Archive for July 2006
By Maja Manojlovič
You only realize why L.A. embodies the paradoxical status of both global utopian dream machine and the dystopian nightmare once you’ve driven out of it and onto the 10 Freeway East towards the Mojave Desert. Its vast space with ancient Joshua trees, curious coyotes – signifying the tricksters in Native American mythology, – and vacillating colors is absolutely magical. As an extension of Mojave Desert the space of City of Angels comes as close as it gets to an apparition, which is probably exactly what was going through D.W. Griffith’s mind when New York based studio Biograph sent him out west to shoot in the Mediterranean like climate of L.A.
This sense of the city being a mirage in the desert is still a very pervasive one. Anything having to do with illusion, fantasy, hallucination, or you name a variation of delusion, is the reality of L.A. This shape-shifting, fluid quality of the city’s material make up absorbs the projections of the imagined and imaged from all over the globe. It works similar to the 3-D, multilayered »screen« where the pre-cog’s minds projected their visions in Spielberg’s Minority Report. However, just like the Minority Report’s pre-cogs are in the service of the corrupt government, this apparently multifaceted screen takes in and mobilizes all creative imagination to serve the box office.
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