Life and Death in L.A.: June 2014

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway in 'Chinatown.'
There's something about iconic films that make fans get dizzy. When a movie so inspires a legion of followers to dress up like the film's characters, and perhaps talk like them, when kindred spirits communicate at parties by exchanging sharp, witty lines of dialogue that they know by heart ... well, then you've got yourself a cultural phenomenon there, buddy.

If you're a "Chinatown" fanatic, you'll want to trace the movements of one Jake Gittes, the private eye who unravels the complex yarn of scandal, murder and deception that unfolds in Roman Polanski's 1974 classic film.

The folks at Curbed L.A. can help you do that, with their online Ultimate Chinatown Filming Location Map of Los Angeles. Some of the filming locations aren't exactly in the same location that they're supposed to be in the film. Immaterial.

What's important is that you can walk in the footsteps of "Chinatown" stars Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway and John Huston. You'll see such locations as:

Los Angeles City Hall, the scene of a Water Department meeting, where an angry sheepherder crashes the party with his charges.
The Oak Pass reservoir -- actually the Stone Canyon Reservoir, where Hollis Mulwray takes the big sleep.
The Brown Derby, where Nicholson and Dunaway meet to talk turkey.

And the list goes on. So, pack a lunch and gas up the car. It's "Chinatown" — remember it!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014


TV Movies Network’s film noir lineup this weekend – June 7-8 -- looks good. The listings are all East Coast times starting early Sunday morning in the East, or Saturday evening in L.A. (KCOP-TV).

12:25AM / I Wake Up Screaming (1941) TV-PG
A young promoter is falsely accused of the murder of a beautiful actress he "discovered" while working as a waitress.
Featuring: Betty Grable, Victor Mature

2:10AM / The Burglar (1957) TV-PG
A jewel thief's big heist is upended when his half-sister is kidnapped by a crooked cop who demands the loot in exchange for her safe return.
Featuring: Dan Duryea, Jayne Mansfield

4:10AM / Human Desire (1954) TV-PG
A Korean War vet returns to his job as a railroad engineer and becomes involved in a sordid affair with a co-worker's wife and murder.
Featuring: Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Broderick Crawford, Edgar Buchanan, Kathleen Case

6:10AM / Pickup on South Street (1953) TV-PG
A pickpocket unwittingly lifts a message destined for enemy agents and becomes a target for a Communist spy ring.
Featuring: Richard Widmark, Jean Peters