Movies Filmed Elsewhere Than Where They're Supposed to Be and Gone Comically Wrong

Rather than hijack this thread about movies filmed in places you’ve lived, how about the opposite? Movies filmed elsewhere but that are supposed to be where you live, or at least a place you are very familiar with, but they’ve screwed it up comically?

In *The Buddy Holly Story * (1978), through the window of the Lubbock, Texas, bus station can be seen a nice mountain. I’m here to tell ya: Lubbock is flat as a tabletop, and there ain’t no mountain around for hundreds of miles.

Similarly, in *Happy, Texas * (1999), there’s a scene where two of the main characters are sitting on a porch taking in the breathtaking scenery in front of them. Bull-fucking-shit! I am more familiar with the real Happy, Texas, than I could ever want to be. It is a dusty, pathetic little dirthole up in the Panhandle – again, flat as a pancake for hundreds of miles around. Lends itself more to The Last Picture Show if anything. That porch scene must have been shot down in Big Bend country, far away close to the Mexican border. And the town is certainly NOT populated by zany colorful characters. And I’d be surprised if there was any sort of “secret gay nightclub” for all the local ranchhands who are secretly gay. I’ve heard that the good citizens of Happy were mighty upset at how the film came out.

*Kickboxer * (1989). I’m no Jean Claude Van Damme fan, but I watched it because I saw part of it being filmed. It was at least actually filmed in Thailand. But there’s a scene where the two main characters drive “a couple of hours” out of Bangkok to some secret training camp. Based on the mountainous jungle scenery, I’d say they would have had to be driving all friggin’ day to reach scenery like that, which was obviously up in the North. The Central region, which includes Bangkok, is as flat as West Texas, and it’s all heavily agricultural. Plus they threw in this goofy Tarzan-jungle-sounding soundtrack. (BTW: The scene I watched being filmed was on Khao San Road. Van Damme goes into a “boxing gym,” which is actually a Khao San Road Hotel, and comes out again. There are two small children in front on the sidewalk sparring with each other. I think he toussle’s one’s hair, then walks away. The scene inside the gym was filmed somewhere else. This part could go in the other thread.)

Rumble in the Bronx and at least one Steven Segal movie are supposed to be in (duh) the Bronx and Chicago respectively.

Yet there are lovely mountain ranges in the background of the chase scenes.

Renegades laughably tries to pretend that Toronto is Philadelphia.

Part of the whacky charm of Army of Darkness is that apparently 14th century England looks a lot like the Mojave.

The Ardennes looks a mite arid in Battle Of The Bulge too.

They do that in so many films. I was listening to the commentary on Shaun of the Dead and Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright pointed out that the scene in the backyard (where the gang is practicing their zombie impressions) was filmed in two different place. Towards the fence and neighboring house in one location and the opposite viewpoint was filmed 15 miles away.

Rumble in the Bronx was going to be my contribution because the mountains were so egregious. The only other ones I can think of off-hand are TV shows: Southern California standing in for almost anywhere:

Georgia (Dukes of Hazzard)
Korea (MASH)
Nevada (Bonanza)
Another planet (Star Trek)

I’m sure there’s gazillions more.

Any scifi show claiming to be an alien planet.


They’re all filmed in abandoned quarries. Are we to believe that every alien planet looks like it’s been heavily mined?


Actually I came here to mention Rumble in the Bronx but someone beat me to it. Unless of course, those are supposed to be the great garbage mountains of northern New Jersey.

Having watched Evil Dead 2 last night I’m pretty sure you’re a few centuries off and I don’t think they ever identified it as England. You can handwave it as a fortress held by some crusaders.

But that’s just being nerdy.

This is too old for most Dopers even to care about, but the old Walt Disney productions (TV shows and feature movies) about Davy Crockett, especially when he was supposedly living in West Tennessee were filmed somewhere else because the mountains shown are closer in size to East Tennessee, but look much more like California or somewhere west of Tennessee. West Tennessee has some hills but there are no mountains in that part of the state.

Our family went camping at the Reelfoot Lake State Park (Northwest Tennessee near the Mississippi River and the Kentucky state line) when the kids were young and we took a boat tour of the lake to see all the flora and fauna of that earthquake-made natural wonder. The surrounding terrain was almost as flat as the lake and the tour guide pointed at a little rise on one shore and said in what sounded like a joking manner, “That rise there is the high point in this county.” It was less than 30’ higher than the lake.

Tennessee slopes downward from East to West and all the really high ground is East of Nashville. The western half (surely the western third which starts at the Tennessee River and goes to the Mississippi) is mostly the sort of terrain you find in Mississippi and Western Alabama.

Bottom line: Davy Crockett, as depicted by Walt Disney, is geographically in error.

In Hannibal, Clarice Starling guns down scary crack dealers at the Washington DC waterfront. Unfortunately, it is Richmond’s waterfront.

No Way Out has a chase scene with Kevin Costner in a DC Metro subway station. It is recognizably a Baltimore subway station, though.

The old Wonder Woman TV series took place in Washington, at least during the first season. Note: No Washington street is lined with palm trees.

Not a movie, but a television series that has now probably gone mostly forgotten, but the cop show Sirens was supposedly set in Washington DC. It was filmed in Montreal and featured blatant French signage as well as a shot of Boulevard René Levesque, complete with skyscrapers and a caption that read: Washington DC.

Part of the Charlie Sheen vehicle, The Arrival, is set in Oaxaca, Mexico. It is portrayed as a dirty, lawless place. Not far from the city, there is a jungle-like area. In fact, Oaxaca is one of the most beautiful cities in Mexico, a charming place littered with literally hundreds of ridiculously ornate colonial churches and sits in the middle of a generally arid area.

In The Deer Hunter, the main characters go hunting in the Appalachian mountains. Unfortunately, they apparently got lost along the way and ended up in Washington state.

There are some episodes of The X-Files just like that. Those huge mountains in Massachusetts bear an uncanny resemblance to the Pacific Northwest.

Well, there were dozens of goofs in “Die Hard 2.” Among the most notable: the Washington DC airport had phone booths that read “Pacific Bell.”

I was coming in to mention the X-Files… In one episode, Mulder and Scully go to Rachel, Nevada to investigate something. They pull up at a big house with a big green lawn and big trees. Rachel is high desert, no grass, no trees, and definitely no big houses. I don’t even think they have buildings/houses there that didn’t come with wheels.

I recently watched The Matrix which was filmed in Toronto but partly set in Chicago. I was amused that in all the high altitude helicopter shoots, the skyscraper rooftops and 70th story windows not a single glimpse of the giant fucking lake Chicago is on is visible.

If TV counts, if only for an honorable mention, then…Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, which used Southern California in place of Colorado.

Not that it takes a local to notice it…though the gently rolling hills of Pikes Peak being covered with the lush, brown, summer grass was kind of a giveaway.

True Grit had scenes supposedly in Yell County, Arkansas, but somehow failed to account for the lack of snowy, 12000 ft pointy-topped mountains. There’s an 1800 foot flat-topped mountain that looms large to the west, but no peaks, and rarely is it snow-covered.

I didn’t think the city was ever explicitly named in the movie - I think I’d give that one a pass on account that it was supposed to be an artificial construct, merely resembling a human city in the late 20th Century.

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. One moment, they’re driving through green, rolling hills in the English countryside - the next, they’re driving past sun-scorched vineyards…

Scranton :smiley:

I’m going with Mangetout on this, since avoiding any shots of the lake would almost have to be on purpose, given that Toronto happens to own some prime shore-front property on a giant fucking lake* of its own…

*Hey, I live in a desert country. Lake Ontario looks pretty huge to me:slight_smile: