The Bridges Of Madison County (1995)

The 1995 film “The Bridges of Madison County” takes place in Iowa, where the film was likewise shot. The farmhouse where Francesca Johnson, played by Meryl Streep, lives can be found in Cumming, Iowa. Here Fransesca meets Robert Kincaid, a photojournalist from National Geographic visiting the area of photograph the covered bridges of Madison County.

The house was built in 1870 by an Argentinian sea captain named Nicholas Thompson, who later sold the house and surrounding land to Joseph Mead. The home has remained with his family since that time. After searching over 150 properties for the perfect farmhouse, on the final day of scouting, the filmmakers discovered the home by helicopter. By the time Eastwood and his crew found the home, it had sat vacant for over thirty years in disrepair. The production completely restored the property and made use of both the interiors and exteriors for the film.

After the success of the film, the owners opened up the home to tours. Much like another famous filming location in Iowa, the house and baseball field from “Field Of Dreams,” the home attracted many tourists, who could visit inside and outside the grounds. This ended on October 6, 2003, when arsonists destroyed part of the home. The northwest corner was largely destroyed, which contained memorabilia for the film, including photos and scripts, many of which were lost forever.

After the fire, the tours ceased and the home was never restored. The area in back damaged most heavily by the fire remains completely open and exposed to the elements. The area is now fenced off from visitors and the home is in poor condition. You can in fact clearly see the home from the gravel road out front, which is public. However, it sits a short distance back from the road. The long driveway up to the home is private and closed to the public. With the home empty, fire damaged and completely exposed for decades, we’re not sure how long it will remain standing. For now, however, it remains somewhat in tact for anyone willing to make their way out to see it.

LOCATION: 3255 130th St, Cumming, IA 50061 (GPS coordinates: 41°28’03.1″N 93°49’43.9″W)

Several covered bridges are featured in the film. The Roseman Covered Bridge plays a key role in the film, when Fransesca first navigates Robert to it in the early part of the story. Roseman Covered Bridge was built in 1883. One of the final two covered bridges ever built in Madison County, it carried motorists for nearly one hundred years before being decommissioned. While most other covered bridges in the area have since been demolished, Roseman Covered Bridge remains standing and is open to the public.

LOCATION: 2451 Elderberry Ave, Winterset, IA 50273

When Robert first arrives with Fransesca, he heads down to this area to set up his camera.

Here is the view Robert was scouting to photograph. This view is also seen on the theatrical poster.

Fransesca walks around this area of the bridge while Robert works.

After getting a drink from the truck, Fransesca comes to the opposite side of the bridge to find Robert picking flowers for her in this area. Fransesca teases Robert that the flowers are poisonous.

The bridge is featured again in the closing scenes of the film.

The locations for “The Bridges of Madison County” are unique in that many of them are old and historic, yet remain standing today. Tucked away from the destination locations of America, they remain a hidden treasure for film lovers, as well as anyone who can appreciate nature or history.

Related articles: Breezy (1973), American Sniper (2014)

Natural Born Killers (1994)

Oliver Stone’s 1994 film “Natural Born Killers” was shot in quite a few different locations, including Arizona, New Mexico, Illinois and Indiana, as the story depicts two killers on a cross-country mass murder spree. In the opening scenes of the film, Micky and Mallory, played by Woody Harrelson and Juliette Lewis respectively, visit a restaurant on a desert road known as the “5 To 2 Cafe.”  After some unwanted advances and rude remarks from some locals, things quickly turn violent.

The building still stands all these years later, although it is long since boarded up and closed down.  The former diner can be found on AZ-99, along an isolated stretch on the outskirts of Winslow, Arizona.  To visit in person, it feels quite remote.  However, in reality, it’s only a few miles from Interstate 40, between the highway and the town of Leupp.  The exact location of the building is 35°06’54.8″N, 110°52’20.3″W.

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LOCATION: AZ-99, Winslow, AZ 86047 (between Interstate 40 and Indian Rte 15, Leupp) (GPS coordinates: 35°06’54.8″N, 110°52’20.3″W)

The property is fenced off from the sides and there is a residence next door, so be careful not to trespass or disturb the tenants.

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These distinct circular windows can still be seen on the sides of the building.  The windows are seen in the film behind Juliette Lewis, as she dances in front of the jukebox.

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The overheating truck pulls up in front.

