The new trailer for London Has Fallen is pretty much a blueprint for how to make a silly disaster movie. There’s a highly improbable plot to bring a city to its knees. There’s one man who can save us all. There’s Morgan Freeman. And, of course, there is wanton destruction of beloved national monuments, in this case Trafalgar Square, The Houses of Parliament and Angela Bassett. Iconic landmarks are always tipping over in movies. Here are some of the most notable.
The Eiffel Tower – G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Such indignity suffered by such an elegant building. In Stephen Sommers’ thoroughly daft take on the super-soldier toy line, a baddy invents tiny robots that can devour anything. In the film’s key scene these tiny robots sink their little metal teeth into Paris’ favourite landmark, turning it to sludge in a storm of ropey CG. Zut alors.
The White House – Independence Day
Perhaps the most famous landmark destruction in cinematic history, it’s the perfect combination of digital and practical effects and the ideal way for the aliens to make very clear that they have not come in peace. They built an entire, intricately detailed model of the White House just to blow it up. God, we love films.
The Statue of Liberty – Cloverfield
This monster movie announced itself with a cracking teaser. A group of exceptionally good-looking young people are at a New Year’s Eve party when an explosion pulls them out onto the streets. As they stand terrified, the head of the Statue of Liberty crashes to the ground in front of them. the trailer ended with just a date, not even a title. Terrific.