50 Greatest London Movies

Sherlock Holmes (2009)

The Movie: Sir Conan Doyle’s sleuth gets a post-modern update, with Robert Downey Jr playing a beefed-up version of Holmes.

Only In London: Shot in and around London (as well as Liverpool and Manchester), Ritchie’s London of yesteryear is a romantic place of heaving bosoms and ridiculously cool heroes.

Notting Hill (1999)

The Movie: Yeah, yeah, it’s from the same brain that wheedled out Love Actually , but Notting Hill is a funny, light-hearted fantasy romance that has its tongue pressed enough into its cheek just about enough.

Only In London: Notting Hill is one of London’s most multi-cultural hot spots, which means it’s odd that Curtis’ film doesn’t reflect that. Still, the area looks the best it ever has – though Portobello Road is where you’ll find Grant’s book shop.

From Hell (2001)

The Movie: The Hughes brothers adapt Alan Moore’s graphic novel, which attempts to solve the mystery of who Jack the Ripper really was.

Only In London: Opium dens, sympathetic prostitutes, law figures exposed as corrupt and nefarious – From Hell is an affecting and effective portrait of London in the late 1800s.

V For Vendetta (2005)

The Movie: Based on Alan Moore’s graphic novel, James McTeigue’s film is set in a future dystopian London where the British Government is run by fascists.

Only In London: Filming around Parliament and the Clock Tower, McTeigue and his crew were only allowed to shoot between midnight and 4am. Meanwhile, they could only stop traffic for four minutes at a time.

Bridget Joness Diary (2001)

The Movie: Renée Zellweger stars as the perpetually-single Bridget in this canny update of Pride & Prejudice.

Only In London: Visit Borough Market and you’ll easily spot Bridget’s little flat near the pub, not to mention the restaurant that's the setting for Firth and Grant's hilarious dust-up.

Bend It Like Beckham (2002)

The Movie: Two 18-year-old girls aspire to become professional footaball players in Gurinder Chadha’s gentle comedy.

Only In London: Chadha captures the city’s cultural diversity beautifully as Parminder Nagra rebels against her orthodox Sikh upbringing – with Hounslow providing the perfect suburban backdrop.

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

The Movie: Sally Hawkins is Poppy, a perpetually cheerful London schoolteacher whose positive outlook on life aggravates those around her.

Only In London: Perfect for drinking games, HGL ’s gal-about-town misadventures provide a veritable tour of London location, with Finsbury Park, Camden Lock, Regent's Park, Camden Market, Stroud Green, Tufnell Park and Lambeth all featured.

Oliver! (1968)

The Movie: Carol Reed’s classic musical in which young orphan Oliver (Mark Lester) falls in with a gang of street urchins who’ve been trained as pickpockets.

Only In London: The city’s a smoggy place filled with danger in this movie adaptation of Dickens’ novel – you definitely believe somebody like Fagin could live here.

An Education (2009)

The Movie: Sixties teen Jenny Mellor (Carey Mulligan) gets involved with a man twice her age in this frisky coming-of-ager.

Only In London: Young Jenny’s world is London at it’s leafy best, with her house found on Carbery Avenue, while the local shops at St John’s Parade were given a period twist for the ‘60s-set tale.

Closer (2004)

The Movie: Sultry drama from director Mike Nichols in which two couples’ love lives intertwine.

Only In London:
What’s London without its dark and glittering strip clubs? Yeah, nothing. More than merely that, Closer is also a look at true-grit Londoners – the ones who shove you out the way on the tube and walk like they’re on a mission to save the world.

28 Days Later (2002)

The Movie: Sci-fi horror from Danny Boyle in which an incurable virus sweeps the UK, transforming people into ravenous zombies.

Only In London: Trust us, it’s never this empty in London – not even at 4am when the clubbers are all tucked up in bed. Which makes the sight of a deserted central London all the creepier…