Ridley Scott's "Blade Runner" crossed Los Angeles with a grittier, less orderly Tokyo. Just over thirty years later, Spike Jonze's "Her" crosses Los Angeles with a sanitized Shanghai, creating a utopian urban setting for surely the mildest cyberpunk story ever told. Instead of menacing android replicants and detective Rick Deckard who hunts them, we have a sentient operating system and the mustachioed, ukulele playing milquetoast Theodore Twombly who, as he lives his lonely life in this future Los Angeles' skyscrapers and on its high-speed trains (but never in a car), falls in love with it.
The video essays of "Los Angeles, the City in Cinema" examine the variety of Los Angeleses revealed in the films set there, both those new and old, mainstream and obscure, respectable and schlocky, appealing and unappealing — just like the city itself.
For more on "The City in Cinema", "Notebook on Cities and Culture", and "A Los Angeles Primer", visit colinmarshall.org