Here I go with the big bumper Bond in Berlin blog. I’ve had help along the way from other blogs and I’ll credit them in the footer.
I should say that whether I say ‘pictured left, right, above, below’ is according to the format I’m writing on the Mac Pro. Might be confusing on other devices if not configured.
These are less locations spots and more promo still shots. Starting with the above pic.
Just goes to show how much has changed.
Of course the wall is no longer there, but you can follow the course of the Berlin Wall thanks to the twin-strips of cobbled stones that delineate the walls original position. (See left).
In the back ground is the Leipziger Platz, behind me is the German Spy museum that has a few pieces of Bond memorabilia.
I did not go, which is a regret. You can buy a Museum pass for 29 euros that will get you into most museums.
(Not the Charlottenberg Palace as we later found).
It’s well worth it. The Ishtar gate and the bust of Nefertiti is quite something.
Back to Bond. Notice the picture below, taken in 1975 I believe.
Everything else in the picture has been torn down apart from the Abgeordnetenhaus of Berlin remains. (Tiny white building next to the derelict factory).
If you head to Potzdamer Platz, face towards the Abgeordnetenhaus (which is a son of a bitch word to say and spell) then you’ll get the spot.
Next up Checkpoint Charlie
According to sources the production team only came up to the checkpoint, got the shot of Bond being dropped off, called cut and hurried back from whence they came.
The tour guide told us to keep an eye on our bags and wallets as pickpockets are rife. Generally Berlin is very safe, and we felt safe but worth keeping in mind.
The original Checkpoint hut has been removed and is now in the Allied Museum. Guards are actors by a staged hut that charge 6 euros per picture.
I don’t know what the money goes towards.
Opposite the Checkpoint you’ll find the Back factory. I was told there was a treasure trove of Octopussy memorabilia there, sadly it was just the Astro plane hanging from the ceiling. Still, was nice to see. We didn’t try the food.
Lastly there is the Brandenburg Gate. Very famous location. Although as I was kindly illustrated on Facebook I stood on the wrong side. Roger stands near to the Siegessäule.
The Berlin Wall is actually clear in the Roger picture and you’ll see the cobbled trace of the wall the other side of this gate. (Bugger).
Berlin outside of Bond
It’s important to note this city has many other things going on outside of the world of James Bond. Let’s start with the bad and work to the good.
It’s a construction site. Every road, every building, every where. The buildings that are standing flip between brutalist and neo-classical. Neither are satisfactory because of how disjointed and syncopated they are in relation to each other.
That said, the dude that restored the museum pillars at the Island Museum won an award for keeping the bullet holes in.
You have to think that 87% of Berlin was destroyed during the war. With the Wall only coming down in 1990 thanks to all the lobbying from David Hasselhoff, this is still a relatively young international city
The Berlin Memorial
A very poignant place to visit. Not great etiquette to stand on the concrete plinths so I’m told. Thankfully there are no swaths of Chinese tourists here like we saw in Angkor Wat. But you still get the occasional arsehole that wants to get their picture in a place of remembrance.
There is a place under the memorial where the stories of individuals are told. But we didn’t get time to visit.
The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, also known as the Holocaust Memorial, is a memorial in Berlin to the Jewish victims of the Holocaust, designed by architect Peter Eisenman and engineer Buro Happold.
Apparently the number of the concrete plinths have no relevance, the height, the order, have no meaning. Much like the war itself. The designers did want this to be a place where people could engage, immerse themselves.
Where did Hitler die in Berlin?
That mother-effer has no plaque, no tombstone, nothing. It’s just a car parking spot near a block of flats.
The tour guide dismissed rumours that Hitler is still alive and well and dining with Elvis in Argentina. It can be found in Gertrud-Kolmer Strasse.
This was the spot where after Hitler committed suicide by swallowing cyanide and shooting himself in the face, him and his newly wedded wife were dragged outside and set fire to by his own men.
How else can I see the city?
You can get a Hotrod tour. We didn’t but they looked like fun.
Where did they burn the books?
That’s by the Humboldt University. There is a glass pane on the ground and a small room beneath that contains empty bookshelves.
A very symbolic reflection of the Nazi book burnings, a campaign conducted by the German Student Union (the “DSt”) to ceremonially burn books in Nazi Germany and Austria in the 1930s. The books targeted for burning were those viewed as being subversive or as representing ideologies opposed to Nazism.
Small fact, you remember that Nazi book burning scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade? Well the guy that played Hitler was the Headmaster in Grange Hill.
What’s the fashion like in Berlin?
Courageously shit. But you get that with international cities, a lot of tourism in their summer casuals and running trainers not giving a damn. For the record I like the two pictures below, but these were few and far between.
Make sure you visit East Side Gallery
It’s the longest running section of Berlin wall. It has graffiti on it that is very decorous, but if you’re after moody isolated shots then the other side of the wall is less illustrative and less touristy as a result.
“The most famous paintings on the Berlin Wall is My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love, sometimes referred to as the Fraternal Kiss, a graffiti painting on the Berlin wall by Dmitri Vrubel.
Created in 1990, the painting depicts Leonid Brezhnev and Erich Honecker in a fraternal embrace, reproducing a photograph that captured the moment in 1979 during the 30th anniversary celebration of the foundation of the German Democratic Republic.”
I’d like to credit the following sources
Where is the original hut of Checkpoint Charlie? – Dark Tourism
Famous kiss on the Berlin Wall – Wikipedia
James Bond locations in Octopussy – Hunting Bond
Walking tours of Berlin – Kathyrn
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