NetGalley, Helen Wilkinson

I imagine having this book starting in a backpack while wandering around London, and then diving for it so often that it has to stay in my hands. Or beside me to read while I’m having a coffee before starting on the next interesting location that it encourages me to pursue. The Movie Lover’s Guide to London is also just a really good read for a person interested in films, locations, excerpts of plots and details of locations associated with this wonderful city. Going to the movies, as well as walking around London, will be doubly interesting with the wealth of information Charlotte Booth packs into this guide.

Do not feel that you will be subjected only to various iterations of Harry Potter and Mary Poppins, although the former appears in locations including Australia House in The Strand (and where, standing in the location, I was told about its fame associated with Harry Potter several years ago). This is one of the more interesting features of the book – for London lovers so many of the locations will be ones with which you are familiar. You will be adding to your connections with locations that seemed so familiar there was nothing left to learn. However, there also many locations that will not be familiarly associated with films – some have changed, some have not been subjected to continual storytelling, and others will be new even to the most avid filmgoer, or London observer.

The introduction is innovative – it is a short history of the camera, the process towards the moving image, sound, colour, 3D and IMAX, purpose-built cinemas and the picture palace in contrast with ‘the fleapit’ and the economic impact of the Covid pandemic. Then we get to the most familiar feature of Sword & Pen publications – the determination to make the material accessible to readers. This does not mean that you will be confronted with a simplistic narrative, rather that you will be provided with an intelligent, detailed and enticing narrative that you will understand and enjoy. Booth begins by explaining how the book can be used. Postcodes rather than maps are used to define areas and precise locations. There are choices about how to approach the topic: firstly, the movie section provides the reader with locations based on the movies they want to follow up; the second is themed tours which can comprise locations associated with a particular genre of movie, or secondly, the areas in which locations can be found.

A short description of the action that takes place is given for each location. So, after placing the British film industry into a financial context by telling the reader briefly about the financial successes nationally and internationally of films such as the Harry Potter franchise, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, and Paddington, the use of Senate House, Malet Street begins the movie location tour. Senate House was a location for 1984, and Booth provides both history of the building and a brief commentary on how the building was used in the film. The tour proceeds throughout London, together with location and a brief on plot and scene.

Some locations are used for a variety of films, and booth has chosen to repeat some of the information about the location, which is not necessarily part of the film detail, each time she refers to it (Aldwych Station stands out here). I wondered whether there was a better way to do this – for example, an appendix of frequently used locations with the information peculiar to that location but not the film. However, other readers might be pleased to be able to follow a trail without looking elsewhere in the text.

Tours such as the Blue Plaque Tour and the Retro Cinema Tour, The Movie Pub Crawl and Church Tour demonstrate the variety of information packed into this engaging book. I realised that I had visited many of the locations Booth writes about, without realising that they had served as locations for films I have seen, heard about or not wanted to see. The variety of films and tours covered allows for each of these responses – to be cliched, ‘there is something for everyone’. However, the book is far from cliched, with its combination of fascinating details about locations, scenes and the films that can be investigated with a self-guided tour around London with The Movie Lover’s Guide to London in your hand.

NetGalley, Robin Joyce

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Great book, loved reading about each part of London and films that filmed there.
I'm from London and even I was shocked to learn so much .

NetGalley, Karen Bull

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

What an absolutely fascinating book this is, I had so much fun reading it.
If, like me, you are a movie buff then you will love this book, but it will also appeal to general knowledge collectors and those who have an interest in the claims to fame that are held by the places in London.
It is a reference book that shares with the reader the key places in London that certain movie scenes were filmed and includes a wide variety of photos too.
This would make a great coffee table book to catch the interest of you friends and family.
This is a great book that I highly recommend.

NetGalley, Pauline Knox

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this guide book & being reminded of some of the places from film & TV that we went to when I was younger.

