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Arts The Movies And TV Shows That Transport Us To Our Favourite Places

The Movies And TV Shows That Transport Us To Our Favourite Places

The Movies And TV Shows That Transport Us To Our Favourite Places
The magic of cinema can transport us to locations far and wide (Photo: Getty Images)
By Tatler Hong Kong
May 28, 2020
As our editors get set to stay in Hong Kong for the summer ahead, we list some of the films and TV shows that transport us home – and to places further afield

Travel is still not looking likely for next few months, so along with dreaming of the destinations and hotels we'll be heading off to in the future, we're relying on the magic of cinema to transport us to locations far and wide. Whether we're missing home, feeling nostalgic or getting inspired for that next international trip, here are the movies and TV shows our editors watch when we miss our favourite places.

See also: Bucket List Travel: The Trips Our Editors Can't Wait To Take Post Pandemic

Brideshead Revisited, Paris Is Burning, Kids and Sex and the City


Maybe it’s because everything feels like it’s changing so quickly right now, but the places I’m missing the most are places that feel like they’re forever—cities steeped in history that always feel familiar and comfortable, no matter how long you’ve been away. When I miss Oxford, I’ll watch binge-watch Brideshead Revisited—the 1981 ITV series starring Jeremy Irons. When I miss my hometown, New York City, I’ll put on Paris Is Burning, Kids, or even Sex and the City when I’m nostalgic for the 90s.—Danica Lo, Chief Content Officer

Cool Runnings


One of my favourite movies of all time is Cool Runnings (1993), based on a true story of the Jamaican bobsled team who, against all odds, qualified for the 1988 Winter Olympics. The film happens to be set in my hometown of Calgary, Alberta, the actual host city that year; it makes me nostalgic for the snow back home, though I don’t really crave the minus 37-degree-celsius winters there at all! Apart from that, not only is Cool Runnings incredibly funny, it’s such a great story about persevering and doing what everyone else once thought was impossible.—Charmaine Mok, Editorial Director, Dining



Celebrating his Hong Kong roots with glimpses of city life, local director Johnnie To took three years to shoot Sparrow (2008), a tale of four pickpockets in Hong Kong. A young woman enters their life and changes the narrative with exciting adventures and challenges for the team. The story is largely set at Cheung Lee, a vintage cha-chaan-teng which shut its doors in 2010, while the plot unfolds with vignettes through Causeway Bay’s now-torn-down Sunning Plaza, Central’s steps on Pottinger, and Sheung Wan. The storyline may be simple, but the film captures a different, but real, view of the city through structures and landmarks that document the city we live in.—Wilson Fok, Dining Editor 

See also: Tatler Reading List: 10 Books About Hong Kong By Hongkongers

The Full Monty


My hometown of Sheffield used to be an industrious hotspot that had a thriving steel industry. Fast forward to today, and it's a swanky northern England city with a booming student population. But nothing epitomises the good ol' days like The Full Monty (1997). This cheeky comedy follows a group of unemployed steel workers in the '70s who turn to stripping to earn a living. It's also a great way to become familiar with the Yorkshire accent (subtitles might be required). Eh up!—Annie Darling, Editorial Director, Watches & Jewellery

Notting Hill, Sean of the Dead and The Trip


There are so many films to choose from that capture the spirit of London, though to be somewhat predictable, I’ll always choose Notting Hill for the pure nostalgia that it brings. The film not only conveys the unique quaintness of the area that so many love, but for me it brings back memories of my teenage years spent roaming the famous market with friends. When I miss the UK countryside however, there are few better TV series than Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon’s The Trip. The comedic pair star as fictionalised versions of themselves as they embark on a restaurant tour of Northern England. Filled with shots of tiny English villages, proper pub grub and plenty of laughs from Brydon and Coogan. Failing that, I’ve watched Sean of the Dead more times than I can count. It guarantees a taste of British culture and humour (with a zombie apocalypse thrown in for good measure).—Annie Simpson, Digital Content Director

The First Wives Club, Father of the Bride and Home Alone


Whenever I’m feeling a little homesick, I watch one of three of the Sobti family favourites – either The First Wives Club, Father of the Bride or Home Alone and it always makes me feel better. If any one of them come on at my parent’s place in Dubai, someone in the house will always take a photo of the TV screen and send it to me. They remind of lazy summer evenings at home when it was too hot to go outside. “Shelly the barracuda – she’s 12”. If you know, you know.—Tara Sobti, Society Editor

Midnight in Paris


I’ve been yearning to explore Paris again since my first visit with family two years ago, and whenever I miss the beautiful city, I’ll watch Midnight in Paris (2011). The movie tells the adventure of a screenwriter, who finds himself mysteriously going back to the 1920s (Jazz Age) every day at midnight while vacationing with his fiancée in Paris. It’s a little silly but fascinating to watch, as it captures the most picturesque scenes in Paris—from the stunning architecture to arty cafés and gorgeous tourist spots... it's a beautifully-shot piece indeed.—Helen Yu, Assistant Editor 

See also: 7 Once In A Lifetime Travel Experiences You Can Enjoy From Home

The Inbetweeners 2


Jay, Neil, Simon and Will reunite down under for the second movie edition of The Inbetweeners. Watching the four British boys visit my homeland is a delight to see and there's nothing like watching a tourist in your natural habitat. Backpacker clichés and schoolboy mischief against the backdrop of beautiful Byron Bay makes me yearn for the days of blue skies and crystal clear waters.—Kristy Or, Associate Editor

My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music and La La Land


The places I miss the most are usually related to my favourite moments in life. When I’d like to relive those wild adventures around Europe during my college years abroad—singing our hearts out shamelessly along the Seine or in Covent Garden with my uni besties (literally!)—I will always watch My Fair LadyThe Sound of Music and La La Land. In the perhaps disillusioning reality, Eliza Doolittle sold flowers in a London film set; the glass gazebo where Liesl von Trapp danced to “I am Sixteen Going on Seventeen” wasn’t in Hellbrunn Palace; and Mia never actually visited Paris. But watching these musicals still bring back those wonderful moments vividly – and that’s the magic of the cinema!—Zabrina Lo, Associate Features Editor

See also: 6 Ways Luxury Travel Will Change After Covid-19, As Predicted By The Experts


Arts Travel tv shows movies favourite movies nostalgic movies transportive cinema editor's picks coronavirus covid-19 movies to watch movies to watch when you miss home


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