Julian Cooper
USA, GBR 1972
52 min

Los Angeles was the first American city to develop a metropolitan freeway system, so its promise of modernity has always been keyed to the idea of nearly miraculous freedom of movement. From beach to mountains to desert in a matter of minutes. The British critic Reyner Banham wrote: «The city will never be fully understood by those who cannot move fluently through its diffuse urban texture ... So, like earlier generations of English intellectuals who taught themselves Italian to read Dante in the original, I learned to drive in order to read Los Angeles in the original.» Banham called Los Angeles «autopia», but few contributors to «Writing Los Angeles» have an unambivalent relationship to its driving culture. Traveling through a region that, by one contemporary estimate, contains 18 urban village cores and over 140 incorporated cities, writers in L.A. have repeatedly experienced the loneliness of the long-distance motorist Joan Didion observed: «A good part of any day in Los Angeles is spent driving, alone, through streets devoid of meaning to the driver, which is one reason the place exhilarates some people, and floods others with an amorphous unease.»

This film i spart of the program <filmlink id=\"3031\">Loving Los Angeles</filmlink>.

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