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Best Travel Movies

While right now we're self-isolating and spending our holiday at home, there's no reason we can't escape into the magic of movies.

You might think you’ve exhausted the Netflix, Stan & Apple back catalogues, try these travel gems for a boost of inspiration of what’s to come when we’re able to set sail and travel again.

Up in the Air
George Clooney stars as Ryan Bingham a human resources consultant who flies across the country spending his life in airports and hotels. An obsessive frequent flyer, he meets Alex (Vera Farmiga) a women equally in love with her transient life. Also starring the fabulous Anna Kendrick as Ryan’s co-worker Natalie, he begins to question his career, his cherished way of life and quest for frequent flyer miles.

Lost in Translation
Two lost souls visiting Tokyo – a washed-up movie star (Bill Murray) and the neglected wife of a photographer (Scarlett Johansson) meet in a hotel bar and find solace in each other’s company. A must-watch for fellow lonely souls in self-isolation.

Under the Tuscan Sun
When Frances Mayes (Diane Lane) learns her husband is cheating on her, her best friend Patti (Sandra Oh) encourages her to take a trip to Italy. During her sojourn she impulsively buys a Tuscan villa and starts a new life amid a cast of colourful local characters that become like family. You’ll be swept up in the beauty of the Tuscan countryside in this heart-warming film.

A Good Year
Following the theme of beautiful vistas, A Good Year starring Russell Crowe is set on a vineyard in Provence. Max (Crowe) inherits the vineyard and travels to France to prepare a quick sale and soon becomes enamoured with the locals and the countryside.

Roman Holiday
An oldie but a goodie, Roman Holiday stars Audrey Hepburn as a royal princess sneaking out to see Rome with Gregory Peck, a reporter. Audrey Hepburn won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in the 1953 romantic comedy.

Starring Tom Hanks, this film feels particularly relevant during the COVID-19 crisis! Inspired by a true story, Victor Navorski (Hanks) arrives in New York’s JFK only to discover his passport is no longer valid after the outbreak of civil war in his home country. Navorski, unable to enter the USA or return home becomes stuck in the terminal.

Catch Me If You Can
Another Tom Hanks movie directed by Steven Spielberg, Catch me if you Can also stars Leonardo DiCaprio, based on the life of Frank Abagnale who successfully performed cons worth millions of dollars by posing as a Pan Am pilot, amongst other aliases all the while FBI agent Carl Hanratty (Hanks) is in hot pursuit.

Priscilla Queen of the Desert
A little closer to home is the Australian classic Priscilla Queen of the Desert. Starring Hugo Weaving and Guy Pearce as two drag queens and Terence Stamp as a transgender woman. The trio journey across the Australian Outback from Sydney to Alice Springs in their tour bus named “Priscilla”. The harsh Australian Outback landscape is the perfect contrast to the colourful drag costumes. Released in 1994 this is a great film to rediscover.

Thelma & Louise
Continuing the theme of road trips, Thelma & Louise is the ultimate road trip movie starring Geena Davis (Thelma) and Susan Sarandon (Louise). Despite the strong themes of sisterhood and feminism you can’t overlook the memorable role of Brad Pitt (J.D) in one of his first major film roles.

Before Sunrise
The original, Before Sunrise released in 1995 sees American traveller Jesse (Ethan Hawke) meeting Celine (Julie Delpy) a French woman while travelling on a train in Europe. This sets off a romance that spans a trilogy over decades; Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight - settle in for the weekend and watch them all.

Also a good one to watch over Easter while you’re devouring Easter eggs is Chocolat! Starring Juliette Binoche as Vianne, an expert chocolatier who moves to a quiet French village with her daughter Anouk (Victoire Thivisol). Also starring Judi Dench as her elderly landlady, Carrie-Anne Moss and Johnny Depp.

What goes with chocolate? Wine! Followup your Chocolat feast with a side of Sideways. Sideways is a road trip movie starring Paul Giamatti as Miles, a depressed teacher and Thomas Haden Church as his buddy Jack on their quest for the perfect Pinot, travelling through the picturesque Californian wine country.

Grand Budapest Hotel
Directed by Wes Anderson, this quirky comedy-drama stars Ralph Fiennes as Monsieur Gustave H, a famed concierge of a fictional mountainside resort who is wrongly framed for murder. He befriends a lobby boy Zero Moustafa (Tony Revolori) who helps him escape from prison. Hilarious hotel hijinks ensue.

Vicky Cristina Barcelona
As the name suggests, the film is set in Barcelona, where two American women Vicky (Rebecca Hall) & Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) spend the summer. There they meet artist Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem) and his wife Maria played by Penelope Cruz, this movie charms with a great cast and stunning views of the Spanish city.

Crazy Rich Asians
Based on the fabulous novel by Kevin Kwan, the lavish movie follows a Chinese-American professor who travels to meet her boyfriend’s family only to discover they are among the richest in Singapore. The film’s closing scene is set at the famous Marina Bay Sands and will have you longing to hop on a plane to Singapore.

Have we featured your favourite? Any we missed? Tell us your favourite travel movie.

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