My impressions of Hollywood and Los Angeles are framed mostly by the movie Mulholland Drive.
The movie is a terrifying strand of subconsciousness that floats like a dream sequence and exposes Hollywood as dark, brash, and unforgiving but with millions of heatlamps where the moths gather between the darkness.
It’s like looking through a a sharp camera lens pointed in the wrong direction. What impacted me the most was when Rebekah Del Rio sings Llorando, based on the Southwestern legend of the Crying Woman. But you really have to watch in context of the movie.
Mulholland Drive in real life is a road that goes from Los Angeles, through the Santa Monica mountains, to the Pacific Ocean. It rises above the city and, at night, you can see the glittering lights of the San Fernando Valley and downtown Los Angeles. Lots and lots of famous people live on Mulholland Drive. Rent costs $20,000 a month. And it is also amazingly gorgeous. Mr. B and I decided to take on its infamy first thing when we got to LA.
We set out at 7:00 in the morning to beat the traffic. There are multiple stops along Mulholland Drive where you can look out over the city at different angles.
The houses there are crazy.
From Mulholland Drive, you can go to Runyon Canyon Park, where you can hike up to a spot to see the Hollywood sign and the city of LA. It was really hard to get a good picture, but we did see lots of dogs and their owners.
This is one of my favorite pictures of the trip:
After we were gone oggling Los Angeles from the hills, we went to the La Brea Tar Pits.
And then to the tourist trap of Hollywood Boulevard. We both took pictures with our favorite celebrities.
Then, we went on the most godawful tour I’ve ever been on at Sony Studios, which bought Columbia Pictures. Why? Because they haven’t won an Oscar for best movie since I was born. And they keep making gems like the newest remake of Karate Kid, a remake of Overboard starring J. Lo, and sequels to every movie alive. Not to mention Eat, Pray, Love. They will never get another statue at this point. But the tour was fun because we got to see how sets are put up in soundstages and just how fake the whole Hollywood process is. Also, we saw Simon Cowell.
Then, obviously, Rodeo Drive.
Do you think Mr. B bought me something from Van Cleef and Arpels? I also don’t think so, considering that I didn’t even want to go into any of the stores.
The second day, we went to Santa Monica. It was cold. Did I mention how cold I was this entire vacation?
cold, but happy.
We ended the day with a visit to the incredible Getty Museum and I got to meet one of my favorite bloggers, Neil, who is a great writer.
As Mr. B stood at the end of our day at the Getty, looking out over the city, we were both filled with endless impressions.
We loved California.