How Philly is watching Philly
Stuck inside and not able to see in-person the city you live in and love? Visitphilly.com compiled a list of movies starring the City of Brotherly Love that you might be able to track down on streaming or pay-per-view services. Here are some of our favorites, and we took a deeper dive than “Rocky” and all of the M. Night Shyamalan flicks.
This critically acclaimed film (1981) set in Philly follows a B-list movie sound effects man (John Travolta) who unknowingly records a car accident that turns out to be a murder while working one night at a park. The car accident takes place on the Henry Avenue Bridge, and other high-energy scenes are filmed around City Hall and Penn’s Landing.
This quirky romantic comedy (1987) centers around a window dresser (Andrew McCarthy) working in a Philadelphia department store and his relationship with a mannequin who springs to life (Kim Cattrall). Filming primarily took place in Wanamaker’s – now Macy’s – at 13th and Market streets, as well as at the old Gallery Mall, now home to Fashion District Philadelphia.
Set in Philadelphia, this DC Comics film (2019) about a teenage boy named Billy (Asher Angel) who can turn himself into an adult superhero (Zachary Levi) simply by saying “shazam” features a bunch of city visuals. Though it was mostly filmed in Toronto, one scene shows Billy and his brother sitting on the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, looking out at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and Logan Square.
Silver Linings Playbook
Montgomery County native Bradley Cooper stars as Pat, a former teacher with bipolar disorder who, after a stint in a psychiatric hospital, obsesses over reconciling with his ex-wife in this critically acclaimed film (2012) set in Upper Darby. The town’s Llanerch Diner gets noteworthy screen time, when Pat meets Tiffany (played by Jennifer Lawrence, who won an Academy Award for the role) there for “not a date” and she offers to help him connect with his ex-wife. Other memorable scenes include Pat’s fight at the Wells Fargo Center parking lot ahead of an Eagles game and the climax of the movie: the dance competition, filmed at Ballroom at the Ben.
Imprisoned man James Cole travels back in time to try to save the world from a killer disease in this 1995 dark sci-fi thriller starring Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt. Cole comes to Philly from the future and lands out front of City Hall. Eventually, he is incarcerated at Eastern State Penitentiary. Memorial Hall, Delaware Power Station, and a pre-renovations Met Philadelphia make appearances in this bleak film, as well.
A historian’s discovery of a secret treasure map on the back of the Declaration of Independence fuels National Treasure (2004), the Nicolas Cage vehicle that was filmed partially in the original birthplace of liberty and inspired an equally thrilling 2007 sequel. In the movie, an epic chase takes place through Washington Square and Reading Terminal Market, and other scenes are filmed at The Franklin Institute, Independence Hall, and the Liberty Bell Center (where Cage’s character believes a clue is hidden).
How we’re separating fact from fiction
There’s no better time than a pandemic lockdown to seek out the truth – after all, there’s not much else to do. And, who doesn’t enjoy debunking a good urban legend? So we wandered over to snopes.com to see what rumors might be true and which ones aren’t. Visit the website for even more examples of weird stuff that probably isn’t true, but is interesting anyway.
In 2017, Dr. Anthony Fauci predicted an outbreak
Wait. This is true. Just before President Trump was inaugurated, the good doctor said the incoming president would “no doubt” face a “surprise infectious disease” outbreak. In reality, it’s not that far of a reach, since the Obama administration had dealt with swine flu and Zika. But still. Nice call, doc.
Oklahoma will detain non-vaccinated people
Nope. Not happening. Apparently, this stems from a dated video that made its way around Facebook this month and dives into the truly strange when claims are made that there are plans to implant microchips in all of us that include our vaccination status. Might make for a good movie, though. Sorry, forgot about “Hardwired.” Never mind.
Democrats are ‘giddy’ about the economic meltdown
Snopes called this an example of “copypasta,” a post that is copied and shared across social media. In the end, Snopes found this claim to be false, as there’s no real evidence and the post has been shared by people who have no connection to D.C. politicians.
Vegetarians are safe from COVID-19
This theory proposes the virus is transmitted through meat, so, therefore, vegetarians are safe. Snopes found this claim to be untrue. The rumor apparently started in India, and that nation’s government has disavowed it, along with pretty much any and all scientists and doctors. Just, you know, be sure to cook your meat thoroughly.
AOC said it’s ‘okay to eat pets’ if food runs scarce
We didn’t even need to scroll to the official Snopes finding. There’s no way U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would say such a thing. She’s a politician and a “let’s eat our pets” plank in her next campaign wouldn’t go over well with voters.
Woodstock took place during a pandemic
Snopes gave this one a mixed review. Indeed the music festival took place during an outbreak of what was called the “Hong Kong flu” that killed 100,000 Americans over an 18-month span. However, Woodstock took place in the summer, right between the first and second waves of the flu that proved to be the most deadly. And, scientists say COVID-19 is way more lethal than the flu of the late 1960s.
