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5.0 based on 10 reviews
My wife, adult daughter and I love to go on walking tours in LA when we are visiting her. This year we signed up for the Movie Experience, expecting to see the insides of some buildings and maybe some street scenes. But, from the moment that we met our tour guide, Armond, we knew that we were in for a real treat. Armond's energy, knowledge and enthusiasm for LA and its movie history made this tour 90 minutes of pure enjoyment. We saw many places where movies, commercials and music videos had been shot. We saw numerous film clips on Armond's laptop. He skillfully created scenes in our minds in addition to what our eyes were watching. The pace of the tour was perfect. Armond's communication style was easy and engaging. It was a wonderful tour.
The Hollywood Movie Experience in Downtown Los Angeles is my favorite of the many tours I've taken in LA. It gives you the best overview of the city's films, history, and architecture. Unlike most other LA tours, this one's entire 90-minute running time is packed with stories, film clips, and amazing sights. One moment you're reveling in the glorious interior of the Bradbury Building from Blade Runner, then you're riding the Angels Flight funicular featured in La-La Land, and next you're seeing the real-life "Gotham City" or a locale from the Muppets. We even got in to restricted areas of the Biltmore Hotel, where they filmed music videos by Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, Jennifer Lopez, and more. Our tour guide, Michael, really made an extra effort to ensure that everyone in our group was able to enjoy the experience. He accommodated our different interests and fitness levels with aplomb, even going so far as to walk backwards while holding the movie player to get us back to the OUE Skyspace before sunset. Give that man a medal!
Personally I wasn't expecting much from this tour, being on mediocre tours a few days earlier. I was even more disheartened when I found out it was just our group that would be attending. This trepidation was unfounded though, as this was honestly one of the most interesting and entertaining walking attractions we have been on. Michael was an attentive and likable host, mixing local knowledge with movie facts and clips. I won't bang on about the actual areas of the tour, but he nailed it, showing us all the best places of downtown Los Angeles.
While in LA we were lucky to take both the Hollywood tour and the downtown movie tour using our GoLA pass. Being the downtime in LA, we were lucky both times to have a private tour. Both our guides were excellent and personable but Michael on the downtown your was exceptional and we found this tour to be the better of the two if you can only choose one while in LA. The combination of the visual clips and the onsite locations really elevated this tour. Whether using the GoLA pass or paying on the gate, the cost is well worth it. I would recommend combining the Hollywood tour with a trip to the Dolby Theatre or a movie in the Chinese Theatre. Combine the downtown tour with pre-lunch in the Grand Central Market and a drink in the skyspace afterwards.
Definitely consider visiting downtown LA. It is not your typical amusement park or entertainment industry crazed environment. We were able to learn the history while seeing the many tourist attraction places. Have been to LA over 10 times now, but this was our family's first visit and tour of downtown LA. Would recommend for those who love history.
Michael is an excellent tour guide! But there is a major problem with the red line and trip advisor interface. We made a reservation online with trip advisor for a 12 pm tour and when we got to the start location at 11:45, the red line tour operator said on his sheet were booked for 10 am.
We did this tour with Michael. He had an incredible knowledge of the area. It was a funny and light-hearted tour, but he packed in loads of locations, lots of stories, facts & even some film excerpts. I booked another tour for a couple of days later to look at the architecture in the Downtown area as I thought this would be focused only on the films but Michael actually pointed out a lot of the features on the buildings and almost rendered the second tour redundant! It was a great tour made even better by a really good guide with a great sense of humour. Highly recommended.
I had a VIP experience doing the walking tour with Michael on Dec 31st. I was looking for something to do before the evening NYE celebrations and this was the perfect fit. The tour starts and ends at the US Bank Tower on 5th Street near Bunker Hill. I suggest you wear comfy walking shoes. The weather was perfect and you may not need heavy clothing because you get a nice work out along the way. The tour lasted just over 90 minutes. Michael is very knowledgeable about the history of movie-making in general, Los Angeles and its industry history and local culture. I really enjoyed seeing the movie clips in context with their locations there were over twenty and surprising that many of my favourite movies were featured. The clips seemed tailored to my interests. It's worth taking the tour to learn more about how the City of Angels evolved and I recommend eating at the Grand Central Market after you're finished. There are lots of amazing food stations to try different cuisines.
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