12 Movies That Will Make You Love NYC
Best viewed on a rooftop (if at all possible)
You know that warm-and-fuzzy feeling you get when you see the Manhattan skyline from a plane?
News flash: You can recreate the feeling anytime you want. (It's as easy as streaming a classic '80s flick.)
We rounded up 12 iconic comedies for reigniting your love affair with NYC.
One of the all-time great rom-coms, this flick nails Brooklyn Heights in the 1980s--and the rather specific dynamic of an Italian-American New York family. Watch it now to see how the brownstone-lined streets and the real-life Cammareri Bros. Bakery (where Nicolas Cage's Ronny meets Cher's Loretta), have evolved.
“coming to america”
New York (well, Queens mostly) is a dirty, graffiti-ed concrete jungle in Eddie Murphy’s 1988 comedy. But it's the authentic city personalities that steal the show--from the corner barbershop dudes (all played by Murphy and Arsenio Hall) to the nosy subway straphangers (when Akeem admits to Lisa that he’s an African prince).
Don't get us wrong: We're stoked for Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon to take over. But we'll always be up for a rewatch of the 1984 original, involving a haunted New York Public Library, the original Tavern on the Green, a ridiculous terraced apartment (Sigourney Weaver's place was at 55 Central Park West) and an old-school Tribeca firehouse (ahem, on the corner of North Moore and Varick streets).
“desperately seeking susan”
This "Get into the Groove" launching pad just celebrating its 30th anniversary (yes, we feel old, too), and even still, all we want to do is traipse around St. Marks, Battery Park and Dancetaria (now an apartment building) pretending to be a 27-year-old Madonna.
Woody Allen is at his neurotic and sardonic best in this 1977 classic, with New York City--Central Park, the Village, Battery Park City--playing as big a part as tomboy-chic Annie (Diane Keaton) and Alvy (Allen).
This 1979 flick reunites Woody Allen and Diane Keaton, again as lovers, but this time involved in a web of affairs between friends. (It also stars Mariel Hemingway and Meryl Streep.) But don’t let the cheating fool you; it’s still one of Allen’s sharpest romantic comedies and uses the NYC landscape as its own character. The iconic Queensboro Bridge shot, filmed at 5 a.m., is widely considered one of the greatest movie scenes in history.
The scene with the creepy Zoltar fortune-teller machine was shot in Westchester (not Coney Island), but essentially everything else in this 1988 Tom Hanks blockbuster was filmed right here--from Hanks and his young friend exploring a then-seedy Times Square to checking in at the St. James Hotel (which still stands today) to the legendary keyboard scene at the recently-shuttered FAO Schwartz (RIP).
“when harry met sally”
Two words: Katz's Deli. (And you remember the rest.)
“breakfast at tiffany’s”
Holly Golightly was the Carrie Bradshaw of the '60s. Totally madcap, fabulously dressed and living in a brownstone on the Upper East Side. Beauty shots of Fifth Avenue at sunrise don't hurt either.
In 1980, the movie world blessed all of us Broadway wannabes with Fame, set at the High School of Performing Arts (a real school located on West 46th Street). It's 134 minutes of leg warmers, off-the-shoulder sweatshirts and traffic-stopping street-dancing.
Martin Scorcese is best known for his gangster dramas, many of which (Goodfellas, Gangs of New York, Taxi Driver, Mean Streets) were shot in NYC. But this often-forgotten 1985 black comedy is absolutely worth a watch. In it, Paul Hackett (Griffin Dunne), an Upper East Side computer programmer, goes on a voyage to the then-dangerous Soho looking for Marcy (Patricia Arquette), whom he met earlier that day. A hilarious and absurd mix of over-the-top, only-in-New York experiences ensues, including the two getting caught in the middle of a mob led by ice-cream-truck drivers.
“muppets take manhattan”
Somehow Port Authority still looks similar to 1982... Reminisce on that, along with Animal’s "I Heart NY" T-shirt, and Kermit and Miss Piggy’s carriage ride through Central Park. (We won't spoil what happens next.)