Ted | 2012
The story of a boy and the magic Christmas wish which brings to life his beloved teddy bear is every bit as fluffy and heartwarming as you’d expect from Seth MacFarlane, the creator of Family Guy.
The story is anchored in the recognisable reality of Boston, beginning in the suburb of Norwood. John Bennett’s earnest wish is granted at the family home, 129 Albemarle Road.
Fast forward to the present and the adult – if not fully grown-up – John (Mark Wahlberg) is living with Lori (Mila Kunis) and the foul-mouthed, dope-smoking Ted, in a rather smart South End townhouse at 65 Chandler Street, at the corner of St Charles Street.
Although Ted drives him to work over the Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge (or Zakim Bridge) across the Charles River, the ‘Liberty Rent-a-Car’ depot was created on Tremont Street at Marginal Road, by the entrance to Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90), in Bay Village, just a couple of blocks east of his home.
The three-cornered relationship is getting a little strained, but nevertheless John and Lori celebrate four years together at classy Italian restaurant, ‘Ciao Bella’. Hiding behind the fictitious name is one of Boston’s top dining spots, the sophisticated and modern Sorellina, 1 Huntington Avenue at Copley Square, not far west of the last two locations.
And it’s still not far to the next location. The pair have conflicting flashbacks to their first meeting, at nightclub Venu, 100 Warrenton Street, a stone’s throw north of John’s house and place of work.
After an unfortunate incident with a trio of hookers, it’s clearly time for Ted to find a place of his own. It’s over to Boston Harbor, inside the New England Aquarium,1 Central Wharf, that John has to break the news to his erstwhile buddy-forever.
In Boston Public Garden, as one-time celeb Ted poses for photographs with fans, an obnoxious kid Robert and his creepy dad (Giovanni Ribisi) first see the bear, and offer to buy him.
John, though, helps Ted find an apartment above a Chinese restaurant in the Chelsea district, where wild times ensue with one-time Flash Gordon actor, Sam Jones. The house is 81 Broadway, on a well-used stretch of road, where scenes for 21, Knight And Day and Transformers have previously been filmed.
Also featured in the Tom Cruise-Cameron Diaz action-comedy Knight And Day is the Gaslight Brasserie, 560 Harrison Avenue, South End, the restaurant where John and Lori’s double-date with Ted and Tami-Lynn goes horribly wrong. With a Parisian-style zinc bar, nicotine stained walls and antique mirrors, Gaslight brings a bit of Paris to Boston.
It’s a few miles north to find he swanky oceanfront home of Lori’s sleazy boss Rex (the proud owner of Lance Armstrong’s bronzed nut), on the Atlantic coast towards Marblehead. Built in 2002, the glass and concrete house is 441 Atlantic Avenue, at Preston Beach in Swampscott.
When John sneaks out of the party here for a more raucous night with Ted and Sam Jones, Lori decides she’s finally had enough and splits with him. John moves into the Midtown Hotel, 220 Huntington Avenue – the site of his energetic fight with Ted. Well, at least it’s convenient for Sorellina.
Not giving up, John awkwardly attempts to woo back Lori by interrupting a Norah Jones concert to serenade her with, what else?, the theme from Octopussy. The concert is at the Hatch Shell, 47 David G Mugar Way on the Charles River Esplanade, west of Beacon Hill.
The song doesn’t quite work but, prompted by Ted, Lori goes to make up with John on neutral territory, in Charlie’s Sandwich Shoppe, 429 Columbus Avenue – just about halfway between the Chandler Street house and John’s hotel. Dating back to the 1920s, the small but historic diner is a great place for breakfast.
The plot takes a twist as Donny kidnaps the unfortunate Ted as his son’s plaything. Donny’s slightly Gothic pillared home, beneath the rumble of the Northeast Expressway, is 50 Chestnut Street at Pine Street, not far from Ted’s apartment in Chelsea.
Naturally, John and Lori are soon on the case. It wouldn’t really be a Boston movie without at least one scene set at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox., and indeed, the chase following Ted’s rescue ends up at the city’s landmark baseball ground. Fenway Park also provides the dramatic climax for local boy Ben Affleck’s The Town.
All, of course, ends happily with John and Lori married by – who else? – Sam Jones little more than a block away from Charlie’s, at Union United Methodist Church, 485 Columbus Avenue.