Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Fantasies: Key West in the Movies

In late October, I wrote a post about literary trips – that is, traveling to places that have featured prominently in classic and modern literature. As I wrote then, it's hard to walk through the historic streets of New Orleans and not think about a slew of famous stories, from A Streetcar Named Desire (1947) to Interview with the Vampire (1976).

Equally fun, though, is traveling to places that have featured prominently in the movies, and though New Orleans is a popular backdrop, it's certainly not the only American city to have made an appearance on the silver screen. While traveling through the Florida Keys with Dan, I discovered that Key West has witnessed its share of film crews, too. For instance, the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum – a lovely, two-story house where the famous writer penned some of his greatest novels – was used in the film License to Kill (1989). Hint: It's where M revokes James Bond's “license to kill,” and Bond (played by Timothy Dalton) subsequently defies M by leaping over the second-floor balcony and fleeing away on his own mission.

Of course, even cooler than that was the fact that, while staying in Key West, we heard that our hotel – The Eden House – had served as the main location for a film called CrissCross (1992), starring Goldie Hawn. In fact, Michael Eden, the longtime owner of the Eden House – which is essentially a collection of breezy buildings centered around a stunning pool area – even had the chance to dine with Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell during the making of the movie, but he turned it down. (When I told Dan that story, he just about fainted – Kurt Russell, after all, has been one of his favorite actors for decades.)

Because movie-making is a big business in this country, it's probably true that most American cities have played host to a film crew at one time or another. So, what are your favorite film-related spots – in this country or otherwise?


Deb@RGRamblings said...

Wow, lucky you, that hotel and pool area look amazing. I loved Kurt and Goldie together in Overboard! Can't believe Mr. Eden passed on the dinner invite. tsk tsk

Bane of Anubis said...

Turning down dinner w/ Snake Plissken? From a nostalgic POV, Astoria's got to rank pretty high on my location list... went to visit a few months back -- it hasn't changed much since the days of Goonies. Of course, I'd recommend the Oregon coast to anybody, regardless of this coolness factor.

Laura Martone said...

Deb - I think The Eden House is truly a lovely place to stay - definitely has that Old Key West feel. And, yes, I love OVERBOARD - that's one funny movie!

Bane - I know, I can't believe it! As for Astoria, I've always wanted to go there - and yes, GOONIES is to blame. I still love that movie. (Dan, of course, thinks I'm crazy, but what else is new?)

Daniel Martone said...

I love the story behind Goonies... but overall, it is just a so-so movie. Of course in typical Hollywood fashion, they are working on a sequel.

And, there is NO WAY I would pass up dinner with Snake Plissken... "the name's Plissken"

Bane of Anubis said...

Yeah,the nostalgia factor for Goonies gives it more measure than it's worth, probably, but I'm a sucker for an adventure store through tunnels/caves :).

I'm actually surprised that Hollywood's taken this long to sequalize it (actually, I'm more surprised they're not just rebooting it)

Donna Hole said...

My hometown has played host to several movies - most noteably BJ and The Bear and The Outlaw Josey Wales, shot entirely in Oroville, CA. Lots of films have been partially shot in the surrounding area, and an old Robin Hood movie featuring Errol Flynn was shot in Bidwell Park in Chico, just 25 miles up the highway.

But I'd have to say my favorite movie shooting spot would be New Orleans. There is so much history there; not just on a couple streets that are ideal, but I think the entire city seems to have been made for film.

I envy you getting to live in New Orleans, and have all that rich history to feed your creativity. I'm not outgoing enough to take advantage like you do, even if I did live there. But someday I hope to visit.

Lovely pictures, btw. Thanks for the views.


Laura Martone said...

Dan - You just like to tick me off. You know how I feel about GOONIES - I still love that movie! It's one of those rare films that holds up to nostalgia for me... even without the octopus scene.

Bane - I, too, love cave stories, but you knew that already. ;-) And I'm also a wee bit surprised that it took this long for Hollywood to reboot GOONIES.

Donna - Wow! OUTLAW JOSEY WALES! That's pretty cool - that's one of Dan's favorite flicks. And, yes, the entire city of New Orleans is a unique place - inspiring for literature, film, music, and art. I feel blessed to have been born here.