Toronto’s extensive work on the silver screen reveals that, while we have the chameleonic ability to look like anywhere from New York City to Moscow, the disguise doesn’t always hold up to scrutiny. Reel Toronto revels in digging up and displaying the films that attempt to mask, hide, or—in rare cases—proudly display our city.
There are two well-known movies called Crash. One takes place in Los Angeles and is about how everyone is a racist. Yes, even you and Tony Danza. The other takes place in Toronto and is about technology and sex and machines and sex and stuff. The latter is what we’re gonna look at here.
David Cronenberg’s 1996 picture was understandably criticized for being cold, violent, and borderline pornographic, however it’s clear that, like it or not, there’s something a bit more than just that going on. As with The Fly, Cronenberg doesn’t really dwell on where the film takes place, but at the same time he makes little effort to hide that it’s shot and set in Toronto.
Being about cars ‘n’ stuff, we could easily bore you with a kajillion road shots. Most of the chases and crashes were shot on the lower stretches of the DVP and Gardiner.
With highways being such a central concern, it’s perhaps not surprising the two main characters live in an apartment overlooking the 401-404 interchange.
As you can see from the balcony, they’re in these apartments on Graydon Hall Drive.
From there, these people will drive and get kinky just about anywhere, yo. Here’s a big accident scene at the Richmond Street ramp.
Things go a bit far leading up to the finale…
…when Deborah Kara Unger ends up below the back side of the same ramp. That sounds potentially sexy, but it’s not.
When traffic’s bad on the DVP you know that the Bayview Extension is a good option.
There’s more driving and crashing and making with the love under the highway, where James Spader meets Holly Hunter at an impound lot…
…but sometimes they like it on top, if you know what we mean.
Occasionally the main characters do get off the road a bit, like this erotic scene at the Dundas-DVP Mercedes dealership. It’s the same place Aretha Franklin asked for some respect, in Blues Brothers 2000.
Just a bit off the Gardiner, here’s the old Joy Gas Station. It used to be on Lake Shore at Windermere but has since been relocated.
Oh yeah, we just can’t enough of that sexy Gardiner…
…we could do this all day.
If you’re not tired of our waterfront eyesore yet, James Spader’s office doesn’t seem to be around anymore but it looks like it was on the chunk of land now being redeveloped for the West Donlands.
They also have fun at this Queen’s Quay parking lot, also alongside the Gardiner…
…and the old parking lot at Pearson Airport.
Crash ain’t for everyone—most Cronenberg films aren’t—but he always shoots Toronto in a unique light. We can’t wait to see what he does with Cosmopolis.