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For those wondering, the “5 To 2 Cafe” sign out front near the road is long since gone.

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Micky and Mallory get married at the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge in El Prado, New Mexico. The bridge is far removed from most tourist destinations, requiring hours of driving through mountains and winding terrain to reach it. Once you’re there, however, it’s instantly recognizable.

LOCATION: Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, US-64, El Prado, NM 87529

Here is where the doll falls at the beginning of the scene and where Micky and Mallory cut their hands, hold them together and drop their blood into the river below.

Here is where the loud truck passengers drive by and momentarily irritate Micky and Mallory.

The gorge is a very sheer drop, so the surrounding land is mostly fenced off, preventing you from getting too close to the edges. Here is about as close as you can get, with this view taken through the wire fencing.

Here is a view standing on the middle of the bridge looking out at the road. It gets extremely windy on this bridge, so much so, you can feel the vibration on the bridge as you stand on it.

This side of the gorge isn’t seen in the film, but here is the view from the opposite side of the bridge.

Here are some landmarks and signs for the bridge. You can see some of the fencing in the background, which is taller than it may appear here.

While it is permissible to fly drones at the bridge, the area is so windy, you’ll almost certainly lose your drone immediately if you attempt to fly one. We don’t recommend trying it. There is a parking lot available on one side of the bridge and a rest area on the other side, making it easy to access on foot. The drive to get there is the hardest part.

Later in the film, Micky and Mallory are finally captured at the “Drug Zone” after being bitten by rattlesnakes and in need of medicine.  The building is currently a crafts store and can be found in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Aside from the sign and some changes to the front entrance, the building otherwise still resembles how it appeared in the film.

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LOCATION: 9350 Eagle Ranch Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87114

A standoff between Micky and the cops ensues out front and after surrendering, Micky is then beaten by the police, as they try to prevent a film crew from capturing it.

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Here’s a look from inside the store, in the general area where Micky exits and surrenders.

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Related articles: U Turn (1997)

Stranger Things

The popular TV series “Stranger Things” is set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana.  The real locations of Hawkins are actually a composite of a number of small towns scattered around the Greater Atlanta Area of Georgia.  Many of the locations are fairly distanced from one another, so it takes some dedication to see them all.  Here we’ll take a look at many of these locations.

The Hawkins National Laboratory, where all of the supernatural mysteries seem to originate, can be found in Atlanta.  The building is actually a former clinic, which is part of Emory University.

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LOCATION: 1256 Briarcliff Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Mike’s house, which is seen frequently on the show, can be found in the town of East Point.  Most of the kids’ houses from the show are all not only in East Point, but all in the same neighborhood.

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LOCATION: 2530 Piney Wood Ln, East Point, GA 30344

Hawkins High School can be found in the town of Stockbridge.  The real school is Patrick Henry High School. The same school also appeared in the film “Brightburn.”

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LOCATION: 109 S Lee St, Stockbridge, GA 30281

Hawkins Middle School is actually the same location as the high school, just different buildings on the same property.  Quite a number of scenes take place around these school buildings.

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LOCATION: 109 S Lee St, Stockbridge, GA 30281

The kids can be seen parking their bikes here.  This and many scenes were filmed towards the back of the school property, away from the road.  So if you don’t immediately spot recognizable areas, look for the tall field lights and head toward the back of the school.

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This building can be seen pretty close to the road, in which the giant creature from the alternate universe known as the “Upside Down” can be seen towering over it.  The building is still painted with the fictitious school name from the show.

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This entrance is seen prominently is Season 2 of the show, with the kids dressed as Ghostbusters.  This same area of the school was also featured in Season 2 Episode 10 of the TV show “Atlanta.”

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Max, played by Sadie Sink, is seen walking up these stairs as the other kids spy on her.

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The kids look for Dart in another Season 2 episode at this spot.

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Another wide view of the school, as seen from the field at the back of the property.

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Most of the town square of Hawkins is comprised of buildings from the town of Jackson, Georgia.  Melvad’s General Store is one such example. The interior was dressed for filming when we visited, so here’s a couple glimpses inside.

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LOCATION: 4 2nd St, Jackson, GA 30233

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Eleven uses her mind control powers to kill a man inside of this restaurant in Litha Springs, known as Tiffany’s Kitchen.

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LOCATION: 7413 Lee Rd, Lithia Springs, GA 30122

The Hawkins Library is actually the Butts County Probate Court building (25 3rd St, Jackson, GA 30233).

