4 Classic Movies Filmed in Highland Park
I hope you’re all staying safe and staying at home as we come to terms with this virus. To help you get through these days of social distancing and self-isolation, I’ve curated a shortlist of my favorite movies that feature Highland Park. They’re all available to stream on Amazon Prime.
1) Reservoir Dogs
The first one up is the cult classic (and brutal) Reservoir Dogs (R). The aftermath of the robbery was all filmed in Highland Park.
Mr. Brown (Quentin Tarantino) gets shot in the alley near Marmion Way between Avenue 55 and 56.
Mr. Orange (Tim Roth) gets his gunshot wound right around the corner at Marmion Way Avenue 55.
Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi) shoots his way out and heads down Figueroa. If you look closely at the reflection in the shop windows, you might see the camera crew. Pretty cool. He then gets hit by a car at the corner of York and Avenue 50, alongside what used to be a real estate office and is now one of my favorite local coffee shops, Café de Leche.
Oh, and the Dog’s warehouse? That used to be at Avenue 59 & Figueroa (sadly, it’s now a parking lot). The building used to be a mortuary, which I think is fitting considering how many people meet their maker in this movie.
2) Ford v Ferrari
Next up is the Academy Award-winning, Ford v Ferrari (PG-13). Who doesn’t love a fast car? I mean, a REALLY fast car. This film has it all – a lot of heart, a great cast, and it’s based on a true story, all with a backdrop of Highland Park.
The residential scenes were all shot on the 6300 block of Meridian St. Rows of vintage cars filled the parking lot at the Hi-Ho Market. Universal Complete Auto Repair was turned into the 1960’s-era repair shop called Ken Miles Limited, where many of the scenes were shot. And Matt Damon and Christian Bale stage a fight at the corner of Garvanza Park in front of the Hi-Ho Market.
Speaking of, I love the Garvanza District and all its historic homes. This area was once the heart of the Arts and Crafts movement in Los Angeles. The architecture here encompasses nearly every style popular from the 1880s through the 1920s – Queen Anne, Craftsman, Mission Revival, and Tudor Revival. The Arts and Crafts movement was hugely popular throughout all of Highland Park, as evidenced by our rich inventory of Craftsman homes (is a personal favorite of mine.)
And in case you didn’t know this, “Garvanza” is named for the garbanzo bean that used to grow wild all over our hillsides.
3) The Lincoln Lawyer
Now I’m ready for a great crime/thriller and lawyer-turned-writer John Grisham pens the best of them. In The Lincoln Lawyer (R), you can see William H. Macy, Marisa Tomei and Matthew McConaughey shooting the breeze while drinking at The York, the gastropub and anchor for many of the galleries, restaurants, and boutiques that soon followed on York. My family from Ohio loves this place we go there whenever they come to visit. Coincidentally, my sister’s favorite snack there are the fried garbanzo beans with lemon and chili.
Word is, the director Brad Furman got a jaywalking ticket while crossing the street during filming. No jaywalking, Brad!
Last but not least is the 1980 comedy classic Caddyshack The house of Danny Noonan (Michael O’Keefe) is 232 N Avenue 54 at Monte Vista. The home has been painted red in the years since filming took place. The tree in front has grown big, almost blocking the view, but it’s still recognizable from its silver screen appearance.
…which takes me back where I started as this is right in the area where Reservoir Dogs was filmed. Full circle!
All of these movies are available on Amazon Prime.
Stay safe, stay calm and let’s all take care of each other. And maybe we’ll find the silver lining in all of this by the gift of staying home and connecting with our loved ones.