NetGalley, Sophie Crane

If you love movies and enjoy traveling this guide is for you. This is a very comprehensive guide that gives a movie and then mentions more than one location from that movie that you can go check out. It also give tours based off the type of landmarks, say breweries or churches, it will give a tour of breweries and churches and what movies they were from as you move from one to the next.

NetGalley, Sarah Tondra

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The Movie Lovers Guide to London is a brilliant wee book.

I really enjoyed this book as it was clear and concise. It has a short history of british cinema at the start then lots of great ideas for places to go and see from movies. It also has tours that you can go on as a planned trip while you are in the capital.

I loved that it had a whole chapter on James Bond places of interest. Loves the photos it had as well. It would be great to have to plan a city break round the tour areas.

NetGalley, Hazel Thomson

What a fun concept for a travel book!

It's no secret how much I love London and I've been very fortunate to visit it on multiple occasions. In the lead-up to my trips, I would reference Pinterest, photography books, and TikTok as a way of garnering inspiration on what to do and see while in the city, steering clear of the stereotypical travel books and tourist sites. I would want to experience the city as a member of the city, not someone who is just passing through. This book allows a new perspective on what to see while in the city, the sites and sets of films that are set in the city including Notting Hill, Harry Potter, Mary Poppin's Return, and The King's Speech.

I plan to reference this book next time I'm planning a trip to London.

NetGalley, Alexa Burban

I wish that they had more of these book, in different country's. This is a great book, it has so many movies that were made in London, The King's Speech, Notting Hill, Mary Poppin's Return, and so much more. It brought back so many movie memories. A great read.

NetGalley, Sheila Treacy

This is a really beautiful coffee table book for anyone who loves the movies and wants to explore London in a different way. Not only are popular landmarks from films discussed but there are also a number of tours laid out in the book which was my favourite part and I’m looking forward to the cemetery tour next time I’m in London.

NetGalley, Lindsay Adams-Riley

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I really liked the way this book was set out and was almost tempted to rerun some of the movies to have the visuals while reading the book but got so engrossed in the text. Absolutely fascinating and when next in London will use this as my guidebook. Will buy this for movie buff pals too.

NetGalley, Karen Hammond

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

A great guide for film lovers. I am a film fan and have read quite a few film location guides. All of them have been a collection of locations I could have easily found with a bit of googling. This guide is different. The amount of detail for each location I feel can only be found by watching the film and then going out and looking. The first half of the guide takes you through the London locations by film in the order that they appear in the film, with a brief description of the scene. No maps, but an exact postcode for finding the location on a phone. The second half of the book takes you on walking tours of areas pinpointing locations for all the films that were filmed in the area. I think that this is the best film location guide that I have seen. I love it.

NetGalley, Hannah Hill

The Movie Lovers Guide to London is a helpful, informative tool for anyone who enjoys cinema and wants to explore its history in London. As someone who has lived in London, I really enjoyed reminiscing on favourite places and learning new things about the city. This book gives you all of the information it promises in the title, it’s clear and easy to navigate by movie, in alphabetical order. It has a themed section if you want to focus on a certain setting such as pubs or churches. It also lists all of the postcode should you wish to just focus on one area of town... If you’re a cinema buff heading to London I would 100% recommend this guide.

NetGalley, Maddie Staines

This book would make a great gift for any film lover, or someone coming on a trip to London from overseas! A different kind of tourist guide.

NetGalley, Kate Henderson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this book! As a huge movie lover and romance fanatic I loved reading abt my favorite places from films I’ve loved over the years. It was much more comprehensive than I thought it would be. Loved it!

NetGalley, Jill Speedman

I’ve been to London a few times, but each time I come home and think of a dozen more places I should check out if/when I return to the city. This book had me adding a few more of those spots to the running list in my phone!... I can’t wait to visit London again and check out some of the places I probably would not have know about without this book.

NetGalley, Renee D

About Charlotte Booth

Charlotte Booth is a freelance writer with a PhD in Egyptology. She has had numerous books and articles published on all aspects of Egyptology and lives in Wiltshire with her partner, her Bengal cat and the escapologist hamster.

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