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Been to the London park where Jude Law and Natalie Portman got ‘Closer’?

Exploring the leafy secret at the heart of Mike Nichols’s psychodrama

Written by
Thomas Hobbs

A dark snapshot of pre-Tinder dating in the big city, Mike Nichols’ Closer sizzled and skulked through a variety of recognisable London locations. But one of its key locales is a lot less well-known...

The location: Postman’s Park, EC1

The scene: Flirty obituary writer Dan (Jude Law) chats up redhead Alice (Natalie Portman) while taking a stroll through the City. They end up in Postman’s Park admiring the garden’s stunning memorial plaques. ‘I’ve been here before,’ notes Dan, mournfully.

Then: This beautiful park, which opened in 1880, was at the core of Mike Nichols’ 2004 psychodrama, providing Law’s character with a place to reflect in-between hopping from Portman’s to Julia Roberts’s beds. Its name derives from its position opposite the General Post Office building. In 1900, sculptor George Frederic Watts created a memorial shelter with vibrant glazed plaques in the park. They were dedicated to ordinary men, women and children who lost their lives saving others.

Photograph: Andy ParsonsPostman’s Park IRL

Now: Bar the tree ferns and a goldfish pond, the park has changed little since 1900. Its historic winding paths, flowerbeds, benches and lawns all remain. Architectural historian Edmund Burd says: ‘It is a truly unique garden with a poignant history – an oasis of calm at the heart of our bustling city.’ It’s easy to miss but well worth a visit.

Closer is streaming on Amazon Prime, Apple TV, YouTube and Google Play.

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