Home » London Transport » Going Underground – The Tube in the Movies

Going Underground – The Tube in the Movies

underground 1928

Underground

Anyone who has travelled on the tube realises that you are capable of seeing all kinds of human behaviour trundling from station to station, therefore it is no surprise that the London Underground would feature in a large number of films over the last 80 odd years.

Amongst the first film to be set on the tube was the aptly titled Underground (1928) directed by Anthony Asquith, it was a the familiar tale of following the love lives of four young Londoners.

Love on the underground has been a theme over the decades with a number of films exploring subterranean love.

These  include :

Georgy Girl (1966),

Hanover Street (1979),

Sliding Doors (1998),

The End of the Affair (1999),

Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001),

Love Actually (2003),

Atonement (2007).

skyfall22

Skyfall

Following soon after Underground was Bulldog Jack (1935), a thriller following the exploits of a Bulldog Drummond type adventure, our hero takes on a master criminal in a disused tube station with predictable results.
In a similar vein recently we have Daniel Craig as James Bond battling  the evil Javier Bardem in Skyfall (2012) on passing tube trains.

Other films that have exploited the thriller of fast trains and fast action have included:

Train of Events (1949)
Seven Days to Noon (1950)
The Fourth Protocol (1987)
Mission: Impossible (1996)
Die Another Day (2002)

passport to pimlico

Passport to Pimlico

One of the most popular post war comedies was Passport to Pimlico (1949) which features a small part of London declaring themselves independent and imposing custom checks on tube trains with chaotic results.

Other films to mix comedy and claustrophobia include :

Georgy Girl (1966)
Press for Time (1966)
Secrets & Lies (1996)
Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)
Love Actually (2003)
Shaun of the Dead (2004)

creep

One genre which makes the most of the subterranean world of the underground is Horror, this has been exploited by many film makers from Quatermass and the Pit (1967) to  Creep (2004).

For many people the tube is terrifying enough but the following films want you to scream a little bit more :

Death Line (aka Raw Meat) (1972)
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
Lifeforce (1985)
Shaun of the Dead (2004) — fictional station Crouch End
28 Weeks Later (2007)

sliding doors

Sliding Doors

Which leaves a number of other films who do not easily fall into categories but use the tube in strange and innovative ways, one film that looks at the perils of missing your train was Sliding Doors(1998) where fate and chance is played out in the Underground.

Other films :

Daleks – Invasion Earth 2150 AD (1966)
Battle of Britain (1969)
Hidden City (1988)
The Krays (1990)
The Wings of the Dove (1997)
Croupier (1998)
Tube Tales (1999)
Virtual Sexuality (1999)
Billy Elliot (2000)
Reign of Fire (2002)
Code 46 (2003)
Touch of Pink (2004)
Green Street (2005)
V for Vendetta (2005)
28 Weeks Later (2007)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)


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