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Saturday December 3rd 2022

The Accidental Tourist | 1988

Anne Tyler’s novel, about a buttoned-up writer of travel books surviving tragedy to discover some kind of liberation with a wacky dog trainer, filmed in the novelist’s own city of Baltimore, Maryland.

The Accidental Tourist filming location: Hawthorne Road, Baltimore
The Accidental Tourist filming location: the home of Macon and Sarah Leary: Hawthorne Road, Baltimore

The house that scribbler Macon Leary (William Hurt) shares with Sarah Leary (Kathleen Turner), before their comfortable world is shattered, can be found in Tyler’s own middle-class neighbourhood of Roland Park. It’s at 324 Hawthorne Road, not far from the Baltimore Country Club.

The Accidental Tourist filming location: Wyndhurst Avenue, Baltimore
The Accidental Tourist filming location: Macon Leary moves in with his siblings: Wyndhurst Avenue, Baltimore

A couple of blocks to the north, the striking house at 524 Wyndhurst Avenue, at the corner of Woodlawn Road, is the home of Macon Leary’s ditsy siblings into which he moves after the collapse of his marriage.

Downmarket, down-to-earth and way downtown is the terraced home of the dog trainer, Muriel Pritchett (Geena Davis), 510 21st Street at Greenmount Avenue.

The Accidental Tourist filming location: Chez Julien, Paris
The Accidental Tourist filming location: Macon Leary’s travel take him to Paris: Chez Julien, Paris

Leary’s travels take him to Europe where he likes his meals fast, bland and international – at the (now gone) Yankee Delight on the Embankment by Westminster Bridge in London, and the Burger King (still there at the last check – holding the world record for Whopper sales) at 122 avenue des Champs Elysées between rue de Balzac and rue Washington in Paris.

The restaurant where the ever-critical Macon voices his disapproval of “prix fixe” is Chez Julien, 1 rue du Pont Louis Philippe, at rue l’Hotel de Ville, in the shadow of the Church of St-Gervais-et-St-Protais.