Skip to main content

50 Greatest London Movies

The Krays (1990)

The Movie: East End gangsters Ronnie and Reggie Kray (Gary and Martin Kemp) get famous off their brutal crimes and end up behind bars in 1969.

Only In London: Shot in London (it really couldn't have been done anywhere else, considering this is based on a true story), false fronts were built for houses in Caradoc Street to fit the different eras that the film spans.

Brick Lane (2007)

The Movie: A Bangladeshi woman arrives in London, leaving behind her family and friends.

Only In London: Cultural diversity is all part of London’s charm, and here we get a look at the East End’s Bangladeshi community, where the aftershock of 9/11 is strongly felt.

The Ipcress File (1965)

The Movie: British agent Harry Palmer (Michael Caine) investigates a spate of kidnappings.

Only In London: Sidney J. Furie takes a look at the London male, most notably Michael Cane’s Elephant & Castle dweller, and discovers he’s an evolving creature. A fascinating snapshot of a bygone time.

Death Line (1973)

The Movie: Scotland Yard investigate when people start going missing in the tunnels between Holborn and Russell Square.

Only In London: Before Creep , Death Line shot in Aldwych tube (which stands in for Russell Square), offering a skin-crawling view of the city's (literal) underbelly.

Harry Potter (2001-2011)

The Movies: Eight films adapted from JK Rowling’s bestselling book series, with Daniel Radcliffe as the lightning-scarred boy wizard.

Only In London: Sad to say, Diagon Alley doesn’t actually exist in our beloved capital. That doesn’t stop Columbus, Yates et al from lavishing the city with adoring screentime, whether it’s the Millennium Bridge getting destroyed in Half-Blood Prince or those gorgeous over-city shots in Phoenix . And, of course, there’s King’s Cross station…

The Kings Speech (2010)

The Movie: Oscar-nabbing historical drama starring Colin Firth as King George VI, who struggles with a debilitating stammer.

Only In London: Rush’s Harley Street practice should look familiar – it’s a Georgian townhouse 33 Portland Place, a popular location used in everything from Amy Winehouse’s ‘Rehab’ video to some less-well-known gay porn films…

Alfie (1966)

The Movie: Adapted from Bill Naughton’s novel and play, Alfie follows Michael Caine’s city playboy as he cuts a stylish swathe through the city.

Only In London: The number of London locations used in the film is exhausting, from the Tower of London to Battersea and the upper-market likes of Mayfair. Dapper indeed.

Blowup (1966)

The Movie: Photographer Thomas (David Hemmings) believes that he’s taken shots of an actual murder…

Only In London: Charlton’s Maryon Park gets the Antonioni treatment as Vanessa Redgrave’s papped in something of a compromising position. Her reedy retort – “You can't photograph people like that, this is a public place” – speaks of a sadly forgotten, more chivalrous past.

Eastern Promises (2007)

The Movie: Crime drama from David Cronenberg with Naomi Watts as a midwife attempting to find out what happened to a Russian teenager who died during childbirth.

Only In London: Mortensen’s infamous buff-baths skirmish was shot at the Ironmonger Row Baths, one of the city’s oldest bath houses. “It's a good place for business meetings,” a gangster tells Mortensen, “because you can see what tattoos a man has.” Too right.

Shaun Of The Dead (2004)

The Movie: Simon Pegg and Nick Frost find London swarming with zombies, and battle to save their loved ones from a sticky fate.

Only In London: Quiet old Crouch End provided the back-drop for this undead modern classic, with Pegg and Frost’s flat situated on Nelson Road. The Winchester pub is actually miles away in New Cross, though...