Have you ever watched a movie and wished in that moment that you could be there, in the beautiful, interesting, and even weird settings? Well, if you’re planning a trip to Japan, you can do just that if you follow this handy guide!
Memoirs of a Geisha is a movie all about what it was like becoming a geisha in Kyoto just before the breakout of World War 2. It is based on a novel (with the same title) written by Arthur Golden. During the movie, one of the most iconic scenes features a young Chiyo running through hundreds of bright orange torii gates after she prays to see the man she loves again one day. These gates can be found at Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto.
This is actually the number one tourist spot in Japan, and it is easy to see why. The shrine is said to hold over 10,000 of these torii gates, each one was bought by either an individual or a company in the hopes that it will bring them wealth. The shrine can get very busy, so taking pictures without any strangers in them can be a little difficult! They also light up the gates at night – which is beautiful.
Kill Bill is a wildly popular action movie, directed by Quentin Tarantino. A good chunk of the movie is set in Japan, as ‘The Bride’ hunts down one of her victims. One of the most iconic scenes in this movie is the ensuing battle with O-Ren Ishii and her army – The Crazy 88.
The battle scene takes place inside a restaurant set that was made for the film, but inspired by a restaurant in Tokyo – Gonpachi Nishi-Azabu. You can see the clear similarities between the two, the only real difference made was a bit more open space so they could film the fight scenes more effectively.
Lost in Translation is an award winning movie that was filmed entirely in Japan, so there are many spots you can visit here. One of the most beautiful settings we see is, in fact, the New York bar inside the Park Hyatt Hotel Tokyo.
This is quite a fancy hotel, so staying in a room here is rather pricey, but the bar itself isn’t too bad. This is where many scenes between the main characters, played by Bill Murray and Scarlet Johansson, take place and offers amazing views of the Tokyo skyline. It is worth noting that the cheapest drink here is a beer which is sold for 1000 yen. So, even though this is more expensive than most bars, it’s not too big a stretch for movie fans to enjoy.
So, what do you think? Have you seen all three movies and are familiar with the scenes? If so, be sure to relive some of those famous movie scenes on your travel adventures around Kyoto and Tokyo!