A View To A Kill, 1985

Director

John Glen

Cast

visit the film locations

Paris: Flights: Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport

Chateau Chantilly, twenty miles north of Paris on the N16 in the Picardy region. The chateau is open to the public (tel: 01.44.57.08.00, admission charge), set among gardens and lakes to the west of the town of Chantilly. It’s a 30-minute walk from Chantilly-Gouvieux station (rail: Paris, Gare du Nord)

San Francisco: Flights: San Francisco International Airport

Tourist info: San Francisco tourism

Dunsmuir-Hellman Historic Estate, 2960 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, over the bay from San Francisco (tel: 510.615.5555. The grounds are free, and there are guided tours to the house, April to September)

West Sussex: Amberley Working Museum (tel: 01798.831370, admission charge) Amberley (rail: London Victoria).


Trivia

Paris’s wildly elaborate Pont Alexandre III is a screen natural. Oscar-winning Ingrid Bergman contemplates suicide at the foot of its steps in the 1956 melodrama Anastasia. It's a backdrop for the 1952 version of Moulin Rouge, Robert De Niro and Jean Reno get a bad feeling before an ambush beneath the bridge in John Frankenheimer’s Ronin.

Chateau Chantilly was a backdrop for Milos Forman’s Valmont, with Colin Firth and Annette Bening (which was overshadowed by Dangerous Liaisons, Stephen Frears’ version of the same story).

A View To A Kill location: Lefty O'Doul Drawbridge, Third Street, San Francisco

A View To A Kill location: the fire-truck chase: Lefty O'Doul Drawbridge, Third Street, San Francisco

The fourteenth in the mainstream Bond series, and Roger Moore’s last appearance as 007, uses much the same plot as the 1978 film of Superman, with electronics wiz Zorin (Christopher Walken) attempting to trigger the San Andreas Fault into action and flood California’s Silicon Valley... or something.

The pre-credits ‘Siberia’ teaser is actually Glacier Lake, on the southeast tip of the huge Vatnajökull Glacier and the tiny hamlet of Höfn on the southeast coast of Iceland. You can visit the glacier on a trip from the Hotel Höfn, 781 Hornefjöur (tel: 478.1240), though be warned, the Vatnajökull volcano erupted under the ice-sheet in 1996. The chase continues at a larger glacier, the Vadretta di Scerscen Inferiore on the Swiss/Italian border.

A View To A Kill location: Old War Office Building, Whitehall, London

A View To A Kill location: the MI6 London HQ: Old War Office Building, Whitehall, London

In the UK, M’s London HQ is now the Old War Office Building in Whitehall, Westminster (as it is in both Octopussy and Licence To Kill), and Bond first checks out Zorin at Ascot Racecourse, on the A330 five miles south of Windsor, Berkshire. Incidentally, both of these locations turn up again (in different guises) in the 23rd Bond movie, Skyfall.

A View To A Kill location: Pont Alexandre III, Paris

A View To A Kill location: Bond leaps into the boat: Pont Alexandre III, Paris

In Paris, Bond meets up with the unlikely French ‘tec M. Aubergine, who’s killed by a butterfly in the Restaurant Jules Verne, the pricey eaterie on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower (tel: 01.45.55.61.44).

After Zorin’s henchwoman, May Day (Grace Jones), makes a spectacular leap from the Tower, there’s a car chase culminating in Bond’s leap into the Seine pleasure boat from the Pont Alexandre III (a wonderfully over-the-top confection also used in the 1956 Anastasia, with Ingrid Bergman, John Huston’s 1952 Toulouse Lautrec biopic Moulin Rouge and John Frankenheimer’s Ronin).

A View To A Kill location: Chateau Chantilly, France

A View To A Kill location: Zorin’s French estate: Chateau Chantilly

Photograph: iStockphoto © Vitaly Titov

Zorin’s estate is the 18th century (he says it’s 16th century, but that’s a Bond villain for you) Chateau Chantilly, twenty miles north of Paris on the N16 in the Picardy region. The dazzling chateau, open to the public, is set among gardens and lakes to the west of the town of Chantilly. It’s a 30-minute walk from Chantilly-Gouvieux station, reached from the Gare du Nord. The chateau also appears in Valmont, Milos Forman’s version of Les Liaisons Dangereuses.

The racecourse here is the spectacular Piste d’Avilly. Bond pits himself against Zorin in a steeplechase in the Forest of Chantilly, while Sir Godfrey (Patrick Macnee, the original John Steed from sixties TV classic The Avengers) gets garotted in a carwash in the city of Chantilly itself.

Bond follows Zorin to San Francisco, where he meets CIA agent Chuck Lee (David Yip) at bright but touristy Fisherman’s Wharf on the bay.

The State Office Building, where Zorin’s corrupt official, Howe, has his Divisions of Oil and Mines office is San Francisco City Hall, Van Ness Avenue at McAllister Street. This 1915 domed building, modelled on St Peter’s in Rome, is no stranger to movies – Dirty Harry seems to spend an inordinate amount of time being insubordinate to city officials here.

The moviemakers were allowed extraordinary licence, including fitting out the balconies with gas jets to simulate Zorin’s burning down of the building.

The fire-truck chase hares off down Market Street to the Lefty O’Doul Drawbridge on Third Street at China Basin (just past the Burger Island where Clint Eastwood utters the immortal line “Go ahead – make my day.” in Sudden Impact. If you were wondering, Lefty O’Doul was an old-time ball-player.

A View To A Kill location: Dunsmuir House and Gardens, Oakland

A View To A Kill location: Stacey Sutton’s estate: Dunsmuir House, Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland

Photograph courtesy: Oakland Convention and Visitors Bureau

The home of oil heiress Stacey Sutton (Tanya Roberts) is Dunsmuir-Hellman Historic Estate, 2960 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, over the bay from San Francisco.

Dunsmuir also featured in a couple of 70s horror pics: it was the Gothic mansion in the 1976 Burnt Offerings (with Bette Davis and Oliver Reed) and the mausoleum in 1979's Phantasm. It also featured in the San Francisco-set Mike Myers comedy So I Married An Axe Murderer.

A View To A Kill location: Amberley Working Museum, Amberley, West Sussex

A View To A Kill location: Zorin’s ‘Silicon Valley’ mine: Amberley Working Museum, Amberley, West Sussex

Zorin’s ‘Main Strike’, the abandoned silver mine in ‘Silicon Valley’ isn’t in California at all, or even in the US.

You can see the entrance to the mine at the 36-acre, open-air Amberley Working Museum – a 36 acre open-air museum dedicated to the industrial heritage of the south-east of England. It presents a wide range of exhibits, ranging from transport-based collections, such as the Southdown bus collection and the village garage, to industry-based collections, such as the Print Workshop & Wheelwrights. The museum is also home to a  number of resident craftspeople, who work to traditional methods. Find it opposite Amberley Station in west West Sussex (rail: London Victoria).

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