Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Munch Goes to Big Shot Bob's House of Wings

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Munch Goes to Big Shot Bob's House of Wings

Article excerpt

So it's Oscar weekend and here's a little known fact: A scene from L.A.-centric "Pretty Woman" was filmed in Pittsburgh. The Internet Movie Database says so. Actually, it's less a scene than a couple of seconds of leftover stock footage of an establishing shot of Carnegie Music Hall that was re-used from "Flashdance," but nonetheless, according to IMDB, it's among 1,284 movies, made-for- TV movies and TV show episodes that list Pittsburgh, Pa., USA, as a filming location of some sort, dating back to primitive documentaries made in 1898.

In the time since, we've brought the world zombies and Hannibal the Cannibal and explored religious "Dogma." Batman and Inspector Gadget both made a brief home here and, of course, there was "The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh," although later on someone tried to blow up our beloved Civic Arena in "Sudden Death." Sienna Miller insulted us, but the real insult was her film's terrible adaptation of Michael Chabon's book.

Our industrial past provided a gritty and grim backdrop for a best picture in "The Deer Hunter" and we've been a post-Apocalyptic gloomscape in "The Road." Worst of all, we've doubled as Detroit -- twice! ("Hoffa" and "Robocop"). But lately, regardless of the storylines, or if Pittsburgh is even a "character" in the movie (it usually isn't) or if the films are any good (they usually aren't) directors have paid tribute to our beautiful hills, valleys, rivers and skyline with gorgeous sweeping shots and panoramas -- hot and heavy Pittsburgh porn, if you will (and that doesn't even count the one Zack & Miri made in Monroeville).

Our film history is occasionally dynamite, though more often dubious. But one would get my lifetime achievement award for most times watched on Saturdays on the couch, after a night out, while ordering in junk food and drooling during naps: "Striking Distance." With a 15 percent fresh grade from Rotten Tomatoes, it has everything: a terrible sulky Bruce Willis, a wooden performance from Sarah Jessica Parker, the late great Dennis Farina delivering Pittsburghese with a Chicago accent, cameos from Sally Wiggin, chase scenes that are impossible (Duquesne to Grandview Avenue in one cut? …

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