Reyner Loves LA.

A few weeks ago I mentioned Reyner Banham and his 1972 BBC documentary, “Reyner Loves Los Angeles.”  Well, I love LA as well and thought that since we were getting such great weather in Cambridge this week, that I’d post a link to the video and few screenshots.

This is worth watching simply for the gawk-value of  a bushy-bearded Banham as he climb into his rental car at LAX and immediately pops in an 8-Track “Baeda-Car” cassette tape. Immediate a creeped pitched  pre-digital tone signals Banham to start his car and a Retro-Siri guides Banham through some more interesting bits of the city (back in the early 70s). What’s compelling about the video is really how much has and hasn’t changed in the city in the past forty years. The highway overpasses are still high and the quality of the plants and the air has that same tone; however, the freeways look a lot less crowded, making me wish I had been able to see—or rather experience—Los Angeles when the car-centered vision of the city ran without traffic.

Some highlights include:

The opening titles of Banham's 1972 documentary.

The opening titles of Banham’s 1972 documentary.

Banham, a tourist at the Watts Towers—built from 1921-1954 by Simon Rodilla

Banham, a tourist at the Watts Towers—built from 1921-1954 by Simon Rodilla

"Baeda-Car" 8-track tape. Or,  "Retro-Siri"

“Baeda-Car” 8-track tape. Or, “Retro-Siri”

Buckle-up!

Buckle-up!

At the drive-in with Ed Ruscha.

At the drive-in with Ed Ruscha.

The video itself:

And a quick video about the making of the Watts Towers:

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: