Movies play an important role on how we shape the world we live in. They help to set an image in which most of us deconstruct reality. Whether based on real life or make-believe, at some point in our lives, we wish to experience what we’re seeing in the movies. Here is a list of 30 movies that have inspired many of us to embark on epic journeys around the world.
Location: Montmartre, Paris, France
“Amélie” is a fanciful comedy about a young woman who discretely orchestrates the lives of the people around her, creating a world exclusively of her own making. Shot in over 80 Parisian locations, acclaimed director Jean-Pierre Jeunet (“Delicatessen”, “The City of Lost Children”) invokes his incomparable visionary style to capture the exquisite charm and mystery of modern-day Paris through the eyes of a beautiful ingenue.
29.The Darjeeling Limited
Location: Rajasthan, India
Estranged brothers Francis (Owen Wilson), Peter (Adrien Brody) and Jack (Jason Schwartzman) reunite for a train trip across India. The siblings have not spoken in over a year, ever since their father passed away. Francis is recovering from a motorcycle accident, Peter cannot cope with his wife’s pregnancy, and Jack cannot get over his ex-lover. The brothers fall into old patterns of behavior as Francis reveals the real reason for the reunion: to visit their mother in a Himalayan convent.
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Born under unusual circumstances, Benjamin Button (Brad Pitt) springs into being as an elderly man in a New Orleans nursing home and ages in reverse. Twelve years after his birth, he meets Daisy, a child who flickers in and out of his life as she grows up to be a dancer (Cate Blanchett). Though he has all sorts of unusual adventures over the course of his life, it is his relationship with Daisy, and the hope that they will come together at the right time, that drives Benjamin forward.
27.Back to the Future
Location: The Future, 2015
In this 1980s sci-fi classic, small-town California teen Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) is thrown back into the ’50s when an experiment by his eccentric scientist friend Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) goes awry. Traveling through time in a modified DeLorean car, Marty encounters young versions of his parents (Crispin Glover, Lea Thompson), and must make sure that they fall in love or he’ll cease to exist. Even more dauntingly, Marty has to return to his own time and save the life of Doc Brown.
26.Out of Africa
Location: Shaba National Game Reserve, Kenya
Initially set on being a dairy farmer, the aristocratic Karen Blixen (Meryl Streep) travels to Africa to join her husband, Bror (Klaus Maria Brandauer), who instead spends their money on a coffee plantation. After discovering Bror is unfaithful, Karen develops feelings for hunter Denys (Robert Redford), but realizes he prefers a simplistic lifestyle compared to her upper class background. The two continue on until a series of events force Karen to choose between her love and personal growth.
25.My side of the Mountain
Location: Green Mountains, Quebec, Canada
After the summer trip his parents promised doesn’t work out, 13-year-old Sam Gribley (Ted Eccles) decides to emulate his hero, writer Henry David Thoreau, by living self-sufficiently in the Canadian woods. He sets out with his raccoon, Gus, and ultimately makes a home inside a hollow tree. While there, he takes on a pet falcon, Frightful, and befriends both a local librarian (Tudi Wiggins) and a traveling folk musician (Theodore Bikel). All goes well until winter comes on.
24. The sound of the Music
Location: Salzburg, Austria
A tuneful, heartwarming story, it is based on the real life story of the Von Trapp Family singers, one of the world’s best-known concert groups in the era immediately preceding World War II. Julie Andrews plays the role of Maria, the tomboyish postulant at an Austrian abbey who becomes a governess in the home of a widowed naval captain with seven children, and brings a new love of life and music into the home.
23.The Blue Lagoon
Location: Turtle Island, Fiji
Cousins Emmeline (Elva Josephson) and Richard (Glenn Kohan) survive a shipwreck and find themselves marooned on a beautiful island somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. Under the tutelage of a fellow castaway, Paddy Button (Leo McKern), the two learn the basics of survival. When Paddy dies, however, the now adolescent Emmeline (Brooke Shields) and Richard (Christopher Atkins) are on their own to discover sex, love and loneliness in a tropical paradise.
Location: Vienna, Austria
On his way to Vienna, American Jesse (Ethan Hawke) meets Celine (Julie Delpy), a student returning to Paris. After long conversations forge a surprising connection between them, Jesse convinces Celine to get off the train with him in Vienna. Since his flight to the U.S. departs the next morning and he has no money for lodging, they wander the city together, taking in the experiences of Vienna and each other. As the night progresses, their bond makes separating in the morning a difficult choice.
21.Lost in Translation
Location: Tokyo, Japan
A lonely, aging movie star named Bob Harris (Bill Murray) and a conflicted newlywed, Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), meet in Tokyo. Bob is there to film a Japanese whiskey commercial; Charlotte is accompanying her celebrity-photographer husband. Strangers in a foreign land, the two find escape, distraction and understanding amidst the bright Tokyo lights after a chance meeting in the quiet lull of the hotel bar. They form a bond that is as unlikely as it is heartfelt and meaningful.
20.Under the Tuscan Sun
Location: Tuscany, Italy
When Frances Mayes (Diane Lane) learns her husband is cheating on her from a writer whom she gave a bad review, her life is turned upside down. In an attempt to bring her out of a deep depression, her best friend, Patti (Sandra Oh), encourages Frances to take a tour of Italy. During the trip, the new divorcée impulsively decides to purchase a rural Tuscan villa and struggles to start her life anew amid colorful local characters, including the handsome Marcello (Raoul Bova).
Location: San Louis Obispo and Santa Barbara, California, USA
Struggling writer and wine enthusiast Miles (Paul Giamatti) takes his engaged friend, Jack (Thomas Haden Church), on a trip to wine country for a last single-guy bonding experience. While Miles wants to relax and enjoy the wine, Jack is in search of a fling before his wedding. Soon Jack is sleeping with Stephanie (Sandra Oh), while her friend Maya (Virginia Madsen) connects with Miles. When Miles lets slip that Jack is getting married, both women are furious, sending the trip into disarray.
18.The Motorcycle Diaries
Locations: Lago Frias, Bariloche, Buenos Aires, Mendoza – Argentina; Cuzco, Machu Picchu, Iquitos – Peru; Atacama Desert, Calama, Temucu, Lautaro, Freire – Chile; Caracas – Venezuela; Havana – Cuba
On a break before his last semester of medical school, Ernesto “Che” Guevara (Gael García Bernal) travels with his friend Alberto Granado (Rodrigo De la Serna) from Brazil to Peru by motorcycle. The two men soon witness the great disparities in South America, encountering poor peasants and observing the exploitation of labor by wealthy industrialists. When they reach a leper colony in Peru, Ernesto’s values have changed so much that he sides with the sufferers, forgetting his own comfort.
17.Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Americans Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) arrive in Spain for a summer vacation at a friend’s (Patricia Clarkson) Barcelona home. Visiting an art gallery, they meet seductive painter Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem), who invites them for a weekend of food, art and sex. Sparks really ignite when his fiery former lover (Penélope Cruz) arrives on the scene, making for a very crowded house
16. Memories of a Geisha
Location: Kyoto, Japan
In the 1920s, 9-year-old Chiyo (Suzuka Ohgo) gets sold to a geisha house. There, she is forced into servitude, receiving nothing in return until the house’s ruling hierarchy determines if she is of high enough quality to service the clientele — men who visit and pay for conversation, dance and song. After rigorous years of training, Chiyo becomes Sayuri (Ziyi Zhang), a geisha of incredible beauty and influence. Life is good for Sayuri, but World War II is about to disrupt the peace.
Locations: Oahu, Kauai – Hawaii, USA
Native islander Matt King (George Clooney) lives with his family in Hawaii. Their world shatters when a tragic accident leaves his wife in a coma. Not only must Matt struggle with the stipulation in his wife’s will that she be allowed to die with dignity, but he also faces pressure from relatives to sell their family’s enormous land trust. Angry and terrified at the same time, Matt tries to be a good father to his young daughters, as they too try to cope with their mother’s possible death.
14.Secret Life Of Walter Mitty
Locations: Grundarfjörður, Seyðisfjarðarvegur, Iceland; Himalayas, Afghanistan scenes shot in Vatnajökull National Park, Iceland; NYC; Los Angeles, CA
Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller), an employee at Life magazine, spends day after monotonous day developing photos for the publication. To escape the tedium, Walter inhabits a world of exciting daydreams in which he is the undeniable hero. Walter fancies a fellow employee named Cheryl (Kristen Wiig) and would love to date her, but he feels unworthy. However, he gets a chance to have a real adventure when Life’s new owners send him on a mission to obtain the perfect photo for the final print issue.
Locations: Alberta, Canada; Iceland; California
In Earth’s future, a global crop blight and second Dust Bowl are slowly rendering the planet uninhabitable. Professor Brand (Michael Caine), a brilliant NASA physicist, is working on plans to save mankind by transporting Earth’s population to a new home via a wormhole. But first, Brand must send former NASA pilot Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and a team of researchers through the wormhole and across the galaxy to find out which of three planets could be mankind’s new home.
11. The Gods Must Be Crazy
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
The tribal people in a remote African desert live a happy life, but it is all torn to pieces when a Coca-Cola bottle falls from a plane. With the villagers fighting over the strange foreign object, tribal leader Xi (N!xau) decides to take the bottle back to the gods to restore peace. His journey to the “end of the world” eventually has him crossing paths with a bumbling scientist (Marius Weyers) and a band of guerrillas who take a schoolteacher (Sandra Prinsloo) and her class hostage.
Location: Flinders Ranges, South Australia, Australia
Accompanied only by her faithful dog and four camels, an Australian (Mia Wasikowska) satisfies her craving for solitude by embarking on a solo trip across the desert from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean.
9.The way Back
Locations; Himalayas; Lhasa- Tibet; Vakarel, Bulgaria; Darjeeling, West Bengal, India; Gobi Desert- Mongolia
Denounced by his wife as a possible spy in 1939, Janusz (Jim Sturgess) finds himself in a remote Siberian labor camp. Faced with brutal conditions inside and out, Janusz is determined to escape. A blizzard provides him with the perfect opportunity, and he and a small group of fellow prisoners make a break for it. Escape, however, is the easy part, for Janusz and his companions face a 4,000 mile trek on foot through the frozen Himalayas before they can truly be free.
Locations: New York City, USA; Rome, Italy; Pataudi Palace, Pataudi, Haryana, India ; Bali, Indonesia
Liz Gilbert (Julia Roberts) thought she had everything she wanted in life: a home, a husband and a successful career. Now newly divorced and facing a turning point, she finds that she is confused about what is important to her. Daring to step out of her comfort zone, Liz embarks on a quest of self-discovery that takes her to Italy, India and Bali.
7.Midnight in Paris
Location: Paris, France
Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) is a screenwriter and aspiring novelist. Vacationing in Paris with his fiancee (Rachel McAdams), he has taken to touring the city alone. On one such late-night excursion, Gil encounters a group of strange — yet familiar — revelers, who sweep him along, apparently back in time, for a night with some of the Jazz Age’s icons of art and literature. The more time Gil spends with these cultural heroes of the past, the more dissatisfied he becomes with the present.
Location: Maldives; Puket, Thailand; Gothenburg, Sweden; New York City, USA
Norwegian adventurer Thor Heyerdahl (Pål Sverre Hagen) suspects that the South Sea Islands were originally colonized by South Americans. In 1947 despite his fear of water and inability to swim, Heyerdahl decides to prove his theory. He and five companions set sail from Peru on a balsa-wood raft built from an ancient design. Their only modern equipment is a radio, and they must navigate using the stars and ocean currents. After three exhausting months at sea, they achieve their goal.
5.The adventure of Priscilla the Queen of the Desert
Locations: New South Wales, Australia
When drag queen Anthony (Hugo Weaving) agrees to take his act on the road, he invites fellow cross-dresser Adam (Guy Pearce) and transsexual Bernadette (Terence Stamp) to come along. In their colorful bus, named Priscilla, the three performers travel across the Australian desert performing for enthusiastic crowds and homophobic locals. But when the other two performers learn the truth about why Anthony took the job, it threatens their act and their friendship.
4.Beast of the Southern Wild
Locations: Terrebonne Parish, New Orleans, Montegut, Louisiana, USA
Six-year-old Hushpuppy (Quvenzhané Wallis) lives with her father, Wink (Dwight Henry), in a remote Delta community. Wink is a stern taskmaster, but he is preparing his young daughter for the end of the world. When Wink falls mysteriously ill, nature seems to fall ill with him. Temperatures rise, the ice caps melt and fearsome prehistoric beasts called aurochs run loose. Rising waters threaten to engulf their community, sending Hushpuppy in search of her long-lost mother.
3.Seven Years in Tibet
Locations: Tibet, China; Lienz, Tirol, Austria
Locations: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Captured by smugglers when he was just a hatchling, a macaw named Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) never learned to fly and lives a happily domesticated life in Minnesota with his human friend, Linda. Blu is thought to be the last of his kind, but when word comes that Jewel (Anne Hathaway), a lone female, lives in Rio de Janeiro, Blu and Linda go to meet her. Animal smugglers kidnap Blu and Jewel, but the pair soon escape and begin a perilous adventure back to freedom — and Linda.
1. Into the Wild
Locations: Alaska; Oregon; Georgia; California; Nevada; Washington; South Dakota; Arizona; Baja California
Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch), son of wealthy parents (Marcia Gay Harden, William Hurt), graduates from Emory University as a top student and athlete. However, instead of embarking on a prestigious and profitable career, he chooses to give his savings to charity, rid himself of his possessions, and set out on a journey to the Alaskan wilderness.