Movies with no sense of Geography

I know movies are ‘fantasy’ - but if you’re going to use ‘real’ places, you could at least look them up on a map surely?

I thought Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves was bad with it’s depiction of Robin and his sidekick walking from Dover to Nottingham overnight (a distance of some 200+ miles)…

But then I watched Reign of Fire earlier this evening (ok - so shoot me!)

In this film we have a US ‘irregular’ landing in Manchester before travelling to Northumberland (150 miles+ NE) before setting out towards London (300 miles S) but travelling through Pembury (which is actually further south than London!) on the way!!

Whilst he’s in Pembury his radio is audible in Northumberland too - can I please have a walkie-talkie that good - please!?

Oh - they then fly a helicopter from Northumberland to London (remember - that’s 300 miles!) - but just to cap it all off, they ride a horse on the return trip (a good month’s journey there then!!!)

Can anyone suggest a movie which uses real-life locations in a more bizarre and illogical way?

Please say you can’t - please…

Someone send Hollywood a map of the UK…



Pretty much any movie set in Washington, DC.

Probably the greatest cinematic geographic error of all time - the 1960’s movie - “Krakatoa EAST Of Java”.
In reality Krakatoa is WEST of Java.

California dopers posted almost continual location and distance errors in an around Los Angeles in all the 24 threads.

Of course, in The Green Berets John Wayne ends the movie by watching the sun set in the east.

I’ll have to see the movie again to remember which streets, but in The Blues Brothers, they turn from one street to another which in reality run parallel.

Also from the Blues Brothers: It’s 106 miles to Chicago. So why then does it take them all night to get there traveling at pursuit speed? Did they take the long way or something?

It’s my favorite movie ever but it kinda hurts that it’s even based on a lie (there is no tax on church-owned property).

Rumble In The Bronx has plenty of striking shots of the Vancouver mountain skyline.

RoboCop is set in Detroit but obviously filmed in Dallas.

And of course in Naked Gun 2 1/2, Drebin holds Papsmear out a window in Washington DC and we see Times Square, although because of the nature of the film it was obviously done on purpose.

The Mel Gibson film Maverick–the scenes shot in Yosemite National Park were all wrong. One minute he’s down in Yosemite Valley, the next minute (OK, probably at most a few hours) he’s up at Glacier Point. No way could a man on horseback get up there so quickly. And even if we are to assume that the characters trekked all the way up there, why would they do that? (There did not seem to be any rational reason why they had to be in Glacier Point for that scene, other than Half Dome did look fabulous in the background…)

A lot of movies that are supposed to be in Washington DC look very much like LA once somebody gets on the freeway.

Each of these types of threads is required – by law – to mention the bit in When Harry Met Sally where, in order to get from the University of Chicago to New York, they travel south on Lake Shore Drive at about Granville.

It’s not a movie, but a few years ago The West Wing season finale depicted the presidential motorcade traveling from the White House to the State Department. No problem there, except it did so by way of the National Cathedral, a good mile or two out of the way.

My perennial favorite “Los Angeles geography blooper” example is Speed – as a long-time native, it tickles me to see that pokey blue bus go from Pico-La Brea to El Segundo (twelve miles away) in the blink of an eye. :wink:

I’ve heard this claim before, but haven’t seen the movie. How do we know that he is facing the east?

On their way to Nottingham, they also had time to go 'way up north to take a walk along Hadrian’s Wall.

He’s on the beach (in Vietnam), watching the sun set over the water.

In Planes, Trains and Automobiles they get pulled over by a Wisconsin state trooper while driving from St. Louis to Chicago. And when they finally make it to Chicago they enter from the north, IIRC. Of course this could be another Blues Brothers tribute: in that movie you have Illinois state police following them into what must be Wisconsin, so they put Wisconsin police in what must be Illinois.

Wasn’t Rumble in the Bronx filmed in Vancouver, complete with mountainous backdrops?

In the “unused scenes” part of the Spy Game DVD, it introduces a scene set in “Karachi, India”.

Specifically, scenes that call for Union Station in Washington. Most of the time, it’s the subway in Toronto, or something. The signs don’t match here, the cars are different, and the operator voices are incongruent.

Don’t Say a Word. That movie botches Manhattan geography. I listened to the director’s commentary after a first run through to find reasons why the movie was so bad and at least the director mentioned that they took some appalling liberties in geographical continuity.

It’s a fun exercise when things are really dull and dreary to poke around IMDB on various movies supposedly about “the South” to see the actual filiming location(s). So often things meant to portray New Orleans (for example) will have been shot in the Carolinas.

But the one that is hard to figure is Hannibal which was partially filmed on the Biltmore Estate in Asheville NC. The main house the Oldman character inhabits is certainly the Biltmore mansion. But to get the approach scenes and some of the other “geography” shots, they must have used a goodly portion of western NC and other places.

One amusing personal yarn has to do with the filming of scenes in Patriot Games when they’re near the Naval Academy on Hanover St. My son had an apartment on the block where the filming took place. The angles are totally wrong in virtually every scene.

Yes, but do we know he’s supposed to be facing east? Some of the Vietnam coastline does face west, you know; the area around Vung Tau, for example.