40 iconic British films being made free to watch on Google Maps

Tom Butler
·Senior Editor
·3-min read
Daniel Craig as Ian Fleming's James Bond 007 in <i>Skyfall</i>. (Sony Pictures)
Daniel Craig as Ian Fleming's James Bond 007 in Skyfall. (Sony Pictures)

Some of Britain’s most rewatchable and nostalgic movies are being scattered across Google Maps to watch for free in a virtual lockdown Easter egg hunt.

Google, in collaboration with the British Film Institute (BFI), is encouraging people to rediscover and download films including Skyfall and Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit.

Around 40 of the 50 top rewatchable films from the last 50 years, as chosen by the BFI, will be hidden in UK locations relating to where they were set, discoverable on Google Maps.

Clues will be released ahead of the Google Pixel Presents Mobile Cinema launch at the end of November. Anyone can rediscover and download the most rewatchable films during lockdown, from the comfort of their own sofas.

Read more: The best British films of the 2010s

“These movies are embedded with sensory memories of when we first watched them and whom we watched them with, which are key triggers of nostalgia,” said Dr Wing Yee Cheung, senior lecturer in psychology and researcher on nostalgia at the University of Winchester.

FILE - This July 19, 2016 file photo shows the Google logo at the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Google says it will start charging smartphone makers to pre-install apps like Gmail, YouTube and Google Maps on Android handsets sold in Europe, in response to a record $5 billion EU antitrust fine. The U.S. tech giant’s announcement Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018 is a change from its previous business model, in which it let phone makers install its suite of popular mobile apps for free on phones running its Android operating system. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)
This July 19, 2016 file photo shows the Google logo at the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

“We can take the opportunity during the lockdown to create more positive memories with people in our social bubble for future recollection.”

Google has also revealed that searches for “what to watch” doubled during the first national lockdown, and have started rising again in recent weeks as England has entered its second.

“As we enter another lockdown, we know that people are seeking familiarity; and find comfort in being able to reconnect to stories and characters that they know and love,” said Soniya Jobanputra, product manager for Google Pixel.

A promotional graphic for Google Pixel presents Mobile Cinema (Google)
A promotional graphic for Google Pixel presents Mobile Cinema (Google)

“Google Pixel Presents Mobile Cinema will allow the nation to rediscover these films from our past and instantly transport themselves, whether they’re on the sofa, in the park, or moving between rooms – Pixel 5G will allow you to download and watch these films instantly.”

The 50 Most Rewatchable British Films list is broken down by genres, with comedy to give cheer, a dead-of-night horror to scare senseless and a heartwarming romance to weep along to.

LAUGH

East is East (1999)

Gosford Park (2001)

Shaun of the Dead (2004)

Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

In the Loop (2009)

Four Lions (2010)

Sightseers (2012)

SCARE

28 Days Later (2002)

ROMANCE

A Room With A View (1985)

Truly Madly Deeply (1990)

Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994)

Sense and Sensibility (1995)

Shakespeare in Love (1998)

Atonement (2007)

Weekend (2011)

Phantom Thread (2017)

DRAMA

The Go Between (1971)

Barry Lyndon (1975)

The Long Good Friday (1980)

Orlando (1992)

The Remains of the Day (1993)

The English Patient (1996)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)

This is England (2006)

Fish Tank (2009)

Locke (2013)

Pride (2014)

The Souvenir (2019)

ACTION

Attack the Block (2011)

Skyfall (2012)

CULT

Performance (1970)

A Clockwork Orange (1971)

The Wicker Man (1973)

Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979)

Quadrophenia (1979)

Babylon (1980)

Withnail & I (1987)

Trainspotting (1996)

Dog Soldiers (2002)

Children of Men (2006)

Moon (2009)

Under the Skin (2013)

Duke of Burgundy (2014)

BIOGRAPHY

24 Hour Party People (2002)

Amy (2010)

Good Vibrations (2012)

Belle (2013)

The Theory of Everything (2014)

The Favourite (2018)

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