These Infectious Films Will Give You the Travel Bug
In the realm of classic films, some have the ability to inspire, whereas some just make us want to peel out in our cars when we hit the parking lot afterwards. And some, however rare, are so majestic in their settings and enthralling in their sights that we simply contract a serious case of the travel bug. Like the ebola of moving pictures, we offer the most infectious films that will have you booking a train or plane in a matter of minutes. And then there’s “Castaway,” which just makes you want to stay home until the end of days.
“By the Sea” (2015)
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie‘s quiet little honeymoon film was shot as a French 1970s small-town story about a struggling couple trying to fix what’s wrong at a quiet seaside villa. Their attraction and interaction with a young, sexy and happy couple takes their struggle to strange places as we uncover what is causing the two so much trouble. The film has a classic feeling, Pitt playing a struggling alcoholic writer, Jolie playing the sexy pill-popping recluse. The scenery, shots and score are all as cool as it comes, giving us an urge to splurge on a foreign trip.
“Midnight in Paris” (2011)
It wouldn’t be a classic film list without a little Woody. Another struggling writer story, Owen Wilson plays a literature junkie who romanticizes living in the ’20s as he begins to step back into his golden days at midnight and meets his literary heroes who workshop his new novel. As his fiancé (Rachel McAdams) pushes him away, he’s pulled into the world more by a new love interest (Marion Cotillard) who wants to take him further down the rabbit hole of golden days.
“Into the Wild” (2007)
A book adaption about a young man who graduates top of his class and foregoes the cookie-cutter lifestyle to instead embark on an internship with the outdoors, Emilie Hirsch plays Christopher McCandless. Upon shedding his material possessions, McCandless sets off into the wild to endure life without its spoils, challenging himself to warm, feed and shelter himself without the use of money in what is both enlightening and gut wrenching to watch.
“Darjeeling Limited” (2007)
Pretty much any Wes Anderson film is going to give you a serious case of the need to travel. Like in “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” Anderson creates a world which we rarely get to see. In the case of “Darjeeling Limited,” he takes us aboard an Indian train trip with three disconnected brothers (Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody, Jason Schwartzman) on a journey to reconnect and find their mother. Although most will tell you it’s not true to the India experience, it romanticizes the idea with great music, color schemes and classic Anderson symmetry.
“Lost in Translation” (2003)
A lonesome, older actor (Bill Murray) finds himself happily exploring the city of Tokyo with another lonesome, but much younger and hotter, woman (Scarlett Johansson). The two escape the usual tiresome parts of tourism and find themselves comfortable in each other’s company. As the story unfolds, we see how easy is it to be alone in a crowded place, as well as how exciting it is to meet someone unexpectedly.
“The Motorcycle Diaries” (2004)
Just before finishing school, a young Che Guevara travels from Brazil to Peru with his friend via an old cafe racer bike. The two encounter not only some of the most beautiful sights, but also the saddest disparities in the lands. This biopic of sorts details an inspiring journey for what would become an inspiring leader.
“The Rum Diary” (2011)
The making of one of the late Hunter S. Thompson’s earliest and most obscure writings, Johnny Depp steps into the role of Thompson in the tropical paradise of Puerto Rico just ahead of its commercial boom. Accompanied by strange characters, fast cars and pretty ladies (Amber Heard), Thompson tries to make it as a writer while fighting off the man at the same time, starting with the local newspaper. The film was directed by the rare and bright mind of Bruce Robinson.
“Life of Pi” (2012)
Ang Lee’s epic travel film about a boy and his family leaving India on a freighter becomes an intense trial for a young boy and a Bengal tiger. This great book adaptation is not only a rare film in that it matches the quality of the book, but it also touches on places and circumstance we’ve not yet encountered in our lifetime. Though its treacherous moments won’t give you the travel bug, the sights you see and the excitement keep you wildly wanting to escape to the outdoors.
“Before Sunrise” (1995)
The first in a three-part series, “Before Sunrise” follows an American in a boy-meets-girl story aboard a train in which Jesse convinces Celine to get off with him in Vienna before they must go their separate ways. The two spend the entire day together, which eventually leads to the film’s sequel nearly a decade later in which the two rekindle their first meeting, then again another decade later for the trilogy’s finale. The sights and feelings of Vienna warm the movie unlike any other place could as you get to know these two in the quickest, most genuine way possible.
“Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981)
The jumping-off point for Indiana Jones in 1981 takes us from Nepal to Cairo as the famed fictional archaeologist goes on a government-sanctioned search for the Ark of the Covenant. This was the start to a series of Harrison Ford-led excursions into off-the-map national treasures, which has a fifth installment on the way in 2019.