Boomtown: a visual history of Toronto getting blown up in movies

Boomtown: a visual history of Toronto getting blown up in movies

The White House was blown to smithereens by aliens in Independence Day. Michael Bay has let the Transformers and other astral forces wreck Chicago and Hong Kong. New York City’s Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty and other landmarks have been flooded, hit by asteroids, abandoned to ravenous vampires and left half-buried in post-nuclear, ape-controlled wastelands. You might think Toronto, perennial Gardiner construction and Rob Ford’s mayoralty notwithstanding, has been spared its own apocalypses—but we’ve had our share, too.

The recent release of the trailer for Adam Sandler’s new flick, Pixels, gave us a chance to see Pac Man, Donkey Kong and other video game villains wreaking havoc on the downtown core, albeit thinly disguised as a Manhattan city block. It may have been jarring to see split-second clips of Pac Man hanging out outside First Canadian Place, but this isn’t even remotely the first time Toronto has been blown up—blown up real good!—for the sake of cinema. Here, a rundown of a bunch of times Hogtown has been laid to waste by special effects.