This is another in my posts on spy tourism. Read other posts in the series here.
Located in London, I had marginal expectations for the London Film Museum’s Bond in Motion exhibit. I’m not any sort of huge car guy and as this is an exhibit looking at Bond vehicles, how much am I really going to get out of it? However a friend who had previously visited insisted I check it out.
Well, my expectations were greatly exceeded. It’s not exactly a cheap experience at £14.50 per person, but the guy working the register recognized my Spectre ring, so the folks working at least had some familiarity with Bond. The exhibit is located on the lower level and as you descend the staircase you see the various cars pop up out of the darkness, spotlit like jewels in a museum. The whole space has an industrial vibe that makes you feel as though you are walking through some Bond villain’s lair where he’s displaying trophies of his vanquished foe.
It’s been a few years since I’ve seen some of the films but they do a wonderful job of reminding you of which movie used the car. Behind each vehicle is a giant screen showing the scene or scene it in which it appeared. As I walked the space, memories of the various cars and movies came flooding back.
There’s Pierce Brosnan driving his car with his phone!
There’s the invisible car!
The jet pack!!
Even Bond likes to play in the snow!
There were some missed opportunities.
How do you not have a pushbroom available behind this motorcycle?!?
It also has fun with how absurd some of the Bond moments are. Whether having a car do a spiral while jumping a bridge, invisible cars or taking a spin in a car that turns into a plane, James Bond has done it all.
The surprising part is how big the exhibit actually is. I thought there would be a few cars and that’s it, but there were several rooms containing over a hundred items of memorabilia such vehicles, storyboards, posters and more showcasing all of the films through Spectre. They even had a funky lounge where you could get a drink and relax. There is free wifi throughout and they encourage social media interaction. The obligatory gift shop had a small but expensive collection of items for sale.
They also seem intent on refreshing the exhibit over time. It was recently updated to highlight various vehicles that the women of the Bond movies used in the films.
Overall, if you have even a marginal interest in James Bond, I suggest visiting. It’s a lot of fun. For superfans it’s a must visit. Your minds will be blown.