Films set in Montenegro
Films set in Montenegro
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Anastasia Barinova
Translation: Vera Root
23.03.2020

For hundreds of years, the cities and villages of Montenegro have not changed much, still preserving the atmosphere of medieval Europe. The cobbled streets and massive fortresses, as well as picturesque beaches and emerald hills make the country a universal place for all kinds of movies.
Here are some interesting examples.

1

The Long Ships, 1963

The Long Ships, 1963

The film is based on the novel of the same name by the Swedish writer Frans Bengtsson, starring Richard Widmark, Sidney Poitier and Russ Tamblyn. The plot focuses on the journey of the brave Viking men to distant lands. They dream to find the magic golden bell, and after many adventures the warriors achieve their goal — on the rocky island they discover the legendary bell walled up in the dome of the tower.

Why was the movie shot in Yugoslavia? Perhaps, for the British director Jack Cardiff, the Adriatic country seemed remote and exotic. But it was not without problems, some actors refused to travel to the communist state, and Poitier later called Belgrade the worst place he had ever worked.

Anyway, the film was shot and turned out to be successful. The bell brought to Budva as a part of set, now can be seen outside the gates of the Old Town. And unnamed Budva beach was called Richard’s Head after the movie star Richard Widmark.

2

The Dark Side of the Sun, 1988

The Dark Side of the Sun, 1988

Romantic drama by the Yugoslav director Bozidar Nikolic about an American boy with a rare skin disease. In search of treatment, the boy travels to sunny Montenegro — a shaman in the country of Black Mountains knows a healing ritual!

Suddenly, the boy sees things differently, he drops his protective mask and sets off to meet his adventures.

For greater credibility, the real American actor was invited to the main role, and then unknown 25-year-old Brad Pitt won the casting of 400 candidates.

Due to political issues that soon led to the collapse of Yugoslavia, The Dark Side of the Sun was not released until 1997 and did not get much attention. Nevertheless, it was the first leading role of the future mega star, and a worldwide presentation of Montenegro’s unparalleled beauty.

3

Casino Royale, 2006

Casino Royale, 2006

The twenty-first film of the famous James Bond franchise shot by the New Zealand director Martin Campbell. For the British actor Daniel Craig, this movie was debut as a super agent.

Casino Royale is closely associated with Montenegro. According to the plot, the exciting pursuits of villains happens here... But in reality not a single scene was shot in the Balkans, the role of Montenegro is “played” by the Czech Republic, Italy and other countries.

4

The Brothers Bloom, 2008

The Brothers Bloom, 2008

American comedy about two brothers who work together as con men. Fraudsters performed by Mark Ruffalo and Adrien Brody, dragged a rich eccentric heiress (Rachel Weisz) into a big scam, and went together on an incredible journey from Mexico City to St. Petersburg. Filming began in Ulcinj in March 2007, and, in addition, Perast could be seen in the movie.

5

Coriolanus, 2011

Coriolanus, 2011

Ralph Fiennes’ adaptation of Shakespeare’s Coriolanus takes place in the modern surroundings. Rome’s warriors are dressed in NATO uniforms and use Kalashnikovs, but everyone speaks exquisite Shakespearean language. In addition to the UK and Serbia, Coriolanus was filmed in Montenegro, in Kotor and Tivat.

6

Move on, 2012

Move on, 2012

An unusual road trip beginning in the Netherlands takes a series of unexpected turns through Germany, Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, etc. The leading role was played by Mads Mikkelsen, the horrible Le Chiffre from the Casino Royale.

7

The November Man, 2014

The November Man, 2014

The former CIA agent, played by Pierce Brosnan, must unravel the international intrigue in Eastern Europe. The script is based on Bill Granger’s novel There Are No Spies, the cobbled streets of Herceg Novi and magnificent beaches of Budva Riviera serve as a backdrop for this classic spy movie.

8

Papillon, 2017

Papillon, 2017

This remake of the original movie Papillon, which was filmed in 1973 and starred Dustin Hoffman and Steve McQueen, tells the story of Henri Charriere, a petty criminal who has been convicted of murder and sent to Devil’s Island, a French penal colony in French Guiana. Henri forms an arrangement with Louis Dega and attempts an escape.

The movie was filmed in Montenegro, as well as Serbia and Malta. Viewers can see romantic Bay of Kotor, Mamula and Goražda fortresses, Ulcinj Riviera stands for South American tropics, and a fake prison was built on a hill above the village of Grbalj.

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