|LOS ANGELES PLAYS ITSELF (director/writer: Thom Andersen; cinematographer: Deborah Stratman; editor: Yoo Seung-Hyun; cast: Encke King (Narrator); Runtime: 169; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Thom Andersen; Submarine Entertainment; 2003)|
|"This unusual brainy pic acts to
show, in a provocative way, how Hollywood
transforms a fiction film into a documentary."
by Dennis Schwartz
video essay takes its title from a gay porn
classic by Fred Halsted. It's superbly directed
by the longtime resident of LA, CalArts
professor Thom Andersen ("Red Hollywood"/"Reconversão"/"Eadweard
He assembles clips from 191 movies set in
Los Angeles, and provocatively offers a running
commentary, via narration, comparing his chosen
films with the real LA he knows. Encke
King acts as narrator.
interesting take on Hollywood fantasy influencing
movies and how its filmmakers can fool the public
about the reality of Hollywood, tries to decipher what
film really lets us see about LA without brainwashing
the public by its supposed myths. It should
greatly please film buffs because of all the film
clips on the subject. They range from The Exiles to
Rebel Without A Cause to Swordfish. Anderson began the
pic in 1999, as his sharp commentary on pop culture
zeroed in on films like “L.A.
Confidential.” He presents his opinions for what an
LA film should be like to be considered authentic
and offers commentaries from the likes
of such intellectuals as the French
philosopher-critic Gilles Deleuze, a look at the
city's unique architecture as influencing films and
how ripe LA is for pulp crime stories.
unusual brainy pic acts to show, in a provocative way,
how Hollywood transforms a fiction film into a
REVIEWED ON 5/15/2015 GRADE: A-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