Lockdown or not, watching movies is always a good idea. This is the most budget way to make your mind travel and see the places without leaving your home. So let me help you forget for a moment about those cancelled trips to Europe and uncertainty about the world today. Let’s visit my new home Belgium, my old homes England and France and some other European countries on our movie trip around Europe.
While this list does not cover ALL of the great movies about Europe, it is my personally curated one of all my favourites + one which I found really boring + one which I really dislike. Curious? Read on!
Table of Contents
Movies about Belgium
In Bruges – Not exactly a feel-good, but will definitely keep your attention. And you’ll see pretty much all of Bruges.
Movies about France
Midnight in Paris – Woody Allen’s film where you will not only see Paris but also meet the artists and writers who used to live there
Amelie – If you ever visit the real Montmartre, you’ll know that the movie is veeeery far from the truth. But it’s better like this.
The Da Vinci Code – Some Louvre and mysteries
Sabrina – Another Audrey Hepburn-in-Paris beautiful film about love.
Funny Face – And yet another Audrey Hepburn wears pretty dresses in Paris and falls in love. Never too many of these though.
Moulin Rouge – Paris mostly by night and also after a couple of shots of absinthe.
Ratatouille – The only case in history where a rat and food actually go well together.
How to Steal a Million – There’s never too much of Audrey Hepburn. In Charade, you’ll not only see the main sights of Paris but also some of the French Alps.
Movies set in French cities
Julie and Julia – Must watch if you like cooking. Or France. Or both.
Chocolat – Much sweeter than the book, but still has a nice bitterness to all that sweetness.
A Good Year and A Year in Provence – South of France at its best.
The Intouchables – A feel-good one about a very unlikely friendship.
Les Miserables – Missing teeth, blood, courage – all in song form.
Marie Antoinette – Let’s eat cake and marvel at her pretty dresses.
Movies about Italy
Angels and Demons – Da Vinci Code, just set in Rome, and slightly different mysteries.
Roman Holidays – More Audrey Hepburn! And some really feel-good retro atmosphere.
To Rome with Love – Woody Allen’s love song to Rome.
The Great Beauty – You can pause this one at any moment, take screenshots, print them and hang on the walls in your living room. Yes, it’s THAT pretty.
Talented Mr Ripley – If you haven’t seen it yet, it will definitely make you forget about weird times outside.
Rest of Italy
The Tourist – Angelina Jolie wears the most beautiful dresses while sailing a boat around Venice.
Letters to Juliet – the sweetest naive love story set in sunny Verona.
Under the Tuscan Sun – Love, family, good food, wine and Tuscany.
Eat Pray Love – That is basically the summary of the whole film here in the name.
The Godfather – Mafia and oranges.
Life if Beautiful – Roberto Benini is pretending to his son that life is good when it really is total shit. Something most parents do every day, but on a MUCH larger scale.
Movies about Poland
The Pianist – Controversial Roman Polansky, before he became controversial.
Movies about Spain
Vicky Cristina Barcelona – Another Woody Allen’s ode to a European city. And some girls in it.
L’Auberge Espagnole – A part of a trilogy set in different cities. Not only you’ll see Barcelona, but also the (stereo-)typical young people from many European countries.
Movies about Portugal
Night Train to Lisbon – directed by Billie August starring Jeremy Irons: so it’s pretty much a classic by default.
Movies about Greece
Mamma Mia! – Singing and dancing to Abba is already the best thing you can do. The only thing better – do it in the Greek islands.
Big Fat Greek Wedding – Another eating, singing and dancing one.
The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants – Some girls exchanging a magic pair of jeans among each other.
Movies about Austria
Before Sunrise – the one from the hipster’s bible, so if you’re an aspiring one, you have to watch it. Pretty much like everything hipster, it’s a little melancholic, dimly lit and nothing much happens, but still, it captivates you.
Sound of Music – the opposite of Before Sunrise. Songs and dancing in very well lit Austrian Alps.
Movies about the United Kingdom
Notting Hill – This otherwise simple love story has a special place in my heart because of the location. It is set entirely around the streets I used to stay in London when I came there for the first time. And at some point, Hugh Grant’s character walks pretty much all the route I used to take from home to work. He even passes the street vendor which was really there (and really THAT loud) in real life.
Love Actually – Several intertwining stories not only about love but also sexism, exploitation, lust and superfluous relationships. Well made and one of my least favourites movies ever. Still worth watching.
Paddington – Paddington 1 and 2 are pretty perfect all-family movies about the famous bear. Kind and inspiring and will show you some best parts of London.
Sherlock – Modern London and the best take on Sherlock I have seen (and it means a lot from the fan of old one).
Sweeney Todd – Johny Depp’s character sings: “There’s no place like London”, while he cuts throats to half of its population. It is also a very didactic story about what happens when no right to justice or basic income is secured.
I hope you’ve found some inspiration for your lockdown home cinema. Which ones are your most and least favourites?