The autumn semester is getting closer and future exchange students are waiting impatiently for the adventure of a lifetime to start. It’s still too early to start packing, but there are some things you can already do – like watch movies that are set in your destination! This could make you even more impatient though…You have been warned!
Please note that the movies do not necessarily reflect the views of Asia Exchange. Also, these are by no means the best movies set in these destinations, just some movies that are relatively well known around the world. The films listed here are mostly American but there are hundreds of excellent local movies – just google them or ask your nearest video rental shop!
Bali: Eat Pray Love (2010)
Description: Liz Gilbert (Julia Roberts) is a modern woman on a quest to marvel at and travel the world while rediscovering and reconnecting with her true inner self in Eat Pray Love. At a crossroads after a divorce, Gilbert takes a year-long sabbatical from her job and steps uncharacteristically out of her comfort zone, risking everything to change her life. In her wondrous and exotic travels, she experiences the simple pleasure of nourishment by eating in Italy; the power of prayer in India, and, finally and unexpectedly, the inner peace and balance of love in Bali. Based on an inspiring true story, Eat Pray Love proves that there really is more than one way to let yourself go and see the world.
Kuala Lumpur: Entrapment (1999)
Description: After the audacious theft of a Rembrandt, insurance investigator Virginia Baker (Catherine Zeta-Jones) sets out to track down notorious art thief Robert ‘Mac’ MacDougal (Sean Connery). She contacts him and proposes a scheme to steal a Chinese mask worth $40 million. In order to prove that she is trustworthy, ‘Mac’ asks Virginia to steal a vase from a local antique store. Having done this, she then sets about seducing the villain, in the hope that she will learn more about his next, most devious plan…
Bangkok: The Hangover Part II (2011)
Description: Stu is getting married. Along with Doug, Phil, and his soon-to-be brother-in-law Teddy, he regretfully invites Alan to Thailand for the wedding. After a quiet night on the beach with a beer and toasting marshmallows by the camp fire, Stu, Alan and Phil wake up in a seedy apartment in Bangkok. Doug is back at the resort, but Teddy is missing, there’s a monkey with a severed finger, Alan’s head is shaved, Stu has a tattoo on his face, and they can’t remember any of it. The wolf-pack retrace their steps on the streets of Bangkok as they try and find Teddy before the wedding.
Phuket: The Beach (2000)
Description: Twenty-something Richard travels to Thailand and finds himself in possession of a strange map. Rumors state that it leads to a solitary beach paradise, a tropical bliss – excited and intrigued, he sets out to find it.
Shanghai: Skyfall (2012)
Description: Bond’s latest adventure takes him deep to the heart of Istanbul to retrieve a hard disc containing the names of NATO operatives, their whereabouts, and their real identities. Unfortunately the mission goes horribly awry and ends with Bond getting shot while on the roof of a train. Fortunately Bond survives and is enjoying life on a remote Mediterranean island. But an untimely and horrific attack compromises MI-6, kills 6 agents, and ultimately compromises M herself. Then a mysterious hacker, using the newly obtained data, outs the agents on Youtube – compromising their missions and identities. That brings Bond back out of retirement. He then goes on a cat and mouse chase after a reclusive computer hacker – taking him to Shanghai, Macau, Japan, and ultimately back to London and his childhood home called “Skyfall”. While the hacker has ties to M’s past, it puts Bond’s loyalty to the ultimate test. Will he be able to stop it before it’s too late?
Seoul: Gwoemul / The Host (2006)
Description: A monster emerges from Seoul’s Han River and focuses its attention on attacking people. One victim’s loving family does what it can to rescue her from its clutches.
Have you seen films that are set in AE destinations? Tell us in the comment section!