What we’re keeping a close eye on…
Case counts and reopenings
One of the things that has been great to stay informed are the daily updates from both the city and state when it comes to the coronavirus and the plan for a return to some sense of normalcy. Both have public daily tune-ins and offer more information beyond just case counts and fatalities. Also, between the veritable genius that is state health department secretary Dr. Rachel Levine and the drinking game you can play with how many times Philly Mayor Jim Kenney says “there is no playbook,” in regard to city plans, these are worth the hour of your day for vital info and – some humor. | Follow @PHLPublicHealth for city information and health.pa.gov for state info.
The pre-order line at Dalessandro’s Steaks
Let us preface this by saying we love all of the Philly steak places that help put this delicacy on the map, but we’d be lying if we didn’t get a little excited over the news Monday that Dalessandro’s Steaks in Roxborough opened for business. The restaurant will have a limited menu of its favorites and will operate on modified hours, but it’s back and it gives us hope. They didn’t get the note about COVID-19 transmission however as the joint is still cash-only, but we don’t even care, we’re just glad it’s back. | Hours: Sunday-Thursday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday-Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Order: 215-482-5407
Michael Jordan “The Last Dance” doc
For the past 10 weeks, ESPN has gifted us with a behind-the-scenes look at the extraordinary career of basketball legend Michael Jordan. Episode No. 10 ended this past weekend, but if you missed any episodes the network announced Sunday that it will host all 10 episodes on the ESPN app. So you have something to binge-watch given at the time of this report the weather in Philly was scheduled to be dogshit this weekend. | espn.com/watch/
How many of you NOT wearing masks in public
If you leave your house without any face covering, congratulations, you are potentially adding to the spread and further longevity of stay-at-home orders due to the coronavirus. Look we get it, breathing on yourself is not optimal, but who gives a shit. Right now, controlling the spread is all that matters and that effectively happens from people wearing masks. So we don’t care if you’re just taking the dog around the block to pee, going for a walk or sitting on the lawn of a public park. Just put the damn mask on.
How stupid Florida makes us all look
If not wearing masks were the only thing we’d have to worry about with this state, we’d actually be in real good shape. But between the rapid reopenings, the redneck protests over civil liberties and the massive party of close to 3,000 people that needed to be broken up by authorities – with all of that being broadcast around the world, honestly we’re not sure we’d shed much of a tear if this state fractured and floated out into the Atlantic. We can’t claim you right now, Florida. We just can’t.
South Korean baseball
Sure it comes on between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m., but if you, like us, deal with bouts of insomnia from time to time then watching what the MLB will probably look like when it returns is actually kind of interesting. We’d be over a month into the baseball season, which is slated to return in June, but baseball is in full swing in Korea, devoid of fans, concessions and readily pronounceable team names, but fuck it, it’s baseball. The players don’t wear masks but the base coaches do and they pump in crowd noise for effect. It’s not much, but it is hope. | espn.com/watch/
What we bought to survive living home with loved ones
Whether it’s with your boo or your entire family, being shut in even with those you love can be, umm, a lot. Here’s what we picked up to make sure we don’t lose our minds while trying to remain calm through it all.
These are vital on the days when the TV, radio and tablets are putting a strain on the family wifi, your significant other is on their fourth Zoom meeting of the day or you want to watch porn in peace, if you don’t have a pair, get some. While we don’t want to suggest one manufacturer in particular, we are partial to Beats by Dr. Dre because we love Dr. Dre and the fact that Beats is the official headphones of our beloved Sixers.
You laugh, but nothing is worse than having to use the bathroom after your partner, parent or kid has just been in there for 30 minutes. Leave it where it’s easily noticeable and you or they have no excuse for leaving the bathroom smelling like the back of a garbage truck on a summer day. Also, due to high volume, the company says to expect shipping delays so apparently this is an idea that many like us also share. | Prices vary. poopourri.com/
Our own snacks
One of two things generally happens here. You either are shacked up with a group of people and the snacks go fast or you live with someone who doesn’t share your same love of Cheez-Its and brings home the organic non-GMO version. You don’t want that shit, so get your own and there’s no shame in hoarding it like you were forced to from your greedy ass roommates before you met the one and moved in with them. When it comes to snacks right now, it’s a commodity you can’t afford to play with.
Cure for whatever ails
Pain relievers, gas pills, heartburn chewable. If you’re going to be shacked up in the house, trust us when we say you’re going to need a healthy supply of all three. Nothing is worse than already being moderately stressed over all of this COVID-19 nonsense with a headache or a stomach ache to boot. We know because we had both recently and had to make a run into a nearby CVS, which, with COVID-19, is not exactly a place you want to find yourself in right now.
Gift cards to local Philadelphia eateries to use later
We doubled up on supporting some of our favorite restaurants in the city and added a few notches to our belt by pre-ordering gift cards to use on those nights we all just don’t feel like cooking or eating another microwaveable meal. We suggest figuring out a denomination you’d like to max out at and then spread that across your favorite restaurants. At a minimum, you’ll have a discount on a future order if you can’t foot the whole bill on the whole thing and you’ll be giving some much-needed cash flow to our small businesses that all need our love right now.