Top 10 Movies Filmed in Chicago
Known for its deep-dish pizza and blustery conditions, Chicago also has a rich, if unheralded, history of playing backdrop to some of film’s most beloved works. From serious Oscar-bait fare like Robert Redford’s Ordinary People and Alfred Hitchcock’s classic North by Northwest, to formative John Hughes favorites Sixteen Candles and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, we count down the Top 10 Movies Filmed in Chicago:
Best Movies Filmed in Chicago
10). When Harry Met Sally
What every rom-com should aspire to. The powerhouse team of director Rob Reiner and the always en-pointe Billy Crystal manages to knock this one out of the park, with a little help from a winning (and excitable) Meg Ryan. Add to the mix a script full of wit that doesn’t condescend and sentimentality that doesn’t cloy by the late, great Nora Ephron, and you get an unbeatable recipe for classic comfort-movie entertainment.
9). Sixteen Candles
The first of four John Hughes-penned movies on our list, Sixteen Candles features breakout performances by Brat-Packers Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall. Painfully good in its portrayal of adolescent awkwardness, Candles isn’t for viewers who can’t handle secondhand embarrassment – just a must for everyone else.
7). The Fugitive
One of those films that’ll suck you in for a four-hour viewing as you’re surfing through network TV, it’s a testament to Harrison Ford’s turn as a wrongly accused murderer on the lam that, even while being creamed with commercials, The Fugitive captivates.
6). High Fidelity
Thanks to his embodiment of lovelorn Gen-Xer Rob Gordon, John Cusack owns High Fidelity – but it’s thanks to memorable supporting performances by Jack Black and John’s sister Joan that millions of fans now own the DVD.
5). Ordinary People
The 1980 Academy-Award winner for Best Picture, Ordinary People is high-brow fare that’s short on affect, sticking with viewers long after the credits roll. Director Robert Redford’s slice-of-life look at grief explores the small cruelties we unknowingly and willfully enact against ourselves and our loved ones. Heavy stuff subtly handled.
One of Hitchcock’s most beloved works, for good reason: Cary Grant at his most charming, Eva Marie Saint at her most alluring, and The Master of Suspense at the height of his powers. With so many heavyweights pulling more than their weight, it’s no wonder Northwest has earned an unshakeable spot in the film canon.
Not a single punchline got lost in translation when John Belushi and Dan Akroyd adapted their “Blues Brothers” comedy routine for the silver screen. One of the funniest sketches on SNL during its not-ready-for-primetime-players heyday, The Blues Brothers has since become one of the funniest films to have emerged from any era – or any city.
So many one-liners, so many iconic scenes, such lasting influence on so many teen/coming-of-age/comedy films that came after. If you don’t fall in love with Matthew Broderick as he tells you, “Life moves pretty fast – if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it;” or when he rigs his keyboard to make bodily noises; or when he impersonates Abe Froman, “the Sausage King of Chicago;” or when he hijacks a float and serenades Von Steuben Day parade-goers with his iconic rendition of “Twist and Shout;” or when… if you don’t love Ferris, you might want to reconsider why you watch movies at all.
1). Home Alone
A children’s classic that’s transcended generational lines to become a classic for all ages, John Hughes’ testament to the shafted Little Brother is a Christmas film, a family film, a comedy, a drama, a cat-and-mouse adventure flick, and yes, thanks to an endearing turn by the legendary Catherine O’Hara’s as the world’s most forgetful mom, even a tear-jerker. Home Alone has all the heart in the world, distilled to the world of one ridiculously clever eight-year-old. Which is why it’s our No. 1 pick.