Switching back to East Point, this house, where Lucas lives, is located right beside Mike’s house.

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LOCATION: 2550 Piney Wood Ln, East Point, GA 30344

Jonathan and Steve get into a fight in this alley as Nancy is caught in the middle.  It can also be found in Jackson, not far from Milvad’s General Store and the Hawkins Library. It is located at the alley between N Oak St / Pittman St, Jackson, GA 30233 (the building seen across the street is 124 W 2nd St, Jackson, GA 30233).

While the kids are being pursued, Eleven uses her powers to flip a van over in front of these houses, found in Tucker, Georgia.

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LOCATION: Between 3782 and 3788 Sarahs Ln, Tucker, GA 30084

The police station, where Sheriff Hopper works, can be found in the town Douglasville, not far from the arcade seen in Season 2.  Finding the building can be slightly confusing.  Many online resources state the address as “48 Pray Street” in Douglasville.  The number above the doorway of the building is indeed 48.  However, the street name is actually Courthouse Square West.  Google lists the address as 8485 Courthouse Square West.  If you find yourself confused, just locate the intersection of Church St and Courthouse Square West and you’ll have no trouble spotting the building.

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LOCATION: 8485 Courthouse Square West, Douglasville, GA 30134

Dustin’s house, nested in trees, can also be found near the houses of Mike and Lucas in East Point.

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LOCATION: 2886 Piney Wood Dr, East Point, GA 30344

Barb’s house is likewise located on the same road.

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LOCATION: 2980 Piney Wood Dr, East Point, GA 30344

Jonathan pays a visit to Lonnie’s house, which can be found in Atlanta.

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LOCATION: 930 Garibaldi St SW, Atlanta, GA 30310

Season 2 kicks off with police in pursuit of a van carrying another girl with supernatural powers, much like Eleven.  As they approach this overpass, the girl seizes control of the cop’s mind to make him envision the structure collapsing.

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LOCATION: Glenn St SW, Atlanta, GA 30312 (nearest address is 562 Glenn St SW, Atlanta, GA 30312)

The cop slams his breaks, with many cop cars crashing into him, only for his partner to inform him his vision wasn’t real.  The tunnel appears much longer and deeper on the show than it is in real life.  It’s actually just a short overpass.  The same overpass was seen in the 2018 film “Game Night,” when Kyle Chandler’s character throws himself from a moving car.

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It isn’t the safest or cleanest of areas, we wouldn’t recommend coming out here alone at night.

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The arcade, seen in Season 2, still has the paint job from the show, although the sign is no longer there.  The building currently sits vacant in Douglasville, the same town as the Hawkins Police Department.

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LOCATION: 6501 Church St, Douglasville, GA 30134

A couple glimpses inside the empty arcade building…

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Max lives at this small house, which can be found in Stone Mountain, Georgia.

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LOCATION: 5280 Moore St, Stone Mountain, GA 30083

While you’ll spend a lot of time driving across Georgia to see all of these places, one upside is that most of these locations still bear a strong resemblance to how they appeared on the show, with some still continuing to be used for production.

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

Spider-Man finally took center stage as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2017’s “Spider-Man: Homecoming.”  While set in Queens, New York, most of the film was shot around Atlanta, Georgia.

Spider-Man, played by Tom Holland, returns a stolen bike in front of the Rainbow store in downtown Atlanta.

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LOCATION: 62 Peachtree St SW, Atlanta, GA 30303

Peter discovers Adrian Toomes, played by Michael Keaton, is selling weapons to Aaron Davis, played by Donald Glover, underneath the Park Drive Bridge in Piedmont Park.

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LOCATION: Underneath Park Drive Bridge, Park Dr NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

Liz lives with her family at this unique glass house in the Ansley Park Sherwood Forest neighborhood of Atlanta.  The same home appeared in the 2016 film “Mother’s Day.” Alex’s house from “Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle” can also be found in the same neighborhood.

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LOCATION: 229 Little John Trail NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

Stand By Me (1986)

Widely regarded as one of the finest Stephen King adaptations, “Stand By Me” was set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine.  However, the film was actually shot around Oregon.  The boys set about their adventure at this bridge in the small community of Walden.  To find it, you will need to follow the Row River Trail up to Mosby Creek.

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LOCATION: Row River Trail at Mosby Creek, Cottage Grove, OR 97424